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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - A ruling by the South Carolina Court of Appeals could delay Duke Energy's renewal of federal hydroelectric license for operations on the Catawaba River.
The Charlotte Observer reports the power company must show its operations won't affect water quality before it can renew its license for 50 years.
An administrative law court found South Carolina environmental regulators waited too long to oppose Duke's renewal. But the appeals court overturned that in a 2-1 ruling.
The state's Department of Health and Environmental Control and environmental groups had appealed the administrative ruling.
Duke could go back to the administrative law court for a trial on the merits of case. Or it could ask for rehearing by the Court of Appeals or appeal to the state Supreme Court.