Utilities Make Big Bets on Electric Vehicles

By Michael Burnham on September 24, 2009

Duke Energy Corp. and FPL Group Inc., two of the nation's largest electric utilities, said today they will transition their entire automobile fleets to plug-in hybrid and full-electric vehicles.

The joint commitment, announced at the Clinton Global Initiative's annual meeting in New York, represents more than 10,000 automobiles. Swapping out the vehicles -- everything from sedans to big rigs -- has the potential to slash greenhouse gas emissions by more than 125,000 metric tons during the next decade, the companies claim.

"Our goal is to have all new vehicles purchased in 2020 be hybrid plug-in or all-electric to give manufacturers time to scale up," said Tom Williams, a Duke spokesman. "The real focus is to set a target to let the manufacturers know if they build it, we will come."

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