Building people power for
climate & energy justice

Duke University Natural Gas-CHP Plant


Click picture above to see our November 2016 newspaper ad.

Duke Energy wants to build a 21-megawatt natural gas-burning power plant on the Duke University campus. As our October 2016 press statement explains, the campus would be a guinea pig for a national scheme to build fracked gas power plants with climate-wrecking emissions on campuses.

NC WARN met with Duke University officials beginning in July 2016, presenting them with information on the dangers of natural gas and discussing alternatives. In October, we sent a report titled Analysis of and Alternatives to the Proposed Duke University Natural Gas-Fired CHP Plant to Duke University President Richard Brodhead.

We followed that up in November with a letter refuting misinformation about the project, and a request in December to be included in the stakeholder process.

In January 2017, we sent a supplemental letter and technical analysis showing that the pollution control equipment proposed by Duke Energy for the plant would allow 10 times as much nitrogen oxide (NOx) to be emitted as best-in-class NOx control equipment used at other gas plants.

Duke Energy has filed for approval of the plan by the NC Utilities Commission, but the details of the contract remain to be worked out and approved by the University. NC WARN will intervene in the case at the Commission (see our Motion to Intervene).

The Commission had scheduled a public hearing and an evidentiary hearing on the plant for January 2017, but on December 1, Duke Energy asked the Commission to delay the hearings to early summer. The University requested more time after receiving significant student and public objections to the plan.

Duke Energy has plans to build such plants at other universities as well, so we are urging President Brodhead to go clean instead of becoming the poster campus for an industry scheme to create profit centers at universities. We’re pushing for a transparent path the campus and community can be proud of. As it becomes clear that the climate crisis is being driven by methane emissions from the fracking boom, humanity badly needs President Brodhead’s leadership.

Take Action!

  1. Email President Brodhead directly at and tell him to ditch Duke Energy’s gas scheme.
  2. If you have connections to Duke University, please contact us.

NC WARN’s report to Duke University President Richard Brodhead
NC WARN’s letter to President Brodhead refuting misinformation about the project
NC WARN letter to President Brodhead urging inclusion of all stakeholders
NC WARN supplemental technical analysis regarding excessive NOx emissions
Duke University web page about the plant
Duke Energy’s request for approval to the NC Utilities Commission
NC WARN Motion to Intervene at NCUC

Read media coverage here
Listen to January 19 commentary on WCHL