Local News

Pioneering alternative fuel station closes

Posted April 22, 2008
Updated April 30, 2008

— The state's first all-alternative fuel station has shut off its pumps.

America's Fuel opened two years ago, offering E-85 and E-10 ethanol-gas blends and biodeisel.

The station's owner said drivers were buying plenty of the alternative fuels, but he was unsuccessful in his attempts to obtain local approvals to open a convenience store on the site. Without the store, he said, the station couldn't produce enough profit.


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  • VT1994Hokie Apr 23, 2008

    I truly hate that it has closed. I stop in there once and twice a week. The E-10 is a few cents lower than the Quality right up the street.

    Hope that he can find a new location.

  • purrcard Apr 23, 2008

    Use land fills and garbage to make fuels; the nazis did it in WWII. Landfills put off enough methane to fuel our economy. The bleeding hearts need to get all the facts.

  • LibertarianTechie Apr 23, 2008

    I wonder why Southern Pines won't grant him a permit for a convenience store there--thats right, there is no room for the convenience store. He needs to do more thinking!

  • Hip-Shot Apr 23, 2008

    "Conservation drives up reserves and that drives down prices. I read somewhere recently that for every ten miles per hour you drive over 55 your mileage goes down by roughly fifteen percent, enough to equate to around fifty cents a gallon."

    In general, that is true about conservation increasing supply and driving prices down. The issue with that is that the refineries simply lower their production to avoid a surplus and that helps keep the price up.

    The talk about distributors setting the prices, not the stores is also true. The issue with this is that distributors within a particular geographic area often decide on a price between themselves to set their prices. I notice this quite a bit driving from Rocky Mount to Wilmington. The prices in recent months have been higher in Rocky Mount(usually about .08 per gallon) and within .02 cents of each other within the city.

  • thefensk Apr 23, 2008

    Sidekick, thanks for updating the question of middle east oil. I will rephrase: we get almost 60% of our oil from foreign sources. Developing another internal source for gasoline substitute will help reduce that aspect of our trade deficit.

    But you make a bigger point. Conservation drives up reserves and that drives down prices. I read somewhere recently that for every ten miles per hour you drive over 55 your mileage goes down by roughly fifteen percent, enough to equate to around fifty cents a gallon.

    I'd be happy to voluntarily go 55 but it is scary out there when you are the only one doing it!!!!

  • Dolphan Apr 23, 2008

    Sidekick - You forget about other rising economies such as Russia, India and China. You do realize those countries each have higher populations than the US right? Although our demand has decreased somewhat, demand for fuel and other commodities has sky-rocketed in these countries. Overall demand has NOT fallen as some would believe. The US does not drive the world economy like it used to. They don't ride bycicles in China anymore...

  • chfdcpt Apr 23, 2008

    Discowhale, that $3.50 he charged at the pump is not his. The store does not set the price per gallon, the distributor does. The store gets anywhere from 1-5 cents a gallon. My sister owns a convenience store, and the distributor is the one that decides the price. And if anyone fills up and drives away, that comes from the store profit. No wonder convenience stores go ballistic when they have a drive off.

  • MyNameIsMud Apr 23, 2008

    "Ethanol is snake oil, as said below: http://www.johnlocke.org/lockerroom/lockerroom.html?id=15366"

    It looks like the author needs to do more homework and stop perpetuating the myth that the ONLY source of ethanol is corn.

    I think there is a lot of potential in closed-system algae production since the information I'm reading shows that it offers yields far greater than other forms of biofuel production. Also, it can be produced in closed-system containers in arid regions without impacting cropland and it can even be coupled with coal-fired power plants to capture the C02 emissions, which will be consumed by the algae and accelerate their growth.

    Research is still being conducted to find more efficient species of algae. If it hasn't already, perhaps NCSU should also be involved with this research as a means of economic development in NC.

  • sassysewer Apr 23, 2008

    I feel this story is very much one-sided. There is no mention of WRAL trying to contact the agencies that grant the approval for the permits to open a convenience store at that location. Not being from Southern Pines, I have no way of knowing anything beyond what was reported in this story. I do, however, feel that using food sources to make ethanol is wrong. It only serves to drive up the price of food and does not in any great way offset our dependence on foreign oil.

  • freddie cadetti 72 Apr 23, 2008

    Lay blame of $3.50 gas at the feet of the environmentalists. Global warming (man made)is hyped up, and creating "alternative" fuels (ie: ethanol) is causing corn prices to skyrocket...making other commodities rise as well. Ethanol fuel will cost more per gallon, vehicles get less mpg's using ethanol, and there will not be enough filling stations for years to accomodate it. Technology is such now that drilling for oil in Alaska and the Dakotas is environmentally safe, and the potential reserves will make the US virtually non dependant on foreign oil. The low emmission vehicles of today will not adversely affect the environment. Drill...buid more refineries...use our own natural resources. Man Made global warming is a drop in the bucket to what the "movement" is doing to us.