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Minister of Energy, Clive Mullings, has urged petroleum marketing companies to make the necessary infrastructural changes at their service stations to meet the growing demand for the new E10 fuel.
“There are long lines at the petrol stations as people are requesting E10. It’s going very well,” the Minister said as he addressed the Rotary Club of St. Andrew luncheon at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in Kingston yesterday (Nov. 11).
He said the demand is putting pressure on the petrol stations offering the blend. “If anything, the other marketing companies should have got on board much more quickly, because it is creating pressure on Petcom, Multipet and Unipet because their loads are finishing quite quickly and they have to be getting other truckloads because of the pressure on their system,” he pointed out.
The state-owned Petcom, in addition to Multipet and Unipet, were the three local marketers that started to offer the blend from the early stages on October 31. Currently, E10 is available at 11 Petcom stations spanning the parishes of Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Catherine, Clarendon, St. Thomas and Manchester. Four Unipet petrol stations in St. Andrew and St. Catherine, as well as one Multipet station in St. Catherine, are currently dispensing E10 fuel.
According to Minister Mullings, while initially reluctant, because “they didn’t believe that we could deliver” more of the international marketing companies are coming on board.
“I know that they are coming on board. Currently 31 stations are selling E10 and by the end of the week that number should increase to about 40 stations. That’s the briefing I got this morning and I expect it to go even more than that,” he stated.
E10 fuel, a blend of 10 per cent ethanol from sugarcane and 90 per cent 87 octane gasoline, was officially launched on November 1, as part of efforts by Government to provide more environmentally friendly fuel for the transport sector.
It is being introduced on a phased basis starting with service stations in eastern parishes as well as sections of central Jamaica. A number of Total Jamaica, Chevron (Texaco), Cool Petroleum, Epping, and A.D. Hobbins Limited stations are now offering the blend.
The roll out will continue over the first quarter of 2009 in western parishes served by the Petrojam Montego Bay Terminal currently under construction, and by April 2009, all motorists across the island will be receiving E10 in both 87 and 90 octane fuel.