WALL, N.J. – Three dollars for a gallon of diesel could be relatively common in the U.S. within 15 months, according to fuel price benchmark expert OPIS (Oil Price Information Service).
Diesel prices are already at record levels in many states, and many fleets are paying double what they paid less than six years ago, says an OPIS statement.
Next summer, a new cleaner burning diesel fuel will be required for on-road vehicles, and that blend could temporarily trade for 30-50 cents per gallon more than the current fuel of choice.
Spring 2006 will see the removal of most sulfur molecules from on-road diesel.
The new ultra low sulfur diesel (ULSD) blend will officially be the standard made by most refiners on June 1, 2006; with distribution systems required to have the new fuel by July 15 and retailers scheduled for a Sept. 1 roll-out.
It could be the most challenging clean fuel to hit the U.S. markets since the introduction of reformulated gasoline a decade ago, said OPIS.
And there are considerable questions about whether there’s adequate production capacity, enough bulk storage, and an ability to keep the new ULSD properly segregated from higher sulfur products.
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