Duke Energy targets net-zero emissions

Duke Energy has a coal gasification plant in the Knox County town of Edwardsport. (Provided Photo/Duke Energy)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Inside INdiana Business) — A utility company with a major presence in Indiana is making more moves toward clean energy. North Carolina-based Duke Energy Corp. (NYSE: DUK) this week updated its climate strategy, saying it now has a goal of hitting net-zero carbon emissions from electric generation by 2050.

Additionally, Duke has accelerated its short-term goal by cutting carbon dioxide emissions by half or more from 2005 levels by 2030. Previously, that goal was set at 40 percent and Duke says, to date, it has reduced carbon emissions by 31 percent since 2005.

“We are making a cleaner energy future a reality for our customers and communities,” said Lynn Good, chairman, president and CEO. “A diverse mix of renewables, nuclear, natural gas, hydro and energy efficiency are all part of this vision, and we’ll take advantage of economical solutions to continue that progress. In the longer-term, innovation and new technologies will be critical to a net-zero carbon future.”

The company says it will work with regulators and stakeholders in every state it serves as it works to achieve its goal, including phasing out remaining coal generation operations. Currently, Duke Energy has four coal-fired plants Vermillion, Floyd, Knox and Gibson counties in Indiana.

“Getting to net-zero carbon emissions, while ensuring energy remains reliable and affordable, will require new technologies. That’s the very reason we need to act now,” Good said. “We must continue leveraging today’s technologies while sustaining investment in innovation for this vision to become reality.”