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October 28, 2014 | Vol. 64, No. 21

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In This Issue

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 lines.

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 rules.”

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

New Alt Fuels Program in VA


In This Issue


PEI and Industry News »


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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.     

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 occur.

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.

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 here.

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 www.steeltank.com.
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 fernando@alfatronics.us.

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. www.banlaw.com 
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. www.protechinc.com    
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. www.clearcreekpi.com
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. www.dimensiongrp.com
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. www.calclean.com
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.


  • Talleres Soto, S.A., Guatemala, Guatemala (dis)
  • 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 (O&E)
  • Jamie Quinlan, Martin Resource Management, Kilgore, TX (O&E)


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© 2014
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.