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Fuel Suppliers Preparing to Meet Future Low-Sulfur Diesel Requirements

Release Date: 09/23/2004
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Contact: John Millett 202-564-7842 /

(09/23/04) Refiners remain on target to supply significantly cleaner highway diesel fuel over the next five years, according to EPA's analysis of industry reports released today. EPA has been working collaboratively with both the engine manufacturers and fuel refiners in preparation for EPA's new clean diesel engine and fuel standards. When fully implemented, EPA's Clean Diesel Program, will reduce 2.6 million tons of smog-causing emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from diesel exhaust each year, thus providing the cleanest running heavy-duty trucks and buses in history. The action will produce the clean-air equivalent of eliminating air pollution from 13 million trucks. To ensure these cleaner-running vehicles, the program requires that sulfur in diesel fuel be reduced by 97 percent. The reports provide the clearest snapshot currently available of the highway diesel fuel market. Similar to the projections that refiners made last year, it is anticipated that 95 percent of the nearly 3 million barrels of highway diesel produced per day will meet the 15 parts per million (ppm) standard in 2006. EPA's analysis of information from more than 120 refineries shows that fuel suppliers are positioned to comply with the 15 ppm highway diesel sulfur standard on time; highway diesel fuel production will be sufficient to meet demand; and 15 ppm sulfur highway 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. Under the EPA's Highway Clean Diesel Rule, any refiner or importer planning to produce or import highway diesel fuel in 2006-10 is required to submit annual "pre-compliance reports" to EPA. The reports are due June 1 of each year; the first was due June 1, 2003 and the last report will be due in 2005. For a copy of the Summary and Analysis of the 2004 Highway Diesel Fuel Pre-compliance Reports and additional information about the Highway Diesel Rule, go to: . For information about EPA Clean Diesel Program, go to: .