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Wednesday, 30 October 2013 02:15

Duke funds streamside enhancement projects

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out invasivesDuke Energy will spend more than $100,000 on seven streamside habitat projects in the watersheds and tailwaters of its Nantahala area hydroelectric projects. Duke’s Riparian Habitat Enhancement Fund grant of $109,057 plus matching and in-kind funds for the projects total $406,873.62.

The projects were chosen by an advisory board, comprised of state and federal resource agencies and county soil and water conservation experts, who rank project proposals based on long-term impact, direct benefits to riparian resources, broad support for the project, creativity and the ability to show measurable results. The projects are:

• Killian Farm - Cartoogechaye Creek Restoration: Stream bank and aquatic habitat restoration in Cartoogechaye Creek, a tributary of the Little Tennessee River near Franklin. 

• Kelly Farm - Savannah Creek Restoration: Stream bank and aquatic habitat restoration in Savannah Creek, a tributary of the Tuckasegee River near Dillsboro. 

• Riparian Education & Enhancement in the Hiwassee River Watershed: Replanting riparian buffers and educating local school children and landowners on the value of these buffers using a small tributary of the Hiwassee River near Hayesville. 

• Little Tennessee River Greenway Riparian Restoration & Education: Remove invasive exotic vegetation and plant native trees and shrubs at the confluence of Cartoogechaye Creek and the Little Tennessee River near Franklin.

• Tributary to Hiwassee River Rehabilitation: Reconstruct 1,000 feet of stream bank and enhance riparian buffers on a small tributary of the Hiwassee River near Murphy.

Another request for proposals will be issued in early 2014. The application will be posted at www.dukeenergy.com/lakes/nantahala/hydroelectric-relicensing.asp.

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