COMPANY ASSESSMENT

Duke Energy Corporation

ABOUT THE COMPANY ASSESSMENTS

Focus companies have been assessed on each of the Net-Zero Company Benchmark’s 10 disclosure indicators and their related sub-indicators and metrics, which collectively reflect the overall engagement goals of Climate Action 100+. Capital allocation assessment indicators complement the disclosure indicators by providing further insights into the upstream oil and gas, electric utilities, and automotive sectors. These frameworks will evolve with future iterations.

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DISCLOSURE ASSESSMENT INDICATORS

Assessments of the company’s publicly disclosed information against each indicator, sub-indicator, and metric provide information on the company’s alignment with the Climate Action 100+ goals.

The disclosure assessment indicators reflect publicly disclosed information as of January 22, 2021.

The Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI), supported by its research and data partners the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics (LSE) and FTSE Russell, conducted the company disclosure research and analysis. InfluenceMap provided independent analysis of the company’s corporate climate lobbying practices (indicator 7).

The necessary time frame for companies to achieve net-zero GHG emissions differs depending on the sector.

Contingency: Metric 1.1b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless 1.1a is also ‘Yes’.

1.1
The company has set an ambition to achieve net-zero GHG emissions by 2050 or sooner.
PARTIAL, MEETS SOME CRITERIA
a
The company has made a qualitative net-zero GHG emissions ambition statement that explicitly includes at least 95% of scope 1 and 2 emissions.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
The company’s net-zero GHG emissions ambition covers the most relevant scope 3 GHG emissions categories for the company’s sector, where applicable.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Contingency: Metrics 2.2a and 2.2b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless sub-indicator 2.1 is also ‘Yes’.  Sub-indicator 2.3 is not currently conditional on 2.1 or 2.2. Therefore, it is possible to have ‘No’ on 2.1 but ‘Yes’ on 2.3. Respectively, 2.1/2.2a/2.2b will be ‘Yes’ if 3.1/3.2a/3.2b are ‘Yes’ and are net-zero targets (i.e. net zero will be achieved in the medium term).

2.1
The company has set a target for reducing its GHG emissions by between 2036 and 2050 on a clearly defined scope of emissions.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
2.2
The long-term (2036 to 2050) GHG reduction target covers at least 95% of scope 1 & 2 emissions and the most relevant scope 3 emissions (where applicable).
PARTIAL, MEETS SOME CRITERIA
a
The company has specified that this target covers at least 95% of total scope 1 and 2 emissions.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
If the company has set a scope 3 GHG emissions target, it covers the most relevant scope 3 emissions categories for the company’s sector (for applicable sectors), and the company has published the methodology used to establish any scope 3 target.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
2.3
The target (or, in the absence of a target, the company's latest disclosed GHG emissions intensity) is aligned with the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C.*
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA

Contingency: Metrics 3.2a and 3.2b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless sub-indicator 3.1 is also ‘Yes’. Sub-indicator 3.3 is not currently conditional on 3.1 or 3.2. Therefore, it is possible to have ‘No’ on 3.1 but ‘Yes’ on 3.3. Respectively, 3.1/3.2a/3.2b will be ‘Yes’ if 4.1/4.2a/4.2b are ‘Yes’ and are net-zero targets (i.e. net zero will be achieved in the short term).

3.1
The company has set a target for reducing its GHG emissions by between 2026 and 2035 on a clearly defined scope of emissions.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
3.2
The medium-term (2026 to 2035) GHG reduction target covers at least 95% of scope 1 & 2 emissions and the most relevant scope 3 emissions (where applicable).
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company has specified that this target covers at least 95% of total scope 1 and 2 emissions.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
If the company has set a scope 3 GHG emissions target, it covers the most relevant scope 3 emissions categories for the company’s sector (for applicable sectors), and the company has published the methodology used to establish any scope 3 target.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
3.3
The target (or, in the absence of a target, the company's latest disclosed GHG emissions intensity) is aligned with the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C.*
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Contingency: Metrics 4.2a and 4.2b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless sub-indicator 4.1 is also ‘Yes’. Sub-indicator 4.3 is not currently conditional on 4.1 or 4.2. Therefore, it is possible to have ‘No’ on 4.1 but ‘Yes’ on 4.3.

4.1
The company has set a target for reducing its GHG emissions up to 2025 on a clearly defined scope of emissions.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
4.2
The short-term (up to 2025) GHG reduction target covers at least 95% of scope 1 & 2 emissions and the most relevant scope 3 emissions (where applicable).
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company has specified that this target covers at least 95% of total scope 1 and 2 emissions.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
If the company has set a scope 3 GHG emissions target, it covers the most relevant scope 3 emissions categories for the company’s sector (for applicable sectors), and the company has published the methodology used to establish any scope 3 target.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
4.3
The target (or, in the absence of a target, the company's latest disclosed GHG emissions intensity) is aligned with the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C.*
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Contingency: Sub-indicator 5.1 is contingent on sub-indicators 2.1, 2.2 (long-term targets) and 3.1, 3.2 (medium-term targets) being ‘Yes’. Sub-indicator 5.1 is not conditional on 2.3 and/or 3.3 (net-zero alignment), i.e. 5.1 can be ‘Yes’ and 2.3/3.3 ‘No’.

5.1
The company has a decarbonisation strategy to meet its long and medium-term GHG reduction targets.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
a
The company identifies the set of actions it intends to take to achieve its GHG reduction targets over the targeted time frame. These measures clearly refer to the main sources of its GHG emissions, including scope 3 emissions where applicable.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
The company quantifies key elements of this strategy with respect to the major sources of its emissions, including scope 3 emissions where applicable.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
5.2
The company’s decarbonisation strategy includes a commitment to ‘green revenues’ from low carbon products and services.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED
a
The company already generates ‘green revenues’ and discloses their share in overall sales.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED
b
The company has set a target to increase the share of ‘green revenues’ in its overall sales OR discloses the ‘green revenue’ share that is above sector average.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED

For focus list companies in the upstream oil and gas, electric utilities and automotive sectors, a supplementary assessment is available. See the Capital Allocation Assessment Indicators for further details on companies in these sectors.

Contingency: Metric 6.2a cannot be ‘Yes’ if either 6.1a or 6.1b are not ‘Yes’.

6.1
The company is working to decarbonise its future capital expenditures.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company explicitly commits to align future capital expenditures with its long-term GHG reduction target(s).
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
The company explicitly commits to align future capital expenditures with the Paris Agreement’s objective of limiting global warming to 1.5° Celsius.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
6.2
The company discloses the methodology used to determine the Paris alignment of its future capital expenditures.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company discloses the methodology it uses to align its future capital expenditures with its decarbonisation goals, including key assumptions and key performance indicators (KPIs).
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
The methodology quantifies key outcomes, including the share of its future capital expenditures that are aligned with a 1.5° Celsius scenario, and the year in which capital expenditures in carbon intensive assets will peak.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Contingency: Metric 7.3b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless metric 7.3a is also ‘Yes’. (i.e. 7.3.b should not be able to be ‘Yes’ unless 7.3.a is also ‘Yes’).

InfluenceMap provides detailed Paris-aligned analysis of corporate climate lobbying independently of the Climate Action 100+ Net-Zero Company Benchmark.

See the individual company profile here.

Explore InfluenceMap’s full ranking of Climate Action 100+ focus companies.

7.1
The company has a Paris-Agreement-aligned climate lobbying position and all of its direct lobbying activities are aligned with this.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company has a specific commitment/position statement to conduct all of its lobbying in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
The company lists its climate-related lobbying activities, e.g., meetings, policy submissions, etc.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
7.2
The company has Paris-Agreement-aligned lobbying expectations for its trade associations, and it discloses its trade association memberships.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company has a specific commitment to ensure that the trade associations the company is a member of lobby in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
The company discloses its trade associations memberships.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
7.3
The company has a process to ensure its trade associations lobby in accordance with the Paris Agreement.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
a
The company conducts and publishes a review of its trade associations’ climate positions/alignment with the Paris Agreement.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
b
The company explains what actions it took as a result of this review.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Contingency: Metric 8.2b is contingent on indicators 2.1 or 3.1 or 4.1 being ‘Yes’.

8.1
The company’s board has clear oversight of climate change.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
a

The company discloses evidence of board or board committee oversight of the management of climate change risks via at least one of the following:

  • There is a C-suite executive or member of the executive committee that is explicitly responsible for climate change (not just sustainability performance) and that executive reports to the board or a board level committee, and/or; 
  • The CEO is responsible for climate change AND he/she reports to the board on climate change issues, and/or; 
  • There is a committee (not necessarily a board-level committee) responsible for climate change (not just sustainability performance) and that committee reports to the board or a board-level committee.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b

The company has named a position at the board level with responsibility for climate change, via one of the following: 

  • A board position with explicit responsibility for climate change, or; 
  • CEO is identified as responsible for climate change, if he/she sits on the board.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
8.2
The company’s executive remuneration scheme incorporates climate change performance elements.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
a
The company’s CEO and/or at least one other senior executive’s remuneration arrangements specifically incorporate climate change performance as a KPI determining performance-linked compensation (reference to ‘ESG’ or ‘sustainability performance’ are insufficient).
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
The company’s CEO and/or at least one other senior executive’s remuneration arrangements incorporate progress towards achieving the company’s GHG reduction targets as a KPI determining performance linked compensation (requires meeting relevant target indicators 2, 3, and/or 4).
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
8.3
The board has sufficient capabilities/competencies to assess and manage climate related risks and opportunities.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED
a
The company has assessed its board competencies with respect to managing climate risks and discloses the results of the assessment.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED
b
The company provides details on the criteria it uses to assess the board competencies with respect to managing climate risks and/or the measures it is taking to enhance these competencies.
NOT CURRENTLY ASSESSED

Contingency: Metric 10.2b cannot be ‘Yes’ unless metric 10.2a is also ‘Yes’.

10.1
The company has committed to implement the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).
PARTIAL, MEETS SOME CRITERIA
a
The company explicitly commits to align its disclosures with the TCFD recommendations OR it is listed as a supporter on the TCFD website.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
The company explicitly sign-posts TCFD aligned disclosures in its annual reporting or publishes them in a TCFD report.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA
10.2
The company employs climate-scenario planning to test its strategic and operational resilience.
PARTIAL, MEETS SOME CRITERIA
a
The company has conducted a climate-related scenario analysis including quantitative elements and disclosed its results.
YES, MEETS ALL CRITERIA
b
The quantitative scenario analysis explicitly includes a 1.5° Celsius scenario, covers the entire company, discloses key assumptions and variables used, and reports on the key risks and opportunities identified.
NO, DOES NOT MEET ANY CRITERIA

Notes

*In the absence of a credible 1.5°C scenario, companies have been measured against a best-available below 2°C scenario. Company assessments will be adjusted when a credible 1.5°C scenario becomes available.

The following new disclosure(s) are relevant to the Climate Action 100+ Net-Zero Company Benchmark and have been made after the January 22, 2021 cut-off date and are not reflected in the current version of the company assessment. The information is supplementary, unaudited and does not guarantee a scoring change in future iterations of the benchmark.

CAPITAL ALLOCATION ASSESSMENT INDICATORS

These indicators analyse companies’ capital expenditures (CAPEX) and economic output from legacy fossil fuel and prospective carbon-emitting assets relative to a range of climate change scenarios. The analysis gives investors additional insights on the relative adequacy and alignment of company actions with the goals of the Paris Agreement. These independent analyses, which correspond with company disclosures related to Disclosure Indicator 6, are included for upstream oil and gas, electric utilities, and automotive companies. Capital allocation analyses for companies in other sectors are expected to be developed in the future. The following Capital Allocation Assessment Indicators apply to focus list companies in the electric utilities sector.

The Carbon Tracker Initiative (CTI) and 2 Degrees Investing Initiative (2Dii) conducted the company disclosure research and analysis. Indicators 1-4 are assessed using CTI modelling, which is based on asset level coal generation data as of July 2019 and natural gas data as of December 2019. Public disclosure and asset ownership information is assessed as of January 2021. Indicators 5-6 are assessed by 2Dii and reflect the company’s physical assets as of December 31, 2020.

  • 1
    COAL PHASE-OUT: Has the company announced a full phase-out of coal units by 2040 that is consistent with Carbon Tracker Initiative's interpretation of the IEA’s Beyond 2°C Scenario?

    This indicator identifies the comprehensiveness of the company’s announced retirement schedule for its coal plants based on disclosed retirement dates and Carbon Tracker’s proprietary asset level least cost scenario analysis against the IEA’s B2DS. The purpose is to show the scope and pace of a company’s coal plant retirements.  

    These results are rated from 1-4, as follows:

    (1) Companies with an announced full retirement of their coal fired generation fleet consistent with CTI’s interpretation of a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (2) Companies with full retirement which is not yet consistent with a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (3) Partial retirement of the fleet;
    (4) Unannounced/ insufficient data on retirements.

    This indicator identifies the comprehensiveness of the company’s announced retirement schedule for its coal plants based on disclosed retirement dates and Carbon Tracker’s proprietary asset level least cost scenario analysis against the IEA’s B2DS. The purpose is to show the scope and pace of a company’s coal plant retirements.  

    These results are rated from 1-4, as follows:

    (1) Companies with an announced full retirement of their coal fired generation fleet consistent with CTI’s interpretation of a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (2) Companies with full retirement which is not yet consistent with a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (3) Partial retirement of the fleet;
    (4) Unannounced/ insufficient data on retirements.

  • Partial retirement of the fleet*
  • 2
    GAS PHASE-OUT: Has the company announced a full phase-out of natural gas units by 2050 that is consistent with Carbon Tracker Initiative's interpretation of the IEA’s Beyond 2°C Scenario?

    This indicator identifies the comprehensiveness of the company’s announced retirement schedule for its natural gas plants based on disclosed retirement dates and Carbon Tracker’s proprietary asset level least cost scenario analysis against IEA’s B2DS. The purpose is to show the scope and pace of a company’s natural gas plant retirements.  

    These results are rated from 1-4, as follows:

    (1) Companies with an announced full retirement of their coal fired generation fleet consistent with CTI’s interpretation of a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (2) Companies with full retirement which is not yet consistent with a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (3) Partial retirement of the fleet;
    (4) Unannounced/ insufficient data on retirements
    .

    This indicator identifies the comprehensiveness of the company’s announced retirement schedule for its natural gas plants based on disclosed retirement dates and Carbon Tracker’s proprietary asset level least cost scenario analysis against IEA’s B2DS. The purpose is to show the scope and pace of a company’s natural gas plant retirements.  

    These results are rated from 1-4, as follows:

    (1) Companies with an announced full retirement of their coal fired generation fleet consistent with CTI’s interpretation of a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (2) Companies with full retirement which is not yet consistent with a Paris-aligned pathway;
    (3) Partial retirement of the fleet;
    (4) Unannounced/ insufficient data on retirements
    .

  • Unannounced/ insufficient data on retirements*
  • 3
    ALIGNMENT OF COAL PHASE-OUT: The percentage of the company's operating and planned coal capacity that is aligned with Carbon Tracker Initiative's interpretation of IEA’s Beyond 2°C Scenario. N/A signifies that no coal plants were identified.

    This indicator uses Carbon Tracker’s least cost methodology to identify the relative alignment of the company’s coal capacity retirement compared to CTI’s interpretation of IEA’s B2DS where perfect alignment = 100%. (In parentheses, we identify what percentage of the company’s coal units have been assigned a retirement date aligned with B2DS.)

    This indicator uses Carbon Tracker’s least cost methodology to identify the relative alignment of the company’s coal capacity retirement compared to CTI’s interpretation of IEA’s B2DS where perfect alignment = 100%. (In parentheses, we identify what percentage of the company’s coal units have been assigned a retirement date aligned with B2DS.)

  • 24% of capacity (10% of units)
  • 4
    ALIGNMENT OF GAS PHASE-OUT: The percentage of the company's operating and planned gas capacity that is aligned with Carbon Tracker Initiative's interpretation of IEA’s Beyond 2°C Scenario. N/A signifies that no gas plants were identified.

    This indicator uses Carbon Tracker’s least cost methodology to identify the relative alignment of the company’s gas capacity retirement plan compared to CTI’s interpretation of IEA’s B2DS where perfect alignment = 100%. (In parentheses, we identify what percentage of the company’s gas units have been assigned a retirement date aligned with B2DS.)

    This indicator uses Carbon Tracker’s least cost methodology to identify the relative alignment of the company’s gas capacity retirement plan compared to CTI’s interpretation of IEA’s B2DS where perfect alignment = 100%. (In parentheses, we identify what percentage of the company’s gas units have been assigned a retirement date aligned with B2DS.)

  • 52% of capacity (0% of units)
  • 5
    Assessment of the company's 2021 technology mix vs. the sector average.

    This indicator assesses the technology mix of the company in 2021 compared to the market in 2021. The analysis is conducted on the technology level, meaning 2Dii compares the technology share of the company with the technology share of the sector average. For example, if the market’s power technology mix consists of 20% of coal power, while the company’s technology mix consists for 17% of coal power, then the company is ‘ahead’ of the market, implying that it’s greener than the market in terms of coal power.

    Possible assessment outcomes include: Behind (>15% negative deviation); Slightly Behind (5-15% negative deviation); Aligned (+ or – 5%); Slightly Ahead (5-15 % positive deviation); or, Ahead (>15% positive deviation).

    This indicator assesses the technology mix of the company in 2021 compared to the market in 2021. The analysis is conducted on the technology level, meaning 2Dii compares the technology share of the company with the technology share of the sector average. For example, if the market’s power technology mix consists of 20% of coal power, while the company’s technology mix consists for 17% of coal power, then the company is ‘ahead’ of the market, implying that it’s greener than the market in terms of coal power.

    Possible assessment outcomes include: Behind (>15% negative deviation); Slightly Behind (5-15% negative deviation); Aligned (+ or – 5%); Slightly Ahead (5-15 % positive deviation); or, Ahead (>15% positive deviation).

    • 5aCoal
    • Slightly Ahead
    • 5bOil
    • Aligned
    • 5cGas
    • Behind
    • 5dNuclear
    • Ahead
    • 5eHydro
    • Behind
    • 5fRenewables (e.g., wind, solar)
    • Behind
  • 6
    Assessment of IEA scenario alignment for each technology based on 2026 forecasts. Companies’ trajectories for each technology are assessed as being below a Beyond 2°C Scenario (B2DS <1.75C), below a Sustainable Development Scenario (SDS 1.75C-2C), above a Sustainable Development Scenario (SDS >2C), or significantly above a Sustainable Development Scenario (SDS >3C).

    This indicator analyses the company’s planned capacity additions and retirements (for power companies) with IEA scenarios and identifies the scenario pathway to which it most closely corresponds per technology. For example, it assesses whether the company is planning to build more windmills and solar farms, and to retire coal plants, and with which scenario that is most closely aligned.

    This indicator analyses the company’s planned capacity additions and retirements (for power companies) with IEA scenarios and identifies the scenario pathway to which it most closely corresponds per technology. For example, it assesses whether the company is planning to build more windmills and solar farms, and to retire coal plants, and with which scenario that is most closely aligned.

    • 6aCoal
    • Significantly above SDS >3
    • 6bOil
    • Significantly above SDS >3
    • 6cGas
    • Above SDS >2
    • 6dNuclear
    • Below SDS 1.75-2
    • 6eHydro
    • Significantly above SDS >3
    • 6fRenewables (e.g. wind, solar)
    • Significantly above SDS >3

Notes

*Carbon Tracker Initiative’s power and utility generation capacity retirement analysis and methodology is described most recently in “Making it mainstream – CA100+ power utility profiles” Carbon Tracker (2019). An update will be published in March/April 2021.

More information on the metrics and other tools on offer by 2DII can be found here.