Duke Energy Progress rates drop for North Carolina customers

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Duke Energy Progress customers in North Carolina don't have to look far for a deal this holiday season. On average, customers can power their homes and lives for less than $3.50 a day.

Effective Dec. 1, 2016, the charge for a typical residential customer using 1,000 kWh of electricity will decrease from $110.04 to $103.23 per month, a savings of $6.81.

Overall energy costs will decrease about 6.5 percent for residential customers, 7.2 percent for commercial customers and 7 percent for industrial customers.

"We work around the clock to bring our customers reliable electricity at affordable rates," said David Fountain, Duke Energy president — North Carolina. "Through our generation operations and fuel procurement practices, we have delivered more than $722 million in fuel and joint dispatch merger savings to our customers since 2012."

Duke Energy maintains lower fuel and fuel-related rates through expertise in operating a diverse generation portfolio of nuclear, coal, natural gas and hydro; efficiency improvements that led to higher capacity factors in the nuclear fleet; and fuel procurement strategies that mitigate volatility in supply costs.

Other key reasons for the overall decrease include:

·      A decrease in the prior period true-up of fuel costs, as compared to the prior period true-up included in the current bill

·      Total fuel costs are declining due to a drop in commodity prices

Duke Energy Progress makes a fuel cost recovery filing annually in North Carolina. The fuel rate is based on the projected cost of fuel used to provide electric service to the company's customers, plus a true-up of the prior year's projection.

The NCUC reviews fuel costs and adjusts the fuel component of customer rates accordingly. By law, the company makes no profit from the fuel component of rates.

The lower rates reflect annual adjustments to charges for fuel, compliance with the state's renewable energy portfolio standard (REPS) and the Joint Agency Asset Rider (JAAR) as approved by the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC).

Additionally, Duke Energy Progress rates will adjust on Jan. 1, 2017, due to charges related to implementing programs to help reduce energy consumption and save customers money on their energy bills.

Residential customers using 1,000 kWh of electricity per month will see an increase of $1.47 per month on their bills beginning in January, which also accounts for a pending lower state income tax.

Energy efficiency and demand side management charges are increasing primarily due to new program offerings, increased customer participation and related costs, and a reduction in the recovery period for non-residential program costs from 10 to three years.

The net effect of all adjustments is a monthly saving of $5.34 for the typical residential customer. In the new year, overall customer rates will decrease about 5.1 percent for residential customers, 6.7 percent for commercial customers and 6.8 percent for industrial customers.

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