CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Duke Energy today issued the following statement in connection with legal action the company is taking against some of its insurance companies seeking payment for liabilities associated with coal ash. The company believes insurance policies issued to it through the mid-1980s may cover some of the costs to comply with new state and federal coal ash laws and regulations. The company asserted claims against more than two dozen insurance companies that, in the past, provided general liability insurance to Duke Energy Carolinas, Duke Energy Progress and their predecessor companies. Since no insurer has agreed to pay these claims, which could total hundreds of millions of dollars, today Duke Energy filed a civil action in North Carolina Superior Court as the next step in the process.
We take very seriously our commitment to customers to manage coal ash in ways that continue to protect people and the environment. We're also working hard to manage cost, including pursuing claims under insurance policies that we believe may cover some of the expenses being incurred in North Carolina and South Carolina. Net proceeds of any insurance monies we collect will benefit customers in the Carolinas, offsetting the total price tag of this important work.
Throughout its history, Duke Energy safely managed coal ash in ways consistent with industry practices and laws and regulations that were in place at the time. Today, we're making great progress protecting the environment around our basins, spending millions of dollars to comply with strict new laws and requirements that we, like other utilities, could not have anticipated decades ago.
These insurance policies were purchased to help protect our customers from new costs imposed in a situation like this, so the prudent and appropriate thing to do is request payment on their behalf.
About Duke Energy
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the United States. Its Electric Utilities and Infrastructure business unit serves approximately 7.5 million customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest. The company's Gas Utilities and Infrastructure business unit distributes natural gas to approximately 1.6 million customers in the Carolinas, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. Its Commercial Renewables business unit operates a growing renewable energy portfolio across the United States.
Duke Energy is a Fortune 125 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com.