The Center for Progressive Reform recently launched the Campaign for Energy Justice to ensure that North Carolina’s transition to a clean energy economy serves all North Carolinians regardless of wealth or background. The campaign puts equity at the center of the state’s transition to clean sources of energy like wind and solar power. Unfortunately, a plan submitted to the North Carolina Utility Commission (NCUC) by Duke Energy to reduce carbon emissions fails to take equity into account.
The North Carolina legislature ordered NCUC to achieve a 70 percent reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted from electric generating facilities by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2050. Under the plan that Duke Energy submitted, low-wealth North Carolinians face steep increases in electricity rates, which threatens to leave many without the power they need to fuel their lives. What’s more, the NCUC has so far failed to meaningfully include these communities in its planning process. The NCUC must reduce the barriers to public participation and ensure that all North Carolinians have reliable access to affordable electricity as the state decarbonizes.
The NCUC is seeking public comments on Duke Energy’s Carbon Plan until December 31, 2022. Any person or entity may submit written statements. Please share your story.
- Tell decision-makers how the plan will affect you, your family, your community, the state, or our nation while also achieving our state’s climate goals.
- Tell them about energy affordability, energy justice, clean energy, and environmental sustainability.
- Don’t worry about length. Comments can be short (a paragraph) or long (multiple pages).
Follow these instructions to file your comments (which include step-by-step directions on how to submit comments, sample topics, and example public comments).
This summary from the Center explains how Duke’s plan ignores low-income ratepayers, does not include low-cost renewable energy resources, and creates health risks ― relying on a report from Synapse Energy Economics, Inc., an independent research and consulting firm, which modeled various ways to ensure the least-cost pathway to decarbonization in North Carolina. You can learn more about these issues here.
North Carolina can reduce carbon emissions and protect low-wealth ratepayers from electricity costs that they cannot afford, but this will take the public insisting on a fair and equitable plan. Please let the NCUC know that you support energy justice. Your voice matters. Questions or comments for the Center can be sent to Climate Justice Policy Fellow Sophie Loeb.