JUNO BEACH, Fla. — The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) presented Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) with the association’s “Emergency Assistance Award” for its contributions last year in rebuilding the energy grid after Hurricane Michael impacted communities in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, and following the historic Camp Fire’s impact in Northern California.
“We always stand at the ready to help our partner utilities bring a sense of normalcy back to their communities, as they have for us in the past,” said FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy. “It’s the right thing to do. Power is a necessity, and this company knows more than anyone the monumental task at hand when getting the lights back on following a natural disaster. I could not be prouder of the men and women of FPL who stepped up to the plate and assisted in these humanitarian efforts.”
For several weeks, FPL’s restoration team of more than 1,000 lineworkers and support staff helped in the aftermath of the Category-5 Hurricane Michael. In addition to assisting with the restoration effort, FPL provided critical mobile fueling support for Florida Highway Patrol vehicles and contractors to assist Florida’s public safety officials with initial search and rescue operations. Manny Miranda, FPL’s senior vice president of power delivery, was asked by former Florida Governor Rick Scott to advise and assist with the state’s power restoration efforts, and serve as a liaison between Florida officials and FEMA, providing technical support and assistance. Less than a month later, the company sent a team of more than 100 to Paradise, California. to assist in the rebuild of the energy grid and restore power to areas devastated by the Camp Fire.
Michael and the Camp Fire marked the third and fourth out-of-state restoration efforts the company embarked on in 2018. Earlier in the year, FPL crews helped restore power to tens of thousands of Carolina residents in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. Crews also assisted in restoring power to the Bayamon region of Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. Some of those lineworkers were deployed to Puerto Rico for as long as three months. In addition to these events, FPL sent engineers to support the restoration effort for December’s Winter Storm Diego in the Carolinas.
The Emergency Assistance Award is given to select EEI member companies to recognize their outstanding efforts to assist other energy companies with power restoration after service has been disrupted by severe weather conditions or other major incidents. The winners are chosen by a panel of judges following an international nomination process. FPL received its award during EEI 2019, the electric power industry’s premier annual conference.
“Mutual assistance is a hallmark of our industry and depends on electric companies helping other electric companies quickly respond during times of need,” said EEI President Tom Kuhn. “I thank Florida Power & Light for responding to these mutual assistance calls and for its crews’ efforts to restore service safely and quickly to customers in the impacted areas.”
Along with the restoration efforts, the NextEra Energy Foundation, the philanthropic arm of FPL and its parent company, NextEra Energy, Inc., donated $200,000 to the American Red Cross and $100,000 to Gulf Power Transformers, a 501(c)(3) charity, to support people affected by Hurricane Michael. The foundation matched up to $50,000 of individual contributions by FPL employees and NextEra Energy subsidiaries to provide assistance to employees of Gulf Power.
Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest energy company in the United States as measured by retail electricity produced and sold, serving more than 5 million customer accounts or an estimated 10 million+ people across the state of Florida. FPL's typical 1,000-kWh residential customer bill is approximately 30 percent lower than the latest national average and among the lowest in the U.S. FPL's service reliability is better than 99.98 percent, and its highly fuel-efficient power plant fleet is one of the cleanest among all electric companies nationwide. The company was recognized in 2018 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Market Strategies International for the fifth consecutive year. A leading Florida employer with approximately 8,700 employees, FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, and has been ranked No. 1 in the electric and gas utilities industry in Fortune's 2019 list of "World's Most Admired Companies." NextEra Energy is also the parent company of Gulf Power Company, which serves more than 460,000 customers in eight counties throughout Northwest Florida, and NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world's largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun and a world leader in battery storage. For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit these websites: www.NextEraEnergy.com, www.FPL.com, www.GulfPower.com, www.NextEraEnergyResources.com.
EEI is the association that represents all U.S. investor-owned electric companies. Our members provide electricity for 220 million Americans, and operate in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. As a whole, the electric power industry supports more than 7 million jobs in communities across the United States. In addition to our U.S. members, EEI has more than 65 international electric companies as International Members, and hundreds of industry suppliers and related organizations as Associate Members.