|Dear PEI Member:
While attending the Plug-In 2011 Conference & Exhibition in Raleigh, North
Carolina, last month, we had the opportunity to listen to and chat with
scores of people representing electric utilities, smart grid vendors,
major automakers and electric car charger manufacturers. Organized by the
Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), the annual Plug-In conference―attracting
over 600 attendees and 250 exhibitor personnel―provides a good indication of
where this nascent industry may be heading.
Our takeaway from the four-day conference was this: Even in the midst of the
worst recession since the Great Depression, the trend to pure electric cars
and plug-in hybrids is growing stronger. While the market is not yet flooded
by any stretch of the imagination―only a smidgen over 6,000 Chevy Volts and
Nissan Leafs are on the road in the United States today―all of the major
automakers are accelerating their design, development and production. By
the end of next year, expect to see six to ten new models of electric
vehicles come on the market. At least ten manufacturers―from Eaton to GE to
Siemens―have listed plug-in charging units available for sale, with two
manufacturers in the process of developing wireless charging stations that
allow drivers to recharge by simply parking their cars over the charging point.
We don't have a clear image of the future of the
electric car after the early adopters and fast followers have made their
purchases. Nor do we have any insight on how the charging units will be
distributed, installed and serviced. It's still too early and so much
continues to depend on factors out of the automakers' direct control, like
the price of gasoline and the availability of the federal tax credit.
We are going to devote a generous portion of the
next PEI Journal (4th Quarter, available in October) to the electric
vehicle and the methods used to recharge it, from home to the office to
retail locations. We will use the TulsaLetter to make you aware of where the
market is going not only in terms of general industry trends but also
the specific markets being opened, like the Walgreens announcement shown
below. We'll explore together where the opportunities for PEI members might
be, and we'll stick with it until the image in the crystal ball becomes
GAO Study on E15 and Existing
APEA Publishes Third Edition of Petrol
Station Construction Manual
Study: Fires at U. S. Service Stations
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GAO ISSUES STUDY ON E15 AND EXISTING INFRASTRUCTURE
Biofuels: Challenges to the Transportation, Sale, and Use of
Intermediate Ethanol Blends is an excellent report issued by the
Government Accountability Office (GAO) that highlights, among other things,
barriers to selling intermediate (E15) blends of motor fuels.
that challenges due to regulations, technical issues regarding
compatibility and cost could slow the retail sale of intermediate ethanol
blends. Specifically, the report explains that:
- Federal and state regulations need to be met prior to the
introduction of intermediate blends. Federal fuel requirements that
affect the introduction of new fuels include fuel registration/health
effects testing and reformulated gasoline testing. These requirements have
not been completed for E15 but are in the process of being addressed. In
addition to federal regulations, many state regulations or statutes
contain references to specific industry standards for fuel published by a
recognized standards development organization, including ASTM
International and the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST).
These standards, however, are only relevant to E10, and neither
organization has published any standards related to the use of
intermediate ethanol blends up to E85. Therefore, before allowing
intermediate ethanol blends into commerce, the states that reference
existing ASTM International or NIST standards would have to either (1)
enact new statutes or regulations that no longer reference the existing
standards, or (2) wait for ASTM International or NIST to update their
standards related to intermediate ethanol blends. Either option could take
more than a year to implement, according to GAO.
- Compatibility of legacy equipment with intermediate blends is an
impediment to quickly introducing the product to the market. Federally
sponsored research―explained in prior TulsaLetters―indicates
that intermediate blends may degrade or damage some materials used in
existing underground storage tank (UST) systems and dispensing equipment,
potentially causing leaks. This creates a problem for gasoline retailers
who must comply with federal safety standards―specifically, OSHA―which do not
allow ethanol blends over E10 to be dispensed with existing equipment at
most retail fueling locations. The GAO report notes that OSHA is still
developing its position on the use of existing dispensing equipment with
intermediate blends. In addition, inadequate recordkeeping may make it
difficult for retailers with older stations to verify UST system
compatibility with intermediate ethanol blends, especially if the station
has changed hands several times since the equipment was purchased and
- Retailers may face significant costs and risks
in selling intermediate blends. Due to concerns over compatibility,
new storage and dispensing equipment may be needed to sell intermediate
blends at retail outlets. GAO reports that for some retailers the costs to upgrade their equipment
could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars. GAO
also references several industry representatives who raised concerns that
fuel retailers could expose themselves to lawsuits for negligence and
invalidate important business agreements that may reference those safety
requirements, such as UST insurance policies, state tank-fund policies and
business loan agreements.
The 50-page report is available at
Design, Construction, Modification, Maintenance and Decommissioning
of Filling Stations is the title of an excellent publication produced
jointly by the Association for Petroleum and Explosives Administration (APEA)
and the Service Station Panel of the Energy Institute (EI). This third edition
replaces the second edition published by APEA/EI in 2005. Although the
307-page book contains information largely based on experience from the
United Kingdom and makes frequent reference to legislation applicable to the
UK, the authors anticipate that the general principles will be applicable to
most regions of the world. For further information about this publication,
or to obtain a copy, visit either the APEA website,
www.apea.org.uk, or the EI publications
Fires at U.S. Service Stations provides data about the size of the
fire problem at gasoline and service stations from 2004 through 2008. The
was prepared by Ben Evarts of the Fire Analysis and Research Division of the
National Fire Protection Association. Statistic-filled, the report sorts
fires at service stations by year and incident type (vehicles, structures,
outside fires, outside trash and other fires). Each incident type is then
further broken out by item first ignited, area of origin, equipment
involved in ignition, factors contributing to ignition, heat source and
cause of ignition. Some of the findings include:
- U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 5,020 fires
at service stations per year during 2004-2008. These fires caused annual
averages of 2 civilian deaths, 48 civilian fire injuries and $20 million
in direct property damage.
- Structure fires accounted for 12 percent of total incidents but 59
percent of direct property damage.
- Vehicle fires accounted for 61 percent (3,050 per year) of all service
- The majority (74 percent) of vehicle fires at service stations began
in the engine area.
- Flammable liquid or gas spilled (4 percent) and improper fueling
technique (3 percent) seldom were identified as factors contributing to
MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS
Wildco Petroleum Equipment Inc. and Wildco Equipment Service Inc.
have agreed to merge their operations with Petroleum Equipment Service of
New Hampshire, LLC. Charles Desfosses will serve as president of the
combined firms, which will retain their names after the merger. Thomas Dion
and Paul Rousseau will be vice presidents. The combined firms will have
warehouse locations in Bloomfield, CT; Chelmsford, MA; and Manchester, NH.
The merger is expected to be completed by August 30.
The Texas Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association (TPCA)
has announced its merger with the Texas Grocery and Convenience Store
Association (TGCA). Beginning January 1, 2012, the combined
organizations will be renamed the Texas Food and Fuel Association (TFFA).
The new association will be led by Chris Newton, current TPCA president.
Joseph H. Lux, Jr., died July 11, 2011, at the age of 85. Joe began
his career with the Sier-Bath Co. in 1951. When that company was acquired by
Gilbarco in 1962, Lux became supervisor of sales and engineering. He
retired from Gilbarco Inc. as vice president of worldwide sales. He was
married to Helen K. Lux, who predeceased him. He is survived by his son,
Peter; a daughter, Catherine Lux; and two grandsons.
John P. Hartmann, principal with John Hartmann & Associates, Evanston,
Illinois, has retired. He is a past president of PEI and served as a
consultant to PEI in the development of three widely accepted recommended
practices published by the association. John served on three
technical committees of the National Fire Protection Association and was a
member of standards technical panels for Underwriters Laboratories
responsible for tanks, dispensers and most other categories of petroleum
equipment. He can be reached at 847-382-4010.
Dresser Wayne will now operate under the brand name Wayne and will go to
market with the tagline, "A GE Energy Business." GE acquired Dresser, Inc.,
including its Dresser Wayne business segment, in February 2011.
The Energy Department has provided a $105-million conditional loan
guarantee to help finanace the first commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol
plant in the country. The Iowa-based plant will be operated by
ELECTRIC VEHICLE NOTES
Walgreens has announced that it will install electric car chargers at
approximately 800 of its 7,733 stores across the United States by the end of
the year. As many as one-third of them may be Level 3 fast chargers. The
charging stations will be installed in Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles,
York City, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Texas.
Seventy electric vehicles will be added to the New York City
municipal fleet. The addition of new electric vehicles, to be used by city
departments ranging from fire to police to parks and environmental
protection, brings the city's total electric fleet to 430, the largest of
any city in the United States, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said.
Alabama compliance management firm. AET Compliance LLC, 3124 West Main
Street, Suite 10, Dothan, Alabama 36305, has applied for affiliate division
membership. Phil Holland is CFO for the firm, which was established in 2001.
The company offers compliance management services throughout the
southeastern United States. Sponsored for PEI membership by Marshall T.
Mott-Smith, MottSmith, Tallahassee, FL.
ADMITTED TO PEI
- LDJ Manufacturing, dba Thunder Creek Equipment, Pella, IA (mfr)
- Bob Doyle, Hess Corporation, Woodbridge, NJ (O&E)
- Jason Franke, Town Pump, Butte, MT (O&E)
- Tom Healey, Nouria Energy Corporation, Worcester, MA (O&E)
- Patrick Henry, Hess Corporation, Woodbridge, NJ (O&E)
- Jeff Sexten, Con-Way Transportation, Ann Arbor, MI (O&E)
- Tim Watkins, Tevis Oil, Westminster, MD (O&E)