Closings and delays

Duke Energy customers may pay for coal ash cleanup

Coal ash from the former Duke Energy Dan River Steam Station spills into the Dan River. (Waterkeeper Alliance)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good told the Charlotte Observer its customers likely will shoulder the costs of closing the rest of the utility’s coal ash ponds across North Carolina.

Good said customers benefited from the ash when it was the byproduct of making electricity for generations, so they should have to pay the costs of dealing with the ash now.

Duke Energy customers told WSOC that they’re opposed to paying for Duke Energy’s cleanup at coal ash ponds throughout the state.

Barbara Morales lives right across the street from the GG Allen Power Plant in Belmont.

For years she’s been concerned about the possibility of coal ash contamination spilling into the Catawba River or seeping into her well water.

“I’ve been worried about that,” said Morales.

Last month, Gov. Pat McCrory demanded Duke move coal ash away from water supplies, and last week a judge ruled the company must take immediate action to eliminate sources of groundwater contamination at coal ash sites.

Friday, WSOC asked whether rate payers would pick up that cost. Duke’s CEO said it’s an option.

In a recent corporate earnings report, the CFO said Duke will pay billions to comply with environmental regulations over the next 10 years.

The CFO said the Carolinas has a strong record of allowing utility companies to recover those costs by passing it along to customers in the form of higher rates.

Read more: The Charlotte Observer and WSOC

24 comments

  • FaithC

    “Good said customers benefited from the ash when it was the byproduct of making electricity for generations, so they should have to pay the costs of dealing with the ash now.”

    NO!! I am sorry we should not have to pay for their screw up!

  • laffinatcha

    Of course the customer is going tp pay. Does anyone expect it to be any other way? Next weeks headline will be Duke customers to pay for storm damages and clean-up. Next we’ll read about a rate increase necessary because of reduced income due to outages snd increased expenses due to storm damages.

  • Tony Greeson

    Classic big dog over little dog! They had to know this was going to be a problem years ago! So go ahead make the bill so high that it can’t be paid (already high enough even with me saving all the power I can) that way it will be cut off! I’ll find a way to generate my own power! Pass the buck ,rich stay rich,poor well we know that story!

  • Tony Greeson

    As far as storm clean up, for 2yrs I’ve called about trees already touching lines (not to say it wouldn’t have went out anyway) but no one came to trim anything! I wish we could all procrastinate our bill like that! I was even told when the power goes out then call! Really,preventive maintenance let’s don’t do any of that! So increase the bill! They are gonna do what they want anyway!

  • Commonsenseisgoneanddied

    The largest company in North Carolina has to comply to their leftist fascist liberal none human loving SELC? Why doesn’t Fox report the real news? 10milions dollars of OUR MONEY TO FIX environmental regulations over the next 10 years? These Lawyers(selc) sleeping with the duke energy CEOs and the all of the Customers have to pay for is this one spill? Go home fox 8 are you collecting a % too?? Bunch lames in this world you have whats coming to you.

  • Mallory

    No I refuse to pay them for their mess! This is not something that customers should pay for!! I hope lyn good is reading this because I would like to get in touch with that ignorant, insane woman and tell her how ridiculous her idea is for customers to pay for THEIR screw up! That is not right and I will stand my ground and refuse to pay for their mess! That is wrong and it’s not fair to the customers! They can pay it with the millions of dollars they have!!!

  • Kristina

    SERIOUSLY!!! Why would we have to pay for there mess?? As a customer of duke energy my bills from them are high enough and now its going to be more!! We need a better energy company cause it seems like our money either goes to them cause they raise rates or goes to the people who rely on welfare.

  • Rb

    Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good should be fired for not doing his job right. Look up the definition for CEO ” the executive with the chief decision-making authority in an organization or business ” merriam webster dictionary. This would be like the captain of a ship running it aground and then asking the passenger to pay to fix the ship. America has to many overpaid CEOs who don’t know how to run these companies but enjoy the high pay for setting on their laurels. Plus what about all the Progress Energy customers that are now Duke power customers do we have to pay for your mess up now Lynn?.

  • Debbie Smith

    just like one would imagine if you had to deal with the mafia. They are in control, because they know we need power!!!

  • Rb

    Duke Power must be hurting for money, check this public Information out about Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good. www1.salary.com/Lynn-J-Good-Salary-Bonus-Stock-Options-for-DUKE-ENERGY-CORP.html

    Lynn J. Good
    Executive Compensation

    As Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer at DUKE ENERGY CORP, Lynn J. Good made $2,562,777 in total compensation. Of this total $617,500 was received as a salary, $648,401 was received as a bonus, $0 was received in stock options, $1,220,361 was awarded as stock and $76,515 came from other types of compensation. This information is according to proxy statements filed for the 2012 fiscal year.

  • kelley

    Paying to dispose of something is one thing, paying to store it? Sure. But, paying to clean up after YOUR company failed to properly contain it? No sir. Someone please refer him to the legislation written to and for BP after their spill. You can not hold customers responsible for your containment issues.

  • PeteandCarrie Hutchens

    You’ll Pay Duke Power and you will pay for the sewage spill off 62.. Sadly nobody seems to get fired for these screw ups.. I know they have to get the money somewhere but I also think heads should roll to prevent this happening again !

  • Chris

    If Pat McCory and the energy commission allow the rate increase they all should be impeached. This is nothing but corporate America at its best.

  • Baxter

    This is just one more example of how the rich have rigged the system in their favor. How can they justify their high salaries and bonuses if screwups like this keep happening and no one gets canned? You lead by example , I have no faith in Duke , they already have instilled the blame everybody else mentality in their top officers . Wake up , until the public outcry is louder than Duke’s blame shifting , nothing will change .

  • Hobbes

    Learn a lesson… corporations do not pay for anything. All expenses are worked into pricing. So when a politician wants to “punish” some industry by taxing it, they are merely taxing us as that cost is passed on in the form of higher prices. Their only other option is to layoff workers. Either way, we lose.

    The same goes for raising the minimum wage. Companies will either lay off workers or raise prices. Period.

    The politicians know this, but they do it because the uninformed think they care about the little guy.

  • grace23

    Truth be told…Duke allows 90 days before a disconnection of service, that could mean up to 3 months with out a payment..duke is one of the only utility companies to allow that long, with a 1% late fee…lowest rates, I’m from NY and the prices given by duke are so much better. Duke also allows payment agreements…that’s un-heard of most places with power bills. Wish you all knew how lucky you had it. We all want power don’t we? Is Duke supposed to supply it for free? Haha, wake up people. If your upset about the power cost/supply/regulations…go off the grid. Power isn’t mandatory, people lived with out it for a longgg time.

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