Duke Energy honored for outstanding river stewardship
In a year when California blackouts have reminded the public of the value of abundant, low-cost energy supplies, The National Hydropower Association (NHA) today awarded Duke Energy Corporation's Joccassee Gorges Conservation effort its Outstanding Stewardship of America's Rivers citation.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 10, 2001 — In a year when California blackouts have reminded the public of the value of abundant, low-cost energy supplies, The National Hydropower Association (NHA) today awarded Duke Energy Corporation's Joccassee Gorges Conservation effort its Outstanding Stewardship of America's Rivers citation.
The award recognizes Duke's long-term preservation of tens of thousands of wilderness acres surrounding the Savannah River headwaters while continuing to meet the region's electrical needs with clean, renewable and reliable hydroelectricity.
"Protection of the natural environment and productive use of rivers can go hand-in-hand," said NHA president Christopher Hocker. "We must balance the imperative to conserve natural resources with the needs of electricity consumers and the economy. Duke Energy's Jocassee and Bad Creek projects are a testament to the fact that we can do both."
Duke Energy and its land management business unit Crescent Resources, LLC transferred nearly 50,000 acres of land in the Blue Ridge foothills of North Carolina and South Carolina as part of The Jocassee Gorges Conservation project. It secured a vast natural resource that serves as a home to rare plants, black bears, peregrine falcons and some of the highest waterfalls in the Southeast.
As the National Wildlife Federation's 2000 National Conservation Achievement Award winner in the category of corporate leadership, Duke Energy has received national recognition for the Jocassee Gorges Project.
"We are proud to have been part of one of the nation's largest and most historic conservation projects," said Richard B. Priory, Duke Energy chairman, president and chief executive officer. "We have worked hard to properly manage the Jocassee Gorges over the years, and feel confident the states of North Carolina and South Carolina will preserve it for many future generations."
Duke Energy business unit Duke Power began purchasing property in the Blue Ridge foothills in the early 1900s for future electricity generation needs. For almost a century Duke Energy has managed the property with environmental stewardship in mind. Many significant environmental partnerships were fostered along with the stewardship efforts. A business review indicated that there was no longer a need to hold all of the property. Consistent with the goals and plans of those partnerships, the property was offered by Duke Energy and Crescent Resources to the two states for conservation.
The company's stewardship is one of 10 projects recognized by NHA this year. The other projects cited were:
* Cabinet Gorge and Noxon Rapids Projects on the Clark Fork River in Montana and Idaho;
* Norris Project on the Clinch-Powell Rivers in Tennessee;
* Priest Rapids Hydroelectric Project on the Columbia River in Washington state;
* Deerfield River Hydroelectric System on the Deerfield River in Vermont and northwest Massachusetts;
* Douglas Hydroelectric Project on the French Broad River in Tennessee;
* Madawaska River Hydroelectric Projects on the Madawaska River in Ontario, Canada;
* Osage Power Plant on the Osage River in Missouri;
* Kingsley and Sutherland projects on the Platte River in western and central Nebraska; and
* Skagit River Hydroelectric Project on the Skagit River in Washington.
The ten projects selected for inclusion in this report were subjected to a thorough evaluation by a four-member judging committee comprised of: a whitewater rafting enthusiast and member of American Whitewater; the managing editor of Hydro Review, the magazine of the North American hydroelectric industry; the environmental resources manager of a public power utility; and the vice president of generation for a investor-owned utility.
Founded in 1983, NHA represents 61 percent of domestic, non-federal hydroelectric capacity and nearly 80,000 megawatts overall in North America. The non-profit trade association promotes the use of clean, renewable and reliable hydroelectric power that accords with today's environmental values.
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 $49 billion in 2000. 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.