Nikki Fried Launches Florida Advisory Council on Climate and Energy

This week state Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried announced the launch of the new Florida Advisory Council on Climate & Energy (FACCE). This committee of energy and climate professionals will advise the Commissioner and the Office of Energy in the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services on modernizing energy and climate policies, diversifying energy sources, increasing energy efficiency, and creating solutions for Florida’s energy and climate future.

“Florida faces the nation’s greatest risk of extreme heat and flooding, increasingly frequent and devastating hurricanes, and destabilizing weather reshaping our lands, waters, farms, and cities. I believe we can best address these issues by bringing all stakeholders to the conversation,” said  Fried. “I’m proud to convene this diverse group of experts that will explore innovative solutions to one of the greatest challenges of our generation. From academic institutions to consumer advocates and environmental organizations to utilities, everyone has a seat at our table, and a stake in the fight against the climate crisis.”

Fried first announced the creation of FACCE in October during the department’s Florida Energy & Climate Summit in Tampa. The 26-member committee will advise on a broad range of energy industry issues like energy conservation, renewable energy, climate change, sea-level rise, and alternative vehicle technologies, as well as perspective on the findings of the FDACS Florida Energy and Climate Plan.

“Sierra Club is glad to see that Commissioner Fried is convening the Florida Advisory Council on Climate and Energy,” said Susannah Randolph, a senior campaign representative for Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign in Florida and a prominent activist. “We must make sure that a variety of perspectives are included, especially those most impacted as we address the future of energy for our state and the growing urgency of climate change.”

“As the largest energy provider in the state and a global leader in clean energy, we believe in the importance of planning for the future,” said Mark Bubriski, the director of state regulatory relations for NextEra Energy, the parent company of Florida Power & Light (FPL) and Gulf Power. “FPL has long been a champion of looking to the horizon and making long-term investments – it’s why we’re able to deliver power today that’s among the cleanest and most reliable in the country for a price that’s more than 30 percent below the national average. It’s also why we’re adding more than 30 million solar panels by 2030 and continuing to strengthen one of the nation’s smartest, most storm-resilient energy grids. We can never stop preparing for tomorrow, and the FACCE committee will provide an important forum to bring stakeholders together for constructive discussions about Florida’s future.”

The American Association of Blacks in Energy Florida Chapter appreciates the opportunity for one of our members, Berdell Knowles, to serve on the Florida Advisory Council on Energy & Climate. Knowles plans to provide deliberative input as the FDACS Office of Energy continues its quest in shaping Florida’s energy and climate policy,” said Kathy Judkins, the president of the  Florida Chapter of the American Association of Blacks in Energy.

The membership of the Florida Advisory Council on Climate & Energy includes:

Florida Energy Systems Consortium

  • Dr. David Norton, Director of Florida Energy Systems Consortium and Vice President of Research, University of Florida
    Community Colleges
  • Dr. Amy Albee-Levine, Dean of Workplace Development, Lake Sumter Community College

Florida City or County

  • The Honorable Janet Long, Commissioner, Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners
  • Megan Houston, Director, Palm Beach County Office of Resilience
    Clean Cities Coalition
  • Doug Kettles, Director, Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition
    Workforce Development
  • Luis Nieves-Ruiz, Economic Development Manager, East Central Florida Regional Planning Council

Consumer Advocate

  • Frank Stewart, Manager, FLFM Stewart & Company

Business/Economic Development

  • Steve Chriss, Director of Energy Services, Walmart
  • The Honorable Matt Surrency, Mayor, City of Hawthorne


  • Andrew Sauber, Director of Corporate Sustainability, Florida Crystals Environmental Community
  • Emily Gorman, Sierra Club Organizing Representative and Miami Climate Alliance Steering Committee Chair
  • Temperince Morgan, Executive Director, The Nature Conservancy in Florida
  • Susannah Randolph, Senior Campaign Representative, Sierra Club Beyond Coal Campaign

Investor Owned Utility

  • Mark Bubriski, Director of State Regulatory Relations, NextEra EnergyMunicipal Utility
  • Lus Avilles, Vice President of Customer Service, Orlando Utilities Commission
    Co-operative Utility
  • Tony Guillen, Director of Engineering & Operations, Talquin Electric

Water Management

  • Keith Rizzaedi, Special Counsel, St. Thomas University School of Law Youth Climate
  • Morgan Higman, Doctoral Candidate, Florida State University Green Building
  • Dr. Jennifer Languell, President, Trifecta Construction Solutions
  • Jeremy Susac, Vice President of Government Affairs, Lennar Regional Planning Council
  • Patricia “Pat” Steed, Executive Director, Central Florida Regional Planning Council
  • Sean Sullivan, Executive Director, Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council

Natural Gas

  • William Blake, Director Alternative Fuels, Tampa Electric Company

Renewable Natural Gas

  • Anddrikk Frazer, President & CEO, Integral Energy

Energy Affordability

  • Berdell Knowles, Task Force Leader, American Association of Blacks in Energy, Florida Chapter

Renewable Energy

  • Jennifer Szaro, Vice President, Smart Electric Power Alliance


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