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E-M:/ FW: Governor announces request for waiver to prevent disruption of gas supply

Hello Michigan – FYI.  ~RJ.


From: gov_office@MICHIGAN.GOV [mailto:gov_office@MICHIGAN.GOV]
Sent: Tuesday, August 30, 2005 5:44 PM
Subject: Governor announces request for waiver to prevent disruption of gas supply



August 30, 2005


Governor Announces Request for Federal Waiver to Ensure Gas Supply Not Disrupted by Hurricane


LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has asked the federal Environmental Protection Agency for a waiver to lift the requirement for use of reformulated gasoline in Southeast Michigan, for the next seven days.  The waiver will allow oil refineries to temporarily increase production to ensure that Michigan’s supply of gasoline is not disrupted by the damage Hurricane Katrina has inflicted.


The DEQ has asked for an immediate response to their request.


“While we are monitoring the situation on the Gulf Coast to determine how we can help, we are also monitoring the effect on Michigan to ensure that we are prepared for all possibilities,” Granholm said.  “This waiver will ensure that we have the supply needed to meet demand and the flexibility to address any additional concerns in the days ahead.”


Granholm said she has been in contact with the State’s Energy Advisory Committee, the Public Service Commission, the Departments of Agriculture and Environmental Quality and industry executives to assess the impact on gas supply.  The area’s oil refineries indicated that a federal waiver would enable them to increase production.  Industry estimates range from 1 to 3 percent increase in production as a result of the waiver.  For Marathon’s refinery alone, a 1 percent increase equals 42,000 additional gallons of gas produced per day.  The Governor requested a similar waiver during the blackout in August, 2003.


“With the Labor Day holiday fast-approaching, we are working overtime to ensure that Michigan families are protected from gas shortages or price gougers who seek to capitalize on a time of national tragedy,” Granholm said.


Granholm reassured citizens that no significant gas shortages are expected in the coming days and reminded gas station owners that as of last week, more inspectors are working to ensure that gas pumps are working properly and prices reflect true market conditions.  She encouraged everyone to take advantage of the many energy-conserving services the state offers including van pools, ride-share, car pool lots, and transit services. Information about these services and more can be found at www.michigan.gov/gasprices


The State will continue to monitor the supply situation in Michigan over the next week, and will make an additional request of the EPA if necessary once the seven days have passed.


“The will of the American people is stronger than any hurricane’s wind,” Granholm said. “We have been in contact today with governor’s offices across the South and have pledged our support as they work to rebuild and move on.”


Granholm indicated that it is too soon to know specifically what supplies or services will be needed.  High water and impassable roadways are slowing damage assessments. She said detailed requests from state governors or through the Federal Emergency Management Association are expected in the next few days.


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