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Reducing Our Emissions

2012 Corporate Responsibility Report


Progress Energy is taking action to help reduce or prevent greenhouse gas emissions from our operations.  Our balanced strategy to meet future demand growth and ensure energy security has three parts: aggressive energy efficiency, innovative renewable and alternative energy and a state-of-the-art power system. We continue to move forward on all these fronts, including taking steps to ensure that state-of-the-art nuclear plants are viable and available for the future.

The other chapters of Progress Energy’s Corporate Responsibility Report provide significant information on our activities in implementing our balanced strategy. Some of the highlights with links are below:

Where We Are Going – The Importance of Technology Development

To achieve the emission-reduction goals contained in many congressional and regulatory proposals, significant technological advancement is needed. As the economy emerges from the current downturn and electric demand increases, technology will play a vital role in closing the gap between potential GHG emissions and policy targets. Renewable energy resources, energy efficiency, additional state-of-the-art nuclear generation and other emerging technologies will be important elements of successfully reducing emissions.

The chart below compares the current (2011) energy resource mix for all of Progress Energy with an illustrative view of the potential mix in 2030 using current planning projections. The chart shows that to accommodate the projected additional load growth from 2011 through 2030 and reduce emissions, cleaner energy resources will play an increased role in the future, including improvements in energy efficiency, additional natural gas-fired generation and new nuclear capacity. Note that the chart illustrates Progress Energy as it currently exists; a future report will address the combined company as a result of the pending merger with Duke Energy.

Planned energy resources 

The following chart takes another illustrative look at the year 2030 for the company as a whole – this time from the standpoint of potential emission reductions from each aspect of Progress Energy’s long-term plan. The CO2 emission milestone level reflects a potential policy goal, which is 42 percent below 2005 levels. Note that despite the aggressive emission-reduction steps that the chart reflects, there still is the potential for a 4 million-ton difference between projected emissions and the potential policy goal.  As the chart shows, we expect new nuclear power to play the greatest role in reducing emissions and meeting increasing demand for electricity. Note that the chart illustrates Progress Energy as it currently exists; a future report will address the combined company as a result of the pending merger with Duke Energy. 

CO2 emissions

Beyond 2030, customer demand growth is expected to continue, and climate change policies likely will require even more substantial emission reductions. Closing this gap will require continued significant advancements in technology on multiple fronts, as well as a climate change policy that aligns compliance timelines with the pace of technological developments and deployments. Meeting the longer-term emission-reduction targets will require significant expansion of carbon-free electricity generation, including a substantial increase in nuclear power.