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Renewables Giant NextEra Books Higher-Than-Expected Q1 Earnings

NextEra Energy Inc (NYSE: NEE) reported on Tuesday an 8.3% annual increase in its adjusted earnings per share for the first quarter, which topped analyst expectations, as the world's largest wind and solar power generator added more customers to its regulated utilities business and boosted renewables capacity.

NextEra Energy posted 2024 first-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.873 billion, or $0.91 per share, up from $1.678 billion, or $0.84 per share, for the first quarter of 2023. The adjusted EPS for the first quarter of 2024 exceeded the analyst consensus estimate of $0.80 in the Wall Street Journal, as it did in the four previous quarters since Q1 2023.

NextEra Energy owns Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), which is America's largest electric utility providing electricity to approximately 5.9 million customer accounts, or more than 12 million people across Florida. NextEra Energy also owns a clean energy business, NextEra Energy Resources, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world's largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun and a world leader in battery storage.

In the first quarter of 2024, FPL added around 1,640 MW of new cost-effective solar projects, and delivered an EPS increase of 4 cents, NextEra said.

NextEra Energy Resources delivered adjusted earnings growth of about 13.1% and added some 2,765 MW of new renewables and storage to backlog in the past quarter. This marked NextEra Energy Resources' second-best origination quarter ever, as well as its best solar and best storage origination quarter.

"We believe NextEra Energy is well positioned to address the power demand growth expected through the end of the decade and beyond," the company said in its presentation of the Q1 results.

The biggest utilities in the United States expect exponential growth in electricity demand in the coming years from data centers and new technologies such as generative AI.  

So great is electricity consumption from data centers that U.S. utilities and regulators have raised significantly their forecasts for peak power demand in the coming decade.

By Charles Kennedy for

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