SENECA, S.C. - The Keowee-Toxaway Basin is now officially out of any drought designation, as rainfall has improved storage in Duke Energy's reservoirs and met other conditions outlined in the regional drought response plan.
The basin includes the Duke Energy reservoirs at Bad Creek, Lake Jocassee and Lake Keowee.
Because the Duke Energy reservoirs are upstream of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) reservoirs, the Keowee-Toxaway regional drought response plan is linked to USACE drought levels. USACE drought levels improved to normal conditions on May 9.
Recent rain helped Duke Energy's reservoirs recover to more than 90 percent of full storage, which meets the threshold for upgrading to normal conditions.
Duke Energy, Greenville Water and Seneca Light & Water voluntarily implemented this regional drought response plan, called the Interim Low Inflow Protocol (ILIP), in January 2012 to enhance drought coordination.
In addition to storage in Duke Energy reservoirs and the USACE drought plan level, the ILIP also bases stage determinations on the U.S. Drought Monitor and U.S. Geological Survey stream flow gages in the area.
Duke Energy and stakeholders have been reviewing the ILIP for any changes needed for a final "Low Inflow Protocol" (LIP). Duke Energy plans to include a final LIP in the new hydro license application it will submit to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission by August 2014.
Duke Energy Carolinas owns nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides approximately 20,000 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 2.4 million customers in a 24,000-square-mile service area of North Carolina and South Carolina.
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at: www.duke-energy.com.