News | January 25, 2012

SELC Defends South Carolina River from Land-for-Water Deal

In 2009, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control proposed issuing a permit to Duke Energy that would allow the utility to give the state a donation of land and cash to compensate for maintaining harmfully low flows from a series of five hydroelectric stations on the Catawba-Wateree River. We challenged the agency’s decision and secured a unanimous vote from the DHEC board to deny approval of the deal.

SELC is now in the South Carolina Court of Appeals to defend this victory, which was overturned by a state judge’s ruling on procedural grounds. How Duke’s system of hydroelectric dams is permitted to operate in the coming decades will set an important precedent, not only for the Carolinas but nationwide.