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July 18, 2008



CEDEX, FRANCE - Governor Charlie Crist today toured Areva NC La Hague the world's largest industrial complex that reprocesses spent reactor fuel to recycle reusable uranium and plutonium. The visit takes place on the sixth day of a 10-day Team Florida Trade and Business Development Mission to the United Kingdom, France, Russia and Spain to encourage trade and investment in Florida and its international partners with a focus on climate change, aviation and alternative and renewable energy.

Areva has built 30 percent of the world's current nuclear generating capacity, with 100 nuclear plants across the world. Governor Crist was joined on the tour by representatives of four Florida power companies: Jeff Lyash, president and chief executive officer of Progress Energy; Sherrill Hudson, chairman and chief executive officer of TECO Power; Armando Olivera, president and chief executive officer of Florida Power and Light; and Susan Story, president and chief executive officer of Gulf Power.

"I applaud France's leadership in alternative energy production, principally nuclear energy," Governor Crist said. "Nuclear energy is a vital part of Florida's energy future, as it is cost effective, clean and can meet large-scale needs."

Currently, there are five nuclear power reactors in Florida, operated by Florida Power and Light and Progress Energy. Florida Power and Light has two facilities in St. Lucie and two at Turkey Point, producing a total of 3,141 megawatts. Progress' reactor at Crystal River produces 858 megawatts. Both companies have announced plans to expand the capacity at each of their existing nuclear units. Combined, these expansions will add approximately 600 megawatts of additional nuclear capacity for the years 2009 through 2013.

As of January 2007, nuclear energy provided approximately 13 percent of Florida's net energy. Last year, Governor Crist signed into law a bill directing the Public Service Commission to establish new rules to provide for early cost recovery mechanisms related to the sitting, design, licensing, and construction of nuclear plants in Florida. Energy legislation signed by Governor Crist last month expanded the rules to include early cost recovery mechanisms related to transmission lines for new nuclear plants.

About Florida-France Relations

France is a world leader in the production of nuclear energy and is Florida's 12th largest trading partner. Bilateral trade between France and Florida reached $3.1 billion in 2007, an increase of 17.9 percent from 2006. Additionally, France is Florida's sixth largest source of FDI, at more than $1.2 billion in 2005. Florida and France have 10 sister city agreements, and the Florida-France Linkage Institute at University of South Florida supports bilateral educational and cultural cooperation.

About the Team Florida Trade and Business Development Mission

Later today, the Governor will visit the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial. Following France, Governor Crist will travel to Russia to meet with government and business leaders to promote Florida-Russia economic relations. Lastly, Governor Crist will visit Spain, meeting with government officials and private sector representatives to discuss Florida-Spain trade and investment, and visit the world's largest photovoltaic solar facility.

In the United Kingdom, Governor Crist attended the Farnborough International Air Show; met with high level government leaders, including His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales and His Royal Highness the Duke of York; David Miliband, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, and John Ashton, Special Representative for Climate Change. He also participated in the Visit Florida marketing campaign kick-off.

Coordinated by Enterprise Florida Inc., the Team Florida delegation includes business and governmental leaders, as well as representatives from economic development organizations and state research institutions. This will be the Governor's third business development mission since taking office in 2007. Most recently, last November the Governor led the largest single-state delegation to Brazil in United States history, which generated more than $300 million in actual and anticipated sales.