Natural Gas

NextEra Energy Resources is committed to ensuring that the growing demand for power is met in the most environmentally responsible manner.

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INDUSTRY LEADER

NextEra Energy Resources' diversified portfolio of electric generation facilities includes various plants powered by natural gas, the cleanest-burning fossil fuel, with gas-fired facilities in three states. Several plants use combined-cycle technology, which uses waste heat to drive an additional power generator. The result is increased energy efficiency and lower emissions than conventional fossil-fueled units.

The company also has several oil-fired and dual-fuel facilities. 

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BENEFITS

In Harmony with the Environment

NextEra Energy Resources is working to ensure that the growing demand for power is met in the most environmentally responsible manner. This commitment to environmental stewardship is visible at many of our fossil plants.

Many of our fossil-fueled plants use the combined-cycle generation system fueled by clean-burning natural gas. Using advanced emission controls, the state-of-the-art combined-cycle technology is one of the cleanest power generating methods available today. As a result, air emissions from NextEra Energy Resources' plants are among the lowest in the states where our facilities are located.

Other measures taken to operate in harmony with the environment at our fossil-fueled facilities include:

  • Using only a small portion of the site for power production facilities; the rest remains in its natural habitat, providing homes to native plant and animal species; and
  • Conserving valuable ground and surface water resources by using alternate cooling sources, such as reclaimed water, for cooling power plant equipment.
Bayswater Natural Gas Power Plant in Far Rockaway, NY

How Natural Gas Plants Works

In our fossil fuel plants, we burn fuel (either natural gas or oil) in a large boiler.

The heat from the fire boils water and turns it into steam. The steam is at very high pressure and spins the blades of a turbine, just like the wind makes a pinwheel turn. This steam cools, turns back into water, and is recycled into the boiler, where it's heated once again.

A long shaft attached to the turbine turns a generator, which makes electricity. The power then goes through a transformer, which boosts the electricity to a very high voltage so it can be sent to customers.

NextEra Energy Resources uses two types of technologies:

The Simple-Cycle Combustion Turbine can be used to generate electricity in a natural gas plant. This is the technology that is used in jet engines, and NextEra Energy Resources' power plants can use combustion turbines to generate electricity quickly during times of high demand.

In this process, instead of the turbine and generator being driven by steam, they are driven by hot combustion gases. This results in power being generated at one end, while the exhaust of the hot gases goes out the other end.

Combined-Cycle Turbine - Many of NextEra Energy Resources' natural gas plants use state-of-the art combined-cycle technology, which results in a much more efficient plant - about 30 percent more efficient, in fact. It works like this:

  • A natural gas, combined-cycle plant produces electricity from two sources of energy instead of one.
  • Energy is produced by combustion of natural gas in a turbine, similar to a jet engine.
  • Energy is also produced by making use of the jet engine exhaust to make steam.
  • Both sources of energy then drive turbines and electric generators to produce electricity.