North Carolina Utilities Commission Approves New Electric Rates for Duke Energy's N.C. Customers January 27, 2012
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -
The North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) today approved Duke Energy Carolinas' proposed settlement in the company's request to increase electric rates for its North Carolina customers.
"We are pleased the NCUC has approved the settlement. We believe the settlement balances the company's need to recover investments made in the electric system with the reality that many of our customers face continued economic challenges," said Brett Carter, president, Duke Energy North Carolina.
"This increase is critical to the company's ongoing modernization plan to address increasingly stringent environmental regulations and also to retire and replace aging power plants. It allows the company to maintain its strong financial position, which enables us to continue investing in a more reliable, efficient and clean electric system for our North Carolina customers."
Duke Energy Carolinas will increase its electric rates in North Carolina by approximately $309 million, representing an average increase of 7.2 percent for most customers. The typical residential customer's bill (based on 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month) will increase by about $7. In its decision, the commission also ordered some rate design modifications.
Additionally, Duke Energy has agreed to contribute $11 million of shareholder money to community non-profits to help low income residents in North Carolina with their energy-related costs.
Under the approved settlement, the company is allowed a return on common equity (ROE) of 10.5 percent with a 53 percent common equity component.
The new electric rates will go into effect early February.
The settlement was agreed upon by Duke Energy; the North Carolina Public Staff, which represents consumers; and Time Warner Cable.
As part of Duke Energy Carolinas' modernization plan, two new power plants will begin producing electricity for customers in 2012. As a result, the company plans to request an additional rate increase in 2012 to recover the costs of the new plants and other capital investments made on behalf of customers.
The entire order can be viewed at the NCUC website.
On Jan. 25, 2012, the Public Service Commission of South Carolina approved the settlement to increase electric rates by $92.8 million.
Money-Saving Opportunities for Customers
Duke Energy wants to help customers make the best use of every dollar spent on their energy-related costs. To learn more, visit www.duke-energy.com/youtility.
Duke Energy Carolinas owns nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides approximately 19,000 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 one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 4 million customers located in five states in the Southeast and Midwest, representing a population of approximately 12 million people. 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 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.
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