~ About Power Lines on Lake Keowee ~
Some people are concerned about the effects of EMF (Electro-Magnetic Fields) on their health. Personally, we are comfortable living here because we know a few Duke Energy retired enginneers and executives who have built waterfront home on Keowee and who live here full-time. They know the inner workings of the plant and what will happen to it in the future. If they are comfortable retiring here, so are we. When you are sitting at The Lighthouse Restaurant, look across the cove and see the beautiful waterfront home with the power lines crossing the back yard. Obviously, these people are not concerned about the electricty radiating of these lines. We helped them purchase this home. He is a retired Duke Energy engineer. She is a photographer; it was very important to her that she have a big water view with mountain sunsets in the back yard. The home is situated so the look under the power lines for their stunning view and not at them. The big towers are on the neighbors' land to the left and right. We have always told you that, “We are the agents who tell you the good, bad, and the ugly.” Go to our Property Topo Maps page for additional input regarding investing in property that has a power line view. This page has step-by-step pictorial instructions on how to view topo maps for any property in Pickens and Oconee Counties.
Duke Energy created Lake Keowee for the purpose of power generation, so it is natural that questions about safety will arise. There have been many studies on the health effects of EMF since the 1970s, but none have positively linked EMF to health problems. The Duke Energy web site has a lot of information about electro-magnetic fields (EMF). Please note the links at the bottom of this page to the National Cancer Institute and other authoritative sources not associated with the electric power industry. Duke's FAQ page (under “What do these measurements really mean”) says:
“Although new technology has made it easier to measure EMFs, it is still very difficult to relate these measurements to human exposure. Measurements vary from moment to moment, depending on the current flow, the type of appliance and a person's position in relation to the source of the fields.
“Interpreting measurements and setting guidelines for exposure levels are difficult, and there is still no consensus as to any health effects resulting from EMFs, let alone whether such effects are related to stronger or weaker fields. It's also not clear whether brief, high-level fields from appliances such as hair dryers have more impact than continuous low-level fields from power lines, wiring or other sources.”
Duke's FAQ page answers many questions about EMF, including results from studies done around the world. Especially eye-opening is the table ("What are some typical magnetic field readings?") comparing magnetic field measurements from typical home appliances to electric transmission lines. Most amazing in the studies Duke sites, standing 50 feet from the edge of an easement containing 100,000 volt lines exposes you to about the same amount of EMF as working 3 feet from a computer!
One of our buyer clients sent us this information.
“We were also concerned with living on a lake with a nuclear power plant. Oconee Nuclear Station has been operating since the late 70’s which is about 35 years with no major incident. They just renewed their license for another 20 years. Our brother in law is a high level executive with Exelon Nuclear that operates many nuclear plants in the Midwest and Northeast. Jim was very familiar with Duke Energy as well as the Oconee Nuclear Station. He assured us that Duke was a “good” company and were very experienced with operating and maintaining nuclear power plants. He said Oconee Nuclear Station was recently inspected for their license renewal and are in the process of upgrading the plant to digital automation, controls, and alarms. He said that Oconee was one of the first nuke plants in the country to make this type of investment and upgrade. He asked if the plant made the water in the lake too warm. No. He also asked if there was much heavy industry surrounding the plant. Again no. While Jim is definitely pro-nuclear minded, he said he would have no concern living on the lake with this plant. He also restated (we have heard this before), that Lake Keowee would not exist if it wasn’t for Duke Energy.”
- “You will not find a more honest, hard-working realtor team than Carol & Doug Patterson. I just don't know where to begin. We spent two days with the Pattersons looking at homes primarily in Keowee Key. We then left and went back to Midland, TX. They handled every detail from the offer, sales contract, inspections, repair requests, post repair inspection, final walk through, and closing. They went back to the home many times to take additional pictures, videos, and get answers to questions we still had about the house. We even assigned Doug power of attorney and they made the drive to Greenville to act as our agents at closing. They continue to stop by the house and check on things since we have not moved there yet. We continue to stay in touch with Doug and Carol and look forward to spending time with them in the future. Not only are they great REALTORS®, but we feel that we have made some lasting friends in the process. We feel truly blessed to have chosen the Pattersons as REALTORS® for our home purchase at Lake Keowee.”
(Read about all the lakes the Robertsons researched before they bought on Keowee.)
Anne and I looked at many different lakes in the SE US over the past 2½ years before deciding on Keowee/Keowee Key.
- Lake Martin, AL – Pretty lake but lowers more than 10' in the winter. Year round water is expensive and many hazards if you wanted to boat during the off season.
- Lewis Smith Lake, AL – Pretty lake, reasonable home prices, but somewhat rural feeling to it. Nearest big town is Birmingham which is not the greatest but good medical.
- Lake Jackson, GA – River lake, nasty water. Good proximity to Atlanta though.
- Lake Lanier, GA – Pretty lake, water levels can fluctuate, though. Proximity to Atlanta can make it very crowded on weekends. Seemed like practically a suburb of Atlanta. Army Corps of Engineers lake so they pretty much control what you can or cannot do with the shoreline up to the Corps line.
- Lake Hartwell, GA/SC – Big lake just south of Keowee. Water can fluctuate quite a bit (it was 15 feet down when we visited, but full now). Housing prices much more reasonable than Keowee. Water not near as pretty as Keowee. Intimidating size and Army Corps lake again which effects what you can do regarding shoreline.
- Lake Greenwood, SC – Nice lake, communities, and reasonable home prices. Water not very nice. Rural area.
- Lake Keowee, SC – Beautiful lake, convenient to Greenville, Charlotte, Atlanta, and the coast. Good lake water levels and year round boating. Keowee Key appears to be a nice, stable, community, with plenty to do, and friendly people from all over the country to meet and develop friendships with. Proximity to mountains, waterfalls, and Lake Jocassee is also a plus.
- Bruce Robertson (Acct Manager, Retired)
and Anne Robertson, Midland, TX