By RYAN TRACY
WASHINGTON -- The US Environmental Protection Agency waived
regulations on gasoline content in 16 states in the wake of the
massive storm that hit the Northeast US earlier this week.
The temporary waiver was meant to free up gasoline supplies
and came after the storm knocked out refineries, pipelines and
terminals for distributing petroleum.
Without the waiver, many of the states would have to use a
special blend of gasoline to reduce pollution, rather than
conventional blends that may be more widely available. The
action by the EPA allows the sale of conventional gasoline even
if it doesn't meet Clean Air Act regulations.
"Extreme and unusual supply circumstances exist that will
prevent the distribution of an adequate supply of gasoline to
consumers," said EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson in a letter to
The waiver will last through Nov. 20, Ms. Jackson said,
after which refiners and importers can no longer produce or
import gasoline that doesn't meet the rules. Any fuel already
in the distribution system by that time can be sold, Ms.
The affected states were Tennessee, North Carolina, South
Carolina, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, New York, Maryland,
Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania,
Virginia, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island, the EPA said in a
The waiver also applies to Washington, D.C.
Dow Jones Newswires