23% of energy produced by 2030 projected to be wind, solar and hydroelectric
Clean-energy transition spelled out in just-released Sustainability Report
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – By the end of this decade, renewables will make up a large portion of the company’s generation mix as Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) looks to triple the amount of renewable energy it produces from company power plants and dramatically reduce carbon emissions.
This information, along with large amounts of other data, was spelled out today in Duke Energy’s 15th Sustainability Report, the company’s annual disclosure on environment, social and governance (ESG) issues.
“Duke Energy has a clear line of sight to reduce our carbon emissions by at least 50% by 2030 and is making terrific progress to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. We’re already a leader in our industry when it comes to low-carbon intensity. This next decade will also be our biggest ever for incorporating thousands of megawatts of new renewable energy generation into our portfolio,” said Katherine Neebe, Duke Energy’s vice president, national engagement & strategy, chief sustainability officer and president, Duke Energy Foundation.
Currently, 7% of Duke Energy’s company-owned electrical output comes from wind, solar and hydroelectric plants. That figure is projected to grow to 23% by 2030.
The company is undertaking its aggressive renewable energy buildouts with wind and solar projects currently under construction in Florida, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas. Over the next three years, the company will also add 280 megawatts of pumped storage hydro capacity at its Bad Creek facility in South Carolina.
Duke Energy’s carbon-free generation is also helped by its six nuclear plants in the Carolinas, which produced 35% of its total electrical output in 2020.
Among the other highlights in the report:
- The company is overseeing the largest coal retirement in the industry and disclosed the closing dates for its remaining coal-fired generating units. Since 2010, Duke Energy has retired 51 coal-fired units, according to a chart in the report. An additional unit was retired last month bringing the total to 52.
- For the first time, Duke Energy is sharing expanded employee diversity data, which is filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
- Duke Energy and its Foundation donated more than $8 million to COVID-19 relief efforts during 2020, and more than $2 million was provided by the Duke Energy Foundation to social justice and racial equity organizations.
- The company’s economic development team helped attract nearly 18,000 new jobs and $9.1 billion in capital investment to its service territories.
- The company’s overall carbon dioxide output continues to fall – down more than 40% since 2005. The company aims to reduce its carbon emissions by at least 50% by 2030.
- Duke Energy continues to offer excellent value to customers with high reliability and retail electric rates below the national average in all customer categories – residential, commercial and industrial.
Today’s report continues Duke Energy’s history of transparency and sharing progress on climate change and other ESG matters.
Yesterday, the company announced a new comprehensive brand for its nonregulated commercial renewables business – Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions.
The brand unifies products and services offered by several Duke Energy subsidiaries, including Duke Energy Renewables, REC Solar and Duke Energy One. The team will continue to leverage Duke Energy’s deep industry experience to deliver the sustainable energy solutions customers need and want while empowering them to make a measurable impact, help reduce emissions and gain resiliency.
About Duke Energy
Duke Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of America’s largest energy holding companies. Its electric utilities serve 7.9 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 51,000 megawatts of energy capacity. Its natural gas unit serves 1.6 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The company employs 27,500 people.
Duke Energy is executing an aggressive clean energy strategy to create a smarter energy future for its customers and communities – with goals of at least a 50 percent carbon reduction by 2030 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The company is a top U.S. renewable energy provider, on track to operate or purchase 16,000 megawatts of renewable energy capacity by 2025. The company also is investing in major electric grid upgrades and expanded battery storage, and exploring zero-emitting power generation technologies such as hydrogen and advanced nuclear.
Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2021 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list and Forbes’ “America’s Best Employers” list. More information is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos and videos. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
Cautionary language concerning forward-looking statements
This document includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements are based on management’s beliefs and assumptions. These forward-looking statements are identified by terms and phrases such as "anticipate," "believe," "intend," "estimate," "expect," "continue," "should," "could," "may," "plan," "project," "predict," "will," "potential," "forecast," "target," "outlook," "guidance," and similar expressions. Various factors may cause actual results to be materially different than the suggested outcomes within forward-looking statements; accordingly, there is no assurance that such results will be realized. These risks and uncertainties are identified and discussed in Duke Energy’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and available at the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the events described in the forward-looking statements might not occur or might occur to a different extent or at a different time than Duke Energy has described. Duke Energy expressly disclaims an obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Media contact: Randy Wheeless