Florida has grown dangerously overreliant on a single power supply, pure fuel.

In truth, pure fuel makes up 75% of the power we use to energy our colleges, houses, companies, and automobiles. With pure fuel costs rising and unsteady, this overreliance has left Floridians experiencing the brunt of risky power markets. Diversifying our power provide will assist defend Florida’s residents and companies from these pointless and undesirable prices however it’s difficult course of and to get there we want Florida’s lawmakers to chart a course.

Speaker Paul Renner and Home Commerce Chair Bob Rommel are completely proper to discover an power agenda, and we recognize the open door they’ve supplied. Whereas it’s unlikely an economically sound and science-based plan could be created in the course of the quick 60-day Legislative Session, we’re hopeful that when the mud settles on the 2024 Legislative Session, lawmakers can have, at a minimal created a process power to judge rising applied sciences, deal with rising demand, and consider gas, upkeep and operational prices over time. This may permit the state to take an enormous step in direction of creating a long-term, viable plan for Florida’s power safety.

Together with my colleagues on the Environmental Defense Fund, we consider there are free market alternatives that can assist diversify and stabilize power costs for our state’s rising inhabitants.

You can not drive a automotive by wanting by way of the rearview mirror. As an alternative of specializing in the applied sciences of yesterday, Florida’s leaders should chart a course with a transparent imaginative and prescient of attainable power aims centered on the info. Along with creation of a process power, we suggest the Legislature think about three core foundational pillars of power diversification:

First, photo voltaic power era manufacturing. Photo voltaic is now 15% less expensive than pure fuel and carries no further gas prices. Because the Sunshine state, it’s crucial that we deal with harnessing this capability to diversify from over reliance on fossil fuels.

Second, decreasing waste by way of sturdy power effectivity and grid reform. Analysis reveals Floridians may payments could possibly be decreased as much as 47% by putting in ductless warmth pumps and different power environment friendly parts. We will leverage this chance to accommodate our rising demand whereas decreasing the necessity to construct dearer and polluting fossil gas energy vegetation.

Third, permit Florida’s Workplace of Vitality to advance residential power effectivity applications, rebates, and contractor trainings. Funding and applications devoted to power effectivity are an vital a part of transferring Florida towards constructive outcomes. Eliminating waste reduces the state’s total power consumption, thereby decreasing prices, which is an important side of addressing power affordability for Floridians. These measures additionally assist to deal with and mitigate prices in a state significantly weak to summer season warmth and extreme storms.

The state of Florida doesn’t make investments our police and instructor pensions in a single section of the economic system, particularly not a risky one. Equally, we should always diversify our power investments to cut back threat. Our state has important untapped potential for power that’s dwelling grown, not imported by way of 1000’s of miles of pipelines from out of state.

Florida’s overreliance on a single power supply has pricey penalties to households and companies. Our group of scientists and economists stand able to assist efforts to create a process power, determine alternatives to diversify threat and stabilize power costs for Florida’s rising inhabitants.

Now could be the time to energy Florida ahead.


Daybreak Shirreffs is the Florida Director of the Environmental Protection Fund.

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