(Sept. 1, 2011) – Progress Energy Florida today filed its annual requests with the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) to recover the costs the company has paid for fuel and purchased power used to generate electricity. A filing for investments in environmental compliance projects as required by state and federal law was made on Aug. 26.
If approved by the PSC, the company’s annual filings would result in an overall increase of about 5 percent or about $6 per month on a 1,000 kilowatt-hour (kWh) residential bill, from the current $119.34 to about $125. The average commercial customer bill would increase 4 to 6 percent and the average industrial customer bill would increase 5 to 7 percent. New prices will take effect with the first billing cycle in January 2012.
"Progress Energy is actively working to manage and mitigate rising costs, and we are focused on keeping electric costs as low as possible for the more than 1.6 million families and businesses that depend on us," said Vincent Dolan, president and CEO of Progress Energy Florida. "We are working every day to become more efficient while continuing to provide our customers clean, reliable, affordable power now and in the future."
Below is a summary of the filings, based on a monthly, 1,000-kWh residential bill:
With all the filings combined, the 1,000-kWh customer bill will increase approximately $6 per month. This modest increase comes after two subsequent years of bill reductions.
The largest portion of the proposed increase is the fuel charge, which recovers the actual cost of fuel, mainly natural gas and coal, used to generate electricity. Due to the extended outage at the company’s Crystal River nuclear plant, Progress Energy Florida used more natural gas, which is the next available lowest-possible-cost resource compared to nuclear, to meet customer needs. The company makes no profit from the fuel portion of the customer bill.
The Sept. 1 filing also included estimates for an increase in the cost of purchased power. Utilities routinely purchase power to ensure customers’ energy needs are met in the most cost-effective manner possible.
The environmental compliance charge, filed on Aug. 26, recovers the costs of environmental investments as required by state and federal law. Environmental improvements at our two largest coal-fired units, Crystal River 4 and 5, now allow the company to use less expensive coal while reducing the plant’s average annual emissions by 80 percent (nitrogen oxides by approximately 93 percent and sulfur dioxide by approximately 97 percent).
The PSC will determine Progress Energy’s nuclear charge on Oct. 24. The PSC hearings and votes on the fuel, capacity, environmental and energy-efficiency charges will take place Nov. 1- 3. At that time, the total 2012 customer bill will be finalized, based on the PSC’s decision.
For more information about Florida rates and a detailed breakdown of a current residential customer bill, visit www.progress-energy.com/floridarates.
Progress Energy Florida, a subsidiary of Progress Energy (NYSE: PGN), provides electricity and related services to more than 1.6 million customers in Florida. The company is headquartered in St. Petersburg, Fla., and serves a territory encompassing more than 20,000 square miles, including the cities of St. Petersburg and Clearwater, as well as the Central Florida area surrounding Orlando. Progress Energy Florida is pursuing a balanced approach to meeting the future energy needs of the region. That balance includes increased energy-efficiency programs, investments in renewable energy technologies and a state-of-the-art electricity system. For more information about Progress Energy, visit www.progress-energy.com.