Florida power company, developer to create solar powered town

A real-estate developer announced Thursday it is teaming with Florida Power & Light to create what the company says will be the first city powered by solar energy.

Kitson & Partners, based in Palm Beach Gardens, said FPL will construct the "world's largest solar photovoltaic power plant" at Babcock Ranch, a 17,000-acre development north of Fort Myers.

Though researchers are working to create storage capability for sunlight-generated power, solar electricity at present only is available during daytime hours. The concept is FPL's 75-megawatt solar generator will produce more power for the state's electric while the sun shines than the city will use in 24 hours.

"We're going to generate more renewable energy than the city consumes," said Kitson spokeswoman Lisa Hall. "It will be a leader in solar. It's a great opportunity to overcome that storage thing. The carbon footprint is going to be net zero."

FPL spokeswoman Jackie Anderson said the new solar plant is contingent upon approvals from the Public Service Commission and action by the Legislature to approve new arrangements for renewable energy.

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