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Valero Energy Corporation Message Board

  • bluecheese4u bluecheese4u Sep 3, 2013 1:51 AM Flag

    Gas Stations Claim Oil Companies Block E15, FTC To Investigate

    Gas Stations Claim Oil Companies Block E15, FTC To Investigate

    By John Voelcker John Voelcker
    878 views Sep 1, 2013 33 Comments

    The idea is simple: Replace refined hydrocarbons yanked deep out of the earth with vehicle fuel derived from crops.

    The ongoing politics of ethanol remain anything but simple.

    The latest salvo sally in the ethanol wars was fired by two U.S. senators from agricultural states, Amy Klobuchar [D-MN] and Chuck Grassley [R-IA].

    They requested that the Federal Trade Commission look into "reports of oil companies pressing independent gas stations to sell premium gasoline in addition to regular gasoline," which they say they've heard from constituents.

    The story was reported by The Wall Street Journal.

    Premium precludes ethanol

    Most gasoline stations currently have only two tanks, and in order to sell E15--or gasoline with 15 percent ethanol in it--one of those tanks must be used for ethanol, the other for gasoline.

    Then the stations will install new "blender pumps" that can adjust the delivered mixture among E10, which can be used in all cars built since 1990, and E15.

    But if they're required to sell premium gasoline in addition to regular, there will be no place for the ethanol to go.

    Billions of gallons by 2022

    And that would hurt the domestic industry, which produces all its ethanol refined from corn--the least efficient method for refining the alcohol fuel.

    It would also impede U.S. fuel refiners' ability to meet the increasingly steep mandates from Congress that specifies how much renewable fuel must be used in vehicle fuel.

    The U.S. is required to use 36 billion gallons of ethanol and other renewable fuels by 2022, under the terms of the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act passed by Congress in 2007.

    Contention remains

    Most gas stations are in no hurry to install the new and expensive blender pumps that can switch between E10 and E15.

    Today, fewer than 100 stations in the country of

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