DESTIN, Fla. (WKRG) — Two big blue solar power trees sit along the Destin Harborwalk Villiage collecting enough energy to power a school classroom each day. Sunny the AR solar tree is a new feature connecting the public to the world of solar power energy, by scanning a QR code.
FPL specialist Kimberly Blair showed WKRG News 5 how Sunny works. He comes to life on your phone screen and can be taken down the Harborwalk for an educational chat on solar power.
“You know, kids learn about science and technology, but they can come out here and actually experience science and technology then experience AR-3D technology with Sunny,” said Blair. “And if at the same time they’re standing under a tree, it is actually harvesting the sun, an abundant free energy source that’s creating emissions, free energy and putting it on the grid right now.”
The solar trees on the Destin harbor are 2 of 15 in the Northwest Florida region, Sunny has been in operation in South Florida for a year. FPL, formerly Gulf Power planted the solar trees on the haror in early 2021.
“Now that we’re part of FPL, He has come to Northwest Florida and we’re so excited to have him here because he is innovative and it’s a technology that you know people can come and experience right here on the Boardwalk,” said Blair.
Blair said they have other ideas in the works for Sunny and how to educate the public on growing solar power in the regions. For now, Sunny lives in the QR code found on each solar tree.
FPL Future in Solar Power:
Blair said FPL plans to be completely carbon footprint free by 2045. FPL is looking at energy sources other than solar to reach this goal.
“We have a new program, a new goal and that is to be have our energy fleet carbon-free by 2045. That means no carbon emissions whatsoever,” said Blair. “You hear about carbon neutral, people have offsets, we are going to be 0 carbon and so this tree and our solar projects are a big part of that because solar is going to be able to play a big role along with nuclear power and then hydrogen power that we are working on developing right now and battery storage.”