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August 30, 2018 | Vol. 68, No. 17

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In This Issue

Dear PEI Member:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires that underground storage tank (UST) owners and operators demonstrate the ability to pay for cleanup or damage to third parties in the event of a release. Thirty-six states help their owners and operators meet these financial responsibility requirements, in whole or in part, through financial assurance funds.

Each year, the Association of State and Territorial Solid Waste Management Officials (ASTSWMO), in cooperation with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation, conducts a survey of these state financial assurance programs. The just-completed 2017 ASTSWMO survey contains downloadable tables summarizing participating states’ characteristics, funding mechanisms, activities and cost-control measures. Thirty-two of the 36 states with funds participated in the ASTSWMO survey.  

In recent years, some jurisdictions have begun to eliminate or phase out their state programs, moving instead toward private insurance as the financial responsibility vehicle for their owners and operators. However, the most recent ASTSWMO survey shows that the states choosing to continue their funds have made great progress in fortifying their programs during the past five years.

  2012 2017
Annual revenue $1.3B $1.62B
Current fund balance $1.15B $2.02B
Total number of sites covered 254,112 191,457
Total number of tanks covered 996,749 242,062
Outstanding claims $252.59M $246.37M
States in which claims exceed fund balance 7 2
Total claims paid $19.78B $22.34B
Average claim paid $124,488 $147,628


State Tank Fund Survey

Isobutanol Webinar for PEI Members

E15 Rebranding Underway

EPA Regulatory Update at PEI Convention

Scott Boorse Joins PEI Staff





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One of the most interesting tables in the ASTSWMO survey summarizes the various measures states have undertaken to increase the solvency and effectiveness of their funds. Among the more creative steps are:

  • Removal of aboveground storage tanks (ASTs) from the program;

  • Incentives to encourage early testing of spill buckets and secondary containment;

  • Grant programs for equipment upgrades to prevent releases;

  • Low-interest loans to owners and operators;

  • New revenue sources, including increased participation fees and additional state funds;

  • Competitive bidding and pre-approval of remediation costs;

  • Twice-a-year physical inspection of tanks.

The nation’s financial assurance programs may be fewer in number and narrower in scope than in the past, but those that remain are getting stronger.

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) will present a free one-hour webinar for PEI members on isobutanol, the emerging vehicle fuel currently produced by Butamax and Gevo. (See June 29, 2018 TL.)

In “Isobutanol: A New Fuel in Commerce,” Kristi Moriarty, senior engineer at NREL, and Mike Kass, senior research engineer at ORNL, will provide background on isobutanol and results of recent isobutanol refueling equipment compatibility tests. The presenters will welcome feedback from PEI members.

The webinar will be held Thursday, Sept. 13 at 2 p.m. EDT/1 p.m. CDT. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. You can register here.

A nationwide survey by CompareCards by LendingTree suggests U.S. fuel purchasers are changing how they pay for gas because of concerns about skimming. Among the survey’s key findings:

  • 15 percent of respondents have been a victim of skimming at the pump.

  • 43 percent said skimming fears have caused them to change how they pay for gas.

  • Women are slightly more likely than men to have adjusted their paying practices.

Of those who changed the way they pay for fuel, 45 percent use debit cards less and credit cards more, 39 percent pay inside the station more often, and 16 percent are more likely to use cash.

E15 advocates may be moving toward a new strategy for increasing the sale of this higher ethanol blend: rebranding the fuel as Unleaded88.

As quoted in Ethanol Producer magazine, Growth Energy Vice President of Marketing Mike O’Brien said tests show E15 sales increasing 16 percent when the fuel is rebranded as Unleaded88.

According to O’Brien, some 1,400 stores selling E15 through Growth Energy’s Prime the Pump program will move to the Unleaded88 brand this fall, with as many as 1,400 more to follow later.

Many of the testing and inspection requirements in the 2015 federal UST regulations take effect Oct. 13—a mere three days after the end of this year’s PEI Convention at the NACS Show. Though the date looms near, many compliance questions still percolate.

The “EPA Regulatory Update” session at the PEI Convention, Monday, Oct. 8, at 9:15 a.m., offers the chance to meet the regulatory experts who can turn confusion into clarity. Carolyn Hoskinson, director of the EPA Office of Underground Storage Tanks (OUST), and other OUST representatives will answer questions and provide updates on the nuances and status of the regulatory deadline.

The EPA OUST team also will be in the PEI 1-on-1 Pavilion at 3 p.m. that day to answer attendees’ follow-up inquiries. Make your list and arrive ready for answers.   

Money-saving advance registration rates for the PEI Convention are still available. If you haven’t already registered for the PEI Convention at the NACS Show, click here.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) will hold five listening sessions Sept. 7-24 to seek input on the overtime pay exemptions for executive, administrative and professional employees in the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.

Through the listening sessions, DOL hopes to hear stakeholder views on possible revisions to the law, including raising the salary level at which the overtime exemptions would apply. Dates and locations, as well as the specific questions on which DOL is seeking input, are on the DOL website.

PEI named Scott Boorse the association’s new director of technical programs and industry affairs. A respected retail fueling, construction and operations expert, Boorse was with the 800-store convenience chain, Wawa, for the past 21 years.

Boorse has been an active PEI volunteer, including service on the PEI Education & Convention Committee and three committees responsible for PEI recommended practices: RP300 (Installation and Testing of Vapor Recovery Systems); RP900 (UST Inspection and Maintenance); and RP1200 (Testing and Verification of Spill, Overfill, Leak Detection and Secondary Containment Equipment).

Read the full press release here.

Art Benjamin,
87, died July 14. Benjamin was the owner of PSI Equipment Sales Inc. for 49 years, in the petroleum equipment industry for 60 years and a PEI member for more than 40 years. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Joan Benjamin, daughter Susan Regier, five grandchildren, eight great grandchildren and three great great grandchildren.

Clean Fuels National was named to the 2018 Inc. 5000 list. Published annually by Inc. magazine, the Inc. 5000 ranks the fastest-growing, privately held companies in the U.S. Clean Fuels National ranked 3,927 this year.

“Wal Mart de Mexico (WALMEX.MX), Mexico’s biggest retailer,
said on Thursday that it will open fuel stations alongside its domestic stores, joining other private companies that are now competing with Pemex, the country’s former monopoly fuel seller.”—erpecnews.com, Aug. 20, 2018
“Mazda Motor Corporation has developed a gasoline engine capable of providing the efficiencies of a diesel engine, while producing less emissions. … Mazda’s innovation could bring about a renaissance of high-efficiency, low-cost ICE vehicles to compete with EVs, potentially slowing the need for mass conversion to electric vehicles.”—FuelsNews,  Aug. 17, 2018
“Consumers have seen the most expensive summer at the pump since 2014 with an average of $2.73 per gallon thus far, according to GasBuddy… . The average gas price over Labor Day weekend is expected to be $2.84 per gallon, a 20 cent increase from Labor Day 2017.”—GasBuddy, Aug. 18, 2018

Virginia fuel management system provider.
Link2pump, 4908 Dominion Blvd., Suite F, Glen Allen, VA 23060, has applied for Affiliate Division membership. Bernardo Nascimento is COO for the company, which was established in 2017. Link2pump offers a fuel management system for commercial fleets and fuel distributors. Sponsored for PEI membership by Meredith Coleman, Jones & Frank, Morrisville, North Carolina.

Mississippi service company. Delta Petroleum Service Inc., 651 E. Lee St., Sardis, MS 38666, has applied for Service and Construction Division membership. Colby Harper is co-owner of the firm, which was established in 2016. Delta Petroleum Service Inc. provides service, installation, environmental compliance monitoring, and fuel filtration and polishing services. Sponsored for PEI membership by Dawn Brooks, Purpora Engineering LLC, Saukville, Wisconsin.

Missouri distributor. Ground-Up Fleet Solutions, 3815 Bowen St., Saint Louis, MO 63116, has applied for Distributor Division membership. Anthony Rivera is owner of the firm, which was established in 2017. Ground-Up Fleet Solutions is a fleet industry consultant and distributor of lube, fuel and DEF storage dispensing and management equipment. Sponsored for PEI membership by Mark Scudder, Meco of Atlanta Inc., Atlanta.


  • Venture Lighting International, Twinsburg, Ohio (Affiliate)

  • Beebe Pump & Tank Inc., Otter Lake, Michigan (Service and Construction)

  • Innovative Corrosion Control Inc. / Clean Earth Solutions, New Braunfels, Texas (Service and Construction)

  • Al Shamal Steel Construction & Trading Co. W.L.L., Salwa Industrial Area, Doha, Qatar (Service and Construction)


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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. Richard C. Long, Editor. Opinions expressed are the opinions of the Editor. Basic circulation confined to PEI members.