Massive solar power plant to produce energy by December
Ground was broken in February on the huge project covering 762 acres — more than 570 football fields. Parrish is expected to start producing 74.5 megawatts of energy in December. The Parrish power plant is one of three that FPL launched at the same time. The others are near Arcadia in DeSoto County and at Babcock Ranch in Charlotte County. Building the three new plants is a workforce of about 250. The new plants together will triple FPL’s solar capacity and help move Florida into sixth place among the 50 states. The solar panels are being installed atop 41,000 piles, or columns, driven 8 to 10 feet into the ground, and are designed to withstand hurricane force winds, Lynch said. The panels will produce direct current, which will be converted to alternating current through inverters, and then be stepped up through a transformer at a substation before feeding into the Parrish power plant. With zero emissions, the clean solar project has generated more enthusiasm from workers and the community than any other project he has been involved with in 20 years, Lynch said. “People are excited about it,” he said.