Green Energy businesses are growing and thriving in Palm Beach County. From companies developing hydrogen fuel cells to new and innovative firms and research-based start-ups that are on the leading edge of technology...it's all here.
Companies are finding ways to turn agricultural waste into power, and researchers are focused on harnessing the power of the Atlantic Ocean. Palm Beach County is a leading location for ambitious companies, investors, and research and development programs focused on finding viable alternative energy sources, and building green or LEED-certified corporate office space.
Palm Beach County has a firmly established traditional energy sector with the presence of such worldwide industry leaders as NextEra Energy and a host of related service and equipment companies.
Yet the region is steadily becoming a hotbed for renewable energy and alternative fuel endeavors as businesses and non-profit entities engage in a variety of research and development projects aimed at deploying more cost-efficient, environmentally friendly power.
State Supported Focus
Through the personal commitment of the Governor’s office and a number of incentives and other regulatory tools, Florida is promoting the use of renewable energy sources and stimulating innovation in the clean energy field, while becoming a national model for such initiatives. The surge of innovation is evident all around the state, where renewable energy companies are thriving.
Finding ways to use what we use to throw away…
Palm Beach County, Florida has a big advantage when it comes to bio-fuels because farmers have access to tons of biomass from citrus and sugar farms. Only a small portion of that fuel source is being used now, but state and private efforts are growing. We welcome companies that make it their business to produce and use clean energy from waste products.
Florida Crystals, based in West Palm Beach, is a leader with its efforts to create a bio-mass-to-electricity power plant at its Okeelanta Plant. The company sells a significant portion of its power, which has been used as a basis for renewable energy credits. Recently, Florida’s legislature awarded $20 million to researchers at the University of Florida to construct a cellulosic ethanol pilot plant. The researchers will use a byproduct (bagasse) of the sugar-making process to create cellulosic ethanol, but will experiment with other feedstocks as well. In addition to the University of Florida, Florida International University is researching enzymes that can cost-effectively convert the bagasse into ethanol. Additionally, strides are being made in researching the conversion of orange peels into ethanol.
Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County is the governmental agency responsible for providing an economical and environmentally conscious integrated solid waste management system for Palm Beach County, FL. The Palm Beach County Renewable Energy Facility #2 currently under construction will be a state of the art Waste-to-Energy (WTE) Facility that combusts solid waste (household garbage) to generate electricity for use in the county. This project is the first of its kind in almost 20 years in the United States. The Facility will reduce the amount of waste being landfilled in Palm Beach County by up to 85% and will significantly extend the life of the landfill. The Facility will have capacity to process 3,000 tons of garbage per day or more than 1 million tons per year. The Facility will generate enough electricity annually to power more than 40,000 homes in Palm Beach County. Through the use of Best Available Control Technology, the Facility will have very low air emissions meeting Emission Permit limits that are the lowest of any renewable energy facility currently combusting municipal solid waste in the United States.
Please visit www.swa.org to view the new WTE facility.
Catching the next wave…
South Florida is uniquely situated to take advantage of the Atlantic Ocean current. The Gulf Stream, about 12 miles off our coast, is the strongest in the world, with the potential to generate power equivalent to a 55 mph wind by using submerged turbines.
Florida Atlantic University’s Center for Ocean Energy Technology (COET) is taking the lead with its cutting edge research and innovation. COET scientists and related companies are developing ocean energy technology systems and components of tomorrow. COET is working on ocean energy permitting, policy development, education and workforce development, public outreach, standards development and economic analysis. Several other companies are pursuing the commercialization of proprietary technologies for ocean energy generation or providing engineering services and hardware for these projects. In August 2010, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) designated the Center for Ocean Energy Technology (COET) at Florida Atlantic University as a national center for ocean energy research and development. The new Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Center (SNMREC) at FAU joins centers in the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii that also work to advance the operational readiness of ocean energy technologies.
Palm Beach State College had established an energy and environmental institute to meet the community's need for a highly-trained workforce in emerging Green Industry sectors such as: Renewable Energy, Clean Technology, Smart Grid Operations, Alternative Transportation, Energy Efficiency.
Officially named the Institute for Energy & Environmental Sustainability (IEES), its director, Dr. Jay Matteson explains that President Gallon and the College's Board of Trustees are "committed to the practice of sustainability in all areas and in becoming a leader in energy education in Florida." This means that the college is focused on the development of academic and career technical programs that meet guidelines and recommendations from National Science Board to support education and workforce development for Building a Sustainable Energy Future (NSB-09-35, April 10, 2009).
To find out more, contact:
Jay Matteson, Ph.D., M.S., Director
3160 PGA Boulevard
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
O: 561.207.5302 / F: 561.207.5247
Green energy industries in Palm Beach County are not just companies developing and providing renewable energy. Green Energy businesses include a wide range of companies that provide complementary and supporting technologies encourage energy efficiency as well as “green” building technologies.
LEED Certified Buildings
Throughout Palm Beach County, builders, architects, developers, and allied industries are embracing sustainability programs of all types. Leading designers, architects, and construction companies are embracing practices that reduce negative environmental and health issues. Companies such as Boca Raton-based Georgeson Group, Navarro Lowery, Hedrick Brothers Construction, and Baron Sign Manufacturing all have LEED-rated buildings and products which adhere to the highest environmental standards.
Carbon Reduction Services
A growing number of companies are seeking ways to reduce their "carbon footprints" by using renewable energy sources. In South Florida, Carbon Solutions America is leading the way as a consulting and carbon-management firm specializing in overseeing the design and implementation of greenhouse gas reduction/sustainability plans, energy efficiency, and managing the generation of carbon and renewable energy and energy efficiency credits.
Through the personal commitment of the Governor and a number of incentives and other regulatory tools, Florida is promoting the use of renewable energy sources and stimulating innovation in the clean energy field, while becoming a national model for such initiatives. The surge of innovation is evident all around the state, where renewable energy companies are thriving.
Click here to download information regarding Florida's Cleantech cluster >>>
Green Energy Council
The Business Development Board's Green Energy Council is dedicated to analyzing the current status of green and clean energy industries in Palm Beach County; articulating and leveraging synergies within the industries; providing a forum for information exchanges among businesses and initiating actions that will stimulate and assist their expansions. The Green Energy Council is focused on attracting companies to Palm Beach County's Green Energy Cluster.
The Council is Palm Beach County's premier advocate for businesses involved in a wide variety of clean energy initiatives, energy technologies, public awareness, political advocacy, and individual businesses collectively called the Green Energy Cluster.
Our diverse membership includes: Research and environmental leaders, economic development, academic institutions, consultants to the clean energy sector, and private companies that produce or sell renewable energy technologies or provide energy efficiency services.
Where can you get more information?
Business Development Board of Palm Beach County
310 Evernia Street, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Kelly Smallridge, President and CEO
Gary Hines, Senior Vice President, Administration
Brian Cartland, Vice President – Business Recruitment
Shawn Rowan, Vice President – Business Retention and Expansion