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Tampa Electric earns Tree Line USA® status for fourth consecutive year

The company is recognized for the care it takes in protecting the community’s trees

TAMPA, April 26, 2012

Tree Line USAThe National Arbor Day Foundation™ has certified Tampa Electric a Tree Line USA ® utility for a fourth consecutive year for its efforts to protect the health of trees the company must trim near power lines. A tree that comes into contact with a power line can create a safety hazard and can also lead to power outages.

The Tree Line USA program is sponsored by The National Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters. The program recognizes public and private utilities across the nation that follow practices to protect and enhance America’s urban forests. To qualify for Tree Line USA status, a utility must exhibit quality tree-care practices, complete annual worker training and participate in tree planting and public education.

“We are pleased to be designated a Tree Line USA utility for the fourth consecutive year,” said Yasodha Ratnasekera, line clearance and inspection manager for Tampa Electric’s Line Clearance Department. “This acknowledges that we are effectively balancing our respect for the environment with managing our electric business to ensure that we provide reliable service.”

National Arbor Day is Friday. Tampa Electric encourages customers to review its online Tree Planting and Safety Guide. The company provides information on ideal trees to plant for Florida’s climate and where to plant them to minimize the chances that they will come into contact with power lines. To access the guide, visit tampaelectric.com/residential, click Products and Services and then Tree Trimming.

Tampa Electric regularly communicates with customers about how to report trees on their property in contact with or in danger of coming into contact with power lines. Customers should never attempt to trim trees near power lines. Instead, they should call Tampa Electric at 813-630-6339.

Learn more about National Arbor Day and the Tree Line USA program at arborday.org.

Tampa Electric Company is the principal subsidiary of TECO Energy Inc. (NYSE: TE), an energy-related holding company with regulated utility operations in Florida, including both Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas System . Tampa Electric serves more than 672,000 customers in West Central Florida. Other subsidiaries include TECO Coal, which owns and operates coal production facilities in Kentucky and Virginia, and TECO Guatemala, which is engaged in electric power generation and energy-related businesses in Guatemala.

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CHERIE JACOBS
TECO Energy, Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas
TECO Energy, Inc.
702 N. Franklin Street
Tampa, Florida 33602
E-mail: cljacobs@tecoenergy.com Email Icon