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Duke Energy Customers Set Record for Electricity Use Dec. 16, 2010

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Duke Energy customers in the Carolinas Wednesday set an all-time record for winter power use. The utility generated 17,570 megawatts of electricity for the hour ending at 8 a.m.

The previous winter peak of 17,282 was set on Jan. 11, 2010.

Weather is a major driver of electricity use. Approximately 50 percent of a customer’s energy costs are attributed to heating and cooling the home.

“During a similar cold snap last year, the average residential customer saw a 30 percent increase in his or her power bill. We could see a similar trend this season,” said Gianna Manes, Duke Energy’s chief customer officer. “We often forget that when the temperatures drop, our heating systems work harder and longer to maintain the comfort level in our homes.”

“We encourage customers who may have difficulty paying a higher-than-expected bill to give us a call early to discuss options including special assistance programs and possible payment arrangements,” Manes added.

Some small changes in a customer’s energy usage could make a big difference.

Energy Saving Tips

  • Adjusting the thermostat just a few degrees can save money and energy.
  • Remove window air conditioning units in the winter to prevent heat from escaping through and around them.
  • Take advantage of natural solar heat. On sunny days, leave the drapes or blinds open to allow the sun’s rays to warm the house.

For more suggestions, go to

Duke Energy’s Online Services

Customers are encouraged to sign up for online services. Once registered, they can complete a brief survey and create a Personalized Energy Report with customized suggestions on how to save energy and money. In addition, customers can view their energy use history and pay bills online.

Duke Energy Carolinas owns nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides approximately 19,000 megawatts of electricity capacity to approximately 2.4 million customers in a 22,000-square-mile service area of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at:  To learn more and contribute to the discussion about the energy issues of today and the possibilities of tomorrow see

Contact: Jason Walls
Phone: 704-382-5559
24-Hour Phone: 800-559-3853

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