Florida Power & Light bags two awards for grid resiliency

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PA Consulting Group has recognised Florida Power & Light with the Award for Outstanding Reliability Performance in the Southeast US.

The recognition is the fourth in consecutive years, recognising utilities use of innovation to optimise the performance of the grid network.

Eric Silagy, CEO at Florida Power & Light, said continued investments in smart grid technologies made since 2006 have resulted in FPL building a strong and intelligent grid network resulted, and in being recognised over the past four years.

Florida Power & Light has invested $3 billion in smart grid since 2006 and improved service reliability by 25% over the past five years.

“It’s a testament to the hardworking men and women of FPL. All 9,000 employees who make up this great company have an unwavering commitment to deliver reliable electric service our customers can count on in good weather and bad…”

Florida Power & Light and bad weather

The energy provider to 4.8 million metering points was also awarded the Outstanding Response to a Major Outage Event award for quickly restoring services following the effects of Hurricane Matthew.

The utility is third largest in the US and has invested billions to strengthen its grid against bad weather and to ensure services are restored quickly, since 2004.

Investments made have reduced an average customer outage time by approximately three days. [FPL restore services to 2.7 million customers affected by Irma].

In addition to investments already made, FPL says it has embarked on:

  • Strengthening nearly 860 main power lines, serving critical community facilities and services, such as police and fire stations, hospitals, 911 centers, grocery stores and gas stations;
  • Placing additional main power lines underground, bringing the total to more than 450;
  • Clearing vegetation – a major cause of power outages – from more than 150,000 miles of power lines;
  • Inspecting the company’s 1.2 million power poles every eight years, and upgrading or replacing those that no longer meet FPL’s standards for strength (approximately 150,000 poles inspected annually); and
  • Installing more than 4.9 million smart meters and 83,000 intelligent devices to help predict, reduce and prevent power outages, and restore power faster if outages occur.

“As companies strive to deliver the highest level of reliability to customers, the next generation of utilities must be resilient,” said Gregg Edeson, PA Consulting Group’s ReliabilityOne™ program director.

“An outstanding example of the utility of the future, FPL proved again that it is committed to resiliency requirements and grid modernisation in the face of probable storm/major event impacts and emerging distributed energy resources.”

 

Image credit: 123rf

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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.