Duke chips in for projects in hydropower territory

out dukeIdeas are being solicited for riparian habitat enhancement projects in Jackson, Swain and Macon counties as part of Duke Energy’s requirement to carry out conservation projects in exchange for harnessing the region’s rivers with hydroelectric dams.


Duke must commit $125,000 to riparian habitat projects along the rivers, lakes and creeks that feed the waterways where it has dams, which include Nantahala River, Little Tennessee River, Oconaluftee River and Tuckaseigee River.

Projects on the main stem rivers downstream of Duke’s dams will get special consideration. Eligible projects include restoring or enhancing riparian habitat directly or educating landowners or school children about the importance of healthy riparian areas for fish and wildlife.

Criteria include long-term impact, direct benefits to riparian resources, broad support for the project, creativity and the ability to show measurable results. 

Proposals may request up to $20,000 and project duration should be limited to three years or less. 

The deadline to submit proposals is April 11. www.duke-energy.com/lakes/nantahala/hydroelectric-relicensing.asp

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