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The petroleum industry opposes the EPA's sulfur reduction plans

Typically when we we're talking about the Environmental Protection Agency and gasoline, we're talking about the EPA's push to increase the amount of ethanol in gasoline used around the country or its efforts to increase fuel efficiency. However, the ethanol mandate isn't the only fuel agenda that the EPA is pursuing. The EPA is now proposing rules for cleaner gasoline that would go into effect by 2017.

This time around, automotive manufacturers are backing the new clean gasoline rules. The EPA has reportedly been working on the new rules for over 18 months and the rules would eventually require a two-thirds reduction of sulfur in gasoline by 2017.

According to the EPA, that sort of reduction in sulfur content in gasoline would be the equivalent of removing 33 million cars from the highways around the country. Automotive manufacturers also say that reducing the level sulfur in gasoline will improve vehicle performance.

Automaker associations supporting the new rules said in a meeting concerning the proposed regulations, "Reducing sulfur yields immediate and future public benefits. Ultra-low sulfur gasoline is already available; costs to implement nationwide are overstated."

Sulfur byproducts in gasoline reduce the effectiveness of catalytic converters and increase tailpipe emissions according automakers. The rules would also boost the durability of catalytic converters.
Refineries are already producing ultra-low sulfur fuel for use in California, the European Union, and Japan.

Predictably, the oil industry is opposing the proposed rules. Industry officials say that these changes would require capital investments of between $10 billion and $17 billion and would result in recurring annual costs of between $5 billion and $13 billion. The net effect according to the petroleum industry would be an increase in the cost of fuel per gallon of between $.12 and $.25.

Source: Detroit News

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12 cents?
By CaedenV on 3/29/2013 11:27:45 AM , Rating: 1
In the last year the cost of gas has fluctuated more than $1 from the lowest to highest point. I don't think anyone is going to notice if you tack 12 cents in there.

There are ~300 Million cars in the US, and (according to wiki answers) roughly 1/5th of them are actuially in use (the rest are in scrap yards, storage, or are otherwise not used or rarely used), which comes to ~62 Million cars on the road. The effect of removing 33 million cars out of 62 million is a pretty astounding number!

roughly +3.5% in the cost of gas in order to effectively remove the pollution of more than 50% of the cars on the road? While getting better gas efficiency and/or more power? Seems like a no-brainer to me. One would think that the greater efficiency would pay for most of (if not all of) the extra 3.5% in the price hike.

... not every day that I actually agree with something that the EPA says. Something must be wrong with the universe.
... If only we could remove 50% of drivers

RE: 12 cents?
By Spuke on 3/29/13, Rating: 0
RE: 12 cents?
By Dorkyman on 3/29/2013 1:33:08 PM , Rating: 2
Another article stated that refiners have already over the years taken out 90% of the sulfur. To take out a small percentage more will cost just as much as it did to get to the 90% level.

I trust NOTHING the EPA says, since to them this stuff is religion and thus not subject to logic and analysis. Keep in mind that Messiah Himself is riding on the EPA's back. He has stated numerous times that since he can't get what he wants through new legislation he will steer the EPA to deliver essentially the same goods. So logic is out the window as long as this president is in office.

RE: 12 cents?
By Spuke on 3/29/2013 2:21:31 PM , Rating: 3
Another article stated that refiners have already over the years taken out 90% of the sulfur. To take out a small percentage more will cost just as much as it did to get to the 90% level.
Didn't know this. They ALWAYS make it sound like nothing is being done unless it's mandated. Assholes.

RE: 12 cents?
By Mint on 3/31/2013 11:10:47 AM , Rating: 1
LOL you think they lowered sulphur content out of the goodness of their heart?

Sulphur regulations have put lower limits all over the world. Canada first had a 500ppm limit, then 15ppm. Europe is mostly 10-15ppm. The US is 50-80ppm.

And while Reclaimer will whine about the EPA making diesel more expensive due to emission standards, diesels in Europe also can't handle the higher sulfur content of US diesel because there is a lack of strong mandate. That's why they're on the side of the EPA here, as mentioned in the article.

Why would the free market have any incentive to reduce sulphur content by itself? You think consumers are going to bring their car's gas to the lab and get it tested and keep checking up for the various stations they frequent?

RE: 12 cents?
By Mint on 3/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: 12 cents?
By piroroadkill on 3/31/2013 11:10:01 AM , Rating: 2
It's too cheap in the US anyway..

RE: 12 cents?
By CZroe on 3/29/2013 2:16:41 PM , Rating: 2
No one will notice? You must not drive.

RE: 12 cents?
By CaedenV on 3/29/2013 3:40:17 PM , Rating: 2
How does $500/mo in gas do ya? Yes I drive, but in a world where gas fluctuates from $2.85 to $3.90 over the course of a year I don't think I would notice if the price goes up or down $0.12 very much.

RE: 12 cents?
By inighthawki on 3/29/2013 5:03:33 PM , Rating: 2
I've seen the price in gas fluctuate by 2-3x that much in a months time. 12 cents is nothing.

RE: 12 cents?
By RU482 on 3/30/2013 6:30:57 PM , Rating: 2
yeah, it tends to increase/(rarely)descrease in $0.10 increments here

RE: 12 cents?
By CZroe on 4/8/2013 2:42:26 PM , Rating: 2
And people "notice" every time. Gas prices are daily news.

RE: 12 cents?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/29/2013 5:09:02 PM , Rating: 3
Gullible mofo's like are why we have the Government we do today. No offense, but yeah, you're sponge-headed.

"Hey sounds good to me, just do whatever you want to us, I'll go along with it..."

RE: 12 cents?
By ammaross on 3/29/2013 7:34:23 PM , Rating: 2
Your diner napkin math doesn't take into account that the gov't is likely taking active vehicle registrations as their "total car count," not some gut-sourced number of cars actually in use. (And come on, this is the gov't. You think they'd toss out a bunch of cars from their statistics just because they're "rarely used"?)

Price increase, what else is new?
By C'DaleRider on 3/29/2013 11:18:32 AM , Rating: 2
The net effect according to the petroleum industry would be an increase in the cost of fuel per gallon of between $.12 and $.25.

Well, at least that price increase would have a reason and provide a benefit.

RE: Price increase, what else is new?
By Dr of crap on 3/29/2013 12:39:09 PM , Rating: 2
but by the time it gets to the pumps that we'll use that 12 to 25 cents will increase to 25 to 50 cents or more!

RE: Price increase, what else is new?
By Mint on 3/31/2013 11:42:20 AM , Rating: 2
Or it will be less given the bunk math and old figures used by the refineries.

RE: Price increase, what else is new?
By Mint on 3/31/2013 11:50:11 AM , Rating: 3
Shane neglected to include this quote from the original article:
The EPA's proposal is estimated to have $7 in health benefits for every dollar spent to meet the standards.

By 2030, EPA estimates annually prevention of up to 2,400 premature deaths, 23,000 cases of respiratory ailments in children, 3,200 hospital admissions and asthma-related emergency room visits.

By Expunge on 3/31/2013 11:52:59 PM , Rating: 4
That is a BS set of numbers not measurable by anything. Why not 2500 premature deaths, why not 5500 premature deaths? Their numbers are BS, and if you believe them, you get what you deserve. Higher cost of living and the government telling you what to do. F'ing sheep

A Quarter a Gallon?
By dsx724 on 3/29/2013 11:04:36 AM , Rating: 2
I think BMW owners have paid more for high pressure fuel pump replacements than a month's worth of gas cost for the entire country. I welcome this legislation.

RE: A Quarter a Gallon?
By Spuke on 3/29/2013 11:49:58 AM , Rating: 2
Just swap them out with the GM units and you won't have anymore problems. :) Jokes aside, is the sulfur content that problem with the BMW HPFP's?

RE: A Quarter a Gallon?
By dsx724 on 3/29/2013 2:33:48 PM , Rating: 2
Sulfur content in fuel causes all kinds of corrosion between fuel intake and exhaust pipe. All the major manufacturers have problems with sulfur content but the BMW HPFP failures were probably the best known one. It also is a problem when it enters the environment. Sulfur content should be reduced to levels that optimizes societal cost/benefit.

RE: A Quarter a Gallon?
By ammaross on 3/29/2013 7:31:22 PM , Rating: 2
So, basically, refineries should continue removing sulfur out of gas as they already do, since it is technically already optimized for cost/benefit (or they'd do more/less).

12 cents isn't chump change
By Motoman on 3/29/2013 3:40:57 PM , Rating: 4

As others have noted, keep in mind that the *refineries* are NOT the ones making big money. The big money is in the drilling of the oil and selling the crude.

Refineries make next to nothing - just like gas stations, that generally make just pennies for each gallon of gas they sell. Naturally, their profits fluctuate with the market too (both in terms of the cost of crude and the wholesale value of the refined fuel), but 12 cents in some cases might be 200% of the profit they're actually making.

So anyway...rage if you want to rage about the cost of gasoline. But don't do it in the direction of refineries (or gas stations). They're barely alive as it is.

RE: 12 cents isn't chump change
By Mint on 3/31/2013 11:40:31 AM , Rating: 2
You're absolutely right, but the numbers provided by the refineries don't make sense here.

The US uses 134 billion gallons of gasoline per year. Divide the $5-12B recurring costs (and interest on the capital costs) over this and you get 4-9 cents per gallon. It's only going to get lower too (those figures are from 2011).

By Cluebat on 3/29/2013 11:24:44 AM , Rating: 4
The price of tortillas will necessarily skyrocket.

By kyee7k on 3/29/2013 7:31:59 PM , Rating: 3
I know that sulfur acts as a lubricant for cylinder bores and piston rings and rubber seals used in fuel systems, how will this affect costs of automobiles as well as commercial vehicles? In addition, how will this affect costs for products and services?
Will current commercial and residential vehicles be required to pay higher penalties for a higher sulfur emissions when they are enacted in 2017?

By btc909 on 3/30/2013 1:49:36 AM , Rating: 2
You better learn how to SeaFoam your vehicle. Plus your performance & driving range will decrease.

By chick0n on 3/29/2013 12:35:05 PM , Rating: 1
Now they said they wanna make it cleaner?

rofl, it sounds so nice on paper but like ALL EPA crap, it's overstated by probably 500% so no one gonna complaint about it like

"oh man, 12 cent gets 32 million cars worth of crap off the road, That's soooo worth it!"

but it probably just gonna cost maybe 1-2 cent more for oil companies to do it, oh man, 12 cents extra every gallon! yay !

Or not....
By rudolphna on 3/29/13, Rating: -1
RE: Or not....
By DanNeely on 3/29/2013 11:52:44 AM , Rating: 3
The drilling companies are making windfall billions; the refining companies aren't. Margins for refining are only a few cents/gallon for refining crude into lubricants/diesel/gas/etc.

RE: Or not....
By compy386 on 3/29/2013 12:33:08 PM , Rating: 2
Valero (a pure refining company) made 2B last year out of a revenue of 139B. That's about 1.5%, or on $4 a gallon gas $0.06 cents of profit.

RE: Or not....
By Dorkyman on 3/29/2013 1:34:32 PM , Rating: 2
Uh, oh, there's that "greedy" word. Those meanie capitalists!

RE: Or not....
By KCjoker on 3/29/2013 6:07:25 PM , Rating: 2
The oil companies aren't the ones making the huge profits off's the GOVERNMENT. The Oil companies make less than 10 cents profit on a gallon and the Gov't makes on average 20 cents. So those greedy oil companies do all the work and yet they're the problem?lol

RE: Or not....
By ammaross on 3/29/2013 7:29:37 PM , Rating: 2
20 cents? Last time I read the tax info on the gas pump, the gov't is taking ~55 cents per gallon.

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