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Duke Energy (DUK) Begins Blue River Solar Facility Operations

Duke Energy Corp’s DUK arm, Duke Energy Indiana, recently revealed that its Blue River Solar Facility at Toray Resin company's Shelbyville campus, boasting a generation capacity of 900 kilowatts of electricity, has finally begun its operations. This should assist Duke Energy in reducing the carbon footprint of its operations by the most cost-effective and sustainable means amid the rising energy cost.

The project takes Duke Energy one step ahead in its pilot program that has been instigated by the company to mainly support businesses, schools and nonprofit organizations in adopting renewables as a source of energy in their operations.

Details of the Solar Facility

As part of the unique leasing arrangement made between the two companies, Duke Energy will provide the required solar energy for Toray Resin through its Blue River Solar Facility, which has been built by Duke Energy at its campus.

Hence, it is imperative to mention that DUK completed the construction of its eight-acre-wide Blue River Solar Facility in August 2022 and equipped it with 2,487 solar panels.

Duke Energy aims to provide services against a monthly service fee, which should boost the company’s top line.

Duke Energy Indiana’s Pilot Program

In the current environment of an increased focus on reducing carbon emissions, Duke Energy initiated a solar services pilot program through which it aims to boost the adoption of eco-friendly ways to combat climate problems.

As part of the program, Duke Energy provides an option for eligible Indiana customers to lease an on-site solar system for a period of up to 20 years. Through the lease agreement, Duke Energy installs, operates, owns and maintains the system, while customers receive all of the kilowatt-hour and solar renewable energy credit output.

The initial program capacity is limited to a total of 10 megawatts (“MW”) for eligible commercial and industrial customers within the Duke Energy Indiana service territory.

Such effective programs by the company are likely to simplify the renewable energy adoption process and help improve reliability and security while keeping costs affordable for customers.

Peer Moves

Duke Energy apart, utilities that are poised to grow their renewable energy portfolio to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are as follows:

NextEra EnergyNEE: It operates more than 16,000 MW of emission-free wind energy. For 2021 to 2022, the company expects to bring online additional 3,700 to 4,400 MW of clean, emission-free wind energy. While on the solar front, its Florida Power & Light Company is the largest generator of solar energy in Florida with nearly 40 major solar power plants and numerous other solar installations totaling more than 2,700 MW of solar generation.

NextEra Energy has a long-term earnings growth rate of 9.3%. NEE shares have risen 6.7% in the past three months.

EntergyETR: It aims to accelerate investments in large-scale renewable power generation. The company plans to add up to 17 gigawatts of renewable energy generation to its portfolio by 2031.

Entergy has a long-term earnings growth rate of 6.7%. ETR shares have risen 3.3% in the past year.

AmerenAEE: It is committed to exploring renewable energy options, such as wind, solar, landfill gas, agricultural methane, hydroelectric and other alternative energy sources, to generate electricity. It has built Missouri's largest investor-owned solar energy center in O'Fallon, MO, which has 19,000 solar panels with a generating capacity of 5.7 MW of electricity.

Ameren’s long-term earnings growth rate is pegged at 7.2%. AEE shares have returned 5.5% in the past year.

Price Movement

In the past year, Duke Energy’s shares have rallied 3.7% compared with the industry’s growth of 6.5%.

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Zacks Rank

Duke Energy currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.


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