News Release
March 14, 2000

DUKE ENERGY COMPLETES PURCHASE OF EAST TENNESSEE NATURAL GAS COMPANY

HOUSTON -- Duke Energy Gas Transmission announced today that it had completed the acquisition of East Tennessee Natural Gas Company, formerly a wholly owned subsidiary of El Paso Energy Corporation.

"The East Tennessee Pipeline is an excellent fit with Duke Energy's natural gas transmission system," said Robert Evans, president of Duke Energy Gas Transmission. "It extends the reach of our entire pipeline network and allows us to access a vibrant gas market in a key strategic region of the country for Duke Energy. East Tennessee Natural Gas Company operates an excellent pipeline with long-term customer contracts and an established record of year-on-year growth. It is a terrific addition to Duke Energy's pipeline system."

East Tennessee owns and operates two mainline systems in central Tennessee that converge near Knoxville, Tenn., extending to a point near Roanoke, Va. The pipeline, regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, has a design capacity of 700 million cubic feet per day and provides unbundled, open-access transportation and storage services to 40 local distribution companies and 16 industrial customers in the region.

Duke Energy owns and operates natural gas pipelines in the eastern United States, known as Texas Eastern Transmission Corporation, Algonquin Gas Transmission Company, and with other partners, Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline. These companies deliver 7 percent of the natural gas consumed in the United States.

Duke Energy, a diversified multi-national 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: Gail Schutz
Phone: 713/627-4060
24 Hour Phone: 704-382-8333
Email: gbschutz@duke-energy.com