The 2018 PEI Convention in Las Vegas concluded Oct. 10 after four full days of nonstop networking, exceptional trade show exhibits and informative education sessions. With 1,766 registrants, paid attendance exceeded the 2017 Chicago convention by 9 percent and PEI's 2015 Las Vegas convention by 8 percent. Here are a few highlights.
Delegates at the Oct. 9 membership meeting elected Charlie Burns, president of the Oscar W. Larson Co., Clarkston, Michigan, the 69th president of PEI, effective Jan. 1. In one of his first acts as president, Burns will make more than 200 committee appointments during a Nov. 1 visit to PEI headquarters in Tulsa, Oklahoma. If you are interested in being considered, please email your name and area of interest to PEI at email@example.com.
Bill Mascott, president of Mascott Equipment Co. in Portland, Oregon, was elected to a one-year term as PEI vice president, effective Jan. 1. The PEI Board of Directors also named Steve Dixon, president of P.B. Hoidale Co., Wichita, Kansas, PEI treasurer, effective immediately.
Seven individuals elected as directors for PEI's even-numbered districts and the Affiliate division were installed into office for two-year terms: Wayne Henderson of Gas Station Supply, Lynchburg, Virginia, (District 2); Tom Fassas of PetroTowery Inc., Richmond, Kentucky (District 4); Casey Kuppart of Mid-South Steel Products Inc., Cape Girardeau, Missouri (District 6); John Keller of Petroleum Solutions Inc., San Antonio, Texas (District 8); James Ayers of Central Illinois Mfg. Co., Bement, Illinois (District 10); Paola Bravo of S. Bravo Co., Commerce, California (District 12); and Liz Concannon of Petroleum Card Services, Minden, Nevada (Affiliate Division).
PEI Executive Vice President Rick Long's annual State of the Industry presentation during the membership meeting included insights on where the industry is and where it's headed. A video of this 25-minute address is available on PEI's YouTube channel. Among key findings are:
The portion of distributors' and service and construction members' business attributable to retail fueling declined from 56 percent to 52 percent in 2018.
On a scale of 1 to 10, distributors and service contractors rated 2018 a 7.45, up from 7.20 in 2017. On the same scale, manufacturers' satisfaction rose from 6.87 to 7.49.
More than 66 percent of distributors and contractors and nearly 60 percent of manufacturers plan to increase their workforce in 2019.
Although only 3.5 percent of distributors and contractors are installing or servicing EV charging stations, another 15.8 percent are actively making plans to do so and 52.6 percent are evaluating whether they want to get into that work.
Distributors and contractors expect traditional pay-at-the-pump credit card transactions to decline from 75 percent to 56 percent during the next five years as contactless mobile payment and in-dash payment apps gain ground.
Well-attended educational sessions covered key industry and business topics, including safety, fuel quality, corrosion, federal regulatory requirements, new UL standards, health care, electric vehicles (EVs), leadership and the economy. For the second year, nearly 100 Latin American members enjoyed a special education track conducted entirely in Spanish. Slides for many of the sessions may be downloaded here.
On behalf of the board of directors and the PEI staff, thanks to all of you who attended, exhibited and helped at this year's convention. If you were a registered attendee, please complete the short, post-convention survey you'll receive within the next few days. Your feedback will help PEI's Education & Convention Committee better plan the 2019 PEI Convention, Oct. 1-4, in Atlanta.
EPA BEGINS RULEMAKING TO ALLOW YEAR-ROUND E15 SALES
On Oct. 9, President Trump directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to begin a rulemaking to allow year-round, nationwide sales of E15.
In warm temperatures, highly volatile fuels evaporate rapidly and increase ground-level ozone. To reduce this effect, the Clean Air Act restricts summertime sales of highly volatile fuels, as measured by Reid vapor pressure (RVP). In most jurisdictions, the allowable summer RVP for non-flex fuel vehicles is 9 psi. Because E15 has an RVP closer to 10 psi, it cannot be sold legally for non-flex fuel vehicles during summer.
The requested rulemaking will grant E15 a summertime RVP waiver similar to that allowed for E10. Although the president's directive does not bind the EPA to a timeline, senators briefed by the White House reported that the intent is to have the new rule in place by summer 2019.
EPA ISSUES PIPE DOPE GUIDANCE
The EPA recently published guidance on the compatibility of pipe dope with ethanol blends greater than 10 percent. The guidance is presented in the form of three Q&As in the Technical Compendium accompanying the 2015 federal underground storage tank (UST) regulations. Here's a quick summary.
Must UST owners and operators demonstrate the compatibility of pipe dope in UST systems storing ethanol blends greater than 10 percent? No. Pipe dope is not included in the 2015 list of UST components for which compatibility must be demonstrated.
Must pipe dope be compatible with higher ethanol blends if used as part of a system storing such fuel? Yes. Both the 1988 and 2015 federal UST regulations require all components in a UST system to be compatible with the substance stored.
Is pipe dope typically compatible with ethanol blends greater than E10? The EPA believes that pipe dope used before 2007 probably is incompatible with higher level ethanol blends. In addition, many UST systems installed since 2007 used less expensive pipe dope compatible only with E10. Accordingly, an owner or operator looking to store ethanol blends greater than 10 percent in a system not specifically installed for that purpose will presumably need to modify each threaded connection point where pipe dope seals the threads. The EPA also acknowledged that in some systems these joints may be buried and accessible only by excavation.
The complete pipe dope guidance may be found here.
PROPOSAL TO INCREASE GENERATOR FUEL QUALITY TESTING DENIED
On Sept. 7, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) committee responsible for NFPA 110: Standard for Emergency and Standby Power Systems gave preliminary approval to a tentative interim amendment (TIA) to increase emergency generator diesel fuel quality testing requirements. NFPA 110 currently requires that the fuel be tested for degradation at least annually. The TIA sought to require testing no less than twice annually with a maximum of 6 months between testing. (See Oct. 2, 2018 TL)
Following a public comment period, the committee on Oct. 5 reversed its preliminary approval and denied the requested increase in the fuel quality testing requirements.
Is this the end of the matter? Not quite. Last week, the Electrical Generating Systems Association (EGSA) the party that proposed the TIA filed an appeal of the NFPA committee's denial. The committee will review the EGSA appeal before making a final decision.
STATE REGULATORY NEWS Arizona. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality expanded two financial assistance programs for UST owners and operators engaged in corrective actions. The UST Preapproval Program will reimburse up to $500,000 for costs incurred to correct releases reported between July 1, 2006 and Dec. 31, 2015. The Time-Barred Claims Program offers reimbursement for corrective actions related to releases that predated the state's financial responsibility requirements. California. The state's
requirements for periodic testing of overfill prevention devices by qualified UST service technicians took effect Oct. 1. North Carolina. In a
letter to the North Carolina Petroleum and Convenience Marketers, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality agreed to extend the state's Oct. 13, 2018 sump and overfill prevention compliance deadline for owners and operators who made good faith, but unsuccessful, efforts to comply. If found to be in violation, these owners and operators will have 12 more months or until June 1, 2020, whichever comes first, to correct the violation.
DEATHS Harold "Ken" Wilcox, 76, died Oct. 14, 2018, in Lee's Summit, Missouri. Wilcox founded Ken Wilcox Associates in 1990 and led the company until his retirement in 2016. Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Kathy; son, Craig, and his wife Precious; daughter-in-law, Stephanie Russell; two grandchildren, Skylar and Asher; and siblings, Ron Wilcox and his wife Barbara, Clay Wilcox and his wife Janet, and Carolyn Dickson and her husband Jim.
MEMBER NEWS Gilbarco Veeder-Root made a minority investment in Tritium, a privately held company specializing in the design and manufacture of DC fast charging solutions for EVs. Established in 2001, Tritium has installations in 26 countries. Growth Energy launched a consumer website, www.unl88.com, to reposition E15 under the name Unleaded 88. Jones & Frank announced that John Sauers has returned to the company as president of ANS Sales. Sauers was president and CEO of ANS at the time of its July 2016 acquisition by Jones & Frank and remained with the company until November 2017. Morrison Bros. Co. named Will Holman western regional sales manager. Before joining Morrison Bros., Holman worked as a service technician and service manager for an Oregon-based service and construction company. Petroleum Containment Inc. hired Rick Rodriguez as national sales manager. Rodriguez has more than 25 years of industry experience working for manufacturers and end users. Titan Cloud Software entered a partnership with M33 Growth to help accelerate the expansion of Titan's solutions for fuel retailers, fleet operators, environmental firms, service providers, distributors and manufacturers. Washworld Inc. recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. The company, which began by manufacturing parts for aftermarket use and refurbishing used equipment, today manufactures complete vehicle wash systems.
BRIEFLY NOTED General Motors Co., which for decades sparred with California officials over emissions standards, is now teaming up with the state to tout electric vehicles.Bloomberg Environment Chevron Products Co., a division of Chevron U.S.A. Inc., is working with Honda Innovations' Honda Developer Studio on a connected-car digital experience with in-vehicle payment. The two companies will collaborate on technology to enable drivers to pay for fuel and make convenience store purchases from their vehicle .Convenience Store Decisions, Oct. 3, 2018 Casey's General Store is looking to expand its E15 fuel offering to more than 500 convenience stores over the next few years. In March 2017, Casey's said it would be offering E15 fuel at 17 select locations across the Midwest in states including Illinois, Iowa and Kansas.Convenience Store News, Oct. 12, 2018 Cumberland Farms, a Massachusetts-based convenience store chain, will begin for
the first time selling E15 at more than 120 of its stores, ethanol industry group Growth Energy said Tuesday.Oil Express Alert, Oct. 16, 2018
MEMBERSHIP APPLICATIONS Texas environmental company. Innovac Environmental LLC, 231 Land Grant Lane, Baird, TX 79504, has applied for Affiliate division membership. Daniel Smedley is CEO of the firm, which was established in 2010. Innovac Environmental LLC specializes in groundwater remediation. Sponsored for PEI membership by Paul Muthig, Muthig Environmental Inc., Columbia, South Carolina.
Texas construction company. GN Services Inc., Suite 503, 4750 FM 2920, Spring, TX 77388, has applied for Service and Construction division membership. Jamie Noack is operations manager for the company, which was established in 2007. GN Services Inc. is an authorized service contractor for Gilbarco, Wayne, Verifone, Veeder-Root and Franklin Fueling Systems. Sponsored for PEI membership by Lydia Cowie, White Tucker Co., Houston.
Florida distributor. Novak Technologies LLC, Suite 212, 2555 NW 102 Ave., Doral, FL 33172, has applied for Distributor division membership. Carolina Garcia Lizarraga is vice president of the firm, which was established in 2013. Novak Technologies LLC sells equipment and accessories for gas stations and refineries. Sponsored for PEI membership by Bob Chase, Bennett Pump Co., Norton Shores, Michigan. www.novak-technologies.com
Indian manufacturer. Eastern Automotive Machine Tools Pvt. Ltd., 1243, M.I.E. Part-B
Bahadurgarh, Haryana 124507, India, has applied for Manufacturer division membership. Sanchit Jolly is business development manager for the company, which was established in 1986. Eastern Automotive Machine Tools manufactures positive displacement flow meters, fuel transfer rotary gear pumps and mobile fuel dispensing equipment. The products are sold through distributors. Sponsored for PEI membership by Jessica Montgomery, Cim-Tek Filtration, Bement, Illinois.
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.