Dear PEI Member:
I started work at
PEI in 1979. Two weeks into my new job in the oil industry, the Shah of Iran
was overthrown and the Ayatollah Khomeini came into power. He cut Iran’s oil
production, which reduced shipments of crude oil to the United States.
Gasoline prices soared, and the American economy plunged into a recession.
The threat of a gasoline shortage and rationing created
traffic jams at gas stations, much like it had in 1973-1974. Drivers
frequently faced around-the-block lines when they tried to fill up. Some
would go to stations before dawn or late at night, hoping to avoid the
Odd-even rationing was introduced. For example, if the
last digit on your license plate was even, you were only allowed to get gas
on even-numbered days. PEI members reported that some stations took to
posting flags—green if they had gas, yellow if rationing was in effect and
red if they were out of gas.
The maximum speed limit was cut to 55 miles per hour.
President Jimmy Carter described combating the energy crisis as the “moral
equivalent of war,” and many Americans—including me—feared that oil shocks
and shortages would be a recurring theme/nightmare.
It was also a rough time for PEI members. Retail
station construction stopped—nobody wanted to build a gasoline station if
they weren’t certain if or when they could get access to product. Commercial
and governmental customers wanted to put in their own storage to better
control supply and price but they had a difficult time finding reliable
petroleum supply sources. Gas clubs formed to avoid the odd-even rationing
dilemma but faced a public relations backlash from motorists “playing by the
Fast forward to 2014. Information from the U.S. Energy
Information Administration (EIA) provides compelling evidence that the
United States is on track to become a net exporter of gasoline—defined as
exporting more gasoline than it imports—for the first time since 1959. (Be
aware that this is just an increase in refined products. The U.S. is still a
colossal net importer of crude oil, in part because overall U.S. oil
production has sharply plunged from its peak in the 1960s, despite the surge
in shale oil production in the States.)
Fuel Supply: Then & Now
E15 Review Denied
Alt Fuels Program in VA
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Our refiners are now doing big business abroad, and
that’s one reason why overall exports have been ticking upward lately. There
are other reasons as well. In the United States—as with other mature
industrialized economies—liquid fuel demand has leveled off and is projected
to slowly decline. The combined effects of several factors have slowed or
even reversed the growth in liquid fuels use. These factors include
sustained high oil prices, efficiency standards for vehicles and equipment
together with high taxation of motor fuels, government mandates (i.e.,
ethanol), price-driven fuel switching toward non-oil fuels outside of
transportation, vehicle saturation, economic growth in Central and South
America that is pulling additional volumes south of the border, and
structural changes in factors such as demographics and consumer behavior.
The United States now has a more secure gasoline supply
than most of us can remember. The customers of PEI members have grown
accustomed to a steady flow of refined product and, thankfully, can make plans
for the future with confidence.
U.S. APPEALS COURT DENIES E15 REVIEW
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on
October 21 denied a review of EPA’s approval of 15 percent ethanol blends.
Specifically, the Court ruled that the petitioners (Engine Products Group
and American Petroleum Institute) lacked standing to bring suit on behalf of
their members who believed the label required by EPA about misfueling did
not go far enough to warn consumers about potential problems that might
PEI CONVENTION SURVEY
If you haven’t already, please participate in
the post-PEI Convention
survey. We rely on your feedback to continue to ensure that the convention
remains productive, successful and relevant to you and your company. The
Education and Convention Committee also relies on your input regarding
topics for future educational sessions.
VIRGINIA TO EXPAND ALTERNATIVE FUELS INFRASTRUCTURE
The state is expanding its Commonwealth Alternative Fuel Program, which
provides federal grants to help fund the purchase or conversion of vehicles
fueling with natural gas or propane autogas. The state’s goal is to deploy
at least 300 vehicles through this program by the end of the administration
in 2018. The state also plans to double its alternative-fuel fueling
infrastructure for state and public use to 800 stations, including electric
vehicle charging stations. Virginia currently has 400 alternative fuel
stations for biodiesel, natural gas, ethanol, electricity and hydrogen.
Governor Terry McAuliffe released the Virginia Energy Plan on October 16.
The advanced vehicle technology and alternative fuel portion of that plan
can be found
The Steel Tank Institute has written a new publication, SP131,
Standard for Inspection, Repair and Modification of Shop-Fabricated
Underground Tanks for Storage of Flammable and Combustible Liquids. The
document, written in response to requests from several state environmental
agencies, is available from the STI/SPFA Store at
Alfa-Tronics, Jobstown, New Jersey, has hired Fernando Ramos to lead
the company’s sump tightness testing and repair team. He can be reached at
Fuel management systems manufacturer. Banlaw Fuel Management
Solutions, 6000 East Idaho Street, #79, Elko, Nevada 89801, has applied for
manufacturer division membership. David Goodman is vice president of
business development for the firm, which was established in 2001. The
company manufactures fuel management systems and components. The equipment
is sold through distributors. Sponsored for PEI membership by Oscar Ramirez,
BolivarFL, Miramar, FL.
California document automation specialist. ProTechnology, 16 Orange
Blossom Circle, Ladera Ranch, California 92694, has applied for affiliate
division membership. Kevin Sincock is director of business development for
the group, which was established in 1996. The company offers products and
services that focus on document automation. Sponsored for PEI membership by
Ryan Rethmeier, WesternPmp, San Diego, CA.
Georgia investment firm. Clear Creek Private Investors LLC, 75
14th Street NE, Suite 2800, Atlanta, Georgia 30309, has applied
for affiliate division membership. George Pfeil is a partner in the firm,
which was established in 2011. CCPI invests private capital into
manufacturing, distribution and service businesses operating in the
industrial and commercial sectors. Sponsored for PEI membership by Chetna
Joshi, Patriot, Atlanta, GA.
Texas architectural and engineering firm. The Dimension Group, 10755
Sandhill Road, Dallas, Texas 75238, has applied for affiliate division
membership. Terry Hesseltine is director of fueling for the firm, which was
established in 1987. The company provides architectural, civil engineering
and MEP engineering services. Sponsored for PEI membership by Jeff Cain,
HarrisTX, Dallas, TX.
Alabama service company. Southern Petroleum Maintenance, LLC, 9069 US
Highway 231, Arab, Alabama 35016, has applied for service and construction
division membership. Scott Maze is president of the firm, which was
established in 2013. The company installs equipment used at fueling sites
and services all brands of dispensers. Sponsored for PEI membership by Bob
Kempf, APSIntl, Loveland, CO.
California soil remediation firm. CalClean, Inc., 1790 North Case
Street, Orange, California 92865, has applied for service and construction
division membership in PEI. Noel Shenoi is president of the company, which
was established in 1999. CalClean remediates soil. Sponsored for PEI
membership by Brad Hoffman, Tanknology, Austin, TX.
Puerto Rico service contractor. Pedro J. Esteves Inc., 200 Rafael
Cordero Avenue, Suite 140, PMB 140, Caguas, Puerto Rico 00725, has applied
for service and construction division membership. Pedro J. Esteves is
president of the firm, which was established in 2010. The company is a
general contractor in addition to providing electrical contracting, service
and repair of petroleum equipment. Sponsored for PEI membership by Jose A.
Rosado, T&TEnv, Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico.
ADMITTED TO PEI
Talleres Soto, S.A., Guatemala,
Arte Comercializadora de Nuevo
Laredo S.A. de C.V., Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico (dis)
Aereon, Louisville, KY (mfr)
Artisoft Laboratories, LLC, Ponce,
Puerto Rico (aff)
No Violation, Inc., Burlingame, CA (aff)
John Beaty, Thorp Fuel, LLC, Thorp, WA
Jamie Quinlan, Martin Resource
Management, Kilgore, TX (O&E)