Panel Approves Regulation Ending “Summer” Gasoline Mandate

Following up on a process started with the enactment last year of a law introduced by Senator Elder Vogel, a state panel approved regulations Thursday aimed at eliminating the “summer gas” requirement for western Pennsylvania.

The Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee approved regulations drafted by the Department of Environmental Resources to eliminate the statutory requirements for low Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) gasoline in Western Pennsylvania.

Act 50 of 2014, sponsored by Senator Vogel and signed into law on May 14, 2014, eliminates the requirements for RVP gasoline in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington and Westmoreland Counties during the summer months. This “summer gas” is routinely more expensive than gasoline sold in the rest of Pennsylvania and also in neighboring Ohio and West Virginia.

“This process to eliminate this costly and unnecessary burden on the people of Western Pennsylvania should move as quickly as possible,” said Senator Vogel. “The RVP regulation is nothing more than a hidden tax, not only at the pump but also on goods and services.”

Since 1999, the state Department of Environmental Protection and federal Environmental Protection Agency have required that gasoline sold between May 1 and September 15 in the seven-county Greater Pittsburgh Area have a RVP of 7.8psi. Regular gasoline has an RVP of 9.0.

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