Photo: Robert Madrid for FPLBrightline to use clean biodiesel from FPL.
Brightline and FPL announce clean energy partnership
WEST PALM BEACH — Brightline, the express train service that will run between West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, today announced its partnership with Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) to provide clean biodiesel to fuel the trains. FPL, which has used clean, high-quality biodiesel as a fuel for its trucks for nearly two decades, will supply Brightline with 2 million gallons of biodiesel-blended fuel annually under a two-year contract.
“This fueling partnership with FPL is a great example of two Florida-based companies working together to create jobs and utilize local resources,” said Tom Rutkowski, Brightline’s Chief Mechanical Officer. “Brightline is investing in the nation’s economy, from the trainsets to the rail infrastructure, all of which are manufactured in America. I’ve visited with many of the manufacturing plants supplying the components of our trainsets, and there is always a strong sense of pride from the teams who are creating the products.”
FPL uses biodiesel as the primary fuel source for more than 1,750 vehicles in its fleet. Now, Brightline’s American-made trains will be running on this similar fuel. Biodiesel fuel is a cleaner-burning replacement produced from renewable sources like corn, soybeans and used cooking oil. It is cost-competitive and reduces engine wear, and can lower operations and maintenance costs.
“FPL has long been committed to energy independence as well as environmental stewardship,” said Sam Forrest, Vice President of Energy Marketing and Trading for FPL. “We’ve been tearing down old power plants to make way for new energy centers that run on clean, low-cost natural gas, and building new emissions-free solar energy centers that use 100 percent Florida sunshine. That’s why we’re proud to partner with Brightline to provide them with a cleaner, biodiesel-blended fuel for their trains.”
Brightline trains are powered by Siemens Charger locomotives and equipped with fuel tanks designed to contain up to 2,200 gallons of fuel. Each trainset includes two locomotives and four passenger cars (‘Select’ and ‘Smart’ coaches). Projected consumption of the trains is 2 gallons of fuel per mile, which means the 67-mile one-way trip from Miami to West Palm Beach consumes 134 gallons.
FPL’s fleet has used an estimated 18 million gallons of biodiesel and driven more than 120 million miles without any fuel-related engine issues. Last year, FPL’s biodiesel consumption led to a CO2 reduction of 3,625 tons – the equivalent of taking more than 600 passenger vehicles off the road in one year.
Brightline is the new benchmark for travel by train in America with express inter-city passenger rail service connecting Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, with future service to Orlando. Providing a travel option that lives at the intersection of transportation and hospitality, the service will ease the stress of traffic, provide a simple and intuitive experience from door to destination, and foster new opportunities to explore more of Southeast Florida. Brightline is the only privately owned, operated and maintained passenger rail system in the United States. For more information, visit our website: www.gobrightline.com and follow us on Facebook andTwitter.
About Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the third-largest electric utility in the United States, serving approximately 4.9 million customer accounts or an estimated 10 million people across nearly half of the state of Florida. FPL's typical 1,000-kWh residential customer bill is approximately 25 percent lower than the latest national average and, in 2016, was the lowest in Florida among reporting utilities for the seventh year in a row. FPL's service reliability is better than 99.98 percent, and its highly fuel-efficient power plant fleet is one of the cleanest among all utilities nationwide. The company received the top ranking in the southern U.S. among large electric providers, according to the J.D. Power 2016 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction StudySM, and was recognized in 2016 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Market Strategies International. A leading Florida employer with approximately 8,900 employees, FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, and has been ranked No. 1 in the electric and gas utilities industry in Fortune's 2017 list of "World's Most Admired Companies." NextEra Energy is also the parent company of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world's largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun. For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit these websites: NextEraEnergy.com, FPL.com, NextEraEnergyResources.com.