Duke Energy, American Electric Power Separately Seeking to Go Net-Zero Carbon by 2050

| September 19, 2019

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Two formidable U.S. coal power generators this week separately revised their carbon dioxide emissions reduction targets. Duke Energy announced it would achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. American Electric Power (AEP), meanwhile, said it would extend its target from 60% to 70% from 2000 levels by 2030, and by more than 80% by 2050—but it also outlined an “aspirational emissions goal” of “zero emissions by 2050.” Both companies cited customer preferences and risk mitigation as reasons for the steep carbon cuts. But while they recently exited competitive wholesale markets to contain risks, both companies also announced they are actively investing substantially in renewables sited in competitive markets. The announcements follow new goals by a slate of power companies as well as U.S. states to substantially slash their carbon emissions, as concerns about climate change ramp up.

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