Progress Energy to issue report on environmental actions, climate change

RALEIGH, N.C., March 1, 2005 (PRNewswire-FirstCall) — Progress Energy announced that it will issue a report on the company’s activities associated with current and future environmental requirements. The report will be issued by March 31, 2006.

The report will include a discussion of the environmental requirements that Progress Energy currently faces and expects to face in the future and an assessment of potential mandatory constraints on carbon dioxide emissions under various scenarios.

“Progress Energy has long demonstrated its commitment to financial transparency,” said John McArthur, senior vice president and general counsel. “Our company’s environmental policy states that we will communicate our environmental impact and performance, and we look forward to sharing this information with our shareholders and customers.”

The report also will include an assessment of the actions the company is taking and realistic, strategic options that the company could consider in responding to current and future requirements. This process will take into account the impacts on shareholder value and the competitive position of the company.

The report is being issued in response to shareholder proposals filed by the Office of the Comptroller of New York City and Boston Common Asset Management on behalf of its client, Brethren Benefit Trust. Under an agreement between Progress Energy and the groups, the proposals will be withdrawn.

“Global climate change poses a potential financial risk to many businesses, and the electric power industry in particular,” said Dawn Wolfe, social research and advocacy analyst at Boston Common Asset Management, the primary filer of the resolution. “Given the uncertainty surrounding future regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, we applaud this move by Progress Energy to join some of its peers in seriously addressing climate change risk to shareholder value. We look forward to working with Progress Energy in developing its reporting to shareholders on this issue.”

Ceres, a Boston-based investor coalition that works with companies to analyze climate change risks, also was involved in the negotiations leading to the agreement. “Moving forward with this report is a clear testament to the financial risks and challenges electric power companies face trying to make capital-investment decisions in a regulatory void,” said Mindy S. Lubber, president of Ceres.

The Operations, Environmental, Health and Safety Issues Committee of the Progress Energy Board of Directors will oversee preparation of the report.

Progress Energy has a diverse fuel mix, which ensures reliability and price stability for customers. Thirty-six percent of the electricity the company generated in 2004 came from nuclear power plants and hydroelectric facilities, neither of which emits carbon dioxide, the primary greenhouse gas. The company also participates in voluntary efforts to reduce carbon intensity, including the Electric Power Industry Climate Initiative, The Business Roundtable’s Climate RESOLVE program and the Edison Electric Institute’s Power Partners program.

In addition, Progress Energy is an investor in the PowerTree Carbon Company, a voluntary consortium of 25 leading U.S. power companies. The companies have established a multimillion dollar fund to undertake six reforestation projects in Louisiana, Mississippi and Arkansas. As the trees grow, they will capture more than 1.6 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and provide critical habitat to threatened and endangered species.

About Progress Energy [ ]

Progress Energy, headquartered in Raleigh, N.C., is a Fortune 250 diversified energy company with more than 24,000 megawatts of generation capacity and $9 billion in annual revenues. The company’s holdings include two electric utilities serving approximately 2.9 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida. Progress Energy also includes nonregulated operations covering competitive generation, energy marketing, natural gas production, fuel extraction, rail services and broadband capacity.

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