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Governor Crist’s Surprise Visit to Orlando to Discuss Future of Florida’s Energy

governor-cristOrlando--Twenty-nine states now have renewable energy portfolio standards (RPS); however Florida isn’t one of them.  Last year Governor Charlie Crist pushed for RPS, and came close when the Public Service Commission (PSC) presented a draft proposal endorsed by the senate but failed to receive enough support from the house to become law.  Despite Crist’s campaigning efforts for a Florida Senate seat, RPS continues to be one of the governor’s top priorities.

Thur. Feb. 17, Governor Charlie Crist made a surprise visit to downtown Orlando where the University of Central Florida Venture Lab hosted the Orange County Cleantech Symposium. The symposium gathered experts in cleantech policy, technology and finance to focus on creating a renewable energy goal and ways to increase renewable energy production. Crist’s current goal is to see public utilities generate 20 percent renewable energy by the year 2020.


andre-and-governor-cristOne of the attendees of the 2010 Cleantech Symposium, Vice President of Power Grid Engineering, Andre Uribe, stated "RPS would be great for Florida." Eighty three percent of Florida's electricity comes from fossil fuels. All of which come from outside our state. According to the EPA currently less than 15 percent of all energy (including nuclear energy) is generated from renewable energy sources. He added "it makes economic and environmental sense to exploit Florida’s diverse resources and build industries such as nuclear, PV, solar thermal, biomass, hydro and wind which would create new jobs to Florida and help create jobs and accelerate economic recovery."
Currently there are eight energy- related bills for consideration in the Florida Legislature. There is no word yet on what is likely to become “the energy bill." Bills range from creating inspection fees on certain alternative fuels, implementing specific clean energy standards for electric utility companies, to off shore drilling of Florida’s coastlines.

For information or to track these bills visit www.leg.state.fl.us.