GREENVILLE, S.C. – A local environmental non-profit plans to fight Duke Energy’s plans to install a 40-mile transmission line that would stretch across the Carolinas.
Upstate Forever placed a full-page ad in The Greenville News on Sunday, taking aim at the adverse environmental and economic impact it claims the transmission line and accompanying towers will have on the Upstate.
“We don’t believe the project is needed, and there’s no reason to even be talking about transmission lines,” said Brad Wyche, the executive director of Upstate Forever. “It’s going to cause a lot of damage to the land, a lot of runoff into the rivers and streams of that area.”
Wyche said other alternatives include solar energy, which he said Duke has discussed in the past.
Duke Energy announced in May that it plans to replace its coal-fired power plant in Asheville with a natural gas-fired plant. The plans call for building a transmission substation in Spartanburg County that will be connected to the new plant, which Duke said should be completed by 2019.
In an email, Ryan Mosier, a Duke Energy spokesman, wrote that Upstate Forever’s claims are “not accurate or even well thought out.” He also wrote that solar energy isn’t the only solution, especially because solar panels rely upon direct sunlight to generate power.
The Public Service Commission of South Carolina will hold a hearing on the proposed project Thursday night at 6 o’clock at Landrum High School. The general public is invited to attend.