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EPA’s gasoline regulations bring no significant benefit

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

According to a recent study by the American Petroleum Institute (API), the EPA’s new Tier 3 regulations on gasoline would not provide measureable ozone air quality benefits.

‘EPA’s new gasoline regulations are a prime example of what happens when regulators ignore facts and hard science,’ API Downstream Group Director Bob Greco told reporters in a conference call. ‘Refiners have made massive investments in cleaner gasoline over the last decade and air quality will continue to improve under existing standards…The additional energy needed to refine gasoline to meet EPA’s new proposal would actually increase greenhouse gas emissions from refineries.’

Refineries have already removed 90% of sulfur in gasoline over the last decade, according to the study conducted by environmental consulting group Environ and commissioned by API. Removing the last bit of sulfur left in gasoline, as EPA’s Tier 3 rule proposes, would raise manufacturing costs without leading to measureable ozone reductions, the study concludes.

‘And this rule is just one of a number of ill conceived EPA regulations that could put upward pressure on prices,’ Greco said. ‘Americans shouldn’t have to bear the brunt of EPA regulations that lack a basis in science and will, at best, yield negligible environmental benefits.’

Greco continued to say that EPA has not ruled out a vapour pressure reduction requirement that could increase refinery costs as much as 25 cents per gallon along with the new Tier 3 rules. In addition, he cited a NERA study that shows the ever increasing federal ethanol mandate under the RFS could increase the cost of gasoline by approximately 30% in 2013, EPA’s upcoming Refinery Sector Rule, new Ozone NAAQS requirements and greenhouse gas controls for refineries.

Adapted from press release by Claira Lloyd.

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