Rather than owning the mistake, McCrory issued a defensive statement and said he broke no rules. In May, a spokesman pointed to the now-discredited disclosure report and said it “eliminates the often repeated, ridiculous and false, partisan left-wing attacks challenging the intent of our decisions and policies.” That reminds one of Hillary Clinton dismissing probes into her husband as just a “vast right-wing conspiracy.”
North Carolina regulators should follow the lead of other states in prohibiting electric utilities from requiring up-front deposits from new customers.
In the span of five years, the solar industry in North Carolina has grown from nearly non-existent to fourth-largest in the nation, behind California, Arizona, and New Jersey. The pace is accelerating, with solar capacity set to more than double in the state, at least this year. The state’s powerful electric utilities are pushing changes that could blot out the industry in North Carolina.
In a proceeding that could boost or dampen North Carolina’s fast-growing solar industry, the N.C. Utilities Commission is taking a new look at the rates utilities pay for renewable energy.
Jim Warren, executive director of the advocacy group NC WARN, said he sympathizes with Rogers’ push for a greener future but adds that North Carolina, where Duke is still dominated by fossil fuels, has little to show for his efforts. Duke is currently 41 percent coal, 33 percent nuclear, 24 percent gas, and 2 percent hydropower and solar energy.
Duke Energy still wants to pay less to the owners of rooftop solar power systems from whom it buys electricity to feed back into its grid. But the utility provider won’t say until later this year how much less and when.
Today NC WARN began an intensive statewide public and legal campaign to expose Duke Energy’s efforts to stifle North Carolina’s growing solar power industry at both the rooftop and large-scale levels.
This N&O editorial is consistent with NC WARN’s view: that Duke Energy is not doing enough to promote solar power.
There’s good news for alternative energy and northeastern North Carolina in the announcement that Duke Energy Renewables will build a massive solar energy project in Pasquotank County. But this sunny story also casts a shadow.
Gov. Pat McCrory, himself a long-time employee of Duke until his retirement, came up with a plan for regulation and cleanup that was underwhelming.
N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper has become the latest Duke Energy critic to urge state lawmakers to spare the public from paying billions of dollars Duke would incur if the legislature forces the power company to fix leaky coal ash lagoons.
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