Duke Energy ups $100B+ financial commitment to EV Fleet and Grid Modernization

Oct. 6, 2022
The now $145B investment amount is about $10 billion more than the previous 10-year plan of the company. The majority of the investment (85%) will be made in the firm’s fleet transition and grid modernization projects

Duke Energy is upscaling its promises to meet clean energy and grid resiliency goals.

The North Carolina-based utility giant, which serves several states, reported that it intends to invest $145 billion over the next decade into the development and upgrading of its critical energy infrastructure to meet customer needs and achieve its net-zero goals.

The investment amount is about $10 billion more than the previous 10-year plan of the company. The majority of the investment (85%) will be made in the firm’s fleet transition and grid modernization projects, including approximately $75 billion spent on modernizing its transmissions and distribution infrastructure.

Another $40 billion is earmarked for zero-carbon generation like solar, wind and battery energy and approximately $5 billion to be invested in hydrogen-enabled natural gas technologies.

“Our customers’ expectations are clear – they want affordability and reliability to remain a central focus as we work to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050,” said Lynn Good, Duke Energy Chair, President and CEO. “We look forward to continuing our collaboration with customers, regulators, community leaders and other stakeholders to meet these expectations. These critical energy infrastructure investments will also provide substantial economic benefits, including job creation and tax revenue for essential governmental services in our regions.”

The investments will enable the firms to maintain service reliability and avoid service interruptions during outages at the time of severe weather. It will also prepare the firm to protect against potential cyber events. Additionally, the investment will pave the way to reaching the firm’s goal of 30,000 MW of renewable energy by 2035 and support the adoption of technologies, like electric vehicles and battery storage.

The investment plan is expected to support over 20,000 additional direct, indirect and induced jobs each year during the 10-year period of implementation. It will also generate more than $5 billion in additional property tax revenue to support infrastructure and essential services in local communities.

In order to ensure customer affordability, the firm is investing in initiatives to lower fuel volatility and costs, like implementation of mechanisms to reduce financing costs of storm restoration and leveraging clean energy tax credits.

 The investments over the next decade are expected to help the firm surpass its target of a 50% carbon reduction by 2030 and set an interim carbon emissions reduction target of 80% for Scope 1 emissions by 2040 and 50% for Scope 2 and 3 upstream and downstream emissions by 2035.