ULSD and biodiesel: Notes you should know

By | January 10, 2007
As the cold season arrived, ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) simultaneously took its permanent place in the on-road market recently. Cold weather can bring more precautions to biodiesel use, but some untested variables are arising with the new ULSD fuels, in addition to ULSD/biodiesel blends.

Some petroleum distributors have expressed concerns about the cold flow properties of some types of ULSD when blended with cold-flow additives. It may take more treatment than previously expected. Adding biodiesel to this mixture can further change the amount of cold-flow additives needed for successful winter use.

The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and the Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) issued a joint bulletin advising petroleum distributors to report any issues they are having with ULSD before biodiesel is blended. For a copy of that bulletin, called the "Biodiesel Winter Weather Advisory," visit www.biodiesel.org/links/110806.htm.

Additionally, the NBB and PMAA have agreed to share data collected from the field on biodiesel/ULSD blends. The NBB is also contracting with laboratories to test and confirm blended fuel properties with ULSD and biodiesel. Winter-grade ULSD has been unavailable for testing until now.

Please e-mail NBB Director of Petroleum Outreach Paul Nazzaro at advancedfuel@comcast.net or Holly Tuminello, PMAA vice president, at info@pmaa.org with any information you might have.
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