News Release
Dec. 09, 1997

DUKE ENERGY, UNITED AMERICAN ENERGY COMPLETE DEAL TO ACQUIRE OWNERSHIP INTEREST IN AMERICAN REF-FUEL

HOUSTON, Dec. 9, 1997 -- Duke Energy Power Services LLC and United American Energy Corp. (UAE) today announced they had completed the purchase of a 50 percent ownership interest in Houston-based American Ref-Fuel Company from Air Products and Chemicals Inc. for $237 million.

Duke Energy Power Services and UAE have formed a limited liability company (LLC) to own their 50 percent interest in American Ref-Fuel. Duke Energy Power Services’ interest in the LLC will be 65 percent; UAE’s interest will be 35 percent. UAE will serve as asset manager for the LLC. The other 50 percent of American Ref-Fuel is held by Houston-based Browning-Ferris Industries, Inc. (BFI).

American Ref-Fuel is the top-ranked waste-to-energy firm in New York and New Jersey, and is the third largest in the United States. American Ref-Fuel had revenues of about $350 million for fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 1997.

"This acquisition strengthens Duke Energy’s portfolio of power generating assets," said Paula G. Rosput, president of Duke Energy Power Services. "American Ref-Fuel is a preeminent owner and operator of reliable and efficient waste-to-energy plants. Ref-Fuel’s concentration of facilities in the Northeast and the quality of its waste and energy contracts will complement our overall merchant power strategy."

Added David Goodman, president and chief executive officer of UAE: "This acquisition builds on our other refuse-to-energy initiatives, which use tires and agricultural waste as fuel. American Ref-Fuel is an excellent fit with our strategic growth plans and we believe it is the best run municipal solid waste-to-energy business in the country."

Under the agreement, Duke and UAE will acquire Air Products’ ownership interest in five waste-to-energy (WTE facilities in: Hempstead, N.Y.; Niagara Falls, N.Y.; Preston, Conn.; Essex County, N.J. and Rochester, Mass. The facilities process about four million tons of municipal solid waste per year and have a generating capacity of 286 megawatts.

"American Ref-Fuel has doubled its size in the past three years in an industry that has been restructuring," said Paul Varello, chairman and chief executive officer of American Ref-Fuel. "With the support of Duke/UAE, we are confident that we will be in a position to take advantage of significant opportunities in the waste-to-energy marketplace."

Duke Energy Power Services engages in electric power asset and project development in the United States. It is a subsidiary of Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE: DUK), a global energy company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., with more than $20 billion in assets.

UAE, based in Woodcliff Lake, N.J., is a privately held national energy firm that focuses on adding value to energy assets through ownership and management. Founded in 1980 as one of the first independent power producers (IPP) in the nation, UAE concentrated until 1990 on development of greenfield hydroelectric projects. Since then, UAE has become a market leader in acquiring and managing IPP projects that require specialized project management for complex market situations. As of September 1997, UAE owned and/or operated 14 projects representing 390 megawatts of installed capacity with an original capitalization in excess of $500 million. UAE also owns and operates the largest underground anthracite mine in Pennsylvania, including a coal processing plant, and sells coal to the metallurgical industry and nearby power plants.

Contact: Randy Wheeless
Phone: 704-382-8379
24 Hour Phone: 704-594-0681
Email: crwheele@duke-energy.com