Duke Energy Carolinas files annual fuel and energy efficiency charges for customers in South Carolina

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GREENVILLE, S.C. - Duke Energy Carolinas made its annual filings this week with the Public Service Commission of South Carolina (PSCSC) to adjust fuel and demand-side management/energy efficiency (DSM/EE) charges for customers in South Carolina.

One filing seeks to increase the portion of customer bills that pays for fuels used to generate electricity. Another filing requests an increase in the monthly customer charge used to pay for expanded energy efficiency and demand-side management programs.

The net effect of the two filings, if approved by the PSCSC, would be an increase of $7.62 per month on a typical 1,000-kilowatt-hour (kWh) residential bill – increasing the price to $108.07 from the current $100.45. These rates do not include the proposed increase to base rates currently under review by the commission.

By law, the company makes no profit from the fuel component of rates.

Duke Energy Carolinas makes a fuel cost-recovery filing annually in South Carolina. The fuel rate is based on the projected cost of fuel used to provide electric service to the company's customers, plus a true-up of the prior year'’s projection compared to actual costs incurred. The PSCSC reviews fuel costs and adjusts the fuel component of customer rates accordingly.

More than 90 percent of the proposed fuel rate increase, which was filed on Aug. 2, is driven by a credit to customers’' rates from a prior year over collection that ends this year.  Otherwise, fuel costs have only marginally increased when compared to current rates.

Fuel consumption and costs are subject to a variety of factors including weather, customer demand and commodity prices. The annual fuel filing provides a means of ensuring that customers are charged fairly for fuel costs incurred to provide electric service.

Duke Energy Carolinas works to actively manage its fuel contracts and leverage the benefits of the recent merger between Duke Energy and Progress Energy to keep fuel costs as low as possible for customers.

If approved, new fuel rates will go into effect Oct. 1, 2013.

New energy efficiency offerings

The utility also filed a request on Aug. 1 to increase the monthly customer charge used to pay for expanded energy efficiency and demand-side management programs. The proposed increase to energy efficiency rates includes amounts related to costs of implementing Duke Energy Carolinas' save-a-watt pilot program, which ends in December 2013. The rates also include charges for the company’'s proposed energy efficiency programs and cost-recovery mechanism that will go into effect Jan. 1, 2014, to replace the save-a-watt program.

Duke Energy Carolinas' energy efficiency and demand-side management programs have generated more than 1,550 gigawatt-hours of energy reductions and approximately 840 megawatts of capacity reductions between June 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2012.

Total impact of fuel and DSM/EE rate changes (combined rate change effective Jan. 1, 2014; fuel effective Oct. 1, 2013)

Customer class Combined average 
rate increase
Residential1 7.9% increase
Commercial2 6.1% increase
Industrial2 8.9% increase
Lighting2 1.7% increase

This table shows the average impact of the proposed changes for each customer class. The specific increase or decrease for individual customers will vary depending on the rate they pay and other factors.

1 – Reflects an average change for all residential customer classes, not just Rate RS. 
2 – Impact may vary based on participation in EE/DSM programs. DEC non-residential customers have the option of participating in EE, DSM or both programs.

Duke Energy Carolinas

Duke Energy Carolinas owns nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides approximately 20,000 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 2.4 million customers in a 24,000-square-mile service area of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Duke Energy is the largest electric power holding company in the United States with more than $110 billion in total assets. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 7.2 million electric customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest. Its commercial power and international business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at: www.duke-energy.com.