Energy & Environment

News and information about energy, environment or both from Charlotte and the Carolinas. 

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Duke Energy

Opposition is already shaping up to the Environmental Protection Agency rule that, if enacted, would be the first to limit how much carbon the nation’s existing power plants can emit into the air. At the Making Energy Work conference in Uptown Charlotte on Thursday, North Carolina utilities gave an early glimpse of the grounds on which they oppose the rule.

“We’re not sure that it can be implemented as written,” Duke Energy senior vice president Dwight Jacobs said during a panel discussion at the event.

Ben Bradford / WFAE

Electric cars were largely novelties until Tesla introduced its Roadster in 2008. Now, a few small start-ups are trying to repeat Tesla’s success in another sector of the electric vehicle industry. They’re building trucks, hoping to sell them en masse to government and business fleets.


Magnum Energy

The nation’s largest wind farm in Wyoming would connect to  one of the largest energy storage facilities in Utah to power Los Angeles, in a proposal announced Tuesday by four companies, including Duke Energy. The project’s scale is more akin to a nuclear plant.


Why We Disbelieve Science, Consider Conspiracies

Sep 22, 2014
Gabriel Rocha / Flickr

Fluoridated water reduces cavities, as scientific studies have repeatedly shown. Yet for decades, public health and government officials have had to defend fluoride in public drinking water, against at-times outlandish conspiracy theories. It’s a battle currently playing out in Charlotte. WFAE’s Ben Bradford examines why we have trouble believing the science.


Strata Solar

The nation’s largest power company will also be one of the largest solar providers. Duke Energy wrapped up six months of shopping for solar projects today, and announced it will increase its North Carolina capacity by more than a third. Despite the increase, solar remains a tiny fraction of overall generation.


Missing Water A Mystery For County Utility

Sep 15, 2014
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities

County water officials have a bit of a mystery on their hands: the case of the missing 20 million gallons of water. Sunday afternoon workers noticed that a pump, which propels that amount of water per day into a water tank, is still operating. But it is not ending up in the water tank.


Duke Projects Next 15 Years Of Power

Sep 5, 2014
Duke Energy/Flickr

Every year, Duke Energy submits a plan to state regulators, showing how it will continue to supply power to the Carolinas over the next 15 years. It projects how the energy mix will change, what new power plants the company intends to build—how much will come from solar, wind, or coal. The most recent plan is out, and WFAE’s Ben Bradford joined All Things Considered Host Mark Rumsey for a quick survey of how Duke sees the energy landscape in 2029.


Environmental Groups File More Coal Ash Lawsuits

Sep 3, 2014
Duke Energy

Environmental groups launched new lawsuits today against Duke Energy for pollution from the company’s coal ash ponds in North Carolina, adding more strands to a tangled web of litigation between Duke, environmental groups and state regulators.


The Science Behind Lake Norman's Fish Kills

Aug 8, 2012

Fish kills have become an annual problem at Lake Norman. Since 2004, wildlife officials have reported frequent large kills of striped bass, or stripers, a popular species with fishermen. So far this year, they've counted over 800. To find out more about the biology behind these kills, WFAE's Duncan McFadyen called Lawrence Dorsey. He's the District 6 Fisheries Biologist for the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. 

Greg Collard / WFAE

About three dozen people gathered outside the Duke Energy shareholder meeting to protest various practices of the company. Here Shaun Ridgway with Occupy Raleigh/Greenpeace speaks to those assembled. 

Charlotte police geared up for large protests at the Duke Energy annual shareholder meeting uptown this morning. In the end, police far outnumbered the 35 or so activists who gathered outside the meeting and reported no incidents, despite the city invoking a special enforcement ordinance in anticipation of unruly crowds.

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