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Op-ed: Duke Energy's net-zero emissions goal requires collaboration

This op-ed was written by Audubon North Carolina Executive Director Andrew Hutson and published at on Sept. 28, 2019.

Like North Carolina’s human communities, birds are feeling the impacts of rising temperatures and more extreme weather across our state. According to Audubon’s scientists, nearly 170 North Carolina bird species are at risk because of these dramatic changes to our climate.

The good news is we already know what is needed to tackle the problem and we have many of the tools to make it happen. What’s missing is the will to get it done.

With that in mind, Duke Energy’s announcement last week that the utility is targeting net zero carbon emissions by 2050 is encouraging. The company plans to reach this ambitious goal by, among other things, doubling solar, wind, and other clean energy production by 2025, as well as accelerating the shut-down of its inefficient coal plants.

This is a hopeful message from the nation’s largest power company and should be emulated by other utility and industry leaders. But as with any aspiration, goals need to be followed by action and the details of how we get there are important.

Read the full op-ed at

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