Shell decision to switch From MTBE to ethanol in California will protect air, water, and consumers

By | June 01, 2002
Shell Oil Products US announced this month that it will discontinue the use of MTBE in its gasoline supplied to California consumers by the end of 2002. The company will replace MTBE with ethanol. Shell, the state's second largest gasoline marketer, joins California's largest gasoline marketer, BP, in committing to be MTBE free by the end of this year. Phillips Petroleum already blends more than 80 percent of its gasoline in California with ethanol. "We applaud Shell for their commitment to protecting California's drinking water by ending the use of MTBE and embracing clean, renewable ethanol as the alternative," said Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association. "I believe California consumers will reward oil companies like Shell that make an early switch away from MTBE." By switching from MTBE to ethanol by the end of 2002, Shell will beat California's official MTBE ban deadline by one year. Although originally scheduled for December 31, 2002, Governor Gray Davis earlier this year delayed the ban deadline until the end of 2003. Shell accounts for roughly 18 percent of all gasoline in California, making them the second largest marketer