Economic Development

Economic Development

Supporting the growth of businesses in our service area is an integral part of Greenville Utilities. Our mission is enhancing the quality of life for those we serve by safely providing reliable utility solutions at the lowest reasonable cost, with exceptional customer service in an environmentally responsible manner. Collaborating with industries is a vital to that mission.

Since 1905, Greenville Utilities has been an integral part of Greenville-Pitt County, growing and progressing along with our expanding service area. GUC provides electric, water, sewer and natural gas services to the City of Greenville and 75% of Pitt County, North Carolina. We serve a combined total of more than 152,000 customer connections.

Greenville Utilities is owned by the citizens of Greenville but operates under a separate charter issued by the N.C. General Assembly. We are guided and managed by an eight-member Board of Commissioners. The Board is responsible for approving rates, development plans, the annual budget and setting operating and extension policies. Policies are implemented by the General Manager. The City Manager serves as a full voting member; five other Board members are nominated by the City Council, and two are nominated by the County Commissioners. All Board members are approved by the City Council. Our highly-experienced Management Team is dedicated to working together to operate GUC in the best interest of our customers.

Electric Service

Greenville Utilities operates an electric distribution system serving the City of Greenville and approximately 75% of the rural portion of the County with 65,351 connections. Our electric system, measured by number of customers served, is the second largest municipal electric system in the State and the 44th largest in the nation.

GUC and 31 other North Carolina municipalities are members of the North Carolina Eastern Municipal Power Agency (Power Agency), a joint agency of the State of North Carolina. On July 31, 2015, the Power Agency completed the sale of its electric generating assets to Duke Energy Progress which drastically reduced GUC’s share of the outstanding debt on those assets.

Additionally, Duke Energy Progress has entered into a 30 year agreement to provide wholesale power to the Power Agency. The reduced debt service costs and the lower costs of wholesale power allowed the Utilities Commission to reduce electric retail rates by a total of 11% since the sale.

GUC’s Board of Commissioners created a rate stabilization fund which will help keep GUC’s electric rates steady for several years which enhances economic development opportunities, and improves the quality of life for the region.

Water Supply

In addition to reliable electric service, another key issue for an area’s growth is water supply capacity, quality and reliability. GUC excels in all three areas. GUC’s water system has the capacity to supply up to 24.5 million gallons per day (MGD), compared to a current average day demand of 13 MGD. The water supplied to GUC’s customers consistently meets higher standards than state and federal regulations require.

Wastewater Treatment

GUC’s Wastewater Treatment Plant has the capacity to treat 17.5 MGD. Currently, we collect, transport and treat an average of 11.29 MGD, a total of more than 4.12 billion gallons a year. This facility allows GUC to fulfill its mission of protecting the environment and public health by producing a higher quality effluent than is required by state and federal regulations.

GUC employs a Pretreatment Program to protect the wastewater plant and the Tar River by issuing wastewater discharge permits for industries that meet certain criteria as significant industrial users. Since the Wastewater Treatment Plant currently accepts mostly residential wastewater, a generous allocation and capacity exists for industrial discharges. GUC staff assists potential industrial users with the permitting process. After application review, should the industry require a permit, GUC strives to provide a permit which meets the satisfaction of the industry and the required regulations.

Natural Gas 

Increasingly, natural gas is becoming the premier fuel for use in industrial processes, in generating electricity and heating residential homes. In an effort to reduce costs associated with purchasing and transporting natural gas, we entered into a supply contract with Piedmont Natural Gas (PNG) in November 2005.

Additional Valuable Services

Load Management
In 1978, GUC was one of the first municipal utilities in the nation to implement load management to control the demand component of its cost of power. This successful program is still going strong, allowing the utility to avoid more than $8 million in annual demand costs.

Partnership with industrial accounts is essential in maintaining electric rate stability. High-demand customers have the largest impact on our purchased power costs. Controlling electricity at peak times lowers the customer’s costs and lowers GUC’s costs. Our load reduction rider allows industries to receive credits for KW demand reduction during peak periods. Joint efforts keep demand costs in check for the benefit of all our customers.

Historically our Load Management Program has been successful due to the open communication we have with our industrial and commercial customers. Many have taken advantage of peak shaving opportunities by installing on-site generation.

Distributed Generation
At the forefront of distributed generation, GUC has operated diesel-engine peakshaving generators at 12 industrial and large customer sites since 1994. By utilizing these peak-shaving generators last year, GUC avoided electrical demand costs, and participating industries received credits of approximately $480,000. In addition, Generation Program Customers receive reductions in power costs by running their generators during peak periods.

Vendors Available
Through ElectriCities, vendors are available for generation, lighting and energy efficiency projects. ElectriCities is a service organization that represents NCEMPA, as well as cities, towns and universities that own their electric distribution systems. Through consolidation of these services, member cities save money on the cost of administering these functions themselves. Greenville Utilities is a member of this organization, along with more than 90 other members in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

Energy Surveys
Through a partnership with the NC State University Industrial Extension Office, GUC and ElectriCities offer Energy Surveys on boilers, compressed air systems, HVAC systems, lighting, chillers/cooling towers, steam traps and steam systems. GUC also has an in-house Energy Services Office that provides surveys upon request, as well as assistance with energy efficiency and water conservation issues. More information is available at our website, guc.com.

Load Profile Data
In partnership with Automated Energy and ElectriCities we provide online access to daily electricity usage and load profile (KW & kWh) data from revenue metering. Data is available in 15 minute intervals.

Liquefied Natural Gas
Greenville Utilities has applied the load management concept to natural gas, using liquefied natural gas during periods of high demand as a cost saving measure. In 1997, GUC became the first municipal utility in North Carolina to construct an LNG storage facility to meet peak demand. GUC’s LNG facility continues to reduce our dependence on one supplier for peak day volumes, reduce purchased gas costs, delay system enhancements and increase gas system reliability. Since 1997, the facility has helped to avoid $23 million in demand costs. We are extremely pleased with the operation of the facility and its low maintenance costs. Even though stringent regulations require many inspections and maintenance functions, the LNG plant continues to be a low-maintenance and low-cost facility to operate.

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Fueling Station
In April of 2016, we expanded our gas service to include a Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fueling station near the Industrial Park. Pitt County’s first public CNG fueling station brings a convenient, less expensive and environmentally friendly fueling option to area industries and businesses, as well as the public.

there are many more opportunities for industry with GUC. Our At Your Service brochure contains more information.

Find out more about our Key Accounts Team

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