Maintaining the Focus on Ethics


Duke Energy prioritizes ethics and integrity in all our actions with our customers, employees and the communities we serve. This includes adhering to our ethics codes for directors, employees and suppliers and complying fully with all legal and regulatory requirements.

New employees are required to complete ethics and compliance training in their first 30 calendar days on the job. All employees also are annually required to complete an ethics refresher training, acknowledge their responsibility to comply with company ethics policies, and confirm their obligation to report violations of laws, rules or company policies.

The company continuously reviews policies and tightens controls and oversight whenever opportunities to achieve higher levels of performance and accountability arise. By restructuring reporting functions, the company’s designated chief ethics and compliance officer’s responsibilities now include a full-time commitment to the ethics and compliance program.

Duke Energy prioritizes ethics and integrity in all our actions with our customers, employees and the communities we serve.

2020 marked the end of independent oversight by a court-appointed monitor and a second independent monitor required by the EPA as part of a plea agreement stemming from a coal ash spill in 2014. The company exited probation and debarment without a single violation of the agreements during those five years.

In the final report to the EPA, the independent monitor observed the company’s ethics and compliance program was adequately designed to prevent and detect non-compliance with applicable laws.

Duke Energy was cognizant of the varying ethical and security risks associated with a work-from-home environment. We digitally transformed the employee concerns hotline by adding an option to report an issue using a smartphone-friendly form.

Employees utilized the company’s hotline to voice both individual and societal concerns, and as a result of lessons learned, Duke Energy revamped ethics training, social media, political activity and workplace harassment communications to bring a common understanding of an inclusive work environment despite the polarization of our social discourse.

In 2020, we received 2.6 reports per 100 employees of breaches of our ethics codes compared to our benchmark median of 1.9. Of those, 40 percent were substantiated resulting in corrective action. The company also expects company leadership to frequently discuss ethical issues with employees.

Learn more about Duke Energy’s ethics and employee engagement programs.