RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION WITH REGARD TO ENERGY, INCLUDING SOLAR ENERGY (Section 377.703-704, Florida Statute)

377.703 Additional functions of the Department of Environmental Protection; energy emergency contingency plan; federal and state conservation programs.--

(1) LEGISLATIVE INTENT.--Recognizing that energy supply and demand questions have become a major area of concern to the state which must be dealt with by effective and well-coordinated state action, it is the intent of the Legislature to promote the efficient, effective, and economical management of energy problems, centralize energy coordination responsibilities, pinpoint responsibility for conducting energy programs, and ensure the accountability of state agencies for the implementation of s. 377.601(4), the state energy policy. It is the specific intent of the Legislature that nothing in this act shall in any way change the powers, duties, and responsibilities assigned by the Florida Electrical Power Plant Siting Act, part II of chapter 403, or the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the Florida Public Service Commission.

(2) DEFINITIONS.--

(a) "Coordinate," "coordination," or "coordinating" means the examination and evaluation of state plans and programs and the providing of recommendations to the Cabinet, Legislature, and appropriate state agency on any measures deemed necessary to ensure that such plans and programs are consistent with state energy policy.

(b) "Energy conservation" means increased efficiency in the utilization of energy.

(c) "Energy emergency" means an actual or impending shortage or curtailment of usable, necessary energy resources, such that the maintenance of necessary services, the protection of public health, safety, and welfare, or the maintenance of basic sound economy is imperiled in any geographical section of the state or throughout the entire state.

(d) "Energy source" means electricity, fossil fuels, solar power, wind power, hydroelectric power, nuclear power, or any other resource which has the capacity to do work.

(e) "Facilities" means any building or structure not otherwise exempted by the provisions of this act.

(f) "Fuel" means petroleum, crude oil, petroleum product, coal, natural gas, or any other substance used primarily for its energy content.

(g) "Local government" means any county, municipality, regional planning agency, or other special district or local governmental entity the policies or programs of which may affect the supply or demand, or both, for energy in the state.

(h) "Promotion" or "promote" means to encourage, aid, assist, provide technical and financial assistance, or otherwise seek to plan, develop, and expand.

(i) "Regional planning agency" means those agencies designated as regional planning agencies by the Department of Community Affairs.

(j) "Renewable energy resource" means any method, process, or substance the use of which does not diminish its availability or abundance, including, but not limited to, biomass conversion, geothermal energy, solar energy, wind energy, wood fuels derived from waste, ocean thermal gradient power, hydroelectric power, and fuels derived from agricultural products.

(3) DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION; DUTIES.--The Department of Environmental Protection shall, in addition to assuming the duties and responsibilities provided by ss. 20.255 and 377.701, perform the following functions consistent with the development of a state energy policy:

(a) The department shall assume the responsibility for development of an energy emergency contingency plan to respond to serious shortages of primary and secondary energy sources. Upon a finding by the Governor, implementation of any emergency program shall be upon order of the Governor that a particular kind or type of fuel is, or that the occurrence of an event which is reasonably expected within 30 days will make the fuel, in short supply. The department shall then respond by instituting the appropriate measures of the contingency plan to meet the given emergency or energy shortage. The Governor may utilize the provisions of s. 252.36(5) to carry out any emergency actions required by a serious shortage of energy sources.

(b) The department shall constitute the responsible state agency for performing or coordinating the functions of any federal energy programs delegated to the state, including energy supply, demand, conservation, or allocation.

(c) The department shall analyze present and proposed federal energy programs and make recommendations regarding those programs to the Governor.

(d) The department shall coordinate efforts to seek federal support or other support for state energy activities, including energy conservation, research, or development, and shall be the state agency responsible for the coordination of multiagency energy conservation programs and plans.

(e) The department shall analyze energy data collected and prepare long-range forecasts of energy supply and demand in coordination with the Florida Public Service Commission, which shall have responsibility for electricity and natural gas forecasts. To this end, the forecasts shall contain:

1. An analysis of the relationship of state economic growth and development to energy supply and demand, including the constraints to economic growth resulting from energy supply constraints.

2. Plans for the development of renewable energy resources and reduction in dependence on depletable energy resources, particularly oil and natural gas, and an analysis of the extent to which renewable energy sources are being utilized in the state.

3. Consideration of alternative scenarios of statewide energy supply and demand for 5, 10, and 20 years, to identify strategies for long-range action, including identification of potential social, economic, and environmental effects.

4. An assessment of the state's energy resources, including examination of the availability of commercially developable and imported fuels, and an analysis of anticipated effects on the state's environment and social services resulting from energy resource development activities or from energy supply constraints, or both.

(f) The department shall make a report, as requested by the Governor or the Legislature, reflecting its activities and making recommendations of policies for improvement of the state's response to energy supply and demand and its effect on the health, safety, and welfare of the people of Florida. The report shall include a report from the Florida Public Service Commission on electricity and natural gas and information on energy conservation programs conducted and under way in the past year and shall include recommendations for energy conservation programs for the state, including, but not limited to, the following factors:

1. Formulation of specific recommendations for improvement in the efficiency of energy utilization in governmental, residential, commercial, industrial, and transportation sectors.

2. Collection and dissemination of information relating to energy conservation.

3. Development and conduct of educational and training programs relating to energy conservation.

4. An analysis of the ways in which state agencies are seeking to implement s. 377.601(4), the state energy policy, and recommendations for better fulfilling this policy.

(g) The department has authority to adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement the provisions of this act.

(h) Promote the development and use of renewable energy resources, in conformance with the provisions of chapter 187 and s. 377.601, by:

1. Establishing goals and strategies for increasing the use of solar energy in this state.

2. Aiding and promoting the commercialization of solar energy technology, in cooperation with the Florida Solar Energy Center, Enterprise Florida, Inc., and any other federal, state, or local governmental agency which may seek to promote research, development, and demonstration of solar energy equipment and technology.

3. Identifying barriers to greater use of solar energy systems in this state, and developing specific recommendations for overcoming identified barriers, with findings and recommendations to be submitted annually in the report to the Legislature required under paragraph (f).

4. In cooperation with the Department of Transportation, the Department of Community Affairs, Enterprise Florida, Inc., the Florida Solar Energy Center, and the Florida Solar Energy Industries Association, investigating opportunities, pursuant to the National Energy Policy Act of 1992 and the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992, for solar electric vehicles and other solar energy manufacturing, distribution, installation, and financing efforts which will enhance this state's position as the leader in solar energy research, development, and use.

5. Undertaking other initiatives to advance the development and use of renewable energy resources in this state. In the exercise of its responsibilities under this paragraph, the department shall seek the assistance of the solar energy industry in this state and other interested parties and is authorized to enter into contracts, retain professional consulting services, and expend funds appropriated by the Legislature for such purposes.

(i) The department shall promote energy conservation in all energy use sectors throughout the state and shall constitute the state agency primarily responsible for this function. To this end, the department shall coordinate the energy conservation programs of all state agencies and review and comment on the energy conservation programs of all state agencies.

(j) The department shall serve as the state clearinghouse for indexing and gathering all information related to energy programs in state universities, in private universities, in federal, state, and local government agencies, and in private industry and shall prepare and distribute such information in any manner necessary to inform and advise the citizens of the state of such programs and activities. This shall include developing and maintaining a current index and profile of all research activities, which shall be identified by energy area and may include a summary of the project, the amount and sources of funding, anticipated completion dates, or, in case of completed research, conclusions, recommendations, and applicability to state government and private sector functions. The department shall coordinate, promote, and respond to efforts by all sectors of the economy to seek financial support for energy activities. The department shall provide information to consumers regarding the anticipated energy-use and energy-saving characteristics of products and services in coordination with any federal, state, or local governmental agencies as may provide such information to consumers.

(k) The department shall coordinate energy-related programs of state government, including, but not limited to, the programs provided in this section. To this end, the department shall:

1. Provide assistance to other state agencies, counties, municipalities, and regional planning agencies to further and promote their energy planning activities.

2. Require, in cooperation with the Department of Management Services, all state agencies to operate state-owned and state-leased buildings in accordance with energy conservation standards as adopted by the Department of Management Services. Every 3 months, the Department of Management Services shall furnish the department data on agencies' energy consumption in a format mutually agreed upon by the two departments.

3. Promote the development and use of renewable energy resources, energy efficiency technologies, and conservation measures.

4. Promote the recovery of energy from wastes, including, but not limited to, the use of waste heat, the use of agricultural products as a source of energy, and recycling of manufactured products. Such promotion shall be conducted in conjunction with, and after consultation with, the Department of Environmental Protection, the Florida Public Service Commission where electrical generation or natural gas is involved, and any other relevant federal, state, or local governmental agency having responsibility for resource recovery programs.

(l) The department shall develop, coordinate, and promote a comprehensive research plan for state programs. Such plan shall be consistent with state energy policy and shall be updated on a biennial basis.

(m) In recognition of the devastation to the economy of this state and the dangers to the health and welfare of residents of this state caused by Hurricane Andrew, and the potential for such impacts caused by other natural disasters, the department shall include in its energy emergency contingency plan and provide to the Department of Community Affairs for the inclusion in the state model energy efficiency building code specific provisions to facilitate the use of cost-effective solar energy technologies as emergency remedial and preventive measures for providing electric power, street lighting, and water heating service in the event of electric power outages.

(4) The department shall be responsible for the administration of the Coastal Energy Impact Program provided for and described in Pub. L. No. 94-370, 16 U.S.C. s. 1456a.

377.704 Appropriation of funds from settlement of petroleum overcharge litigation. -- There are and will be funds available to this state due to settlements of litigation brought by the United States Department of Energy against oil companies and refineries. It is the intent of the Legislature that funds received as a result of federal statute or administrative or regulatory actions requiring the disbursement to states of refund moneys for alleged overcharges for crude oil or refined petroleum products sold during the period of time in which federal price controls on such crude oil and refined petroleum products were in effect, whether by themselves or in conjunction with other moneys appropriated by the Legislature, may not be expended unless appropriated in the General Appropriations Act or other subsequent specific appropriation by law.



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