ULSD supply expected to meet national demand
Oct 11, 2006 11:40 AM
The supply of ultra low sulfur diesel will meet demand across the nation as the October 15 deadline goes into effect for the fuel sold at retail stations, according to information from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Insuring that supply is met downstream falls to tank truck carriers that transport ULSD from terminals to retail outlets. John Conley, president of the National Tank Truck Carriers (NTTC), said trucking companies are determining whether to use dedicated trailers to haul ULSD in order to maintain the 15 parts per million maximum sulfur content. "But in the final analysis, it will be up to the shipper requirements," Conley added.
Meanwhile NTTC is working on a ULSD quality assurance plan that is expected to be in place on the association's Web site, tanktruck.org, by the October 15 deadline.
According to EPA information, the ULSD fuel price is likely to be three to five cents more than the previous cost of diesel as a result of the industry requirements to meet the mandated 15 ppm maximum sulfur content. Refiners and fuel importers were required to start producing ULSD by June 1, 2006. Current production is at 2.4 million barrels per day. Only ULSD fuel will be allowed for highway and virtually all off-road vehicles by 2010, and by 2014, all highway non-road, locomotive, and marine diesel fuel will be ULSD.
Margo Oge, an EPA spokesman, said the agency anticipates as a result of its data that 90 percent of the ULSD delivered to retail outlets will meet the 15 ppm standard, 10 percent more than the 80 percent required by the rule.
Red Cavaney, American Petroleum Institute (API) president, said in a news release that $8 billion has been invested by the refining industry to meet the mandates. “API member-companies are justifiably proud of this achievement. This effort has been bolstered by our industry’s close-working relationship with EPA and vehicle technology advances by automakers.”
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