Duke-Progress Merger Critics Call for Stricter Conditions

Sep 21, 2011

State regulators continue a hearing today about whether Duke Energy and Progress Energy should merge.

The deal would create the single largest utility in the country with more than 7-million customers in six states. Most residents who spoke at the hearing yesterday said Duke and Progress should do more to develop clean energy sources if they want to merge. Critics said the deal should include more production from solar and wind farms, protection for the poor against future rate increases, and faster installation of smart-grids. Duke and Progress say they operate under North Carolina policy, which calls for a combination of energy sources at the lowest possible price to consumers. The utilities will call witnesses over the next few days along with environmental groups who filed a motion against the merger earlier this month.