VeraSun postpones VE30 launch

By Erin Voegele | June 02, 2008
Web exclusive posted July 3, 2008 at 2:03 p.m. CST

The June 30 launch of VeraSun Energy Corp.'s trademarked VE30, a fuel blend of 30 percent ethanol and 70 percent gasoline, has been postponed. According to Melissa Ullerich, VeraSun Energy's vice president of marketing and communications, the event has been postponed while Olson Oil Co. works through issues with its gasoline supplier. "VeraSun remains hopeful these issues can be resolved in a timely manner," Ullerich said.

Olson Oil owns the station at which VeraSun was launching its VE30 blend. The June 30 event was supposed to take place at a Get-N-Go station in Sioux Falls, S.D. Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, and Sens. Tim Johnson and John Thune were scheduled to appear, along with representatives from VeraSun Energy, the American Coalition for Ethanol, the South Dakota Corn Council and Olson Oil.

The VE30 launch was to provide VeraSun with a pilot refueling facility and the opportunity to gather feedback from flexible-fuel vehicle owners on fuel efficiency and performance when compared to regular gasoline and E85.

Midlevel blends, such as VE30, reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Argonne National Laboratory reported that the use of 6.5 billion gallons of ethanol in the United States during 2007 reduced greenhouse gas emission by approximately 10 million tons, the equivalent of taking 1.5 million cars off America's roadways.

The U.S. EPA only approves the use of E30 in flexible-fuel vehicles, based on requirements of the Clean Air Act. There are more than 6 million flexible-fuel vehicles in the United States.

The event has not yet been rescheduled. Ullerich said that VeraSun continues to be committed to introducing VE30 to flexible-fuel vehicle drivers in the Sioux Falls, S.D., area.