News Release
Dec. 19, 2000

DUKE ENERGY: OCONEE NUCLEAR STATION ESTABLISHES NEW RELIABILITY RECORD

SENECA, S.C. – Duke Energy’s Oconee Nuclear Station has set a new record for providing safe, reliable electricity to the Piedmont Carolinas. The station has been operated by Duke Power for 27 years.

The station that already has generated more energy than any other nuclear facility in the country saw all three of its units operate simultaneously for 179 consecutive days, smashing the station’s old record of 126 days set in 1995. The Nuclear Energy Institute, which tracks nuclear industry performance, could find no other three-unit station in the country that had put together a more impressive run. Oconee concluded its record-breaking performance Nov. 23, when unit 1 was taken out of service for a regularly scheduled refueling outage.

Oconee, which earlier this year became just the second nuclear station to have its licenses extended for an additional 20 years, has put together an impressive two-year run. In 1999, the power plant generated nearly 20 million megawatt-hours of electricity, its highest output since 1993.

Prior to coming offline for refueling, unit 1 had been operating for 261 consecutive days. Unit 2 has been operating for 357 days and unit 3 has been cranking out power for 205 straight days.

"These performances are the result of solid planning and the excellent day-to-day performance of our employees," said William R. McCollum Jr., Oconee site vice president. "While we are pleased with our recent accomplishments, we feel we must continue to improve. Our industry has made great strides in efficiency and reliability in recent years, and our goal is to be at the forefront of those efforts."

Duke Power, a business unit of Duke Energy, is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities and provides safe, reliable, competitively priced electricity to approximately two million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina. Duke Power operates three nuclear generating stations, eight coal-fired stations, 31 hydroelectric stations and numerous combustion turbine units. Total system capability is 19,290 megawatts. More information about Duke Power is available on the Internet at: www.dukepower.com.

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: Tom Shiel
Phone: 704/373-6396
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
Email: tpshiel@duke-energy.com