Southeast Supply Header Signs Progress Energy Florida for 200 MMcf/day Capacity on Proposed Pipeline Project - Duke Energy

News Release
Dec. 20, 2006

Southeast Supply Header Signs Progress Energy Florida for 200 MMcf/day Capacity on Proposed Pipeline Project

Application Filed with Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

HOUSTON – Southeast Supply Header, LLC (SESH) has signed an agreement to provide Progress Energy Florida with 200 million cubic feet a day (MMcf/d) of firm transportation service on its proposed pipeline that will bring natural gas from east Texas and north Louisiana to growing U.S. markets.

This agreement, combined with Florida Power and Light Company’s commitment for 500 MMcf/d, brings SESH’s total subscribed capacity to 700 MMcf/d of the 1 billion cubic feet per day capacity initially planned for the project.

On Dec. 18, SESH filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), seeking approval to construct, own and operate the pipeline.

“We look forward to working with the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission to facilitate their timely approval of our project and anticipate having SESH in service in the summer of 2008,” said Cy Zebot, chief commercial officer of CenterPoint Energy’s pipelines group. “Progress Energy Florida’s commitment validates the significance of this pipeline project.”

“Adding Progress Energy Florida as a significant shipper on SESH is another important milestone for the success of the project,” said Mark Fiedorek, vice president, asset optimization and storage, DEGT. “This commitment again demonstrates the important role the Southeast Supply Header will play to connect growing markets to prolific onshore supply basins.”

“This agreement reflects our balanced approach to meeting the growing energy needs of our customers,” said Jeff Lyash, president and CEO of Progress Energy Florida. “Natural gas plays an important role in balancing the fuel-mix diversity of our generating fleet and this project will enhance supply reliability.”

The Southeast Supply Header is a joint venture between subsidiaries of CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) and Duke Energy Gas Transmission (DEGT). The 270-mile, 36-inch and 42-inch diameter pipeline will extend from the Perryville Hub in northeast Louisiana to the Gulfstream Natural Gas System, which is 50 percent owned by an affiliate of DEGT. Along the route, SESH will access several major pipelines serving the eastern United States and have access to several storage facilities.

About the Companies

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution, competitive natural gas sales and services, and pipeline and field services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Through subsidiaries, the company owns and operates two interstate natural gas pipelines, CenterPoint Energy Gas Transmission Company and CenterPoint Energy-Mississippi River Transmission Corporation. Assets total approximately $17 billion.  With about 9,000 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 130 years. For more information, visit the Web site at www.CenterPointEnergy.com.

Duke Energy Gas Transmission (DEGT) is a North American leader in the long-haul transportation and storage of natural gas. For close to a century, DEGT and its predecessor companies have developed the critically important pipelines and related energy infrastructure that connects natural gas supply sources to premium markets. Based in Houston, Texas, the company’s assets include about 17,500 miles of transmission pipeline and 250 billion cubic feet of storage capacity in the U.S. and Canada. DEGT also has natural gas gathering, processing and distribution assets and natural gas liquids operations that are among the largest in Canada. In June, Duke Energy announced a plan to separate its electric and gas businesses. DEGT, along with Duke Energy’s 50 percent ownership in Duke Energy Field Services, expects to become a stand-alone, publicly traded company known as Spectra Energy Corp. Spectra Energy is expected to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange as an independent company on Jan. 2, 2007. More information can be found at: www.degt.duke-energy.com.

Progress Energy Florida, a subsidiary of Progress Energy (NYSE: PGN), provides electricity and related services to more than 1.6 million customers in Florida. The company is headquartered in St. Petersburg, Fla., and serves a territory encompassing more than 20,000 square miles including the cities of St. Petersburg and Clearwater, as well as the Central Florida area surrounding Orlando. Progress Energy is the 2006 recipient of the Edison Electric Institute's Edison Award, the industry's highest honor, in recognition of its operational excellence. In 2005, the company also received the prestigious J.D. Power and Associates Founder's Award for dedication, commitment and sustained improvement in customer service. For more information about Progress Energy, visit the company's Web site at www.progress-energy.com.

Forward-looking statements

This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The statements in this news release regarding future events and other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Although CenterPoint Energy and Duke Energy believe that their respective expectations of future events as set forth in this release are based on reasonable assumptions, neither CenterPoint Energy nor Duke Energy can give assurance that anticipated results will be achieved or that anticipated events will occur. Actual events and results may differ materially from those projected. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements of CenterPoint Energy herein are discussed in CenterPoint Energy’s and its subsidiaries Form 10-Ks for the period ended Dec. 31, 2005 and Form 10-Qs for the quarters ended March 31, June 30 and Sept. 30, 2006, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements of Duke Energy herein are discussed in Duke Energy’s Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, June 30 and Sept., 30, 2006, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Contact: DEGT Contact: Gretchen Krueger
Phone: 713-627-4072
24-Hour Phone:
e-mail:
Contact: CenterPoint Energy Contact: Leticia Lowe
Phone: 713-207-7702
24-Hour Phone:
e-mail:
Contact: Progress Energy Florida Contact: C.J. Drake
Phone: 407-942-9518
24-Hour Phone:
e-mail: