Investing in zero-carbon wind power is one way we’re trying to reduce our environmental footprint while meeting the demand for reliable, affordable, and increasingly clean electricity.
In 2008, we entered the renewable energy space with the acquisition of our first wind energy asset in Wyoming. Since then we have invested more than $7.3 billion to grow our commercial wind and solar power businesses. Today, we own or operate 23 wind energy assets, generating over 3,000 megawatts of energy across the country, including Wyoming, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Texas, and Oklahoma.
As a leader in developing innovative wind solutions, we’re continually investing in new wind energy projects for offtake. We believe generating electricity from renewable resources plays an important role in the transition to cleaner energy. That's why we continue to develop innovative, renewable power projects that make good financial sense for the company and also preserve the wildlife and habitats within our project footprints.
At Duke Energy, we use powerful and secure technology to monitor our wind and solar sites across the U.S. through our Renewable Control Center (RCC), which is located in Charlotte, North Carolina. The RCC provides around the clock, critical monitoring services for our operating assets, which allows us to optimize our operations, increase safety, automate site control, analyze equipment conditions, and conduct real-time weather forecasting.
Social and Environmental Stewardship
The responsible stewardship of natural resources is a priority for Duke Energy, which is why we have taken the initiative to pursue protections for wildlife species that inhabit the areas surrounding our renewable energy sites.
In 2018 at our Top of the World Windpower Project, we were the first to install IdentiFlight, a system that blends artificial intelligence with high-precision optical camera technology to detect eagles and prevent them from colliding with rotating wind turbines. This same technology is used at Frontier Windpower II in Oklahoma.
In 2019, Duke Energy was also the first to commercially deploy NRG System’s innovative Bat Deterrent System in the continental U.S. This technology uses high frequency signals to block the echolocation, a radar of sorts, that bats use to navigate in the dark, causing them to avoid areas around wind turbines. Researched performed at our Los Vientos Wind project showed a reduction of all bat fatalities by nearly 50 percent and certain species up to 80 percent.
In addition to investing in research and operations that minimize our environmental impact, we also identify opportunities to maximize local economic and social benefits, such as jobs, new tax revenues and education where our sites are located.