Duke Energy’s (DUK) Arm Opens Duette Solar Plant in Florida – November 15, 2021

Shares in Duke Energy Corp.‘s (DUK Quick QuoteMATERIAL Free Report) rose 0.6% on Nov. 10, after the company announced the launch of its Duette solar facility in Florida. The facility is in line with Duke Energy’s strategy to expand its solar power portfolio and achieve its goal of completing ten new solar projects by 2022.

Details of the solar system

Duke Energy’s subsidiary, Duke Energy Florida, handles the operation of the 74.5 megawatts (MW) Duette solar power plant. The facility includes approximately 227,000 solar panels that will utilize the single axis tracking system capable of generating energy to provide peak production to approximately 23,000 households annually.

Duke Energy’s growth prospects in Florida

The state of Florida is known as the Sunshine State and is considered the most suitable region for solar energy penetration.

It’s important to note that Duke Energy successfully started operating eight solar power plants from 10 to 2022. The Charlie Creek and Sandy Creek solar power plants are currently under construction at Duke Energy Florida. Both projects have a generation capacity of 74.9 MW. We believe that once the projects are completed, they will further strengthen Duke Energy’s presence in the state’s expanding solar energy market.

To further expand in Florida’s solar market, Duke Energy intends to deliver more than 2 billion in turn to clean energy to all of the company’s 1.9 million customers in Florida.

Solar energy growth outlook

According to the latest short-term energy outlook released by the US Energy Information Administration in November 2021, the United States is expected to add 15.7 gigawatts (GW) of new solar capacity in 2021 and 18.2 GW in 2022.

This shows ample growth opportunities for the solar energy utility companies, which has convinced other utility companies besides Duke Energy to aggressively invest in the solar generation projects.

For example, NextEra Energy partner (NEE Quick QuoteNEW Free Report) added 515 MW of solar projects in the third quarter to expand in the solar market. In addition, the NextEra subsidiary Gulf Power plans to bring 150 MW of low-cost, zero-emission solar capacity online within the next six months, while the North Florida Resiliency Connection is expected to go live in mid-2022.

Meanwhile, Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), another subsidiary of NextEra Energy, has exceeded its groundbreaking 30-by-30 plan to install 30 million solar panels by 2030 by 40%. FPL is well on its way to having 42 solar energy centers in Florida, including the Discovery Solar Energy Center at Kennedy Space Center, which has just started operations. For the past month, NextEra’s shares have returned 6.6%.

In September, Power of domination (D Quick offerD. Free Report) announced that it currently has plans for 11 utility-scale solar projects, two small distributed solar projects, a combined solar and storage project, and a standalone energy storage project that will be owned and operated by Dominion Energy Virginia.

Upon completion, the projects will deliver more than 1,000 MW of CO2-free electricity, sufficient to supply more than 250,000 households with peak performance. This is the largest addition to Dominion Energy’s solar and energy storage facility in Virginia. Dominion Energy stock returned 3.9% last month.

Likewise in March, CMS energy (CMS quick offerCMS Free Report) announced plans to source 140 MW of clean, renewable energy from the Calhoun Solar Center, which will be enough to power approximately 70,000 residential customers in Michigan. The Calhoun Solar Center with a total capacity of 200 megawatts should be completed by 2022.

As part of the agreement, CMS Energy would obtain 140 megawatts from the solar system for 25 years. To achieve its goal, CMS plans to add around 1,100 MW of solar energy by 2024. Over the past month, CMS Energy stock is down 0.8%.

Price movement

Over the past year, Duke Energy’s stock is up 9.1%, compared to an industry growth of 2.6%.

Image source: Zacks Investment Research

Zacks rank

Duke Energy currently holds a # 3 Zacks Rank (Hold). You can see the full list of current Zacks # 1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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