The Associated Press April 22, 2010, 12:29PM ET

Duke Energy picks 10 NC sites for solar panels

Power company Duke Energy said Thursday that it will install solar panels at 10 buildings in North Carolina as it builds on its solar generation program.

The panels will generate enough electricity to power about 525 homes.

Duke began the program last October when roof space was leased from four large manufacturing and commercial facilities for the placement of solar panels.

When the program is complete, Duke will have invested about $50 million on a project that will be capable of generating enough electricity for 1,300 homes.

The 10 sites were chosen based on the interest of the building's owner in solar energy, access to the electricity grid and solar potential. Installation should be finished by this fall.

North Carolina's renewable energy standard requires each public electric utility to meet at least 12.5 percent of its retail customers' needs through renewable energy or energy efficiency by 2021.

Duke shares fell 19 cents to $16.11 in afternoon trading.

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