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Fuel Suppliers Prepared to Meet Future Low-Sulfur Diesel Requirements

Release Date: 10/29/2003
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Contact: John Millett, 202-564-7842

(10/29/03) Refiners are on target to supply significantly cleaner highway diesel fuel in the next four to six years, according to EPA’s analysis of industry reports released today.

“EPA’s clean diesel standards are an important reason Americans can expect air quality to continue to improve in the years ahead,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation Jeff Holmstead. “We’re pleased with the preliminary indications from fuel suppliers, because the new clean diesel fuel – in combination with EPA’s Acid Rain Program, cleaner vehicles and more stringent standards for ground-level ozone and particle pollution – will help us meet the goals of the Clean Air Act and further protect public health and the environment.”

Although the industry information compiled, analyzed and summarized by EPA is preliminary, the results provide the clearest snapshot currently available of the highway diesel fuel market. Based on current projections for 2006, 96 percent of the nearly 3 million barrels of highway diesel produced per day will meet the 15 parts per million (ppm) standard.

EPA’s analysis of information from 126 refiners shows that fuel suppliers are positioned to comply with the 15 ppm sulfur standard on time; highway diesel fuel production will be sufficient to meet demand; and 15 ppm sulfur diesel fuel will be widely available nationwide. Reducing the sulfur content in diesel will enable advanced emission control technology in diesel engines and substantially contribute to air quality improvement, help states meet Clean Air Act goals and further protect public health and the environment.

Under the January 2001 “Clean Diesel Rule,” any refiner or importer planning to produce or import highway diesel fuel in 2006-10 is required to submit a “pre-compliance report” to EPA. The reports are due annually from June 2003 through 2005 and must contain information that includes the amount of low-sulfur fuel that will be produced or imported; the number of credits that will be generated or used; and a projected compliance time line.

For a copy of the Summary and Analysis of the 2003 Highway Diesel Fuel Pre-compliance Reports and additional information about the Clean Diesel Rule, visit http://www.epa.gov/otaq/diesel.htm .