To The Editor:

Recently, I drove through Moncure and was pleased to see that Duke Energy had begun recycling its fly ash at the retired Cape Fear Electric Plant.

The plant, an icon in the community, had delivered electricity to its customers for over 90 years and was retired in 2012. Before retiring, I had the pleasure of working for 46 years with Duke. the last eight years as Cape Fear Site Manager overseeing the decommissioning, demolition and restoration of the site. I was also proud to be a part of the ash reclamation team that was charged with safe closure of the site ash basins.

The ash, which had accumulated over years of operation, will now be reclaimed and repurposed for use in the construction industry. This is but one of Duke Energy’s commitments to a cleaner and safer environment. As coal-fired plants are retired, Duke plans to double its portfolio of solar, wind and other renewables by 2025 and to modernize its electric grid to protect from cyber or physical attacks.

So what is our role as citizens in supporting clean and renewable energy?

For starters, we must call on our elected officials to continue to work with partners like Duke Energy to ensure the electric grid can support the influx of renewable energy as solar farms and newer technologies come online. Lee and surrounding counties are booming with development yet very little has been discussed on how to prioritize investments in our electricity grid or how to embrace new technologies such as battery storage or electric vehicles.

Renewable energy is not just about the power company it is about all of us working together to ensure future generations have safe reliable power.

Danny Wimberly