INSTITUTE INDEX: Duke Energy challenged on secrecy surrounding controversial NC gas plant

Duke Energy's coal-fired power plant outside Asheville, North Carolina. The company would have to curb carbon emissions under EPA rules that utilities have been battling, and they're cultivating political allies to help them in their fight. (Photo by Will Thomas via Flickr.)

Date on which Duke Energy filed documents with the North Carolina Utilities Commission seeking approval for a natural gas-fired plant to replace its coal plant near Asheville: 1/15/2016

Expected cost of the new plant, which would be built on the site of a coal ash pond that's now being excavated: $750 million

Total estimated cost of Duke's proposed Asheville project, which also includes modernizing transmission infrastructure: $1.1 billion
Because of a new state law passed last year that dramatically shortens the timeline for the plant's approval, number of days from the company's initial filing that the state Utilities Commission must hand down a decision: 45

Amount of time the commission would have had to consider the plan before the new law was passed: several months

Date on which environmental watchdog groups NC WARN and The Climate Times filed a motion in court to compel Duke Energy to release data on the proposed plant that it's now withholding from the public: 1/25/2016

Portion of the attachment to Duke's application setting out the case for why the plant is needed that was hidden from public view: the majority

In response to a discovery request from environmental groups, amount of analysis Duke provided to support its claim that regional winter peak electricity demand will grow by 17 percent over the next decade: 0

According to calculations by NC WARN, factor by which the power generated by the new gas plant would exceed what was generated there in 2014: 6

Aside from the total estimated price tag, amount of detailed cost information Duke has provided for the plant's construction: 0

Amount of information Duke provided to assess its accuracy of estimating future fuel costs for the plant: 0

Amount Duke Energy Florida lost from 2002 to 2015 by making bad bets on the future price of natural gas, losses paid for by its customers: $1.4 billion

Date by which the Utility Commission's Public Staff, which is supposed to represent ratepayers' interests, will present the findings of its evaluation of the proposal to the commissioners: 2/22/2016

Number of people who turned out for a hearing on the plant that was held this week in Asheville, with most of the speakers opposing the plan: about 220

Year in which Duke hopes the new plant will begin operating: 2019

(Click on figure to go to source.)