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Consumer, Environment Groups Are Appealing The Duke Energy Rate Case Decision

By Rebecca Thiele, IPB News | Published on in Business, Environment, Government
Duke Energy's Edwardsport coal gasification plant. (Duke Energy/Flickr)
Duke Energy's Edwardsport coal gasification plant. (Duke Energy/Flickr)

In June, the state approved Duke Energy’s $146 million rate increase. Now environmental groups and consumer advocates are appealing that decision in court.

One issue is the fact that the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved the cost of operating Duke’s Edwardsport coal plant.

READ MORE: State Approves Much Smaller Rate Increase For Duke Energy Customers

“Duke didn’t offer anything to contradict the overwhelming evidence that showed that Edwardsport is high-cost,” said Wendy Bredhold of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign in Indiana. “This decision failed to protect communities’ pocketbooks and public health in favor of Duke’s bottom line. The IURC has a responsibility to consider all the facts and to protect ratepayers from wasteful decision making by utilities like Duke.”

A spokesperson from Duke Energy Indiana said the company believes the state’s order was “balanced and constructive” and that it will respond when it has a chance to review the filings.

The IURC approved a smaller rate increase than what Duke had requested. The original ask would have increased the average residential customer’s bill by about $23 a month over two years. The final decision would increase it by about $15 a month.

Contact reporter Rebecca at rthiele@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

Indiana Environmental reporting is supported by the Environmental Resilience Institute, an Indiana University Grand Challenge project developing Indiana-specific projections and informed responses to problems of environmental change.