News Release
Dec. 8, 2000

PATRIOT EXTENSION OPEN SEASON BEGINS DECEMBER 12

New Duke Energy pipeline to serve parts of Virginia and North Carolina

HOUSTON – Duke Energy today announced its Duke Energy Gas Transmission (DEGT) unit will begin Dec. 12 conducting a month-long open season for pipeline capacity associated with its Patriot Extension. The Patriot Extension is an announced 95-mile expansion of the company’s East Tennessee Natural Gas system into portions of southwest Virginia and North Carolina.

The open period for expressing interest in Patriot capacity ends Jan. 12. Company representatives will share project-related details with interested parties at a meeting in Greensboro, N.C., on Dec. 12. Information about the meeting, the Patriot Extension or the open season is available by contacting Randy Riha at 713/627-4746.

The 24-inch diameter Patriot pipeline will be coupled with East Tennessee system mainline enhancements to initially transport 200 million cubic feet of natural gas per day beginning in fall 2002. The pipeline extension is expandable, in increments, to 600 million cubic feet per day.

DEGT, the Houston-based division of Duke Energy responsible for the company’s interstate natural gas pipeline operations, announced the Patriot Extension in October. The pipeline will bring natural gas service to portions of southwest Virginia for the first time – and introduce a competitive supply of natural gas to North Carolina from Appalachian and Gulf Coast producers. The pipeline will originate from the East Tennessee system in Wythe County, Va., cross Carroll, Patrick and Henry counties in Virginia and terminate in Rockingham County, N.C.

"Demand for natural gas in the Southeast U.S. region is currently being driven by a strong demand for natural gas-fired electric generation," said DEGT President Robert B. Evans. "The Patriot Extension is designed to help meet this anticipated growth and demand for natural gas supplies, supply diversity and transportation competition.

"Most Appalachian production has traditionally gone to the Northeast," he continued. "Local producers, however, are now seeing value in the southeast market and are planning infrastructure additions accordingly."

East Tennessee Natural Gas owns and operates two mainline systems in central Tennessee that converge near Knoxville, Tenn., and extend to a point near Roanoke, Va. The system has a current design capacity of more than 700 million cubic feet per day and provides unbundled, open-access transportation and storage services to 40 local distribution companies and 16 industrial companies in the region.

Duke Energy Gas Transmission manages 12,000 miles of natural gas pipelines including East Tennessee Natural Gas Co., Texas Eastern Transmission Corp., Algonquin Gas Transmission Co. and with other partners, Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline. DEGT also owns natural gas salt cavern facilities in Texas and Louisiana with a total storage capacity of 23 billion cubic feet.

Duke Energy, a diversified multinational energy company, creates value for customers and shareholders through an integrated network of energy assets and expertise. Duke Energy manages a dynamic portfolio of natural gas and electric supply, delivery and trading businesses -- generating revenues of nearly $22 billion in 1999. Duke Energy, headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is a Fortune 100 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.

Contact: Gretchen D. Krueger
Phone: 713/627-4072
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
Email: gdkrueger@duke-energy.com