CHARLOTTE – Duke Energy Progress asked North Carolina regulators to review its rates as the company continues to strengthen the electricity grid, reducing power outages for customers and facilitating a clean, secure energy future in a manner that supports economic development across the state, the company announced in a release Thursday afternoon.
Over the past five years, infrastructure upgrades helped avoid more than 1.3 million extended customer outages, saving more than 3 million hours of total lost outage time for customers, the company said.
“Our customers count on us to deliver affordable, reliable and increasingly clean energy every day,” said Stephen De May, Duke Energy’s North Carolina state president. “We’re sensitive to the financial pressures our customers face, and we remain committed to keeping rates as low as possible.”
The company has proposed a gradual rate increase over three years. If approved by the North Carolina Utilities Commission, the net increase in retail revenues in year one is about $326 million or 8.5%, followed by $151 million (3.9%) in year two and $138 million (3.6%) in year three – a total 16% increase by late 2025.
Beginning Oct. 1, 2023, the monthly impact for a typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per month would be an increase of $14.72, from $126.43 to $141.15 per month, followed by a $5.62 increase in October 2024 and a $5.21 increase in October 2025.
Duke Energy Progress serves about 1.5 million customers in central and eastern North Carolina, including portions of Bladen County, and in the Asheville region. This is the first rate case the utility has initiated since 2019.
Since its previous rate case, Duke Energy Progress has driven out more than $100 million in annual operating costs (2018 to 2021) to relieve pressure on customer rates. Those savings will be passed on to customers in this case.
Customers struggling to pay their energy bills might qualify for a new Customer Assistance Program proposed as part of the rate case – if approved, it would reduce monthly bills for the company’s most vulnerable customers by $42 per month.
Duke Energy Progress has also proposed new energy efficiency programs available to all customers, with potential savings that could significantly offset the proposed rate increase, and new time-of-use rates to help customers take more control over their energy bill.
To learn more about these programs, details of the company’s proposal and the rate review process, visit duke-energy.com/DEPNCRates.