Greenpeaces campaign to make Duke Energy into a true clean energy champion has started with a bang, and the reactions from both Duke Energy and Progress Energy (which are attempting to merge into the countrys largest utility) have been sadly predictable.
With the economy struggling to create new jobs, the climate inching closer to the tipping point, and coal communities fighting for their lives, talking points wont be enough this time. We need leadership from Duke.
Both Duke and Progress are eager to explain that theyre doing the minimum required by law to reduce pollution from their coal plants. Thats not leadership, and it's not enough to protect the communities suffering from the poison pumping from their coal plants.
Duke has touted its policy that states theyll end their use of coal from mountaintop removal mining, just as soon as its cheaper for them to do so. Thats not leadership, and it won't do a thing to stop the destruction of mountains and rivers in Appalachia.
Duke has touted the handful of investments theyre making in renewable electricity. But almost none of that investment is bringing renewable energyor jobsto the Carolinas, and its a drop in the bucket compared to the billions theyre spending on dirty energy like coal, nukes, and gas. That's not leadership, and it's not real progress for the climate.
If this company cares about climate change as much as their CEO claims, they should start acting like it. Stop using mountain top removal coal. Stop building coal and nuclear plants. Start investing in renewable energy, in a big way, now.
Talk is cheap. Its time for action.