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May 14, 2012 | Vol. 62, No. 11

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In This Issue
Dear PEI Member:

On May 9, 2012, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determined that the use of onboard refueling vapor recovery (ORVR) for capturing gasoline vapor during refueling of gasoline-powered vehicles is in widespread use throughout the highway motor vehicle fleet. As a result of this determination, EPA is waiving the requirement that current and future ozone nonattainment areas classified Serious, Severe or Extreme must implement Stage II vapor recovery systems on gasoline pumps.

This action by EPA means states that are implementing mandatory Stage II programs under Section 182(b)(3) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) may submit revisions to their State Implementation Plans (SIPs) seeking EPA's approval for gasoline service stations to remove their Stage II control equipment. EPA says its guidance for states on calculating the emission impacts of removing this equipment is "forthcoming."

EPA's Stage II vapor recovery program was required in approximately 40 areas in 19 states and the District of Columbia, including ozone nonattainment areas and in the ozone transport region (OTR). Approximately 30,600 gasoline dispensing facilities could potentially be affected. California, which plans to keep its Stage II vapor recovery program in place, is not included in these totals.

The OTR includes 12 northeastern states and the District of Columbia. EPA pointed out in the final rule that section 184(b)(2) of the CAA separately requires states in the OTR to adopt and implement control measures that are capable of achieving emissions reductions comparable to those achievable by Stage II systems. EPA commented that it is updating its guidance to OTR states to help them meet the independent "comparable measures" requirement, in light of its final ORVR widespread use determination.

Other important aspects of this rule:

  • The final rule does not require states to remove their Stage II systems. It allows states to retain their Stage II requirements if so desired.
  • The EPA's Stage I air toxics rule limits emissions of hazardous air pollutants from gasoline distribution terminals nationwide. The Stage I requirements remain in effect.
  • Numerous commenters on the proposed rule urged EPA to adopt provisions in the final rule that would exempt new gasoline dispensing facilities from installing Stage II. EPA pointed out that under the CAA, states adopt state-specific or area-specific rules, which are then submitted to EPA for approval into the SIP. These rules are independently enforceable under state law and EPA cannot unilaterally change legally-adopted state statutes or rules or otherwise revise an SIP, except in very limited circumstances. As a result, only the states―not EPA―can change or eliminate SIP-approved state rules that set forth the compliance dates for newly constructed gasoline dispensing facilities.
  • The Administrator's finding that the use of ORVR is in widespread use throughout the highway motor vehicle fleet will be effective upon publication in the Federal Register, which is expected within a week.

EPA Issues Final Rule on Phasing Out Stage II Vapor Recovery

Recommended Practice on Testing Electrical Continuity (RP400) Revised

10,000 Alternative Fuel Stations in U.S.

In This Issue


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The next step in the process is for the states to remove the Stage II vapor recovery requirement from their regulations and submit revised SIPs to EPA. Chances are good this process will begin in many nonattainment areas soon after EPA issues its guidance. When that actually will occur depends on actions by the individual states. In the meantime, you should familiarize yourself with the Stage II decommissioning provisions of Recommended Practices for Installation and Testing of Vapor-Recovery Systems at Vehicle-Fueling Sites (PEI/RP300-09). Air quality control administrators have recently shown a great deal of interest in incorporating the decommissioning procedures contained in this document in their revised rules.

A rash of refueling fires in 2000 and 2001 caused end-user customers and their service/testing contractors to become increasingly interested in procedures used to test electrical continuity in dispenser hose assemblies. At that time, there were no procedures that were universally accepted by contractors, customers, manufacturers and regulators. PEI formed a committee of station owners, regulators and service contractors who responded to the need by writing the Recommended Procedure for Testing Electrical Continuity for Fuel-Dispensing Hanging Hardware (PEI/RP400), which was published for the first time in 2002.

PEI solicited comments to PEI/RP400 earlier this year. Members of the PEI Electrical Continuity Testing Committee reviewed those public comments and made a few changesprimarily editorial―to PEI/RP400. The 2012 edition of Recommended Procedure for Testing Electrical Continuity for Fuel-Dispensing Hanging Hardware is available for purchase at    

Members of the PEI Electrical Continuity Testing Committee who wrote the document include:

  • Blair D. Shwedo, SouthEastern Petroleum Systems, Inc., Charlotte, NC (chair)
  • Bruce Bragg, Catlow Inc., Tipp City, OH
  • Clark Conklin, Nebraska State Fire Marshal, Lincoln, NE
  • Mike Conner, QuikTrip Corporation, Tulsa, OK
  • Brent Erekson, Cochise Contractors, Inc., Phoenix, AZ
  • Cathy Kwiatkowski, Oil Equipment Company, Inc., Madison, WI
  • Sheldon Schall, Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services, Madison, WI
  • Mark Wilson, Sheetz, Inc., Claysburg, PA

The E15 liability measure introduced recently by Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) and supported by the ethanol and oil industry alike ran into trouble at a hearing last month. Top Democrats and state officials said the bill would undermine contamination lawsuits resulting from the use of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) and that the language needs to be changed to narrow the types of fuels the measure would cover without interfering with pending court cases. Shimkus indicated that he is willing to amend some of the bill's MTBE provisions, but it is unclear if that will satisfy the bill's critics. Meanwhile, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) is said to be developing legislation as an alternative to the Shimkus bill that would narrow liability protection to refiners and fuel marketers who sell and produce E15. Companion legislation to the Skimkus bill introduced March 30 by Senators John Hoeven (R-ND) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) is on hold pending House action, sources say.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that there are currently nearly 10,000 alternative fuel stations in use across the lower 48 states, with another 431 planned. The alternative fuels included in the EIA estimate are hydrogen, liquefied natural gas (LNG), biodiesel, compressed natural gas (CNG), higher ethanol-gasoline blends (E85), propane and electricity. The total includes both private stations and those open to the public. Here is how the number of stations break down as of March 27, 2012, according to the U.S. Department of Energy's Alternative Fuels & Advanced Vehicles Data Center.

Charging electric vehicles is cheaper
and produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions than most gasoline-powered cars, according to a Union of Concerned Scientists report released April 16. The report, State of Charge: Electric Vehicles' Global Warming Emissions and Fuel-Cost Savings Across the United States, accounted for greenhouse gas emissions from extracting, processing and transporting fuels as well as from electricity generation.
EPA issued a proposed finding earlier this year stating that palm oil biofuels do not meet the 20 percent lifecycle greenhouse gas reductions necessary to qualify as renewable fuels under the Clean Air Act. Biodiesel produced from palm oil has 17 percent lower life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions than comparable petroleum fuels, EPA found. Environmental and scientific groups say EPA's analysis underestimates the greenhouse gas emissions from palm oil production, while many palm oil groups and companies say EPA overestimated emissions from palm oil production in its analysis.

. Owners of sites with leaking underground storage tanks in Michigan will have greater leeway to devise and implement cleanup plans, under legislation (S.B. 528-533; P.A. 108-113) signed May 1 by Governor Rick Snyder. The legislation amends the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act by deleting requirements that the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) establish a cleanup classification system and audit all aspects of a site's cleanup plan. Instead, the property owner or other responsible party will submit a final assessment and closure report to DEQ, which will have 90 days to decide whether to audit the cleanup.

Southern Pump & Tank Company (SPATCO), headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, has acquired Palmetto Oil Equipment Company, based in Columbia, South Carolina. The combined companies will operate under the SPATCO name. Current Palmetto president Robin Neal, a graduate of Clemson University with more than 30 years of industry experience, will remain with the company as a senior account executive in South Carolina.

RDM Industrial Electronics
, Nebo, North Carolina, has selected Porter Associates, Inc., West Chester, Pennsylvania, as its 2011 Rep of the Year. Porter Associates covers the Northeast territory for RDM.
Cumberland Farms Inc. is divesting 16 convenience stores selling gasoline throughout the Northeast. Cumberland Farms currently operates 589 convenience stores.

California petroleum equipment contractor. Ursa Engineering Inc., 3963 Eastside Road, Redding, California 96001, has applied for service and construction division membership. Kevin Post is president of the firm, which was established in 1996. The company installs and maintains tanks, piping and other petroleum equipment. Sponsored for PEI membership by Ann Thomas, PtrMktgEqp, Placentia, CA.
EFS West, 28472 Constellation Road, Valencia, California 91355, has applied for service and construction division membership. Brainy Singh is the primary contact for the company, which was established in 2003. The company is a general contractor involved in the construction of CNG/LNG fueling stations. Sponsored for PEI membership by Ann Thomas, PtrMktgEqp, Placentia, CA. 


  • Anco International Inc., San Bernardino, CA (mfr)
  • JohnDow Industries, Barberton, OH (mfr)
  • Ecolab, St. Paul, MN (aff)
  • Wenzhou Blue Sky Electronic, Wenzhou, China (aff)
  • Platt Rogers, Centennial, CO (S&C)
  • H&E Group of Services, Fenton, MO (S&C)
  • Pump Pipe & Tank Service, Phoenix, OR (S&C)
  • T & T Environmental Solutions LLC, Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico (S&C)


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Petroleum Equipment Institute
P. O. Box 2380
Tulsa, OK 74101-2380

The TulsaLetter (ISSN 0193-9467) is published two or three times each month by the Petroleum Equipment Institute. Robert N. Renkes, Executive Vice President, Editor. Opinions expressed are the opinions of the Editor. Basic circulation confined to PEI members.