General Motors announced that it has facilitated plans for the addition of three new E85 fueling sites in the Pittsburgh area, through a collaborative partnership with VeraSun Energy Corporation, Sheetz, Inc. and the State of Pennsylvania.
GM has been the catalyst behind several similar collaborative partnerships across the country and began an initiative with VeraSun in February as part of a broader, national campaign to boost the use and awareness of E85—85% ethanol and 15% gasoline—in the United States.
VeraSun Energy, the nation’s second-largest ethanol producer, will supply its VE85 brand of E85 to select Sheetz stores in the Pittsburgh area beginning this week and expanding to two additional stores by later this year.
The announcement marks the fourth collaboration in four states that GM and VeraSun have entered with a third-party retailer since the companies began working together to promote awareness of E85 ethanol-based fuel. The first initiative, launched last May in Sioux Falls, S.D., promoted VE85 pumps in seven prominent local stations. In the Chicago metro area, what began as a 20-location effort in February has already expanded to include 32 sites, and the initial four outlets in Minneapolis-St. Paul have grown to 16 in the last four months.
General Motors says that it will continue to spend significant advertising and promotion dollars to help generate awareness of E85 flexible fuel vehicles—and where consumers can purchase E85 ethanol—with consumer marketing initiatives and dealer outreach.
Since May 2005, GM has announced partnerships with states and fuel providers around the country to locate, to date, over 160 new E85 ethanol fueling locations.