2021 Legislature             CS for CS for SB 896, 1st Engrossed
    2         An act relating to renewable energy; creating s.
    3         163.3205, F.S.; providing legislative intent; defining
    4         the term “solar facility”; providing that solar
    5         facilities are a permitted use in local government
    6         comprehensive plan agricultural land use categories
    7         and certain agricultural zoning districts; requiring
    8         solar facilities to comply with specified criteria;
    9         authorizing counties to adopt ordinances that meet
   10         certain requirements; providing applicability;
   11         amending s. 366.91, F.S.; defining and redefining
   12         terms; authorizing the Florida Public Service
   13         Commission to approve cost recovery by a gas public
   14         utility for certain contracts for the purchase of
   15         renewable natural gas; amending ss. 366.92, 373.236,
   16         and 403.973, F.S.; conforming cross-references;
   17         reenacting s. 288.9606(7), F.S., relating to the
   18         issuance of revenue bonds, to incorporate the
   19         amendment made to s. 366.91, F.S., in a reference
   20         thereto; providing an effective date.
   22  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   24         Section 1. Section 163.3205, Florida Statutes, is created
   25  to read:
   26         163.3205 Solar facility approval process.—
   27         (1)It is the intent of the Legislature to encourage
   28  renewable solar electrical generation throughout this state. It
   29  is essential that solar facilities and associated electric
   30  infrastructure be constructed and maintained in various
   31  locations throughout this state in order to ensure the
   32  availability of renewable energy production, which is critical
   33  to this state’s energy and economic future.
   34         (2)As used in this section, the term “solar facility”
   35  means a production facility for electric power which:
   36         (a)Uses photovoltaic modules to convert solar energy to
   37  electricity that may be stored on site, delivered to a
   38  transmission system, and consumed primarily offsite.
   39         (b)Consists principally of photovoltaic modules, a
   40  mounting or racking system, power inverters, transformers,
   41  collection systems, battery systems, fire suppression equipment,
   42  and associated components.
   43         (c)May include accessory administration or maintenance
   44  buildings, electric transmission lines, substations, energy
   45  storage equipment, and related accessory uses and structures.
   46         (3)A solar facility shall be a permitted use in all
   47  agricultural land use categories in a local government
   48  comprehensive plan and all agricultural zoning districts within
   49  an unincorporated area and must comply with the setback and
   50  landscaped buffer area criteria for other similar uses in the
   51  agricultural district.
   52         (4)A county may adopt an ordinance specifying buffer and
   53  landscaping requirements for solar facilities. Such requirements
   54  may not exceed the requirements for similar uses involving the
   55  construction of other facilities that are permitted uses in
   56  agricultural land use categories and zoning districts.
   57         (5) This section does not apply to any site that was the
   58  subject of an application to construct a solar facility
   59  submitted to a local governmental entity before July 1, 2021.
   60         Section 2. Present paragraphs (a) through (d) of subsection
   61  (2) of section 366.91, Florida Statutes, are redesignated as
   62  paragraphs (b) through (e), respectively, a new paragraph (a)
   63  and paragraph (f) are added to that subsection, present
   64  paragraph (d) of that subsection is amended, and subsection (9)
   65  is added to that section, to read:
   66         366.91 Renewable energy.—
   67         (2) As used in this section, the term:
   68         (a)“Biogas” means a mixture of gases produced by the
   69  biological decomposition of organic materials which is largely
   70  comprised of carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, and methane gas.
   71         (e)(d) “Renewable energy” means electrical energy produced
   72  from a method that uses one or more of the following fuels or
   73  energy sources: hydrogen produced or resulting from sources
   74  other than fossil fuels, biomass, solar energy, geothermal
   75  energy, wind energy, ocean energy, and hydroelectric power. The
   76  term includes the alternative energy resource, waste heat, from
   77  sulfuric acid manufacturing operations and electrical energy
   78  produced using pipeline-quality synthetic gas produced from
   79  waste petroleum coke with carbon capture and sequestration.
   80         (f)“Renewable natural gas” means anaerobically generated
   81  biogas, landfill gas, or wastewater treatment gas refined to a
   82  methane content of 90 percent or greater which may be used as a
   83  transportation fuel or for electric generation or is of a
   84  quality capable of being injected into a natural gas pipeline.
   85         (9)The commission may approve cost recovery by a gas
   86  public utility for contracts for the purchase of renewable
   87  natural gas in which the pricing provisions exceed the current
   88  market price of natural gas, but which are otherwise deemed
   89  reasonable and prudent by the commission.
   90         Section 3. Paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of section
   91  366.92, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   92         366.92 Florida renewable energy policy.—
   93         (2) As used in this section, the term:
   94         (b) “Renewable energy” includes means renewable energy and
   95  renewable natural gas as those terms are defined in s. 366.91(2)
   96  s. 366.91(2)(d).
   97         Section 4. Subsection (7) of section 373.236, Florida
   98  Statutes, is amended to read:
   99         373.236 Duration of permits; compliance reports.—
  100         (7) A permit approved for a renewable energy generating
  101  facility or the cultivation of agricultural products on lands
  102  consisting of 1,000 acres or more for use in the production of
  103  renewable energy, as defined in s. 366.91(2)(e) s. 366.91(2)(d),
  104  shall be granted for a term of at least 25 years at the
  105  applicant’s request based on the anticipated life of the
  106  facility if there is sufficient data to provide reasonable
  107  assurance that the conditions for permit issuance will be met
  108  for the duration of the permit; otherwise, a permit may be
  109  issued for a shorter duration that reflects the longest period
  110  for which such reasonable assurances are provided. Such a permit
  111  is subject to compliance reports under subsection (4).
  112         Section 5. Paragraph (f) of subsection (3) and paragraph
  113  (b) of subsection (19) of section 403.973, Florida Statutes, are
  114  amended to read:
  115         403.973 Expedited permitting; amendments to comprehensive
  116  plans.—
  117         (3)
  118         (f) Projects resulting in the production of biofuels
  119  cultivated on lands that are 1,000 acres or more or in the
  120  construction of a biofuel or biodiesel processing facility or a
  121  facility generating renewable energy, as defined in s.
  122  366.91(2)(e) s. 366.91(2)(d), are eligible for the expedited
  123  permitting process.
  124         (19) The following projects are ineligible for review under
  125  this part:
  126         (b) A project, the primary purpose of which is to:
  127         1. Effect the final disposal of solid waste, biomedical
  128  waste, or hazardous waste in this state.
  129         2. Produce electrical power, unless the production of
  130  electricity is incidental and not the primary function of the
  131  project or the electrical power is derived from a fuel source
  132  for renewable energy as defined in s. 366.91(2)(e) s.
  133  366.91(2)(d).
  134         3. Extract natural resources.
  135         4. Produce oil.
  136         5. Construct, maintain, or operate an oil, petroleum, or
  137  sewage pipeline.
  138         Section 6. For the purpose of incorporating the amendment
  139  made by this act to section 366.91, Florida Statutes, in a
  140  reference thereto, subsection (7) of section 288.9606, Florida
  141  Statutes, is reenacted to read:
  142         288.9606 Issue of revenue bonds.—
  143         (7) Notwithstanding any provision of this section, the
  144  corporation in its corporate capacity may, without authorization
  145  from a public agency under s. 163.01(7), issue revenue bonds or
  146  other evidence of indebtedness under this section to:
  147         (a) Finance the undertaking of any project within the state
  148  that promotes renewable energy as defined in s. 366.91 or s.
  149  377.803;
  150         (b) Finance the undertaking of any project within the state
  151  that is a project contemplated or allowed under s. 406 of the
  152  American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009; or
  153         (c) If permitted by federal law, finance qualifying
  154  improvement projects within the state under s. 163.08.
  155         Section 7. This act shall take effect July 1, 2021.