State Overview of North Carolina

Cities interested in procuring renewable energy must first understand the factors that shape their state energy landscape. This overview provides a starting point by providing insight into state market and regulatory context that impacts the renewable energy procurement options available. Options that are available within each state are highlighted and introduced. As cities progress in developing their procurement plans, the boundaries of their utility service territory and their utility type will also impact options but are not captured within these state overviews.

The materials here are a living resource, and as states and cities progress towards a renewable future, the website will be updated accordingly. We welcome your feedback.

North Carolina Generation Profile

These graphs show the percentage of existing renewable energy generation within North Carolina and future growth projections based on existing Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). When developing a renewable energy strategy, cities should consider how much renewable energy they already receive from their utility and which technologies have proven more successful in their state (e.g. wind vs. solar). Further, cities with green house gas emissions (GHG) targets may wish to consider the carbon intensity of their local grid; cities located in states which rely heavily on coal or petroleum are in a prime position to reduce their carbon intensity through renewable energy purchases.

How is electricity generated in North Carolina ?

Total Annual Electricity Generation By Energy Source (2017)

Source: EIA

4.4 %

of electricity in North Carolina comes from wind and solar

5.6 %

of electricity in North Carolina is imported from other states

North Carolina ranks
26
out of all 50 states plus Washington, D.C. for the percent of electricity sourced from wind and solar

Where is North Carolina Headed?

Near Term Compliance for RPS Targets

RPS (%)
Top Line RPS

12.5% by 2021 (investor-owned utilities), 10% by 2018 (co-ops and munis)

Notes

Carve-out: From 2017-2021, 0.2% of retail electricity sales must come from solar resources.

North Carolina Electricity Markets

The information below shows whether your state has electric retail choice, which allows you to choose your supplier. It also indicates if your state is within an organized wholesale market that may provide additional options for procuring renewable energy.

In states that do not have electric retail choice, consumers must purchase electricity directly from their traditional utility provider, which may limit their ability to enter into contracts with third-party electricity providers.

Cities which control their own municipal utility do not have the same regulatory constraints as they would if they were purchasing from a state-regulated utility.

Retail Electric Choice

Can I choose my electricity provider?

No

What does the average consumer expect to pay in North Carolina ?

Residential
10.94 ¢/kWh
Commercial
8.44 ¢/kWh
Industrial
6.2 ¢/kWh

Organized Wholesale Markets

Is North Carolina within an Organized Wholesale Market?

If so, what is the name of the independent system operator (ISO) / regional transmission organization (RTO) ?

Yes

Does the market cover the entire state?

Only Portions Of the State

At what price is electricity bought and sold in the wholesale market by energy traders and utilities and the current fuel mix?

Wholesale prices should be considered when entering into any off-site power purchase agreement. For more information, see the descriptions of these contracts on our renewable procurement options page. Note that prices fluctuate by season, day, and hour. Illustrative historic wholesale electricity rates can found here.

Questions? A Renewables Accelerator team member can assist you with interpreting this data.

Wholesale Prices and Fuel Mix

For more information on data sources and methodology, you may find the technical note here.

Potential Renewable Procurement Options in North Carolina:

Community Solar

Learn More

Green Tariff

Learn More

On-Site Solar

Learn More

Virtual Power Purchase Agreement (VPPA)

Learn More

Off-Site Physical Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)

Not Available in North Carolina