Nearly 100 area residents gathered in Pritchard Park Saturday to call on Duke Energy “to include more clean energy in [its] 2013 Integrated Resource Plan.” Some also protest what they say are unfair rate hikes by Duke Energy. Calling on Duke to produce cleaner energy, the protesters decried the use of coal and nuclear power by what they say is a state-supported monopoly.
The rally also proceeds hearings being held statewide by the North Carolina Utilities Commission on rate hikes proposed by Duke, which merged with Progress Energy last year to become the largest electric utility in the United States. The Buncombe area hearing is planned for Tuesday, March 5, at 7 p.m. in the Buncombe County Courthouse, District Courtroom #1, 60 Court Plaza. For more information visit the NCUC Website.
A coalition of organizations, including the Western North Carolina Alliance, provided this link for more information: the Consumers Against Rate Hikes website: http://www.consumersagainstratehikes.org/
Progress Energy merged with Duke Energy last year, becoming the largest utility company in the United States.
From the rally’s organizers:
ASHEVILLE, NC – On Saturday January 26th, Asheville residents will gather in Pritchard Park in downtown Asheville to call on Duke Energy to include more clean energy in their 2013 Integrated Resource Plan. This is Duke’s 20 year plan for how North Carolina will get its energy, which they must present in front of the Utilities Commission and the public. Citizens in Asheville will be speaking out about the need for more clean energy and the urgent need to transition off of fossil fuels. There will be music, colorful visuals, and speakers from local environmental organizations.
WHO: Dozens of clean energy supporters, including families with young children, and leading environmental and public health advocates. A local musician will perform bluegrass music with solar-powered amplifiers.
Laura Sorenson, SAFE Carolinas
Richard Fireman, MD, local activist
Eva Westheimer, Student, Warren Wilson
Representative from Green Opportunities