Duke Energy

Duke_Energy_LogoDuke Energy, based in North Carolina, is the largest electric utility in the United States and the company emits more carbon pollution than any other utility. Duke also ranks first in fossil fuel generation and second in coal-fired generation. The majority of Duke’s business is in regulated, monopoly utilities in six states: North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. While Duke also owns a commercial arm that has invested in wind and solar power that it sells electricity to other utilities, Duke’s electricity customers in its regulated territory receive an electricity mix that contains next to zero renewable energy. The company has shown little appetite for change. In fact, regulatory documents show it intends to have only 4% renewable power in North Carolina by 2029.

Duke’s fossil and nuclear-dominated strategy have led to a series of scandals in recent years both for its customers and the environment. Duke’s coal ash waste has become a systemic disaster in the Carolinas, culminating in the 2014 coal ash spill on the Dan River. Nuclear construction projects in the Carolinas and particularly Florida have been beset by problems, costing ratepayers billions of dollars.

Duke has protected itself from stricter oversight in its regulated operations by contributing heavily to the state and federal politicians that control its destiny, pouring millions of dollars into campaign contributions and lobbying. Despite massive pressures facing the electric power sector to adapt to technological change that is ushering in a new wave of energy efficiency, rooftop solar power, and distributed energy storage, Duke has yet to show much of an appetite for change. It has aggressively fought efforts to open up North Carolina’s and Florida’s market to non-utility solar providers in an effort to preserve its monopoly business model.

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Basics
Overblown Clean Energy Claims
Coal Ash Controversy
Natural Gas Gamble
Nuclear Energy Issues
Environmental Justice
Money In Politics
Integrated Resource Plan Details
Disastrous Clean Coal Project

 

Recent Posts About Duke Energy

Insider Emails: Polluter Lobbyists Behind Clean Energy Standards Freeze in Ohio

Insider emails confirm the undue influence of polluter lobbyists and special interest groups over the controversial Energy Mandates Study Committee report that recommended an extension of the freeze on clean energy standards in Ohio. The Ohio House of Representatives and […]

Duke Energy says it supports solar, despite backing Amendment 1. We fact-check.

Duke Energy says it both supports solar energy, and the deceptive anti-solar Amendment 1 in Florida. But the facts show that Duke has no plans to significantly grow its own installation of solar power, and it’s fighting customers who try to do the same.

What’s next for solar in Florida after the Amendment 1 results?

How Florida votes on Election Day will determine whether Amendment 1 results in success for the utilities that have spent $20+ million backing this ‘deceptive’ attack on rooftop solar, or a David versus Goliath win for solar supporters. Regardless of […]

Florida Power Companies Continue To Spend Money Supporting Amendment 1 To Limit Solar

Florida’s four largest power companies have contributed over $20 million to the Consumers for Smart Solar campaign, also called Amendment 1.

Retired Duke Energy Executive Paul Newton Raises Large Sums in Race for State Senate

If elected, Paul Newton will join a growing list of former Duke Energy employees who are serving in North Carolina government roles.

Duke Energy Shareholders Reject Proposal for Disclosure of Lobbying Activities and Expenditures

Sisters of two Catholic religious orders that own Duke Energy stock want full disclosure of lobbying activities, but the board and shareholders rejected the proposal.

Coal Ash Still Considered Non-Hazardous by the EPA, Despite Evidence to the Contrary

After years of delay, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the first federal regulations for the disposal of coal ash, a toxic byproduct of burning coal at power plants that contains arsenic, mercury, chromium and other substances associated with cancer […]

Duke Energy’s Plans To Attack Solar In North Carolina

In a sign it will seek to maintain its monopolistic control of North Carolina’s energy generation, Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good criticized solar net metering in a meeting with local reporters on January 22, 2014. According to the Charlotte News […]

Coalition Sends Letter to Duke Energy CEO: Drop ALEC

A coalition of democracy advocates sent a letter to Jim Rogers, Chairman, President and CEO of Duke Energy Corporation, to drop his company’s affiliation with the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC serves as a conduit to feed big business-sponsored […]

Trump cites alternative facts about Clean Power Plan from NERA Economic Consulting

A White House fact-sheet on President Trump’s executive order targeting key U.S. climate change policies cited a controversial report by NERA Economic Consulting that was sponsored by the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity. The fact-sheet circulated by the White […]

U.S. DOE: Magical Thinking on Future Shale Gas Supplies

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Energy Information Administration (EIA) is the go-to source for data on electricity, natural gas, petroleum, nuclear, coal, emissions, energy efficiency and renewable energy. Every year, the EIA publishes its Annual Energy Outlook (AEO), which […]

On ABC’s “This Week” Scott Pruitt Cites the Success of the EPA and Clean Air Act to Undo Them

It is a bitter irony that Scott Pruitt cites the Clean Air Act success story to justify the Trump administration’s attacks on clean air and water safeguards

Neil Chatterjee: Trump’s FERC pick is a rubber stamp for fossil fuel and utility interests

President Trump will soon nominate Neil Chatterjee to fill one of the three open seats on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), according to media reports. A coalition of 135 environmental groups is lining up to oppose Trump’s FERC nominees. […]

Southern Company's Kemper Power Plant

As Time Runs Out for Southern Company, Brain Drain Begins at Kemper

This blog was authored by Dan Zegart and cross-posted from the Climate Investigations Center With the Kemper power plant officially scheduled to go on-line imminently according to builder Southern Company, a group of key engineers and managers who work on […]

New DOE Chief of Staff, Brian McCormack, Played Critical Role in EEI’s Rooftop Solar Campaign

Brian McCormack, most recently of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), will become Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s chief of staff, reports confirmed yesterday. Previously, McCormack was EEI’s vice president of political and external affairs and one of the highest paid staffers at […]

UtilitySecrets.org, a new site from EPI and Center for Media and Democracy

The Energy and Policy Institute and Center for Media and Democracy have teamed up to launch a new web site, UtilitySecrets.org. UtilitySecrets will be a collection of documents, analysis, audio, and video that shines a light on what utility companies are […]

Chevron's oil refinery in Richmond, CA

California Democrats who got big gifts from Oil Industry gave big gifts back

California Democrats who voted for oil interests the most received 2.5 times more than other CA Democrats in gifts from the oil industry from 2012 to 2016, according to a new analysis of financial disclosures.

Donald Trump once believed in clean energy, so what happened?

President Donald Trump is well known for his record of over the top attacks on clean energy, but properties managed by the Trump Organization have taken advantage of state energy efficiency incentives to save money and reduce their carbon dioxide […]

Southern Company's Kemper Power Plant

Southern Company Says Kemper Not Viable as Coal Plant, Blames the PSC

Southern Company chief executive officer Tom Fanning admitted that Kemper plant is not economically viable as a coal-burning power plant and shifted blame away from himself and corporate management.

Two workers installing rooftop solar panels

PNM, Edison Electric Institute lead deceptive attack on rooftop solar in New Mexico

Supposed “customer protection” legislation proposed in New Mexico is the latest chapter in monopoly utilities’ plot to kill rooftop solar.

“Hell to pay” if Trump targets EPA climate science, says U.S. Chamber official

A senior official with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce warned that if Trump tries to rescind the EPA’s endangerment finding for greenhouse gasses, it will be a “huge, huge buzzsaw”.

Navajo Generating Station coal plant

Andy Tobin Pushes To Keep Open Dirtiest Coal Plant In The Western United States

The Najavo Generating Station is one of the oldest, dirtiest coal-fired power plants. It is also one of the country’s largest CO2 emitters.

Legislation Advances to Allow Xcel Energy to Build Natural Gas Plant that Bypasses Usual Regulatory Review

On February 2, the Minnesota Senate Committee on Energy and Utilities Finance and Policy voted 7-2 in favor of giving Xcel Energy the certainty to build a 780-megawatt natural gas power plant. The new gas units will replace two coal-fired […]

Gulf Power Wants to Make its Customers Pay for Twice the Coal by 2025

While most electric utilities are sprinting away from coal and toward less expensive and cleaner generating options, Gulf Power wants to make its customers in Florida pay for double the amount of coal it burns by 2025.

Report: Natural Gas Prices and Utility Infrastructure Spending Have High Impact on Bills; Solar Negligible

In the utility industry’s effort to slow the growth of rooftop solar across the country, electric companies and their trade association, Edison Electric Institute (EEI), have based their campaign on the notion that rooftop solar customers cause a cost-shift to […]

Documents reveal who’s behind RPS and RGGI repeal bills in New Hampshire

February 14, 2017 update: A bill to repeal the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) will be retained the committee for now, the bill’s sponsor told ICIS Analytics. Republican Jeb Bradley, the New Hampshire Senate Majority leader, also told the Associated Press that he doesn’t […]

Under Rex Tillerson, ExxonMobil lobbied against carbon tax bills

Rex Tillerson claimed to support a carbon tax while CEO of ExxonMobil, but under his watch last year the oil and gas company lobbied against two pioneering carbon tax bills in Massachusetts, and it has long funded opponents of carbon […]

Renewable energy just disappeared from Donald Trump’s energy plans

Renewable energy received no mention today on the new White House website, launched today during Donald Trump’s inauguration. Trump pledged to include renewable energy, including solar and wind, in his energy plan while on the campaign trail last year. After […]

Arizona Commissioner To APS: Why Invest In So Much Gas?

Arizona Corporation Commissioner Andy Tobin asked monopoly utility APS why it plans to invest in so much natural gas, and so little solar energy and energy storage, over the next 15 years.

Jay Clayton, the SEC, and climate change disclosure

What does Donald Trump’s plan to nominate Jay Clayton as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) mean for the future of corporate climate change disclosure? The election of Donald Trump has created real uncertainty about the direction the […]

Insider Emails: Polluter Lobbyists Behind Clean Energy Standards Freeze in Ohio

Insider emails confirm the undue influence of polluter lobbyists and special interest groups over the controversial Energy Mandates Study Committee report that recommended an extension of the freeze on clean energy standards in Ohio. The Ohio House of Representatives and […]

Donald Trump Has Nominated Oklahoma AG Pruitt, ALEC and Fossil Fuel Industry Ally, To Lead EPA

“We have an EPA that is engaged in rulemaking, proposed rulemaking, that seeks to exert itself in a way that the statute doesn’t authorize at all.”

Follow the money behind attacks on clean energy in Ohio

December 28, 2016 update: Republican Governor John Kasich has vetoed legislation – HB 554 – that would have effectively extended the freeze on Ohio’s clean energy standards for another two years by making them voluntary. The standards will now be unfrozen on […]

An invitation to the California Independent Petroleum Association's dinner for freshmen legislators from CIPA

California’s newest legislators have first chance to cozy up to Big Oil on Sunday night

California’s Big Oil industry, led by CIPA, is hosting a dinner this Sunday night exclusively for the state’s newly elected freshmen legislators.

Koch and Trump Factions Plan to Erase Climate Policy Gains

Forces from the Koch and Trump camps are converging around plans to erase some of the key climate policy gains of the past eight years.  Koch group is hopeful Trump will “use his eraser” on U.S. climate policies As Mac Zimmerman, […]

Donald Trump’s renewable energy and global warming Tweets

Donald Trump has posted more than 100 Tweets attacking wind and solar power. He has also suggested that global warming is a hoax manufactured by the Chinese.

Duke Energy says it supports solar, despite backing Amendment 1. We fact-check.

Duke Energy says it both supports solar energy, and the deceptive anti-solar Amendment 1 in Florida. But the facts show that Duke has no plans to significantly grow its own installation of solar power, and it’s fighting customers who try to do the same.

What’s next for solar in Florida after the Amendment 1 results?

How Florida votes on Election Day will determine whether Amendment 1 results in success for the utilities that have spent $20+ million backing this ‘deceptive’ attack on rooftop solar, or a David versus Goliath win for solar supporters. Regardless of […]

Arizona Corporation Commissioner Andy Tobin Caught With Hand in Cookie Jar

Republican Commissioner Andy Tobin has been caught soliciting donations for a side job that he would do alongside his work at the ACC. Tobin’s solicitation calls into serious question whether regulated companies like Arizona Public Service could try to curry favor with Tobin via a donation to fund his moonlighting.

Where is the National Black Chamber of Commerce getting its money to attack solar power in Florida? And is it breaking the law?

National Black Chamber of Commerce contributed money to Consumers for Smart Solar through a lobbying arm of the organization that was revoked by the IRS

The Real Cost Shift: Utilities Force Customers to Subsidize Attacks on Rooftop Solar

Florida utilities are using customer money to subsidize the Edison Electric Institute’s misleading attacks on so-called “subsidies” for rooftop solar.

UPDATED: Florida Professional Firefighters Reverse Endorsement of Amendment 1

Pressure from “hundreds, if not thousands” of members persuades firefighters’ union to reverse support for anti-solar Amendment 1.

Two workers installing rooftop solar panels

Press Release: Florida Utilities Pour $3.5 Million More Into Anti-Solar Amendment 1

Florida Power & Light now the biggest bankroller of a ballot campaign in Florida history; Duke Energy second

First Episode of ‘Years of Living Dangerously’ Focuses on Solar Energy and Amendment 1 in Florida

‘SNL’ castmember Cecily Strong travels to Nevada and Florida to investigate the latest solar controversies between power companies and their customers.

Florida Power Companies Continue To Spend Money Supporting Amendment 1 To Limit Solar

Florida’s four largest power companies have contributed over $20 million to the Consumers for Smart Solar campaign, also called Amendment 1.

Florida utilities silent amidst controversy over anti-solar Amendment 1

Deceptive Amendment 1 strategy defies utilities’ codes of conduct

Funding to Consumers for Smart Solar for Amendment 1 as of Oct. 14, 2016

“Consumers for Smart Solar” behind Florida’s Amendment 1 collected only $10 from actual consumers

Florida’s “Consumers for Smart Solar,” the group behind the anti-solar Amendment 1, has collected only $10 from actual individual consumers. It has collected $22 million from electric utilities, fossil fuel companies and their front groups.

Consumers for Smart Solar Caught Deleting References to the James Madison Institute

Deletions started to occur after leaked audio sufaced of JMI revealing the true intentions behind Amendment 1

Press Release: Utility-funded PAC caught attempting more “political jiu-jitsu”

Consumers for Smart Solar tries to delete online ties to James Madison Institute

Two workers installing rooftop solar panels

Press Release: New Evidence that Florida Utilities Sought to Deceive Public on Anti-Solar Ballot Initiative

Florida utilities disguised anti-solar initiative as pro-solar to trick voters, state solar supporters

Leaked Audio Shows How Florida Utilities Sought to Deceive Voters to Support Amendment 1

“use the language of promoting solar, and kind of, kind of put in these protections for consumers that choose not to install rooftop”

Arizona Regulators Blunt Solar Progress

Arizona could be a solar hotbed, but regulators there have stunted the market, causing the state to fall behind other leaders in solar growth.

Consumer Energy Alliance, group behind fraudulent petitions and letters signed by dead people, releases anti-solar report

The Consumer Energy Alliance, a front group for fossil fuel companies and utilities, released a report last month attacking policies that support solar power.

Retired Duke Energy Executive Paul Newton Raises Large Sums in Race for State Senate

If elected, Paul Newton will join a growing list of former Duke Energy employees who are serving in North Carolina government roles.

EPA’s Clean Power Plan Opponents Led By Just A Few Power Companies

Recent investigations have revealed that some of the nation’s largest electric utilities, including the industry’s trade association, have quietly funded UARG to sue President Obama’s Clean Power Plan.

With Kochs Now Attacking Electric Vehicles, Utilities Should Reexamine Their Friends

The Kochs’ funding of anti-EV politics should leave utilities reconsidering their funding of the Koch network. The rift may already be opening in the utility and Koch-funded American Legislative Exchange Council.

Arizona Public Service Company Rate Request: Billions for Fossil Fuels, Nickels and Dimes for Solar

Arizona Public Service Company’s $3.6 billion rate request will increase bills, benefit coal and gas, and limit both rooftop and utility-scale solar energy.

Does Dominion support using Thomas Jefferson’s name to spread climate denial?

This relationship between a lobbyist for one of the nation’s largest utilities and an aggressive purveyor of attacks on climate science and policies warrants much deeper scrutiny than it has so far received.

Kemper Scandal Unraveling Southern Company’s Credibility

A corporate rebrand won’t rid Southern Company of its history of misinforming the public on climate change, or their forthcoming problems with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Southern Company's Kemper Power Plant

Southern Company Scandal: The Documents

Read the documents behind Southern Company’s Kemper Scandal that has prompted the Securities and Exchange Commission to open a formal investigation into the utility company.

Southern Company's Kemper Plant

Southern Company’s Kemper Scandal and Why Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Will Never Work

Southern Company’s Kemper scandal illustrates that investments in carbon capture and storage technology and “clean coal” have wasted billions of dollars, remain too expensive, and are not viable options to decarbonize our electricity sector.

Peabody Energy Funding Climate Change Denial and Anti-Renewable Campaigns

Analysis of bankruptcy court documents reveals Peabody Energy funding climate denial that span trade associations, lobby groups, and industry front groups.

Southern Company’s Kemper Power Plant: Latest Utility Boondoggle at the Expense of Customers

Public frustrations of construction work in progress laws have not been limited to Mississippi. Utility companies throughout the country have been benefiting from this policy for years, and Kemper is just the latest example.

Edison Electric Institute Caught Secretly Working To Influence FTC Solar Workshop

The Edison Electric Institute was behind a ghostwritten letter from Rep. Yvette Clarke that took a swipe at the rooftop solar industry – a tactic EEI has been using over the years to influence the distributed solar debate.

Groups Ask Indiana Supreme Court to Reconsider Legislative Public Records Case

Last month, in a 4 – 1 ruling, the Indiana Supreme Court agreed that APRA does apply to the General Assembly, but the Court still did not require disclosure of the correspondence.

NextEra Energy Shareholders Reject Resolution on Projected Sea Level Rise and Climate Change Impacts

Shareholders voted 65% against a resolution that would have required the corporation to report material risks and costs of sea level rise scenarios projecting forward to 2100.

FirstEnergy Shareholders Vote Against Proposal for Disclosure of Lobbying Activities and Membership Payments

The shareholder activist stated the inadequate disclosure by FirstEnergy, combined with its active lobbying against the Clean Power Plan, present significant risks to investors.

Duke Energy Shareholders Reject Proposal for Disclosure of Lobbying Activities and Expenditures

Sisters of two Catholic religious orders that own Duke Energy stock want full disclosure of lobbying activities, but the board and shareholders rejected the proposal.

Indiana Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Secrecy

Indiana Supreme Court ruled that the legislature is governed by the Access to Public Records Act but declined to force lawmakers to follow it – allowing communication between lobbyists and legislators to remain private.

Global Investors Warn Utilities to Change Business Strategy and Prepare for Climate Change

Now that countries have signed the Paris Agreement, global investors are warning utility companies that they must now act.

Yes on 1 for the Sun: The Anti-Solar Ballot Initiative from Utilities and Fossil Fuel Interests

The Koch Brothers and utility-funded Consumers for Smart Solar unveiled its amendment ballot campaign, Yes on 1 for the Sun, to restrict the solar market in Florida.

NextEra Energy Shareholder Resolution on Sea Level Rise Advances

Shareholders have proposed a resolution to NextEra Energy, Inc. that would require the corporation to report material risks and costs of sea level rise scenarios projecting forward to 2100.

Utility Funded Consumers for Smart Solar Ballot Approved by Florida Supreme Court

The Florida Supreme Court approved the utility-funded Consumers for Smart Solar ballot for the 2016 election.

Public Interest Groups Call on Executive Nominations Committee to Reject Michael Richard’s Appointment Over Communications between Michael Richard and Governor Hogan’s Office

The emails demonstrate that in just the first month of his appointment, Michael Richard, coordinated with his previous office on matters both confidential and restricted.

Co-founder and CEO of Harpoon Brewery Behind Efforts to Block Solar in Massachusetts

Associated Industries of Massachusetts has stepped up its lobbying efforts targeting the pro-solar policies in the state.

The Koch Brothers ‘Hijacking’ of American Democracy

The Koch Brothers have leveraged their business empire to shape the political system in the mold of their own agendas while simultaneously capturing the Republican Party and along with it, American democracy.

Utilities Exert Influence Through Universities to Sway Regulatory and Political Debate

Through the funding of university institutes and faculty, utility interests and their trade association, Edison Electric Institute (EEI), wield significant influence over the education of regulatory staff and production of advocacy materials to support lobbying efforts around the country.

FirstEnergy Ohio Bailout – Bad for Ratepayers, Bad for Ohio

186,000 ratepayers would be forced to pay an additional fee to prop up the company’s uncompetitive coal and nuclear plants, which cannot compete in the free market.

C. Boyden Gray: Tobacco, Tea Party, and Dirty Energy

As someone with deep ties to right-wing political circles, and strong financial ties to the tobacco industry, C. Boyden Gray fits the bill as the ideal lobbyist for the dirty energy industry. Dirty energy in many ways is the successor to the […]

Richard Fink: The Koch Brothers’ Big Tobacco Man Behind the Kochtopus Curtain

Richard Fink has long been one of the Koch Brothers’ inner circle, playing the role of both political strategist and close confidante. Some say the Koch Empire wouldn’t have been nearly as successful without Fink. Without him and his ideas, […]

Special Interests Behind Anti-Solar Ballot Initiative Consumers for Smart Solar

The utility-backed Consumers for Smart Solar would preserve the status quo, preventing homeowners or businesses from contracting with solar companies that can install solar for no upfront cost.

Paul Chesser, Fossil Fuel Pundit, Attacks Tech Industry’s Cleantech Investments

The biography of Paul Chesser includes a long list of fossil fuel-backed front groups that he’s currently involved with, which may explain his blatant anti-renewable energy stance.

Roy Spencer, Climate Skeptic, wants RICO Investigation of Environmentalists

Roy Spencer has a career filled with outrageous statements.

Americans For Prosperity Leads Fossil Fuel Front Group Push for Crude Oil Exports, Anti-Renewables Lobbying

The fossil fuel-funded Americans for Prosperity wrote a coalition to Congress signed by 21 front groups calling for the elimination of the oil export ban.

Clean Power Plan Published – Here Is The Utility Industry’s Strategy To Overturn It

Utility companies including the industry’s trade association, Edison Electric Institute, have worked to stop the rules and continue to fund organizations focused on overturning the rules.

Ohio Energy Study Committee Relied Upon Flawed Testimony

The Ohio Energy Mandates Study Committee relied on a flawed testimony from Strata Policy, a front group with financial ties to the Koch Brothers.

Ohio Energy Mandates Study Committee Relies on Fossil Fuel Interests to Attack Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS)

Ohio legislators should be cautious of any action to freeze, eliminate, make voluntary or weaken the standard because the study committee will be forced to rely on special interest groups to come to their conclusion.

Revealed: Public Records Between Senator Seitz and Utility Companies

Internal emails reveal how ALEC, utility industry representatives, and front groups have been working to influence the members of the Ohio Energy Mandates Study Committee.

The repeated effort by Ohio ALEC members to end the state’s clean energy law

Internal emails reveal how ALEC, utility industry representatives, and front groups have been working to influence the members of the Ohio Energy Mandates Study Committee.

Charles Koch Distorts the Facts: Here Are The Ways His Money & Political Network Prevent Clean Energy Businesses From Succeeding

The Kochs use their political influence and funding for efforts to repeal laws designed to support the deployment of more renewable electricity.

Attacks on Clean Power Plan Based on Flawed Reports

This briefing outlines the studies frequently used by special interests, details who has been paid or consulted in the production of these reports, and exposes the front groups involved in circulating the reports.

Vitter and His Campaign Contributors Fight Against EPA Carbon Rules, Favor Anti-Environment Agenda

Vitter’s Billionaire’s Club report is a distraction from the real billionaires in politics with whose dirty energy agenda David Vitter is strongly aligned.

Corporations Behind The Lawsuit Against The EPA

The coalition of lawyers suing the EPA is connected to some of the largest electric utility corporations in the country, and many want to remain hidden.

States Begin New Legal Attack Against The Clean Power Plan

Sixteen states, led by West Virginia, have requested that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency stay the final Clean Power Plan rule.

Industry-funded Front Groups Working Together To Fight Clean Power Plan

These ten industry-funded front groups have been working to stop the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan regulations seeking to combat combat climate change.

The Secret Network of Fossil Fuel & Utility Backed Groups Working to Stop Clean Energy

Energy & Policy Institute’s new report exposes the strategies, front groups, and people used by the fossil fuel and utility corporations to attack clean energy policies.

Wisconsin Energy Corp. CEO, Gale Klappa, President of Global Warming Misinformation Campaign Earlier In His Career

The Information Council on the Environment was created as a front group for coal and utility interests to “reposition global warming as theory (not fact).”

Are Utility Companies Changing Their Strategy To Fight Obama Power Plan?

In a letter sent to President Obama this week, Indiana Governor Mike Pence said that the State of Indiana “will not comply” with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan unless the plan is “demonstrably and significantly improved.” Gov. Pence […]

Pope Francis’ Encyclical: Clean Energy and The Moral Case for Climate Solutions

Pope Francis officially released his encyclical, “Laudato Si (“Be Praised”), On the Care of Our Common Home”, calling on “every person living on this planet” to urgently address climate change, reduce the use of fossil fuels, and transition to clean energy.

Edison Electric Institute Elects New Leaders But Policymakers Are Unlikely To See Innovative Ideas

Nick Akins, president and CEO of American Electric Power, was announced as the elected chairman of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) yesterday at the association’s annual meeting in New Orleans. EEI is the national trade association representing investor-owned electric utility […]

Electric Utility Industry Created Their Own Air Pollution Permits, Held Private Meetings With Texas Regulators

Utility employees held private meetings with state regulators to discuss revisions to the permits and provided language that was incorporated verbatim by the regulators into the final text of the revised permits.

The Exelon-Pepco Merger & Exelon’s History of Anti-Clean Energy Lobbying

The Exelon-Pepco merger would empower the company to continue its anti-renewable campaign in Washington, D.C. and Maryland, negatively impact ratepayers, and hinder the growth of the renewable energy industry.

Clean Energy Think Tank Calls for Public Records Between Governor Sandoval and Utilities on Solar Energy

The Energy & Policy Institute submitted a public records request with the Nevada Executive Branch asking for correspondence regarding solar energy between Governor Brian Sandoval and NV Energy, the lobbying firm R&R Partners, and the Edison Electric Institute.

North Carolina Renewable Energy Standard Attacked Again

After using last year’s legislative session to deal with Duke Energy’s Dan River coal ash spill, Republicans on the House Public Utilities Committee are bringing back their 2013 attempt to freeze the state’s clean energy law.

Mississippi Net Metering Rules Advance

A state investigation found net metering “has the potential to result in a downward pressure on rates.”

Oklahoma Wind Energy’s Future In Jeopardy Due To One Man

Frank Robson, a multi-millionaire real estate developer, entered the wind energy debate last year when he found out a wind farm was planned near his ranch in Centralia.

Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy Releases Anti-Solar Report

CARE is a fossil fuel-funded advocacy organization that opposes environmental activism and says that the pursuit of renewable energy will “end the America we know and love.”

Edison Electric Institute Strategy Documents Behind Utilities’ Campaign Against Solar Unveiled by Energy and Policy Institute

Evidence of the Edison Electric Institute “action plan” envisioned by utility officials can be seen in states across the country.

Edison Electric Institute Campaign Against Distributed Solar

The rapid emergence of solar energy has caused investor-owned utility companies and their trade association, the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), to create a strategic campaign to disrupt the growth of the distributed rooftop solar market.

Documents Reveal Edison Electric Institute Campaign Against Solar

The rapid growth and emergence of solar energy in the electricity market has caused investor-owned utility companies and their trade association, the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), to create a strategic campaign to prevent distributed rooftop solar energy from gaining more […]

Release: Fossil Fuel-Funded ALEC Behind Attack Colorado Renewable Energy Standard

The sponsors of the bill are tied to the fossil fuel-funded American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which has sought for at least three years to overturn renewable energy standards (RES) in the states.

Beacon Hill Institute EPA Attack Funded Through Richard Berman Front Group

The reports have been released in partnership with industry-funded state think tanks with ties to the Koch brothers and other fossil fuel special interest groups.

Willie Soon Secret Fossil Fuel Funding Revealed For Papers Denying Man-Made Climate Change

Southern Company has been funding Willie Soon, an astrophysicist and climate change denier at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics through one of its subsidiaries called Southern Company Services.

Peabody’s Energy Poverty Campaign Versus Reality at Powering Africa Summit

African energy ministers, utility companies, and private sector investors all gathered in Washington D.C. recently for the Powering Africa Summit at the St. Regis Hotel. The summit is designed to bring stakeholders together, including those leading the Obama administration’s Power […]

Floridians for Solar Choice Launches Ballot Initiative: Americans for Prosperity Stays Silent on the Issue

Update: On Wednesday, March 11, the Florida Chapter of Americans For Prosperity (AFP) held a press conference on the topic of solar energy. A reporter asked if the chapter was speaking against the ballot initiative, communications director Andres Malave said, “Absolutely not. […]

American Gas Association Wants States To Submit Implementation Plans, Not Ignore Clean Power Plan

David McCurdy, President & CEO of the American Gas Association, said last week that he prefers state lawmakers and regulators submit their state implementation plans (SIP) to the EPA, rather than completely refuse to comply with the regulations. If states […]

EEI President Says Energy Efficiency Is A Priority. Why Are His Members Then Working to Weaken State Efficiency Programs?

On Wednesday, Thomas Kuhn, president of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the trade association for investor-owned utilities in America, said, “energy efficiency is a priority for our business.” Kuhn continued by saying efficiency programs, “have been saving customers a lot […]

Edison Electric Institute’s Anti-Solar, PR Spending Revealed

Over the past couple of decades, special interests from the coal, oil, utilities, and other energy industries have routinely used lobbying, public relations, and other means to impact decisions that could affect their businesses.

Our Prediction for 2015 on Utility Dive

We submitted the following prediction to Utility Dive after they asked: What do you think will happen in 2015? See the rest of the predictions here.  Matthew Kasper, Fellow, Energy and Policy Institute: Koch funded-Americans for Prosperity and the American Legislative […]

Coal Ash Still Considered Non-Hazardous by the EPA, Despite Evidence to the Contrary

After years of delay, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the first federal regulations for the disposal of coal ash, a toxic byproduct of burning coal at power plants that contains arsenic, mercury, chromium and other substances associated with cancer […]

Florida Regulators Weaken Energy Efficiency Goals for Utilities

The Florida Public Service Commission voted today to gut the state’s energy efficiency goals by more than 90 percent for electric utilities (Duke Energy Florida, Florida Power & Light, Gulf Power Company, and Tampa Electric Company). Combined Residential & Commercial/Industrial Cumulative […]

LEED Green Building Standards Attacked By Chemical and Timber Industries

The chemical and timber industries are working across the country to eliminate energy efficiency standards modeled on the latest version of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), the industry standard that is used in over 3.3 billion square feet […]

Arizona’s Energy Efficiency Program Attacked

Last week, Arizona regulators filed a plan to eliminate the state’s energy efficiency program. The Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) staff submitted the proposal on Tuesday and the five commissioners will vote on the plan. The ACC adopted the energy efficiency […]

Atlantic Offshore Drilling Plans Continue: Fossil Fuel Front Groups Meet Privately With Federal Agencies

Update March 15, 2016: The Obama administration said it will not auction off drilling rights for Atlantic Ocean waters off the coast of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. However, the Department of Interior will consider the sale of drilling rights in three spots in the Arctic […]

The 2014 Midterm Election Results: Implications for Energy and Environment Policies

The 2014 midterm elections will have implications on a variety of issues across the country and throughout all levels of government. Many people will be analyzing the events and decisions that occurred during the campaign season. But looking forward, numerous […]

Message to Dems: Natural Gas Won’t Save the Climate

Last week, a study published in the journal Nature found that the increase in global natural gas consumption “is not necessarily an effective substitute for climate change mitigation policy.” The study’s conclusion undercuts climate change policies that use natural gas […]

Koch-Backed American Energy Alliance Releases Misleading Poll

Today, the American Energy Alliance (AEA) released a poll regarding the EPA’s plan to cut carbon emissions, and federal tax credits for clean energy like the wind Production Tax Credit. The poll was an effort to show that Americans disapprove […]

The Solar Boom

Solar energy’s growth rate in the U.S. over the past four years has been 418 percent. In 2010, America’s total solar capacity was just over 2,000 megawatts (MW), and by 2014 over 12,000 MW of solar electricity generation had been installed across the country.

Wall Street and Regulators Choose Solar Over Fossil Fuels

Wall Street Favors Solar As Utilities Face Financial Threat For the past few decades the electricity sector in the U.S. has faced almost no competition and enjoyed access to cheap credit. This is because utility companies are able use rates […]

The External Costs of Fossil Fuels; Environmental and Health Value of Solar

Introduction Ratepayers and customers have been led to believe that a power plant burning coal or natural gas is the cheapest form of electricity and therefore, should be prioritized over renewable energy generation. However, ratepayers are paying for more than […]

How to Secure the Grid and Save Ratepayers Money

Background: The Aging Power Grid Knowing of how the electrical system works is critical to understanding why and how solar energy benefits the power grid. The U.S. electric grid consists of large high-power voltage lines, substations, and transformers, all of […]

Arizona Public Service Proposes To Install Free Solar Panels, Here’s What They Should Do Next

On July 28, Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) filed a proposal to state regulators seeking approval to install 20 megawatts (MW) of distributed solar generation on approximately 3,000 homes. APS filed the proposal in order to meet the 2015 renewable […]

ALEC’s Anti-Renewable Energy Agenda – July 2014

The American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) new energy agenda continues to support the interests of the fossil fuel and utility members by attacking clean energy policies at the state level. ALEC is funded by some of the nation’s largest energy […]

House Subcommittee on Energy and Power Features Fossil Fuel Front Groups

House subcommittee hearing features testimony from people who have received funding from fossil fuel interests and primarily advocate for the continued use of fossil fuels over renewable energy.

Assemblymember Perea’s Energy Bill Pushed by Fossil Fuel Interests Tied to American Legislative Exchange Council

In 2014, California Assembly Bill 1763 would require the California Energy Commission (CEC) to develop a state energy plan for 2030 and 2050. It is sponsored by Californians for Affordable and Reliable Energy (CARE), a coalition that includes multiple fossil fuel interests, and connected to the American Legislative Exchange Council.

Analysis: Americans for Prosperity Anti-Wind Letter, June 2014

Americans for Prosperity spearheaded a letter published as a full page advertisement attacking the production tax credit. Sixty organizations are either funded by fossil fuel interests or have known ties to the Koch Brothers’ political network.

Wind energy is a key wedge in the fight against global warming

Wind farms reduce greenhouse gas emissions and must be deployed to limit global warming’s impact

Front Groups Spread Disinformation in Attempt to Freeze Ohio Cleantech Laws

Front groups backed by utility and fossil fuel companies spread disinformation to back up legislation that freezes Ohio’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard.

Property Values Not Hurt by Wind Farms

Studies find properties that host wind farms are worth more after turbines installed. Nearby properties are unaffected.

Duke Energy’s Plans To Attack Solar In North Carolina

In a sign it will seek to maintain its monopolistic control of North Carolina’s energy generation, Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good criticized solar net metering in a meeting with local reporters on January 22, 2014. According to the Charlotte News […]

Dominion Thwarts Solar Net Metering Bills in Virginia

Dominion successfully lobbied for substitute language that would give the company the right to build and own community solar.

Coloradans Urge Governor Hickenlooper Not to Swear In Glen Vaad to Utility Commission

Glenn Vaad received an American Legislative Exchange Council “State Legislator of the Year” Award in 2012.

Utility Interests Threaten Future of Renewable Energy in Colorado via Public Utility Commission (PUC) Appointment of Glenn Vaad

In Colorado, alarm and concern is quickly spreading with revelations that Glenn Vaad, appointed by Governor Hickenlooper as one of three Public Utilities Commissioners, is also a former high ranking member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

The Campaign Against Net Metering: ALEC and Utility Interests’ Next Attack on Clean Energy Surfaces in Arizona

APS appears to be leading the first assault of a national campaign by the utility industry trade association, Edison Electric Institute (EEI), and fossil fuel interests like APS, to weaken net metering policies.

Michigan Releases Report on Renewable Energy Benefits Amidst Front Group Attacks

The Michigan Public Service Commission released a report detailing how renewable energy is saving consumers money and leading to robust business investment.

Q&A: ALEC’s new tactics to weaken renewable laws

This Q&A originally appeared in Midwest Energy News.  By Kari Lydersen Though bills meant to revoke or undercut renewable standards in numerous states failed last session, clean energy advocates say the model Market Power Renewables Act and the Renewable Energy Credit Act proposed […]

Fossil Fuel Interests Continue Attacks on Clean Energy Policies

This response was originally posted at National Journal’s Energy Insiders blog, which asked energy experts this week, “How Bright Is Renewable Energy’s Future?” The outlook for clean energy remains strong because smart investments like state Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) are combining with […]

After Fossil Fuel Front Group Attacks on Clean Energy Fail, New Model Bill Emerges to Weaken RPS Laws

Members of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), including fossil fuel corporations and front groups, will meet in Chicago this week to discuss their next round of attacks on clean energy policies. The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), Energy […]

ALEC’s Most Wanted: Exposing a front group for fossil fuel interests (and other corporations)

The Center for Media and Democracy’s (CMD) Brendan Fischer and Nick Surgey uncovered an internal document from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) at the controversial organization’s meeting last week in Oklahoma City. The document entitled “OKC anti-ALEC photos” featured […]

The Maine Players Attacking Renewable Energy: The Koch Brothers

In a new report, the Maine Conservation Alliance asks: are we debating renewable energy, or the Koch brothers’ profits?” Maine’s renewable energy standards have been the prime target of the Koch Machine – front groups, think tanks, and legislators with financial […]

Fracking New York with Another Conflict of Interest: Ecology and Environment’s Frackonomics

Member of one of the oil and gas lobby hired as “independent consultant” by Cuomo Administration.

Grover Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform’s Deceptive Campaigns for Dirty Energy and Big Tobacco

Grover Norquist is a familiar player in Washington debates, renowned for convincing nearly every Republican in Congress to sign a pledge to not raise taxes. But Norquist’s main job is not as a principled advocate for his brand of limited […]

The Real Cost of Coal Exports and Fossil Fuels

Coal mining companies such as Peabody Energy are trying to boost exports of publicly owned coal to Asia

Donors Trust: The Secret Group Funding Attacks on Clean Energy & Climate Science

New research shows almost $120 million flowed from two secretive groups, called “Donors Trust” and “Donors Capital” to 102 groups denying climate science and attacking clean energy. The Guardian’s Suzanne Goldenberg reports that “the funds, doled out between 2002 and 2010, helped […]

Fracking Scandal Hits Cuomo Administration

Newly Disclosed Documents Show Conflicts of Interest

ALEC Attacks Clean Energy Standards: Ohio & Virginia

Over the past couple weeks, fossil fuel interests and their allies have ramped up attacks on clean energy on the state level. As the Washington Post reported in November, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a fossil fuel-funded advocacy group, has made it a […]

Vote 4 Energy: Activists Launch Parody of API’s Deceptive 2012 Ad Campaign

Today, Greenpeace USA launched a new campaign that mocks the American Petroleum Institute’s (API) “Vote 4 Energy” advertising initiative. API’s multi-million dollar campaign, which launched this week, is advocating for more drilling and hydraulic fracturing in United States. Watch the ad below: […]

Behind the Scenes: American Petroleum Institute’s Commercial Shoot

Recently, the Energy and Policy Institute responded to an open casting call from the American Petroleum Institute (API) to be a part of their multi-million dollar ad campaign targeting the 2012 elections.  API’s Energy Citizens campaign sent an email asking […]

Coalition Sends Letter to Duke Energy CEO: Drop ALEC

A coalition of democracy advocates sent a letter to Jim Rogers, Chairman, President and CEO of Duke Energy Corporation, to drop his company’s affiliation with the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC serves as a conduit to feed big business-sponsored […]

Confidential Documents Reveal Fossil Fuel-Funded Organizations Coordinating With Local Anti-Wind Groups

Network of fossil fuel funded organizations secretly coordinated campaign to turn the American public against wind farms