Duke Energy Donates $1 Million as Part of Settlement Agreement

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The largest electric power holding company in the United States, Duke Energy, has made good on a portion of a settlement agreement requires it to give $2 million to renewable energy projects. On Tuesday, the utility powerhouse announced that it has given half of the funds to Palmetto Clean Energy (PaCE), a non-profit program in South Carolina. Here are the details.

* PaCE is a program in which the customers of South Carolina's investor-owned utilities -- Duke Energy, Progress Energy and SCE&G -- buy tax-deductible blocks of green energy. The contributions are used to pay for locally-produced renewable energy, PaCE stated.

* The settlement agreement in which the $2 million contribution was required was entered into by Duke Energy and the environmental groups Southern Alliance for Clean Energy and the Coastal Conservation League. The settlement was part of the merger between Duke Energy and Progress Energy.

* According to Blan Holman, an attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center, which represented the Environmental Defense Fund, the Coastal Conservation League and the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy in negotiating the agreement with Duke Energy, the dollars will stay in South Carolina, "giving a boost to our state's economy while protecting our environment."

* Duke stated on Tuesday that supporting renewable energy from resources such as the sun, wind, water, waste and other sources is an important part of the company's efforts to reduce its carbon footprint.

* In accordance with the agreement, Duke Energy will give another $1 million in 2013.

* Duke Energy has more than $100 billion in total assets, and serves approximately 7.1 million electric customers in six states in the Southeast and Midwest, the company stated.

* The merger between Duke Energy and Progress Energy was completed in July, at which time Progress Energy became a wholly owned direct subsidiary of Duke Energy.

* PaCE was created by the South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff in 2007 to encourage the development of renewable energy resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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