JUNO BEACH, Fla., June 10, 2002 — FPL Group Inc. (NYSE:FPL – News) received the highest ranking among 28 electric utilities in the United States in the latest Innovest Strategic Value Advisors report that compares environmental performance.
Innovest is an internationally recognized independent investment research firm specializing in environmental finance and investment opportunities. The company’s performance rating model analyzes more than 60 aspects of environmental risk exposure, management quality and business development.
The report said, “FPL’s leading environmental program includes beyond-compliance commitments to energy efficiency, renewable energy development, and natural resources protection. Environmental factors are integrated into its business planning and marketing activities.”
Innovest said that FPL has below average exposure to increasing air emission regulations because of a diversified energy mix, average air emissions per megawatt hour, and a strong focus on clean generation. By continually improving environmental performance, FPL’s score improved over that of the year 2000 when the company was also rated highest.
Lew Hay, chairman and CEO of FPL Group, said, “We are extremely pleased to be recognized for our environmental commitment to clean and renewable fuels and for taking the initiative to voluntarily make improvements in our operation. This report confirms that an electric utility can be environmentally sensitive and responsible while providing above average returns to shareholders.
“Meeting the demand for cost-effective production of electric power can go hand in hand with preserving, protecting and enhancing our beautiful and fragile environment and in our view it must. Future generations, after all, will be affected by how we act recently and we believe this is the most important reason to commit to sound environmental management in every part of our business.”
In February, Hay pledged FPL Group’s corporate-wide support in participating as a charter partner in the Environmental Protection Agency’s new voluntary Climate Leaders program aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Florida Power & Light Company, which has more than 4 million customers in Florida, and FPL Energy, FPL Group’s unregulated electricity generating subsidiary with facilities throughout the U.S., own domestic power plants representing nearly 22,000 megawatts of generation.
FPL’s fleet of generating units uses a clean and diversified fuel mix of 26 percent natural gas, 24 percent oil, 24 percent nuclear, and 6 percent coal.
FPL Energy, which owns more than 5,000 megawatts of generating capacity, has a diversified portfolio of 46 percent natural gas, 28 percent wind, 15 percent oil, 7 percent hydro, and 4 percent from other sources. FPL Energy is the nation’s largest developer and operator of wind-generated electricity and expects to add 1,000 to 2,000 megawatts of new wind generation over the next two years.
Innovest’s report said, “As a strong proxy for management quality, environmental performance consistently correlates well with stock price performance. Companies with above average ratings taken as a group achieved an average total shareholder return (stock price appreciation plus dividends) 30 percentage points greater than the average return of lower rated companies over the past three years.”
Innovest projects that FPL probably will outperform the utility sector in the future and added, “FPL Group has below average risk, above average environmental management capacity, and above average engagement in environmentally favorable businesses. Environmental issues are having a growing financial impact on firms. As a result, incorporating environmental analysis into investment decisions will most likely increase investor returns to an even greater degree going forward.”
FPL Group companies have been further recognized for their environmental practices.
In 2001, FPL won the Edison Electric Institute’s National Land Management Award for stewardship of 25,000 acres surrounding the Turkey Point plant. The site contains fresh and estuarine wetlands, subtropical hardwood forests and is home to 26 state and 17 federally protected animal species including the American crocodile and the wood stork.
Also, FPL donated an 18-acre refuge known as Manatee Island, located in the Caloosahatchee River adjacent to the Fort Myers plant, to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The island serves as a unique haven for birds and other species of wildlife. FPL’s donation was the first addition to the wildlife refuge that was established in 1920.
FPL was recognized by the Florida Ocean Alliance and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for repowering projects at Fort Myers and Sanford that doubled the energy output of older, oil-burning power plants by converting them to new natural gas-fired generating technology and significantly reducing emissions.
The innovative wildlife management efforts at FPL Energy’s Harris hydroelectric facility in Maine were recognized by the National Hydropower Association in its 2002 Outstanding Stewardship of America’s Rivers report.
FPL Group, with annual revenues of more than $8 billion, is nationally known as a high quality, efficient, and customer-driven organization focused on energy-related products and services. With a growing presence in more than a dozen states, it is widely recognized as one of the country’s premier power companies. Its principal subsidiary, Florida Power & Light Company, serves approximately 3.9 million customer accounts in Florida. FPL Energy, LLC, an FPL Group energy-generating subsidiary, is a leader in producing electricity from clean and renewable fuels. Additional information is available on the Internet at http://www.fplgroup.com, http://www.fpl.com and http://www.fplenergy.com.