Duke Energy

Ohio decision could put more ratepayers on the hook for old cleanup costs

“Gavel,” a sculpture by Andrew F. Scott, outside the Supreme Court of Ohio (Credit: Sam Howzit / Creative Commons).

COLUMBUS — “Critics say an Ohio court decision last week underscores the urgency of a pending bill to address unfairness under current law, while opening the door to more efforts by utilities to shift the economic burdens for past pollution to today’s customers.

Under the Supreme Court of Ohio’s June 29 court decision, Cincinnati-area utility customers must pay $55.5 million to Duke Energy for cleanup of contamination from plants that haven’t run in more than 50 years.

‘It is a disappointment that Cincinnati-area customers must pay tens of millions of dollars for the cost of cleaning up their utility’s defunct manufactured gas plants that date back to the 1800s,’ said spokesperson Dan Doron at the Office of the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel.

…The basic issue in the case was whether environmental cleanup costs for old contamination at two manufactured gas plants could be recovered from Duke Energy’s current customers or would be borne by the company and its shareholders.”

— Kathiann M. Kowalski, Midwest Energy News

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