Earth Club went to the Duke Energy Shareholders Meeting yesterday at Duke Energy’s headquarters in uptown Charlotte, and the turnout was amazing. The police and security folks were very nice, as long as we stayed in front of the little line, of course. Here is a press release that June Blotnick sent out from the Carolinas Clean Air Coalition:
Questions about Cliffside and Climate Change Dominate
Duke Shareholder Meeting
Charlotte, NC—Shareholders concerned about climate change, mountaintop removal of coal, health risks from air pollution and the effects of carbon legislation on Duke Energy’s Cliffside plant dominated the discussion period at Duke Energy’s Shareholder Meeting this morning. While a dozen questions were raised by shareholders inside the meeting, demonstrators gathered outside with banners, signs and literature encouraging Duke to stop construction of its Cliffside coal plant in Rutherford County.
Duke views Cliffside as its transition plant to a low-carbon future but the expanded 800 megawatt plant will emit close to 10 million tons of carbon dioxide a year for the next 50 years.
Duke shareholder Chatham Olive raised the issue of stockholder liability surrounding new coal plants given the national push for carbon regulation, the growing rate of global warming and exposure to toxics emitted by coal fired power plants.
Alice Loyd, director of NC Interfaith Power and Light, a program of the NC Council of Churches, also attended the meeting. Speaking afterward, she stated “We see our response to climate change as a moral issue. Building new coal plants that add substantial amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere contributing to global warming is not an ethical business practice.”
Environmental, public health and citizens groups call for Duke to make an immediate and massive push toward investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy such as wind, solar, biomass and geothermal to meet the energy needs of the Carolinas.
Of course, Duke Energy knew we were coming, so they brought out the plug-in vehicle.