DU, Duke Energy to help South Carolina waterway

Santee National Wildlife Refuge project supported by Water Resources Fund

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Santee National Wildlife Refuge

Photo © Ducks Unlimited

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Nov. 28, 2017 – Ducks Unlimited received a $75,000 grant to continue protecting regional waterways and the environment through wetland restoration and enhancement at the Santee National Wildlife Refuge in South Carolina. The grant is part of the Water Resources Fund, a $10 million commitment from Duke Energy.

"This grant will help us improve 726 acres of publicly accessible wetland complexes at the Santee National Wildlife Refuge," said James Rader, manager of conservation programs for Ducks Unlimited. "Duke Energy's support helps Ducks Unlimited conserve waterfowl habitat and protect local waterways."

The grant will partially fund wetland restoration work on the Bluff Unit and Dingle Pond Unit of the Santee NWR. These units are on the north shore of Lake Marion, the largest lake in South Carolina. They are open for public use, including fishing, birding, hiking, wildlife photography and hunting. Through management infrastructure improvements, the project will increase water quality, quantity and conservation while providing important habitat for wildlife, including waterfowl and other migratory birds.

"The rivers and waterways that power our regional economies are an essential resource that unites us all," said Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe, Duke Energy's South Carolina president. "We are proud to support the important work of Ducks Unlimited, which will have a lasting impact on South Carolina's waterways."

Total project cost will exceed $880,000. Along with Duke Energy and Ducks Unlimited, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the North American Wetlands Conservation Council are project partners.

The Water Resources Fund is a multi-year commitment to leave a legacy of improved water quality, quantity and conservation in the Carolinas and neighboring regions. Investment decisions are carefully reviewed by the Water Resources Fund committee, an independent body that includes five environmental experts and two Duke Energy employees. Selected projects are chosen on several criteria, including whether the project is based on science and supported by research.