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SEMCO ENERGY to Build Pipeline to Southern Energy Power Plant

PORT HURON, Mich., May 15 /PRNewswire/ -- SEMCO ENERGY, Inc. (NYSE: SEN) today announced that the Company has been awarded a contract to build a 7 1/2- mile, 16-inch natural gas line to serve the new Southern Energy, Inc. Power Generation Plant in Zeeland, MI.

Southern Energy, Inc., a unit of Southern Company, plans to build an 830- megawatt plant to help supply the growing demand for electricity in the upper Midwest.

Construction of the natural gas-fired plant is scheduled to begin this month. The power station is scheduled to begin commercial operation in June 2001 with 300 megawatts of capacity, with the additional 530 megawatts beginning commercial operation by June 2003.

The gas line will connect the Southern Energy, Inc. plant with ANR Pipeline's interstate mainline system in the western Michigan community.

"Southern Energy has decided to bring this plant to Zeeland and SEMCO ENERGY is pleased to support them with a project that will benefit not only this community but much of the region," said Carl Porter, President and Chief Operating Officer of SEMCO ENERGY.

SEMCO ENERGY also will own and operate the interconnecting line for a 12- year period. Maverick Pipeline Services, Inc., a subsidiary of SEMCO ENERGY, will handle the complete turnkey construction project.

Preliminary work on the pipeline project is currently underway. Construction of the pipeline is expected to begin this spring with a projected completion date in early 2001.

SEMCO ENERGY, Inc. is a diversified energy and infrastructure company with two natural gas divisions providing service to more than 350,000 customers in Michigan and Alaska. It has two subsidiaries. SEMCO ENERGY VENTURES, owns and operates businesses involved in gas engineering and quality assurance services, propane distribution, intrastate pipelines and natural gas storage in various regions of the United States. Aretech Information Services, Inc. is a southeastern Michigan-based information technology company specializing in outsourcing to the mid-range computer market.
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CONTACT: Media, Francis R. Lieder, 810-987-2200, ext. 4186, fax, 810-989-4098, or Analysts, Edric R. Mason, 810-989-4104, fax, 810-989-4098, both of SEMCO ENERGY, Inc.

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding SEMCO Energy's business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.

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