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July 23, 2018

Maine oil dealers begin delivering new, cleaner blend of heating oil

Courtesy / Maine Energy Marketers Association
Courtesy / Maine Energy Marketers Association
Maine Energy Marketers Association announced last week that effective July 1 all oil dealers in Maine and New England are now required to deliver a new, cleaner home heating oil that will reduce emissions and burn more efficiently.
Courtesy / Maine Energy Marketers Association
Jamie Py, president of Maine Energy Marketers Association, says the new blend of heating oil that was introduced in Maine and New England on July 1 is cleaner and more energy efficient than the traditional blend.

About Maine Energy Marketers Association

MEMA has more than 300 members, including 125 heating oil, propane, biofuels, pellets, electricity, motor fuels providers as well as convenience store owners who serve more than 415,000 Maine households and keep nearly 1 million Maine people warm through the winter months. MEMA also has more than 175 associate members who provide goods and services to Maine's petroleum dealers and their customers. In addition, its members own and operate 70% of Maine's 1,300 convenience stores, at which more than 1 billion gallons of gasoline and diesel fuel are sold. Its members also sell more than 90% of all the propane sold in Maine each year.

Maine Energy Marketers Association announced last week that effective July 1 all oil dealers in Maine and New England are now required to deliver a new, cleaner home heating oil that will reduce emissions and burn more efficiently.

MEMA reports the new blend has 99% less sulfur in it than standard heating oil, with the new standard capping the amount of sulfur in residential heating oil at 15 parts per million, compared to 5,000 ppm under the previous blend.

The changeover is expected to reduce emissions by more than 70% compared to emissions produced by traditional heating fuel.

"Heating oil is getting even cleaner in Maine," MEMA President Jamie Py said in a news release announcing the change. "This new standard drastically reduces emissions and improves homeowners' heating efficiency without them having to purchase a new heating system. Mainers will save money and help the environment by simply doing nothing."

The new fuel requires no modification to existing heating systems, according to MEMA, which noted that super-efficient heating systems previously unavailable are now an option for consumers as a result of the July 1 switch to ultra-low-sulfur heating oil. MEMA added that the fuel also can be blended with renewable biodiesel and used with existing equipment and fuel storage tanks.

Other benefits of the new heating oil blend touted by MEMA:

  • It's the cleanest heating oil ever produced, emitting almost zero particulates, cutting sulfur dioxide emissions by 99% and nitrous oxide emissions by 10% compared to traditional heating oil. MEMA said emissions from this cleaner heating oil are the equivalent of natural gas, according to research conducted in 2015 at Brookhaven National Laboratory.
  • With virtually no sulfur in the fuel, oil heating systems can burn fuel more efficiently, leading to lower heating bills.
  • Running the new blended fuel produces 90% less ash and reduces soot by 99% versus regular heating oil.

"Cleaner burning fuel means less build-up and gunk on heat exchangers, leading to longer equipment life, especially for boilers and furnaces," MEMA stated. "This means the heat stays in your home and less goes up the chimney. Additionally, taking sulfur out of heating oil causes no problems for heating equipment or storage tanks."

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