Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Duke and Progress Energy merger hearing happening now in Raleigh, N.C.

Posted By on Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 1:08 PM

Duke Energys CEO, Jim Rogers is in the house ... and looking thrilled to be here.
  • Rhiannon Fionn
  • Duke Energy's CEO, Jim Rogers is in the house ... and looking thrilled to be here.

Charlotte's darling, Duke Energy, is taking some heat from North Carolina citizens today at a Utilities Commission hearing in Raleigh — and we're here tweeting the good stuff.

The hearing is about Duke's proposed merger with Progress Energy, which, if approved, will create the largest utility company in the country and a virtual monopoly in North Carolina. Additionally, at least 2,000 of the companies' employees will get canned, the company will become a political powerhouse (as if they're not already), etc. In other words: power, money; money power (a.k.a. just another day in the state's capital).

The merger's detractors, whom the companies attempted to prevent from testifying, are worried that the energy super-giant will raise rates (even more than it already is) and stay so focused on building coal and nuclear plants that solar and wind ventures will fall by the wayside. Others are pissed that there's only one public hearing on the merger — this one — and that it's happening in the middle of the day in Raleigh, making it inconvenient for most of the state's citizens to attend.

The hearing will probably last all week, but this afternoon we're expecting to hear from Duke Energy's CEO Jim Rogers.

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