News Release
March 15, 2002

DUKE POWER BREAKS GROUND ON NEW PLANT IN CHEROKEE COUNTY, S.C.

BLACKSBURG, S.C. South Carolina and Duke Power officials celebrated construction of the $300 million Mill Creek Combustion Turbine Station during a groundbreaking event today at the plant site in Cherokee County.

The 640-megawatt oil- and natural gas-fired plant will generate enough power during peak periods to serve approximately 500,000 homes. It is slated to begin supplying electricity for North Carolina and South Carolina customers of Duke Power by mid-2003.

 

“We’re pleased to have the Mill Creek facility in our community,” said South Carolina State Senator Harvey Peeler. “The new plant will provide power for our citizens, add to the county’s tax base and provide the opportunity for future economic development.”

 

Cherokee County Council Chairman Hoke Parris echoed the welcome and support for Mill Creek. “The investment Duke Power has made in Cherokee County and Blacksburg will benefit the region on many levels and we’re delighted to help them observe this groundbreaking event.”

 

The eight-unit combustion turbine plant will operate as a “peaking plant,” providing electricity primarily during periods when customers’ electricity usage is greatest – usually hot summer afternoons and cold winter mornings.

 

Bill Coley, president of Duke Power, said the Mill Creek project is an example of how a progressive local community and business can work together to make certain the necessary energy infrastructure is in place to support economic growth.

 

“Duke Power is committed to providing a reliable and economically priced supply of electricity to our customers in North Carolina and South Carolina,” Coley said. “We appreciate the support of Cherokee County and the town of Blacksburg in helping make this project possible.”

 

Duke Energy affiliate Duke/Fluor Daniel will design and build the plant. A peak work force of approximately 400 skilled workers will be employed during the construction.

 

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 generating capability is approximately 19,300 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 more than $59 billion in 2001. 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: Rosalind Bennett
Phone: 704/382-0475
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
Email: rtbennet@duke-energy.com