Business Briefs

Apr. 18, 2013 @ 07:28 PM

PSNC files for rate increase

DURHAM – PSNC Energy has filed a request for a cost-of-gas-related rate increase with the N.C. Utilities Commission.

If approved, the company’s summer residential rate for natural gas would increase from 92 cents per therm (or 100 cubic feet of natural gas) to $1 on May 1, according to an email from Angie Townsend, a spokeswoman for the company.

Currently, residential customers are still paying the winter energy rate of $1.02 per therm. On May 1, the rate will convert to the lower summer energy charge.

If approved by the commission, the average increase to a customers’ bill would be about $1 per month based on the average natural gas consumption for 16 terms per month during the non-heating season, Townsend said.

PSNC Energy does not earn a profit on the cost of gas component of its natural gas rates, she said in the email. Any adjustment to the cost of gas component is passed directly to customers in accordance with state regulations.

Townsend said the company has about 500,000 customers in the state.


Syngenta first-quarter sales up 6 percent

BASEL, Switzerland – Syngenta reported Thursday that its first-quarter sales increased 6 percent to $4.6 billion.

Its sales in North America were up 6 percent to $1.3 billion. In a news release, the company said North America saw strong crop-protection sales growth of 14 percent despite a prolonged winter.

“Business momentum was sustained in the first quarter of 2013 despite adverse weather in March delaying northern hemisphere plantings,” said Mike Mack, company CEO, in the release. Farmer sentiment remains strong and we will continue to drive innovative offers through a commercial organization which is now fully integrated in all territories.”

Steven Goldsmith, a company spokesman, said that the company has about 400 employees in the Research Triangle Park, and about 1,100 total in North Carolina. A new crop laboratory and greenhouse opened this quarter in the RTP.

“Plants are growing there now, and we’re very excited at the early performance of the new growth environments,” he said in an email.