Gas Station Chain Converts to Ethanol
By George Anderson
Robert Bolduc, president of Pride, a 16 gas station chain headquartered in Springfield, Mass., knows that ethanol blend gasoline is currently cheaper than gasoline alone but that’s not the reason says he is switching over his entire operation to allow consumers to fill up their tanks with this fuel alternative.
“We are doing this for environmental reasons and because corn is a renewable source of energy. If all gasoline used a 10 percent ethanol blend, it would cut reliance on foreign oil by 10 percent,” he said while also telling The Republican newspaper, “we also want to be the first in state to have converted totally to an ethanol blend.”
As to the current issue of the high price of fuel (prices for a barrel reached an all-time high of $70.80 yesterday in reaction to Hurricane Katrina), Mr. Bolduc is not unaware of what the price paid at the pumps means to some of his customers and the economy as a whole.
“When households are spending $2,500 to $3,000 more a year on gas, by my estimates, someone in the economy is going to feel the pinch,” he said.
“Most families will have to cut back somewhere because they can’t take the hit at the gas pump and continue to spend the same amount elsewhere. Will it be restaurants, hotels? Someone somewhere is going to feel the impact.”
Montgomery Shaw, spokesperson for the Renewable Fuels Association said that switching to alternative fuels such as ethanol will help drive prices down at the pump. “Any time you cut dependence on foreign oil, it should put a downward pressure on prices,” he said.
Moderator’s Comment: What do you think of the Pride gas station chain’s decision to switch entirely to ethanol blend gasoline? Do you expect many more
gas station operators to follow Pride’s lead and voluntarily switch to ethanol blend gasoline?
Sounds like a winner to us: Consumers save money at the pump, help improve the environment and reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign oil. Kudos, Mr.
George Anderson – Moderator