State and Local Policy Database

Florida

State Scorecard Rank

25

Florida

16.0Scored out of 50Updated 9/2016
State Government
Score: 3.5 out of 7
State Government Summary List All

Florida offers a grant and a rebate program for energy efficiency investments. The state government leads by example by requiring energy-efficient fleets and encouraging the use of energy service performance contracts for public buildings. Research and development focused on energy efficiency is conducted at several universities in the state.

Financial Incentives List All

Financial incentive information for Florida is provided by the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE Florida) and State Energy Office contacts. Information about additional incentives not present on DSIRE is listed here. In addition to the state-funded incentives on DSIRE and below, Florida has enabled Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing and has several active programs. For additional information on PACE, visit PACENation.

Renewable Energy and Energy Efficient Technologies (REET) Grant Matching Program: Renewable Energy and Energy Efficient Technologies (REET) Grant Matching Program provides a mechanism for entities to receive matching funds to conduct demonstration, commercialization, research, and development projects relating to renewable energy technologies and innovative technologies that significantly increase energy efficiency for vehicles and commercial buildings. The purpose of the program is to provide a source of state match funding to Florida entities that can be used to strengthen their applications for external funding. The program recently finished going through a rulemaking and a notice of funding availability (NOFA) is under review at this time. There will be approximately $2 million in funding made available in the next few months once the NOFA is released.

Farm Energy and Water Efficiency Realization (FEWER) program: This program’s objective is to conduct on-site evaluations of the potential for energy efficiency, renewable energy upgrades and water saving measures and practices on individual farms. Once the evaluation is complete, the program will provide cost-share reimbursement to eligible agricultural producers in the Suwannee County Conservation District (SCCD) and other areas of the state for activities identified during the evaluation.

Warehouse for Energy Efficiency Loans (WHEEL): A public-private partnership among the National Association of State Energy Officials, Energy Programs Consortium, Pennsylvania State Treasury, Renewable Funding and Citigroup Global Markets, WHEEL provides low-cost, large-scale private capital to state, local and utility-sponsored residential energy efficiency and solar programs. The capital raised will be utilized for loans to Florida homeowners who are customers of participating Rural Electric Cooperatives who are making improvements to their 1 or 2 unit primary residence (owner occupied). 

Last Updated: July 2016

Building Energy Disclosure List All

There is no disclosure policy in place.

Last Updated: July 2016

Public Building Requirements List All

The 2006 Florida Energy Plan calls for all new state government buildings to meet LEED standards and for a reduction of energy consumption in state facilities by 25% from 2002 levels by 2007. It is unclear if a post-2007 energy savings target is in place for new and exisiting state buildings. Green building requirements have been expanded several times since then. Executive Order 07-126 directs the Florida Department of Management Services to set Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building standards for the state's new and existing state-owned buildings. In 2008, Florida Governor Charlie Crist approved House Bill 7135, which requires newly constructed or renovated buildings financed by the state to be designed and built to meet a nationally recognized sustainable building rating or national model green building code. Eligible rating systems include those established by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, the International Green Construction Code (IGCC), the Green Building Initiative’s Green Globes rating system, the Florida Green Building Coalition standards, or a nationally recognized, high-performance green building rating system as approved by the department. State agencies also must lease ENERGY STAR-rated buildings and employ energy saving performance contracts to upgrade existing facilities.

In 2008, the Florida Legislature passed the Florida Energy Conservation and Sustainable Buildings Act, directing state agencies to incorporate sustainable building practices into the design, construction, and renovation of state buildings. Through this act, the Florida Department of Management Services (FDMS) developed the Florida Life-Cycle Cost Analysis Program (Chapter 60D-4, Florida Administrative Code), which pertains to the evaluation of life-cycle energy performance for alternative building designs. Additionally, FDMS developed the State Energy Management Plan (SEMP), which is a comprehensive plan to help state agencies reduce energy consumption and costs. The SEMP includes the following: data-gathering requirements, building energy audit procedures, uniform data analysis procedures, employee education program measures, energy consumption reduction techniques, training for agency energy management coordinators, guidelines for building managers, and measures to reduce energy consumption in the area of transportation.

In 2012, House Bill 7117 passed modifying Florida Statutes Section 255.257 that included the reporting requirements on energy use by each building owned or leased for state business 5,000 square feet or more. The statute requires that agencies collect energy usage and cost data, but does not specify a tracking tool.

All State government owned buildings larger than 5,000 square feet with air conditioned space report their energy usage to DMS for benchmarking, and this data is reported annually in the State Energy Management Plan Annual Summary Report. According to the 2015-2016 SEMP Annual Summary, Florida is comprised of twenty-one state agencies that own facilities, encompassing 45,820,611 gross square feet of space. The combined annual energy consumption is approximately 3.4 billion kBTU (thousand British thermal units), at a combined annual cost of approximately $111.4 million.

Last Updated: June 2017

Fleets List All

Executive Order 07-126 requires the Department of Management Services to only approve the purchase of new vehicles with the greatest fuel efficiency in a given class, as required for that vehicle to minimize emissions of greenhouse gases.

Also, in accordance with S. 286.29(4), F.S., when procuring new vehicles, all state agencies, state universities, community colleges, and local governments that purchase vehicles under a state purchasing plan shall first define the intended purpose for the vehicle and determine which of the following use classes for which the vehicle is being procured:

  • State business travel, designated operator;
  • State business travel, pool operators;
  • Construction, agricultural, or maintenance work;
  • Conveyance of passengers;
  • Conveyance of building or maintenance materials and supplies;
  • Off-road vehicle, motorcycle, or all-terrain vehicle;
  • Emergency response; or
  • Other

For all vehicles use classes except "other," when being processed for purchase or leasing agreements, vehicles must be selected for the greatest fuel efficiency available for a given use class when fuel economy data are available.

Last Updated: July 2016

Energy Savings Performance Contracting List All

ESPCs are promoted and coordinated by the Department of Management Services and the Department of Financial Services.  The state provides a manual that offers both a step-by-step description of the process and a sample of many associated documents to help streamline the process.  The Department of Financial Services provides model contracts and financing agreements, and the Department of Management Services lists prequalified ESCOs.

Last Updated: July 2016

Research & Development List All

The University of Central Florida’s Florida Solar Energy Center's (FSEC) building science program includes research projects concentrating on: industrialized housing; zero net-energy buildings; fenestration; energy efficient schools; green standards; and ceiling fans.  The Center has a 20-acre campus on the Space Coast.  It receives $3 million in operating funds annually from the University and an additional $8-$12 million in external contracts and grants.

The Energy and Sustainability Center (ESC) at Florida State University addresses challenging alternative energy issues through innovative solutions for consumers and industry. The Center’s Off-Grid Zero Emission Building project created an energy-efficient mold for alternative energy technologies in both residential and commercial buildings. Other energy efficiency research has focused on both PEM fuel cells and water electrolysis.  The center receives funding from the University.

The Florida Institute for Sustainable Energy (FISE) at the University of Florida has a mission to develop energy efficient and environmentally sustainable technologies and practices, educate the public regarding energy and environmental technologies and trade-offs, and inform the larger policy debate on urgent, global issues relating to sustainable energy and the environment.  The Institute’s efficiency research focuses on fuel cells, building construction, and lighting.  The Institute’s funding over the past several years has totaled $70 million.

Clean Energy Research Center (CERC) at University of South Florida specializes in the development of environmentally clean energy sources and systems that meet the needs of power and energy producers and the transportation sector. Two areas where its research focuses on energy efficiency are combined power and cooling thermodynamic cycle and energy-efficient building technologies. These projects have been sponsored by the US Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Defense (DOD), NASA, Center for Biological Defense, National Science Foundation, and other funding organizations including local power utility companies.

Florida Energy Systems Consortium (FESC) brings Florida statewide faculty together for energy research and also connects Florida industry with university research expertise and facilities, resulting in improved technology transfer and commercialization. FESC members develop innovative energy systems that lead to alternative energy strategies, improved energy efficiencies, and enhanced economic development. FESC leverages state funding in energy research, technology transfer, education, and outreach activities. 

University of West Florida’s (UWF) Community Outreach, Research and Education (C.O.R.E.) initiative aims to enhance construction and education at UWF and in the greater Pensacola, Florida community. UWF is renovating an existing printing services building as a multipurpose construction lab, where the facilities will include a trade demonstration area, a construction yard, soils testing equipment and an energy efficiency demonstration and applied learning prototype. The building is intended to serve students, industry professionals, and the residents of the community and region. 

Last Updated: July 2016

Buildings
Score: 5.5 out of 7
Buildings Summary List All

Effective June 30, 2015, Florida law requires that residential and commercial buildings comply with the 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation. The 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation consists of the foundation code 2012 IECC and amendments. The 6th Edition (2017) is on schedule to take effect on December 31, 2017.

Residential Codes List All

Effective June 30, 2015, Florida law requires that residential buildings comply with the 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation. The 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation consists of the foundation code 2012 IECC and amendments. The FBC certified in letters to the U.S. DOE that the new code meets or exceeds 2012 IECC standards. Compliance with the code is mandatory for all new construction including alteration to existing buildings.

Last Updated: June 2016

Commercial Code List All

Effective June 30, 2015, Florida law requires that commercial buildings comply with the 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation. The 5th Edition (2014) Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation consists of the foundation code 2012 IECC with significant Florida-specific amendments to maintain per statute efficiencies already in the Florida code. The FBC certified in letters to the U.S. DOE that the new code meets or exceeds 2012 IECC standards. Compliance with the code is mandatory for all new construction including alteration to existing buildings.

Last Updated: June 2016

Compliance List All
  • Gap Analysis/Strategic Compliance Plan: The Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) completed a baseline compliance study in 2012, which was submitted to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). The report presents data on energy code enforcement and compliance rates, and makes recommendations for targeting areas to improve compliance. FESC has also published reports on the historical performance of Florida’s building energy codes to determine more effective stringency and compliance strategies in the future.
  • Baseline & Updated Compliance Studies: The state's last compliance study was conducted in 2014. Buildings were selected randomly around Florida using guidance from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Building Energy Codes Program. Primary areas of the energy code were selected to evaluate how well compliance was enforced in each building. Ninety percent of the residential buildings were found to be passing the performance code although forms submitted had one or more items incorrectly specified in almost all cases. On average, 84% of what was specified on the form complied. Many jurisdictions did not have sufficient commercial building code forms to conduct a field evaluation. This occurred 25% of the time based on our commercial building sampling process. Of those commercial buildings field audited, on average 81% of the specified components were found to be in compliance.
  • Utility Involvement: NA
  • Stakeholder Advisory Group: The Energy Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) to the Florida Building Commission holds regular meetings on a number of building related issues, including building energy codes.
  • Training/Outreach: On-site training has been performed by Building A Safer Florida (BASF), Building Official Association of Florida, private entities and energy code webinars by the Codes and Standards Office of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.  

Last Updated: July 2015

CHP
Score: 1 out of 4
CHP Summary List All

The state has an incentive program for CHP projects, but otherwise has limited policies to encourage CHP development. No new CHP systems were installed in 2015.

Interconnection StandardsList All

Policy: Florida Public Service Commission Rule 25-6.065

Description: The Florida Public Service Commission adopted its interconnection standard in March 2008. The standards, which apply to distributed generation systems up to 2MW in size, delineate three separate tiers of interconnection based upon system size. The interconnection rule applies only to generation using renewable fuels, but includes waste heat in its definition of “renewable energy.” Some CHP systems may be interpreted as using “waste heat” as a primary fuel, but there is no wording that clearly defines CHP as eligible for interconnection using this standard.

Last Updated: July 2016

Encouraging CHP as a ResourceList All

There are currently no state policies designed to acquire energy savings from CHP (like other efficiency resources) or energy generation from CHP (in terms of kWh production) that apply to all forms of CHP.

Last Updated: July 2016

Deployment IncentivesList All

Incentives, grants, or financing: CHP systems are eligible for the state’s Solar and CHP Sales Tax Incentive (Fla. Stat. § 212.08). CHP systems that are sold and used in Florida in facilities that primarily manufacture, process, compound or produce “for sale items of tangible personal property” are exempt from Florida’s Sales and Use Tax.

Net metering: Florida’s Public Service Commission (PSC) adopted rules for net-metering for renewable-energy systems up to 2 MW in capacity in March 2008. CHP is eligible to net meter, as it meets the Florida statutory (Section 377.803) definition of "renewable energy."

Last Updated: July 2016

Additional Supportive PoliciesList All

Some additional supportive policies exist to encourage CHP in Florida. The state’s Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit provides incentives to encourage the use of opportunity fuels like biomass, biogas, anaerobic digester gas, landfill gas, wood, and other waste, including waste heat-to-power in conjunction with CHP technology.

Last Updated: July 2016

Utilities
Score: 1 out of 20
Utilities Summary List All

Florida utilities with sales of 2,000 GWh or more are subject to the Florida Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act (FEECA). This act requires each utility to implement cost-effective energy efficiency programs and to conduct energy audits. It also includes improving the efficiency of generation, transmission and distribution systems.

FEECA was amended in 2008 and now requires the state to conduct energy efficiency potential studies. ITRON completed a study in 2008 and reported a technical potential savings of ~34%. This includes both photovoltaic solar technology and energy efficiency. In December 2009, the The Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) set energy efficiency goals based on this study. Some of these goals have since been adjusted.

The FPSC reviews and approves utilities’ energy efficiency plans. According to FEECA, the FPSC may allow investor-owned utilities to earn an additional return on equity of up to 50 basis points for saving 20 percent or more of their annual load-growth via energy efficiency . The FPSC may also assess penalties if utilities do not meet the goals.

Since 1980, when FEECA was approved, utility programs have deferred the need for eleven 500 MW power plants. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), Florida electric utilities saved 364,599 MWh in 2009.  The Consortium for Energy Efficiency reports 2010 electric program budgets totaling $123.2 million and natural gas budgets of $6.5 million. The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found from the tables on the left.

Natural gas programs are available for residential and commercial customers in Florida and are required by both orders and legislation. These programs are approved by the FPSC and are implemented by the utilities.

Florida has considered implementing decoupling, which reduces the financial disincentive for utilities to support energy efficiency by separating utilities’ profits from their levels of sales. In 2008, the FPSC decided that existing annual cost recovery clauses made it unnecessary to introduce decoupling. In December 2009, the Florida Public Utility Commission set goals for its electric utilities at 3.5% energy savings over 10 years. This rule was rolled back in July 2011. In 2014, the Commission voted to establish goals for the FEECA utilities based on the RIM cost-effectiveness analysis .

In 2007, ACEEE researched Florida’s energy efficiency potential. ACEEE reported that energy efficiency improvements could offset the majority of Florida’s predicted load growth over the next 15 years, leading to impressive savings for Florida residents and businesses. That report can be found here. In 2014, Florida utilities proposed to reduce efficiency efforts from 2010 levels by at least 80%. The Florida Public Service Commission approved this proposal.

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Last updated: September 2016

Customer Energy Efficiency Programs List All

The 1980 Florida Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act (FEECA) requires utilities to implement cost-effective energy efficiency programs. Florida utilities establish demand-side management (DSM) conservation goals for summer and winter demand (MW) and annual energy sales (GWh). The Florida Public Service Commission reviews DSM goals for each utility at least once every five years and sets demand and energy sales goals that extend 10 years into the future. Within 90 days after the Commission issues its order approving a utility’s DSM goals, that utility must file a plan with the commission for approval. The utilities are also required to file annual reports on their DSM programs.

Most of these DSM plans include residential, commercial, and industrial sectors. The utilities provide conservation education programs to their customers. They also typically offer incentives to encourage customers to install more efficient equipment. The utilities distribute the costs of the programs by adding a surcharge for all customers. The surcharge varies by utility.

Natural gas programs are available for residential and commercial customers in Florida and are required by both legislation and orders. Natural gas energy efficiency is required by the Florida Statutes (Section 366.81-82). It is also required by FPSC Rule 25-17.009.

Investor-owned electric utilities may recover reasonable expenses, including customer incentive costs, forDSM programs approved by the Florida Public Service Commission. The utilities recover these costs by adding surcharges to customer bills. Also, the FPSC conducts Energy Conservation Cost Recovery (ECCR) proceedings each November and determines an energy conservation cost recovery factor to be applied to bills during the next year. This factor is based on each utility’s estimated conservation costs for the next year.

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Last Updated: June 2016

Energy Efficiency as a Resource List All

In December 2006, the FPSC endorsed the National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency, which recommends making energy efficiency a high-priority resource. 

Florida does not have an integrated resource planning (IRP) statute or rule, but it does have a filing requirement for long-term energy plans.

FEECA utilities are required to provide the Commission with a demand-side management status update on an annual basis. The Commission uses this information within its annual FEECA report to the Governor and Legislature.

For more information on energy efficiency as a resource, click here.

Last Updated: June 2016

Energy Efficiency Resource Standards List All

Florida does not have an EERS. Past energy reduction targets were not implemented due to insufficient funding, and existing savings goals are negligible.

The Florida Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act (FEECA -- Sections 366.80-85 and 403.519 of the Florida Statutes) established the authority for the Florida Public Service Commission to set targets for energy and peak demand savings, and to require each affected utility to develop and implement energy efficiency programs.  The Public Service Commission must revisit the goals at least every five years.  Specific electricity and peak demand savings goals were set for each of the seven "FEECA utilities" most recently in 2014 for 2015 through 2024, averaging 990.6 GWh annually. These goals are lower than those approved by the Commission in 2009. The Commission identified fewer programs as cost-effective due to more stringent building codes and appliance efficiency standards, as well as lower avoided costs resulting from lower natural gas prices. The most recent status of Florida's Energy Efficiency and Conservation efforts for utilities under the Commission's oversight can be found in the Commission's 2016 FEECA Report.  A comprehensive description of the goal-setting process and methodology can be found in Order No. PSC-14-0696-FOF-EU

Last Updated: June 2016

Utility Business Model List All

Florida does not have decoupling or lost revenue adjustment mechanisms in place for electric or natural gas utilities. HB 7135 instructed the Public Service Commission to analyze utility revenue decoupling and provide a report and recommendations to the governor and the legislature in December 2008. In 2008, the FPSC decided that existing annual cost recovery clauses made it unnecessary to introduce decoupling, though gas utilities could still request decoupling in a rate case. In 2009 the FPSC concluded that utilities may request an increase in rates in order to maintain a reasonable rate of return when efficiency programs reduce revenues, but none have been authorized (See Final Order PSC-09-0855-FOF-EG).

Sections 366.82(8) and (9) of Florida Statute authorize the commission to provide financial rewards and penalties and to allow gas and electric investor-owned utility to earn an additional return on equity for exceeding energy efficiency and conservation goals. Specifically the FPSC may allow utilities to earn an additional return on equity of up to 50 basis points for exceeding 20 percent of their annual load-growth through energy efficiency measures. The FPSC may also assess penalties if utilities do not meet the goals. No utilities have yet requested the additional return.

Last Updated: June 2016

Evaluation, Measurement, & Verification List All
  • Cost-effectiveness test(s) used: TRC, PCT, RIM
  • Uses a deemed savings database: no

The evaluation of ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs in Florida relies on both legislative mandates (Florida Statutes Sections 366.82(10)and 377.703(2)(f)) and regulatory orders (Rule 25-17.0021). Evaluations are administered by each utility. Florida has established formal rules and procedures for evaluation, which are stated in Rule 25-17.0021. Florida uses three of the five classic benefit-cost tests identified in the California Standard Practice Manual. These are the Total Resource Cost (TRC), Participant (PCT), and Ratepayer Impact Measure (RIM). The rules for benefit-cost tests are stated in Rule 25-17.008. These benefit-cost tests are required for total program level screening. The current goals were set at levels consistent with RIM test results.

Last Updated: June 2016

Guidelines for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs List All

Requirements for State and Utility Support of Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

In 1992, the Florida legislature passed the William E. Sadowski Affordable Housing Act, which required funding to be set aside from a portion of documentary stamp taxes on deeds to support two programs that supplement the state’s WAP program. These programs include the State Housing Initiatives Partnership, which funds weatherization measures, and the Low-Income Emergency Home Repair Program, which funds emergency and energy-related home repairs.

Cost-Effectiveness Rules for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

Program-level cost-effectiveness is not required, although the majority of IOU-administered low-income programs in Florida pass both the TRC and RIM cost-effectiveness tests. 

Coordination of Ratepayer-Funded Low-Income Programs with WAP Services

Level of coordination is unclear from publicly available data.

Last updated: April 2017

Self Direct and Opt-Out Programs List All

Florida does not allow for large customers to self-direct the funds they would have paid for energy efficiency, nor to opt-out entirely from participating in energy efficiency programs. 

Last updated: July 2016

Data AccessList All

There is no policy in place that requires utilities to release energy use data to customers or third parties. The Commission's website includes reports and publications created by technical staff that provide energy use and consumption data for the state and its utilities.

Last Updated: September 2016

 

Transportation
Score: 5 out of 10
Transportation Summary List All

The state has a dedicated revenue stream for transportation projects, and has policies to promote the integration of transportation and land-use planning.

Tailpipe Emission Standards List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: July 2015

Transportation System Efficiency List All

Transportation and Land use Integration: In 2008, Florida enacted House Bill 697 which outlined detailed specific requirements for future comprehensive plans. All future comprehensive plans must include strategies that reduce urban sprawl and transportation strategies designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector.

VMT Targets: No policy in place or proposed.

Complete Streets: State Statute 335.065 mandates the  incorporation of complete streets principles into road project planning and maintenance.

MAP 21 Freight Plans and Goals: Florida also has a comprehensive long-term freight plan 

Last Updated: July 2015

Transit Funding List All

The state recently adopted transit finance legislation. House Bill 1271 allows municipalities in Florida with a regional transportation system to levy a tax, subject to voter approval, that can be used as a funding stream for transit development and maintenance.

Last Updated: July 2015

Incentives for High-Efficiency Vehicles List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: July 2015

Appliance Standards
Score: 0 out of 2
Appliance Standards Summary List All

Florida has not set appliance standards beyond those required by the federal government.

Last Updated: July 2016