You be the judge. Here is the abstract from the study:
“A proposal has been made by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers for a single national (excluding California) summertime gasoline specification that they referred to as National Clean Gasoline (NCG). NCG, as proposed, would require significantly lower sulfur limits on Reid vapor pressure (RVP).
This report examines four potential scenarios with lower sulfer and lower RVP requierments than current gasoline specifications. in two, summertime RVP is reduced nationwide (excluding California) to 7 pounds per square inch absolute (psia). In the other two, summer time RVP’s are limited to 7.8 psia and 8.8 psia (including a 1 psia vaiver for ethanol blending) in regions that currently allow the waiver for conventional gasoline. Reformulated gasoline (RFG) maintains an RVP of 7.0 psia. In three of the cases, sulfer in individual batches is limited to 20 parts per million (ppm) with a company annual average limit of 10 ppm. In one case, the sulfur limits are 10 and 5 ppm, respectively.
The resuls of the analysis show that four to seven refineries are likely to shut down rather than make the necessary investments to produce gasloline with lower sulfer and lower RVP specifications. A substantial volume of domestically-produced light hydrocarbon currently blended into gasoline would be removed from gasoline and would be sold into other markets. Total domestically-produced gasoline (excluding ethanol) is estimated to decrease by 0.6 to 1.3 million barrels per day during the summer. If gasoline consumption remains at Base Case levels, gasoline imports would more than double in three of the cases, leaving the US more exposed to supply disruptions. Annualized marginal compliance costs for US refineries are estimated in the range of 12 to 25 cents per gallon. Summer-only costs are nearly double that of annualized costs. Additional hydrotreating and fractionation required to comply would result in an increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) emission from refineries that continue to operate. On an annual average basis, the total increase in CO2 emissions at domestic and foreign refineries is estimated at 2.9 to 7.4 million tonnes per year.”
Read the full story here, including a link to the full study.