News Release
July 10, 2003


BLACKSBURG, S.C. – Duke Power officials and local community leaders today celebrated the completion and commercial operation of Duke Power’s newest generating station -- Mill Creek Combustion Turbine Station.

The $300 million, 640-megawatt, natural gas-fired combustion turbine station is located in Cherokee County and will generate enough power to serve more than 500,000 homes in North Carolina and South Carolina.

“Duke Power is committed to supplying reliable and economically priced electricity to more than 2 million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina,” said Ruth Shaw, president of Duke Power. “We appreciate the support of Cherokee County and the town of Blacksburg and are excited about being part of the region’s continued growth and success.”

At a ribbon-cutting today at the Mill Creek station, Shaw said the project is an example of how local communities and business can work together to put necessary energy infrastructure in place to support sustained economic growth.

Local officials agreed. “This expansion in Cherokee County demonstrates that Duke Power has what it takes to make things happen,” S.C. Secretary of Commerce Bob Faith said. 

“We are pleased with this accomplishment,” said Cherokee County Council Chairman Hoke Parris. “We look forward to having Mill Creek as a part of the community for years to come.” 

The eight-unit combustion turbine station operates as a “peaking” facility, generating electricity quickly and economically primarily during periods when customers’ electricity usage is greatest – usually hot summer afternoons and cold winter mornings.

A peak work force of approximately 400 skilled workers was employed at the height of 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 17,800 megawatts. More information about Duke Power is available on the Internet at:

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: 

Contact: Guynn Savage
Phone: 704/382-8350
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333