The new 30-year license covers Nantahala hydroelectric project, located substantially in Macon County, North Carolina, and with waters in Clay County.

The license triggers a variety of public recreation and aquatic habitat enhancements in the Nantahala River watershed.

Additionally, as part of a settlement agreement with relicensing stakeholders, in 2004 Duke Energy altered Nantahala project operations to keep the lake higher during summer months, enhance downstream whitewater recreation, and help stabilize the lake level during fish spawning season.

Nantahala project’s specific items are expected to take about two to three years from start to finish.

Duke Energy said it is engaged in implementing enhancements, which will cost an estimated $10.5m.

In addition to activities required in new licenses, Duke Energy and stakeholders from 30 organizations formed the Nantahala and Tuckasegee Cooperative Stakeholder Teams.