Duke Energy’s Neglect Could Cost NC Ratepayers $400M

Duke Energy’s Neglect of Federal Funding Could Cost NC Ratepayers $400 Million

Duke Energy has already faced criticism for its controversial carbon plan, which proposes new dirty fossil fuel plants and expensive nuclear reactors instead of renewable energy. Now, they are under scrutiny for neglecting to seek federal loans from the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) that would save NC ratepayers $400 million in their clean energy transition.

Duke’s Mandated Carbon Plan

North Carolina law mandates utility companies such as Duke Energy to achieve a 70% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 (from 2005 levels) and carbon neutrality by 2050. Instead of investing in renewable energy, Duke Energy is proposing build-outs of dirty gas plants and expensive small nuclear reactors. Energy customers are footing the bill for these projects and the failure to utilize IRA funding demonstrates the monopoly’s disregard for its ratepayers.

Duke’s Refusal to Save Money and the Environment

The untapped funding from the IRA would come in the form of a loan program called The Energy Infrastructure Reinvestment (EIR). The EIR refinances any outstanding loans on its retiring coal fleet and combines them with renewable energy investments to lower the overall interest rates on the loans. The program allows for alternative uses of the EIR, but experts believe that they would bring less savings to ratepayers. 

The North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC), charged with regulating all “investor-owned” public utilities in North Carolina, has recommended that Duke better utilizes the EIR. As Duke adjusts its mandated carbon plan, incorporating the EIR is essential to an economically efficient clean energy transition. Time is of the essence as the loan program ends in September of 2026. If Duke Energy does not apply for the funding by then, NC ratepayers will continue suffering increased energy bills.

Duke’s Greed Neglects Ratepayers

By failing to take advantage of the EIR program, Duke Energy has positioned itself as a greedy monopoly, prioritizing revenue over the interest of its ratepayers. The EIR is a significant opportunity for Duke Energy to more easily meet its legally mandated carbon reduction requirements. Duke Energy’s unwillingness to utilize the IRA demonstrates their relentless commitment to polluting fossil fuels and a simultaneous neglect to the financial needs of their ratepayers.

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience. Privacy Policy

environmental justice

Join the Fight

Help us fight for fair maps, free elections, clean air, clean water, and clean energy for every North Carolinian!

legislative battlegrounds on climate

Stay Informed

Keep up to date on the latest environmental and political news. Become an email insider.