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Energy & Environment
Here are some of the other stories catching our attention.

Duke Offers Buyouts To IT, Nuclear Employees

Catawba Nuclear Station, on Lake Wylie.
Duke Energy
Catawba Nuclear Station, on Lake Wylie.

Duke Energy has offered buyouts to some employees who work in information technology and nuclear power. A spokesman would not say how many people are affected by the voluntary severance program but said it's part of regular efforts to improve efficiency.

"We're always looking for ways to get better and more efficient. And those are the areas where we see opportunities," spokesman Neil Nissan said.  

"Frankly, it's something our customers expect from us," he added, to keep down energy prices.

Duke also did not say when staff reductions would happen.

Charlotte-based Duke has about 29,000 employees in six states, including the Carolinas. That number has held steady in recent years.

Besides its Charlotte headquarters, Duke has six nuclear plants in the Carolinas. They include two near Charlotte - Catawba Nuclear Station on Lake Wylie and McGuire Nuclear Station on Lake Norman.

The company canceled two planned nuclear projects last year, one in South Carolina and one in Florida.