FPL Blog http://www.fplblog.com Wed, 23 Jul 2014 14:17:26 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9 Open vents vs. closed – Which lowers A/C costs? http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/vents/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=vents http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/vents/#comments Mon, 14 Jul 2014 18:37:50 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3456 http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/vents/feed/ 0 What causes higher summer bills? http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/summer-tips/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=summer-tips http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/summer-tips/#comments Tue, 24 Jun 2014 22:51:56 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3436 http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/summer-tips/feed/ 4 Top 5 Ways To Get Storm Info http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/top-5-ways-to-get-storm-info/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=top-5-ways-to-get-storm-info http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/top-5-ways-to-get-storm-info/#comments Thu, 22 May 2014 13:32:38 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3416 http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/top-5-ways-to-get-storm-info/feed/ 16 Robotics competition excites future engineers, computer scientists and other high-tech professionals http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/robotics-competition-excites-future-engineers-computer-scientists-and-other-high-tech-professionals/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=robotics-competition-excites-future-engineers-computer-scientists-and-other-high-tech-professionals http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/robotics-competition-excites-future-engineers-computer-scientists-and-other-high-tech-professionals/#comments Fri, 02 May 2014 17:44:50 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3323 For the second year in a row, I’ve had the pleasure of supporting the FIRST Robotics South Florida Regionals Competition, an incredible combination of hard work and pure fun. You may wonder what a high school robotics competition has to do with maintaining Florida Power & Light Company’s current fleet of modern fuel-efficient power plants. While power generation and working with robotics are two very different things, the teamwork, skill, dedication, and determination required to be successful at each is very similar.

At this year’s South Florida competition, high school robotics teams from all over the region, plus other states and Mexico, face-off in a game called Aerial Assist. The game consists of three robots per team, on a flat 25’ x 54’ field, that try to score as many balls into a goal as possible during a two-and-a-half minute match. Behind the scenes are FPL’s talented welders, machinists and engineers who manned the “Robot Urgent Care” center, a machine shop for repairing “injured” robots.

At the care center, students and the FPL team’s skills overlapped. The interaction between fellow craftsmen, while operating on damaged robot drive systems and broken appendages, provides insight to a career in the mechanical craft field. Not only are we helping teams to successfully complete months of hard work, but the FPL employees are introducing students to a world of design, fabrication, and manufacturing that they might not even know existed in the power industry.

FPL’s support of FIRST Robotics encourages future engineers, mathematicians, physicists, computer scientists, machinists and mechanics. If the respect, dedication, and teamwork these students exhibited at the competition reflect future FPL employees, our future is looking bright.

 

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Together, we’re always ready when you need us most http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/together-were-always-ready-when-you-need-us-most/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=together-were-always-ready-when-you-need-us-most http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/together-were-always-ready-when-you-need-us-most/#comments Thu, 01 May 2014 22:42:24 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3314 On the ten-year anniversary of Hurricanes Charley, Jeanne and Frances, our Vice President & Chief Communications Officer, Rob Gould, shares his thoughts on what we’ve learned during the past ten years and how our new partnership with the Florida National Guard is one way we’re doing our part to be ready when the next major storm hits.

The world has changed during the past ten years, and in particular, the last 3-4 years with the proliferation of mobile devices and other items in our homes and businesses that require electricity. Super Storm Sandy demonstrated how large an undertaking it is to launch a public response to a man-made or natural disaster. While we’ve been fortunate to have a relatively quiet string of storm seasons here in Florida, at FPL, we’re certainly not resting on our laurels.

When it comes to emergency response, we’re constantly striving for continuous improvement. We’ve learned from our fellow utilities and understand the value of working together. We’ve had the opportunity to benchmark how other emergency response professionals from outside our industry have worked together to communicate during other types of incidents, such as the Boston Marathon and late January mall shooting in suburban Maryland.

We value our partnership with Florida’s first responder community and we share with these organizations a passion and duty to serve in times of crisis, such as a hurricane. Our commitment to you is we’ll work around-the-clock to restore your life to normal as quickly as possible.

And that’s what has led us to launch what we believe is a first-of-a-kind partnership with the Florida National Guard. As a former National Guardsman myself, I can speak for the entire company when I say we’re honored to have a Florida National Guardsman work side-by-side our emergency response organization with one goal in mind – to improve our ability to respond during a crisis.

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We hope this partnership creates a model other utilities and National Guard units around the country can replicate to better serve their customers and citizens in times of need.

How we’ve upgraded our system to make it more resilient

Though it’s been a decade since the epic storm season of 2004, as a company our commitment to upgrading our electric grid has never been stronger. It’s evident in the more than $1.4 billion we’ve invested since 2004 to make it more resilient. We have now installed more than 4.6 million smart meters and introduced state-of-the-art technology to help reduce the number of outages and restore service faster when they happen.

We’ve also looked at how to shorten the amount of time it takes to restore power when we experience large scale storms. In Florida, when falling tree limbs knock out power, repairing the broken line extends the time it takes get your power restored. To minimize these delays, we’ve proactively cleared away vegetation from over 100,000 miles of power lines. Similarly, we’ve made sure our poles are ready to withstand extreme winds by inspecting all of our power poles – more than one million of them – and upgrading or replacing those that aren’t up to muster.

We know that after any major storm public safety is critical. That’s why we’ve strengthened the more than 450 main power lines serving key community infrastructure – like hospitals, police and fire stations, 911 centers, water treatment and sewage facilities.

Each year, our nearly 9,000 employees participate in training and drills to test our comprehensive restoration plan, such as this one this week. Our experience from past hurricanes has only strengthened our resolve to do even better for our customers when the next bad storm comes our way.

Now is the time to get ready

Our back of the envelope math leads us to believe that more than one million residents are new to the FPL service territory since the time of Charley, Jeanne or Frances. That means that these customers have either never experienced the deadly force of a hurricane, or their paradigm is one of a number of named storms in some other part of the country. Regardless, complacency is something all of us must guard against. The fact is it’s not a matter of if we’ll ever see another hurricane, but rather when.

One thing I’ve learned in my years of experience in the utility industry is to never to bank on a quiet storm season. That’s why at FPL we’re getting prepared and encourage you to do the same. Take time today to visit our upgraded storm center at www.FPL.com/storm for tips on how to prepare yourself and family this storm season. We’ll be ready for the next one and we urge you to be, too.

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Are you missing out on saving up to $137? http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/are-you-missing-out-on-saving-up-to-137/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=are-you-missing-out-on-saving-up-to-137 http://www.fplblog.com/ask-the-expert/are-you-missing-out-on-saving-up-to-137/#comments Mon, 28 Apr 2014 20:38:15 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3239 h

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Storm Banner http://www.fplblog.com/storm-mode-banner/storm-banner/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=storm-banner http://www.fplblog.com/storm-mode-banner/storm-banner/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 17:25:20 +0000 http://208.39.123.211/?p=3267 http://www.fplblog.com/storm-mode-banner/storm-banner/feed/ 0 Hero Banner http://www.fplblog.com/banner/hero-banner/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=hero-banner http://www.fplblog.com/banner/hero-banner/#comments Mon, 21 Apr 2014 20:44:53 +0000 http://208.39.123.211/?p=3258 http://www.fplblog.com/banner/hero-banner/feed/ 0 Turning computers off vs. sleep mode http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/turning-computers-off-vs-sleep-mode/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=turning-computers-off-vs-sleep-mode http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/turning-computers-off-vs-sleep-mode/#comments Wed, 26 Mar 2014 18:41:36 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3155 http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/turning-computers-off-vs-sleep-mode/feed/ 114 2014 Power to Care Makes A Difference Across the State http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/2014-power-to-care-makes-a-difference-across-the-state/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=2014-power-to-care-makes-a-difference-across-the-state http://www.fplblog.com/featured-posts/2014-power-to-care-makes-a-difference-across-the-state/#comments Mon, 10 Mar 2014 18:19:24 +0000 http://www.fplblog.com/?p=3022 There’s nothing like helping someone else. Studies show that the more people volunteer, the happier they are. It connects you to others, it’s good for your mind and body, it’s fun!
 
This past week, more than 1,300 NextEra Energy employees and their families in Florida were able to get out and do something nice for our community. We saw support and enthusiasm from all levels of the company. Monday through Saturday, employees participated in 29 events, including 24 on Saturday! 

Everywhere we went, our hosts were shocked at how hard our folks worked and how much we got done. All I can say is that if you volunteered last week, thank you for personifying our company values. Please take a minute to appreciate the immediate and lasting positive impact of your work. The Power to Care projects, which covered a wide spectrum of activities, not only help the individuals who are served by the various community organizations that we partnered with, but also the people who work at each location.

The week kicked off with our largest employee volunteer event in the history of the six years of Power to Care. Close to 200 of us met at Washington Elementary in Riviera Beach, a Title One school that was actually on the list to be demolished a few years ago. But when the economy took a turn for the worse and dollars got tight, the Palm Beach School District had to work with what it had and the school stayed as it was; no additional money or work has been invested there in several years.

Well, we changed that on Monday, March 3. Every exterior wall was painted, gardens thinned, reading areas carved out, vegetables planted and beautiful expansive murals were hand-painted. The school’s principal Sandra Edwards wrote a blog about the day and its impact.

As a touching sidebar to this event, Information Management employee Dan Russell from the Toledo Blade Service Center in North Port drove across the state to participate in this event. His son works at the school as a learning specialist, and Dan loved the idea of being able to do something special for his son’s school and its students.

The rest of the week was equally rewarding and special. In Collier County, we helped construct wire cages to protect sea turtle eggs. In Broward, our volunteers sorted clothes for the homeless and spruced up a foster home. While in Miami, we assembled furniture and painted the gym for  a Boys & Girls Club. Check out Clubs’ Executive Director Alex Rodriguez-Roig’s blog about the day.

While Power to Care Week may be over for this year, please know that Power to Care events are not limited to just one week. We plan dozens of these volunteer events throughout the year. Likewise, I hope that our company events encourage you and your family to connect with your community and to make it a better place to live, work and play.

See more highlights from FPL’s Power to Care Week on our Facebook page.

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