Flex Fuel question

Discussion in 'Performance & Fuel' started by Camaro69car, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. dobey

    dobey Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    Yes. To depots. Trucks are still used deliver gasoline to the final destination. And those pipelines do not deliver all the different manner of refined products through the exact same pipe. Whenever a new refined product is introduced, the new pipes must be laid, in order to deliver that product to the depot. This is true whether you are talking about Ethanol, Petrol, Kerosene, Jet Fuel, Natural Gas, or anything else. Mixing 93 octane gasoline, and asphalt oil, would be nonsense, and financially untenable for the oil companies to do.

    Also, corn can be grown anywhere, like directly at a refinery. While the majority of corn is grown in the corn belt out in the Midwest, and the majority of Ethanol refineries are located there, it is more financially tenable to build small refineries all around the country, than to lay 95000 miles of new pipelines. Concentrating on whether it's delivered by truck or pipeline to fuel tranport depots, is just something to bitch about, and avoids any intellectual conversation about the validity of Ethanol as a fuel source or supplement. It's a very small problem, that can easily be resolved with some minor engineering.
  2. ElbowJoe

    ElbowJoe Member

    I am glad you feel vindicated Cowpie and appreciate your concession on the “total volume” of products from a barrel of oil. Do you also concede that Ethanol subsidies were reduced in January of this year rather than 3 years ago as you stated based upon my supporting evidence? BTW - If you read my earlier post I actually said the following after you pointed out my misstatement about crude to diesel ratios:
    Thanks Cowpie. I stand corrected. What I should have said was: From a 42 gallon barrel of crude oil everything that is made from that same barrel of crude oil totals 44.2 gallons. http://www.txoga.org/
    Your suggestion that I hire legal counsel to sue my former schools and attempts to mis-direct the valid points I have made (with supporting evidence) rather than show evidence to the contrary makes me laugh and exposes your obvious link to the Ethanol industry and the benefit that you receive from the continued use and expansion of this product.
    You and Dobey both have shown a preponderance to ignore factual data regarding this subject and offer personal experiences as counter arguments. Dobey continues to focus on gasoline being trucked from terminals to gas stations at relatively short distances but ignores the 95,000 miles of pipelines that got the product to the terminals in the first place. His statement that pipelines are a “very small problem that can easily be resolved with some minor engineering” is laughable. I would like to know from Dobey what major engineering would be and how much it would cost – oh and who should pay for it as well. And by the way, I feel that the investigations of the points in our collective posts constitute an intellectual conversation about the validity of Ethanol and are not just things “too bitch about” as Dobey states.
    His argument is similar to passing Obama care so we can see what is in it. How about we expose all of the true costs of this industry and then make an informed decision rather than sweep real uncomfortable issues under the rug.
    What does your accusation that I “failed to show how ocean transport vessels are also in the distribution channel” and comment regarding the export of biodiesel and importing ethanol have to do with the primary focus of this debate? (Nice try at mis-direction again – but I feel you may have lost the focus of the jury Perry Mason.)
    As for your comment on my analytical reasoning skills and reading comprehension, I stand by my findings based upon the data I have researched from reputable sources and invite you to counter these findings with reputable proof to the contrary.
    If you look at the issues raised regarding the inability to use the existing gasoline pipeline for product transport due to corrosion and concerns about seal and gasket failures in pipelines, the issue with gas tanks, hoses and other materials used in boats, small engines, and yes - even older automobiles and the issue with ethanol’s water affinity problem - what is the single common component causing issues? ETHANOL!
    The technical definition of caustic aside, water and iron don’t mix. You mention Oxygen in your argument. Last I knew there is 1 Oxygen component and 2 Hydrogen components in water and I have seen enough rust to know that where water is present with untreated metals, there is rust. I also know that rust or corrosion is not good when it comes to trying to contain flammable substances. Call it a process or a caustic reaction – the end result is a destruction of the integrity of the metal surface. – Again – nice try to focus on minutia to avoid the real subject. Answer me this: Are any of these issues as much of a concern if we take Ethanol out of the mix?
    Below are some other facts from reputable sources complete with links that you might choose to ignore regarding ethanol. Since you are benefiting from the use and expansion of this product, I expect that is exactly what you will do. Perhaps others who come across this discussion will be interested in understanding the issues involved with the use of Ethanol. They can use their “analytical reasoning and reading comprehension” skills and make their own minds up rather than listen to the three of us amateurs banter.
    There are billions of dollars on the line here with some rather major industries and powerful people in high places moving the chess pieces around. Whatever the outcome, it is important for the general public to understand the complete picture and costs involved beyond production on what started out in this blog as a relatively simple question regarding the use of E85 in a Chevy Captiva.
    From an article produced by the American Petroleum Institute:
    In the near term, it is likely that most of the projected increase in shipments of ethanol to terminals will be handled by tanker truck and rail tank car as opposed to pipelines. Except for a few proprietary pipelines, the refined product pipeline operators do not ship ethanol in their systems.
    Wider use of pipelines to transport ethanol is problematic for several reasons. It means addressing ethanol’s water affinity problem (ethanol is water soluble meaning it absorbs water). Because water accumulation in pipelines is a normal occurrence (in most cases water enters the system through terminal and refinery tank roofs or can be dissolved in fuels during refinery processes), introducing ethanol into a pipeline risks rendering it unusable as a transportation fuel.
    The second challenge to transporting ethanol by pipeline is the need to address corrosion issues. Ethanol-related corrosion problems can result from how ethanol behaves in the pipe. There is some evidence that ethanol in high concentrations can lead to various forms of corrosion including internal stress corrosion cracking, which is very hard to detect. This damage may be accelerated at weld joints or “hard spots” where the steel metallurgy has been altered.
    While it may be technically possible to address issues relating to transporting ethanol via pipeline, significant investments in new and modified facilities and operational practices would be necessary.
  3. Cowpie

    Cowpie Rockstar 3 Years 500 Posts

    No. And so have you.
  4. ElbowJoe

    ElbowJoe Member

    From ScienceDaily
    [FONT=&quot]Oct. 1, 2013 — If we're to meet a goal set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Renewable Fuels Standard to use 36 billion gallons per year of biofuels -- mostly ethanol -- the nation must expand its infrastructure for transporting and storing ethanol. Currently, ethanol is transported via trucks, trains, and barges. For the large volumes required in the future, transportation by pipeline is considered to be the most efficient method to get it to customers.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]The integrity and safety of pipelines and storage tanks is crucial[/FONT][FONT=&quot], because ethanol is both flammable and, at certain concentrations, can cause adverse environmental impacts.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]"One of the most important concerns with regard to the integrity of pipelines and tanks is the propensity of ethanol at concentrations above 20 volume percent in gasoline to cause cracking of steel,"[/FONT][FONT=&quot] explains Narasi Sridhar, vice president, director of the materials program at Det Norske Veritas. "This phenomenon is called stress corrosion cracking."[/FONT]
    Excerpts From U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardouse Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA):

    A large pipeline can transport roughly two million barrels of gasoline a day. By way of comparison, 9,375 large semi-truck tankers are required to transport two million barrels of product. It takes twenty-four 100-car unit trains extending three miles each, or ten 1 5-unit barge tows, to transport two million barrels. Trucks, vessels, and trains consume diesel or other liquid fuels and also contribute to congestion in our Nation's freight and passenger transportation corridors. Further, as the National Transportation Safety Board has observed, pipeline transportation has a consistently lower accident rate than other modes.
    The American Petroleum Institute (API) and the Association of Oil Pipe Lines (AOPL) have provided PHMSA with information on their progress analyzing safety and integrity issues associated with biofuel pipelines and shared a proposed research agenda with PHMSA and other agencies. The PHMSA has begun a technical assessment with the Pipeline Research Council International on the potential for ethanol induced stress corrosion cracking in existing pipeline infrastructure used to transport ethanol and various ethanol blended fuels. Using its authority under chapter 601 of the U.S. Code, PHMSA expanded its research and development efforts to focus on short-, medium- and long-term challenges of transporting biofuels in existing products pipelines and in dedicated biofuel pipelines.

    Although pipelines are highly efficient, they have not been used on a widespread basis for transporting gasoline-ethanol blends. This is partially a function of unresolved technical and operational issues that would affect both the use of existing products pipelines and the prospect of building new, dedicated biofuel pipelines. These include metallurgical issues, such as internal corrosion and stress corrosion cracking, and operational issues, including the performance of seals, gaskets and internal coatings.
    The risk of product contamination is also a significant factor. The PHMSA understands that the industry is concerned about the ability of transported gasoline-ethanol blends to meet the ASTM specification for gasoline, D 48 14 - Standard Specification for Automotive Spark-Ignition Engine Fuel due to ethanol's sensitivity to water. The U.S. pipeline system is a "wet system" with moisture introduced from the transport of various products. Unless measures are undertaken to remove or control moisture in the system, ethanol and ethanol blends could potentially absorb water and arrive at destination off specification. Additionally, many pipeline segments may need to undergo preparatory cleaning to remove built up lacquers, gums, and deposits in the system. Otherwise, the solvency effect of ethanol could remove such deposits, potentially contaminating the ethanol and trailing products in the system.
    And finally an enlightening article from that radical conspiracy theorist publication “Popular Mechanics”. I invite you to read the article in its entirety but I will share the first 2 paragraphs as a “teaser”.

    [FONT=&quot]Can E15 Gasoline Really Damage Your Engine?[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]Automakers have filed a lawsuit against the EPA's decision to make E15 (gasoline with 15 percent alcohol) legal for all cars after 2007. They argue that, among other problems, the blend could damage the engine. Wait, moonshiners used to run their cars on 190-proof hooch. Can ethanol really do damage to an engine? Yes. Here's how.[/FONT]

    Most people realize that all of us burn gasohol—a mixture of gasoline and alcohol—in our cars. Just about every gallon of gas pumped today contains as much as 10 percent domestically produced ethanol. Gummed-up fuel systems, damaged tanks and phase separation caused by stray moisture infiltrating fuel systems have plagued many consumers since this mixture debuted, and the problems will only get worse if government policy to increase the proportion of ethanol to gasoline is implemented. Don't get me wrong: Gasoline diluted with ethanol is a perfectly acceptable motor fuel when it's stored properly, dispensed promptly and burned in vehicles and power equipment designed to handle it. Which, unfortunately, is not always the case.
  5. Cowpie

    Cowpie Rockstar 3 Years 500 Posts

    I sincerely hope that the end of mankind and the world, for that matter, is due to ethanol. I will use it, and flip off the planet. Seems that everything is going to ruin, kill, or destroy everything. Next week, they will come out with the idea that saliva causes stomach cancer.... however, only when swallowed in small amounts over a long period of time.

    I have to take my hat off to you, ElbowJoe. I took the bait and got sucked into a useless discussion. Happens once in a while.
  6. dobey

    dobey Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    I know you are but what am I!

    LOL @ ethanol causing cracking of steel. All those shiners must have had one hell of a time keeping their stills together, back in the 20s and 30s.

    And if you really cared about the "true costs of the industry," then you'd never use another petroleum based product in your life. Your problem is that you think the financial cost is important, or that the gasoline itself is important. They aren't. They are insignificant. The facts are simple. We are running out of oil. And our overwhelming consumption of oil, is killing us.

    But congratulations on turning this thread into yet another bitch-fest about Ethanol. Really glad you made a comment about Obama and healthcare. Really drove your point home.

    Facts are good, but only when you actually read and understand all of them, not simply the ones you choose to agree with.
  7. ElbowJoe

    ElbowJoe Member

    So the both of you are actually saying - don't bother me with the facts - they are just getting in my way. That's what I thought. That is why people who do not use scientific methods to verify issues and check consequences are dangerous.

    Thank you for helping make my point. Have a nice day!:gasp:
  8. Cowpie

    Cowpie Rockstar 3 Years 500 Posts

    It was easy. That point is under your hat. You have a nice day too!
  9. 71Stage1Conv

    71Stage1Conv New Member

  10. Cowpie

    Cowpie Rockstar 3 Years 500 Posts

    Look, for every bit of "facts" you come up with that support your preconceived position, I can come up with other facts that dispute it. So what? Gasoline, in and of itself, is as polluting, if not more so, than ethanol. Heck, even the batteries used in hybrid autos are more polluting than anything we are burning. I can show you engine tear downs where the person used E85 for two years on the engine and it is one of the best looking engine internals I have ever seen on a motor with the use time his has. He only opened the engine up to see how the E85 played out and wanted to make sure it was still good, as he was selling it to someone else.


    And that ethanol is damaging to old crusty pipelines? Again, so what? The next best pipeline for moving this stuff is the BNSF railroad! You know.... the folks that claim they can move a ton of freight 200 miles or more on a gallon of fuel in their T.V. ads! As a side note, while my semi truck is not quite that efficient, I can move a ton of freight 168 miles on a gallon of fuel based on the same methodology they use. And if the railroad has a boo boo and spills the ethanol, Hey! It is biodegradable unlike petro based fuel!

    And the larger amount of what you get out of a barrel of crude than the original volume? Water. Yep, water is a major factor in crude oil refining. Oh, but wait.... isn't that the "terrible" thing about ethanol production? The amount of water it uses? Guess we better put a halt to crude oil refining also!



    (I prefer to provide links and not put the entire transcript in a post, that way folks won't think I doctored something)

    OOPS! Forgot to include this one. Over 68 pages of very dry and technical information, but gets to the point after a while. When you factor out the normal water use that would be just for the corn production itself, disregarding whether it is used for ethanol production or not, and you compare with the water used for crude oil extraction, processing, and refining, and the increased risks of contaminating water supplies, ethanol competes quite favorably. And that it is the "thumb on the scale" that those who hue and cry over ethanol use to "pad the case" for their position. They include the water that would fall from the sky anyway and grow the corn in their dissertation against ethanol. Shame, shame. To be so deceiving of the public in the attempt to sway them.

    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014

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