UPDATE: Christie OKs Out-of-State Fuel Buying

Published in CSP Daily News

EPA approves temporary gas, diesel waivers over Sandy

UPDATE:  Trenton, N.J. – In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has acted to boost supplies of gasoline and diesel in New Jersey by directing Treasury officials to waive licensing requirements that affect merchants' ability to buy fuel from out-of-state suppliers.

Under normal conditions, merchants not licensed to import fuel can't legally buy gasoline and diesel from out of state and import it. The waiver, which will be in place until Nov. 7, will boost storm-depleted supplies by allowing all merchants temporarily to buy fuel from out of state for their New Jersey customers.

"When shortages threaten after natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy, fuel buyers need to venture farther from state borders to ensure that their customers get the gasoline and diesel they need," state treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff said. "Temporarily suspending licensing is a prudent way of empowering merchants to buy fuel farther from the state line, boosting supplies for New Jersey motorists who need fuel to get to work and do their jobs."

Fuel merchants who buy fuel from out of state who are not currently licensed importers will have to document their purchases and pay required New Jersey taxes.

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has exercised its authority under the Clean Air Act to temporarily waive certain federal clean gasoline requirements for gasoline sold and distributed in Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, District of Columbia, New York, Maryland, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island.

The EPA has also exercised its authority under the Clean Air Act to temporarily waive federal clean diesel fuel requirements in New Jersey to allow the use of home heating oil in most generators and pumps in emergency service in New Jersey.

The waivers were granted by EPA in coordination with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson determined that, as a result of effects of Hurricane Sandy, extreme and unusual supply circumstances exist that may result in a temporary shortage of gasoline compliant with federal regulations. The federal waiver will help ensure an adequate supply of fuels in the impacted states.

The waiver allows the sale and distribution of conventional gasoline in a number of eastern states that are required to use reformulated gasoline, and allows a number of additional states to mix reformulated gasoline and conventional gasoline to remove potential barriers to the supply of gasoline to the region.

Jackson also determined that, as a result of effects of Hurricane Sandy, extreme and unusual supply circumstances exist that may result in a temporary shortage of diesel fuel compliant with federal regulations. The federal waivers will help ensure an adequate supply of fuel for emergency response in New Jersey.

The waiver temporarily allows the use of heating oil in emergency generators and pumps if ultra low-sulfur fuel is not available. The waiver will not apply to a small subset of diesel engines used in generators and pumps that could be damaged by the high-sulfur fuel.