The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued a new 30-year license to Duke Energy for its 868-MW Keowee-Toxaway complex, which includes the Keowee hydropower plant and Jocassee pumped-storage project.
The new license takes effect September 1 and also includes stipulations for improvements to existing recreational areas on Lake Jocassee and Lake Keowee. Duke Energy will also implement a habitat enhancement program in the watershed to protext about 2,900 acres of property extending through the Carolinas.
"The project provides clean, renewable hydroelectric power generation, supports regional public drinking water needs and provides high-quality recreational opportunities for the region," said Steve Jester, vice president of water strategy, hydro licensing and lake services. "This license ensures the availability of these resources for future generations."
Keowee-Toxaway's original 50-year license went into effect in 1966. Duke filed to relicense it in August 2014.
The utility said the application is the culmination of nearly a decade of collaboration with governmental and community stakeholders. The license also includes new operating agreements with the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers and the Southeastern Power Administration to improve cooperation with USACE projects located downstream.