Updated 02/12/2013 07:35 AM
State Utilities Commission holds public hearing on future of Duke Energy
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RALEIGH—The public got its chance to voice their opinion Monday night about how Duke Energy plans to provide power to the Tar Heel state for the next 20 years.
The State Utility Commission held a public hearing in Raleigh on the power company's Integrated Resource Plan. Duke Energy files long range plans, called Integrated Resource Plan, every two years with the utilities commission. It is an outline of how the company plans to keep meeting the demand for power for the next 10 to 20 years.
Approximately 180 people packed the public hearing Monday night. Most of them wanted Duke Energy, which now also owns and controls Progress Energy, to move to more renewable power sources such as solar, wind, and hydroelectric power.
Representatives with Duke Energy said the company is moving towards cleaner and more efficient power. However environmentalists and concerned customers say they are not doing enough and they are not doing it fast enough.
“I am concerned that Duke Energy needs to be doing much more to shift to a sustainable energy future for both consumers and the future of the company itself,” said Duke Energy customer Heidi Zehnal.
“We have to balance that mix of renewables with traditional resources and also balance that with the cost impact to customers,” said Duke Energy spokesman Jeff Brooks.
Since there was so much statewide interest in the meeting, the utilities commission has scheduled another meeting for Feb. 28 at the Mecklenburg County courthouse in Charlotte.