While the Sunshine State has unlimited potential to be a true leader in solar and energy efficiency, creating jobs and a new, vibrant economy for our state, coal-fired plants like Duke Energy's Crystal River Power Station generate soot, smog and toxic mercury pollution that threaten our health, environment and economy. The Sierra Club's Florida Beyond Coal Campaign has a simple message: it’s time for Duke Energy to stop stalling and choose twenty-first century, clean renewable energy solutions for Florida.Simply put, the Crystal River plant is too costly for Duke Energy customers and takes a heavy toll on Florida’s air and water quality. The Florida Beyond Coal Campaign is calling for Duke to phase out two boilers at its Crystal River coal plant by 2016 and commit to clean renewable energy solutions, such as solar, sooner rather than later.
However, we have learned that Duke Energy filed a petition with the state Public Service Commission on December 31st that would allow the utility to extend operations of the two coal boilers until 2018. In addition, Duke would be permitted to charge customers for costs associated with the continued operation of those units.
Ivan Penn of the Tampa Bay Times has written an excellent piece setting out the details regarding Duke's petition: http://www.tampabay.com/news/business/energy/duke-seeks-to-extend-operations-of-dirtiest-coal-units-through-2018/2160019