Duke Energy executives are seeking support from North Carolina legislators and others for a highly controversial and twice-failed plan to lock in up to $13 billion in customer rate increases for what critics say are wasteful capital projects.
See our page on Duke Energy’s 2017 rate hike requests, with details on hearing dates and other action alerts.
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Duke Energy wants to charge its customers for costs related to three destructive 2018 storms.
Robeson County leaders are taking a stand against Duke Energy’s plan to seek state approval to charge more for the electricity it sells. The utility says its needs to raise rates to pay for costs incurred during recent weather events, including Hurricane Florence.
NC WARN, a North Carolina climate justice watchdog, and Friends of the Earth, a leading environmental organization, began legal action today to ban the pervasive influence spending by Duke Energy in a case with national ramifications for climate change, electricity rates and corporate control over government and civic leaders.
See coverage in Facing South
NC WARN today began running a hard-hitting TV and online ad in all major media markets across North Carolina. The goal is to counter Duke executives’ pervasive deception by going straight to people across the political spectrum.
The NC Utilities Commission ordered this state’s Duke Energy Carolinas customers to pay $545 million for coal ash negligence and $347 million for the utility’s 13-year, failed effort to begin construction of twin nuclear reactors – a project now cancelled. Even more shameful is that the commission granted Duke a roughly 10 percent mark-up on the coal ash mistake by corporate execs, just as it did in the Duke Progress case earlier this year.
Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good recently promised investors they could count on “multiple rate cases” in both of the corporation’s Carolinas service areas beginning next year – to fund seemingly endless construction of fracked gas power plants and clean-up of coal ash. Separately, she promised to boost rates and profits via a $16 billion electric “grid modernization” scheme that an expert for the NC Sustainable Energy Association (NCSEA) testified could, on its own, raise residential rates by up to 50 percent.
Duke Energy’s proposed side deal at the 11th hour of an already controversial rate case continues drawing opposition from consumer watchdogs, industrial customers, tech giants and environmental groups. It appears the vaguely worded deal could bring an initial rate hike of 26 percent over the first three years – while becoming a perpetual tax on customers.
Today NC WARN filed a motion calling for the NC Utilities Commission to reject a secretive, last minute settlement between Duke Energy and several organizations that would open the floodgates for huge, streamlined rate hikes with no guarantee of benefit to anyone other than corporate stockholders.
See coverage in Greensboro News & Record
The utility that serves the Triad, Charlotte, Durham and much of North Carolina’s western area struck the $2.5 billion proposed deal with several environmental groups and the Commercial Group, a coalition of major retailers, including Walmart and Food Lion. *Please see paragraph in bold*