CenterPoint Energy is the first combined electric and natural gas utility with generation to announce its Net Zero goals for its Scope 1 and certain Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 2035, nearly 15 years ahead of certain of our peers’ average goals.
Our Net Zero by 2035 goal is a company-wide goal across our electric, natural gas and power generation businesses for both Scope 1 and certain Scope 2 emissions.
In addition to our Net Zero goals, CenterPoint Energy strives to be a leader in enabling our customers to transition to a cleaner energy future. We have set a Scope 3 emission reduction goal across our entire multi-state footprint. Specifically, CenterPoint Energy aims to help our residential and commercial customers reduce GHG emissions attributable to their end use of natural gas by 20-30% by 2035 from a 2021 baseline. The total emission reductions for this Scope 3 goal are comparable to the total emission reductions for both our Scope 1 and certain Scope 2 Net Zero goals.
To achieve our Net Zero and Scope 3 goals, CenterPoint Energy will take the following steps:
- Offer customers affordable conservation and energy efficiency programs,
- Continue to develop alternative fuel programs,
- Collaborate with our suppliers to help lower their methane emissions, and
- Pilot and support innovation.
Projected GHG Reductions
|60% reduction in emissions*||Complete exit of operating coal generation by year-end||Net Zero**|
*With the retirement of Brown Units 1 and 2 and Culley Unit 2, and exiting operations at Warrick unit 4, we expect to see a 60% reduction in emissions of carbon, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter and mercury attributed to our generation fleet.
**Emissions are projections based on our strategy to reach Net Zero by 2035 from a 2005 baseline and are subject to change.
Progress on our Net Zero goals and carbon emissions reductions goals will advance as we continue to work to significantly reduce carbon emissions attributable to our assets. In 2026, with the retirement of Brown Units 1 and 2 and Culley Unit 2, and exiting operations at Warrick unit 4, we expect to see a 60% reduction in emissions of carbon, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter and mercury attributed to our generation fleet.
Carbon Emissions Reductions
Guided by our carbon policy and long-term electric generation transition plan, we intend to achieve our Net Zero goals through measurable emission reductions as we work to significantly reduce carbon emissions attributable to our assets. Our Indiana-based electric business recently announced an Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) preferred portfolio to further invest in renewable generation and end its use of Indiana coal by the end of 2027.
Modeling conducted within the IRP analysis points CenterPoint Energy toward the following goals:
- In 2023, expect to retire A.B. Brown 1 and 2 coal units and exit joint operations in Warrick 4 unit
- In 2025, expect to retire Culley 2 coal unit
- By the end of 2027, expect to convert F.B. Culley 3, the last coal unit operated by CenterPoint Energy, to natural gas, maintaining its 270 MW capacity
- Preserving the 270 MW of dispatchable generation is expected to maintain reliability during long duration summer and winter weather events
- By 2030, expect to add 200 MW of wind and 200 MW of solar, with the potential need for an additional 400 MW of wind resources by 2032
2022 Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Scope 1, 2, and 3 GHG Emissions (million metric tons of CO₂ equivalent)
2022 GHG Emissions by Scope and Source
NATURAL GAS OPERATIONS2
POWER LINE LOSSES4
NATURAL GAS SUPPLIED TO
END USE CUSTOMERS5
- Electric Generation as reported under Subpart D of the mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP) as required by the US EPA. Scope 1 GHG emissions from Electric Utility Power Generation are third-party verified and registered with the EPA Clean Air Markets Division.
- Natural Gas Local Distribution Company (LDC) operations Subpart W GHG emissions are determined using emissions factors and calculations as required by the EPA’s rule for the mandatory GHGRP.
- Electric Transmission Substation and Distribution equipment GHG emissions in the form of SF6 are determined using emissions factors and calculations as required and reported under Subpart DD of the EPA’s rule for the mandatory GHGRP.
- Does not include line loss attributable to CenterPoint Energy’s Houston electric transmission and distribution assets because CenterPoint Energy does not own the electricity in Texas and only transports electricity owned by others. This aligns with Edison Electric Institute guidance on reporting guidelines.
- Subpart NN indirect emissions are GHG emissions reported to the US EPA based on the amount of natural gas supplied to all end-use customers.
Climate Modeling for 2° and 1.5° Scenarios
To support our strategy, our Net Zero goals for Scope 1 and certain Scope 2 emissions by 2035 are aligned with the Paris Agreement. The actions we are taking today as part of our electric generation transition plan support the long-term target set by the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature increases to 2° Celsius by 2100. As we implement our Net Zero plan, we intend to continuously assess steps needed to meet the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s short-term target of limiting global warming to 1.5° Celsius.
Mitigating SF6 Emissions
Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), a GHG, is an insulating gas used in high-voltage electric transmission and distribution switchgear equipment. Since 1999, CenterPoint Energy’s electric operations business has been actively involved in SF6 emission programs with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Participating in the Methane Challenge
The EPA Natural Gas STAR Program provides a framework for partner companies with U.S. oil and natural gas operations to implement methane reducing technologies and practices, as well as to document their voluntary emission reduction activities. CenterPoint Energy joined the program in 1997 and submits its reports annually.
Based on our 2021 performance, we anticipate an approximately 33% reduction in methane emissions by 2035 resulting from our pipeline modernization efforts.
PROGRESS TO NET ZERO BY 2035
Scope 3 Customer End-Use Goal by 2035
*As measured from Form EIA-176 for residential and commercial customers
Scope 1 GHG Emissions Resulting from Direct Operation
of CenterPoint Energy Assets
Scope 1 GHG Emissions Resulting from the Direct Operation of CenterPoint Energy Assets
|Electric Generation (Owned) (CO2e) Metric Tons||6,071,283||4,620,963||6,370,671||4,355,838|
|SF6 Houston Electric (CEHE) (CO2e) Metric Tons||
|Natural Gas Operations (CO2e) Metric Tons||
|Fleet (CO2e) Metric Tons||68,171||58,105||57,600||50,424|
|Total Scope 1||6,684,083||5,237,273||7,049,158||4,853,990|
Net Zero Disclaimer: CenterPoint Energy’s Scope 1 emissions estimates are calculated from emissions that directly come from its operations. CenterPoint Energy’s Scope 2 emissions estimates are calculated from emissions that indirectly come from its energy usage, but because Texas is in an unregulated market, its Scope 2 estimates do not take into account Texas electric transmission and distribution assets in the line loss calculation and exclude emissions related to purchased power between 2024E-2026E. CenterPoint Energy’s Scope 3 emissions estimates are based on the total natural gas supply delivered to residential and commercial customers as reported in the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Form EIA-176 reports and do not take into account the emissions of transport customers and emissions related to upstream extraction. While CenterPoint Energy believes that it has a clear path towards achieving its Net Zero emissions (Scope 1 and certain Scope 2) by 2035 goals, its analysis and path forward required it to make a number of assumptions. These goals and underlying assumptions involve risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees. Should one or more of our underlying assumptions prove incorrect, CenterPoint Energy’s actual results and ability to achieve Net Zero emissions by 2035 could differ materially from its expectations. Certain of the assumptions that could impact our ability to meet its Net Zero emissions goals include, but are not limited to: emission levels, service territory size and capacity needs remaining in line with company expectations (inclusive of changes related to the sale of CenterPoint’s Natural Gas businesses in Arkansas and Oklahoma); regulatory approval of Indiana Electric’s generation transition plan; impacts of future environmental regulations or legislation; impacts of future carbon pricing regulation or legislation, including a future carbon tax; price, availability and regulation of carbon offsets; price of fuel, such as natural gas; cost of energy generation technologies, such as wind and solar, natural gas and storage solutions; adoption of alternative energy by the public, including adoption of electric vehicles; rate of technology innovation with regards to alternative energy resources; CenterPoint Energy’s ability to implement its modernization plans for its pipelines and facilities; the ability to complete and implement generation alternatives to Indiana Electric’s coal generation and retirement dates of Indiana Electric’s coal facilities by 2035; the ability to construct and/or permit new natural gas pipelines; the ability to procure resources needed to build at a reasonable cost, the lack of or scarcity of resources and labor, the lack of any project cancellations, construction delays or overruns and the ability to appropriately estimate costs of new generation; impact of any supply chain disruptions; changes in applicable standards or methodologies; and enhancement of energy efficiencies. Please also review the section entitled “CenterPoint Energy Cautionary Statement” included on this website.