New energy ‘superhighway’ connecting Northwest Florida to FPL energy grid
PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -Northwest Florida is connected to the Florida Power and Light energy grid. The North Florida Resiliency connection went into service Thursday.
“It helps day-to-day reliability. It helps with storm reliability and it will eventually, over time, actually reduce our customer’s costs because if we can produce power for less money everybody benefits,” Eric Silagy, FPL chairman, and CEO, said.
From start to finish the process to build the new transmission line only took around 18 months.
“To us, it was obvious that this would have so many benefits and it was something that really needed to be done,” Silagy said.
The North Florida Resiliency Connection is like a super-highway for energy. FPL officials said it is 176 miles long. They also say this is going to save them time and energy when severe weather hits the Panhandle.
“This line will now give us a new interstate a new super highway of electricity, that will allow us to get electricity from a part of the state that maybe hasn’t been impacted by a hurricane to a part that has,” Silagy said.
Taking things back to 2018 when Hurricane Michael hit the Panhandle and many went without power. Local and state officials said they learned a lot from that and this new connection will be helpful in the future.
“Hurricane Michael tormented a lot of us,” Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, said. “I get emotional because this is an investment this is a commitment this is part of the march to make sure northwest Florida is better stronger easier to bounce back when disaster strikes again.”
“We know what it is like to have the resiliency to have the power back is a big deal,” Congressman Neil Dunn, said.
Officials noted Thursday that while they have a storm plan in place for the area you should have one as well. Click here to make sure you have everything you need.
In addition to storm protection.. Fpl says the connection that is now in service is expected to save customers millions of dollars in fuel costs.
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