News Release
December 19, 2003

DUKE ENERGY ANNOUNCES FERC SETTLEMENTS

CHARLOTTE, NC – Duke Energy today announced agreements to resolve matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) related to the company’s participation in the California energy market during the state’s electricity crisis.  

These agreements are consistent with the company’s objective of reducing regulatory risks and uncertainty, and will bring closure to all FERC proceedings regarding Duke Energy's trading and operating practices in west-wide electricity markets from January 2000 through June 2002. In moving to resolve these proceedings, Duke Energy has agreed to pay up to $4.59 million to the benefit of California and Western electricity consumers, pending final approval by the commission. Duke Energy remains a party to FERC’s ongoing refund proceeding, involving all participants in the California market during the period Oct. 2, 2000, through June 20, 2001

“Bringing closure to these protracted proceedings is in the best interest of our shareholders,” said Fred Fowler, Duke Energy president and chief operating officer.  “From a business perspective, settlement with the commission will remove the risks and burdens of regulatory uncertainty.  And from a practical standpoint, today’s action will allow our company and our employees to move forward.”

The agreements support the facts put forth by Duke Energy that the company acted appropriately and within the market rules in California during the state’s energy crisis.   

Duke Energy is a diversified multinational energy company with an integrated network of energy assets and expertise. The company manages a dynamic portfolio of natural gas and electric supply, delivery and trading businesses – meeting the energy needs of customers throughout North America and in key markets around the world. Duke Energy, headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is a Fortune 500 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: Pete Sheffield
Phone: 704/373-4503
24-Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
e-mail: pvsheffield@duke-energy.com