The Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) of Wall, NJ, is hosting an “Emergency Ultra-Low Sulfur Diesel Summit” April 21-22 at the Westin Grand Hotel in Washington, D.C., to help companies tackle the complex logistics involved in switching to ULSD next year.
OPIS said that beginning June 1, 2006, ULSD will be the diesel fuel produced by most refiners, since distribution systems require the new fuel be ready for shipping on July 15 to meet a scheduled September 1 rollout. According to OPIS there are still questions about adequate production capacity, availability of bulk storage, and the ability to keep ULSD properly segregated from diesel with higher levels of sulfur.
In addition, there seem to be huge disparities in price projections for ULSD blends. While government regulators suggest the cost of producing the fuel could average 4 to 7 cents more per gallon than current diesel blends, private consultants note that there could be huge premiums attached to ULSD because of supply dislocations, downgrading of material that gets contaminated with sulfur from other fuels, lack of foreign imports, and other factors. Some pundits, says OPIS, estimate that the ULSD could temporarily debut at 30 to 50 cents more per gallon than traditional diesel.
More information can be found at http://www.opisnet.com/ulsd/index.html.