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China Rationing Diesel as Oil Prices Hit Refiners

Reuters reports that China is rationing diesel at pump stations in at least four coastal provinces in the widest-scale rationing since 2003, as rising oil prices hit output at loss-making Chinese refiners.

With US crude soaring to new highs above $92 a barrel on Friday, the supply squeeze is a telling sign that high oil is taking its toll on demand in the world's second-largest consumer by forcing refiners to limit output.

“We are rationing. Supplies are getting short,” said a sales executive with top refiner Sinopec Corp from east China’s Jiangsu province.

The rationing, which started about a week ago, reflected official data released earlier on Friday that showed China’s apparent oil demand nearly stalled in September with only a 0.3 percent rise from a year earlier, the lowest growth in 20 months, according to Reuters calculations.


Mikael Johansson

Peak Oil is here. Drive electric.


In China they produced 19 million electric bikes in 2006. That number is growing by 30% per year and it is the primary reason that lead prices are going up globally.


Western consumers will also start do drive electric I think when the new lithium batteries from A123 and others become available in volume for e-bikes and e-scooters, e-motorboards, EVs etc. In any case the momentum for this electrification is improved greatly with increasing oil prices. I hope oil will go much higher and the sooner the better.


Henrik, last time I looked, lead prices seemed stable. That must have been some time ago; just checked and lead prices are up 100% in the last 12 months and 800% in the last 5 years!


If the price of fuel (and lead) goes up (and stays up), the market will find a way of getting around it - like the Firefly energy graphite lead foam batteries.

or just go back to pedal cycling for shorter distances ...

Roll on $100 oil and lets see what happens.

2 wheeled vehicles are very suitable for crowded cities, but you might need a 20mph speed limit to keep it safe (which would antagonize motorists), but in many cities, the average speeds are well below 20mph.

You might just impose the 20mph limit at certain (commuting) times, and not all night for instance.

Harvey D


I have to agree with you this time.
Electrification of most (if not all) our ground (2, 3 or 4+ wheels) transportation vehicles is the most logical sustainable solution. Let's to it.


Oil at $100+/barrel will be here soon. Let's hope that it will not trigger a run for first generation agrofuel increased production but a move towards PHEVs and BEVs.



Or smaller cars!
Or even diesels - most likely in Europe.

PHEVs are the way to go [ IMHO ] but it will take time.
The trick is to optimise the battery use so we get the best out of a 5 mile, 10 mile, 20 mile and 40 mile battery.
To some extent, we can substitute intelligent control algorithms with GPS and machine learning for battery life - and this would be worth doing, especially in cities.


Lead has risen in price. Prices for VRLA batteries from BB battery have risen substantially over the last few months. Up $200 for a set of 6 batteries for escooter.

Max Reid

China is rationing not only Diesel, but also Petrol (Gasolene), I think its high time for them to start considering smaller cars, otherwise they will also end up like USA with big unsold stock of gas-guzzlers.

Roger Pham

The most practical substitute for petroleum now is to modify these trucks to run on compressed methane.

Bio-methane or methane from coal gasification can be used to substitute from natural gas should there be a NG shortage also.

The diesel fuel injectors can be retained to give a pilot injection to start the ignition process, while the methane can be injected earlier in the throttle body to mix with the air, thus avoiding additional cost of direct methane injectors, that would have required one for each cylinder. High pressure tanks is heavier, but is still much lighter and more compact than battery. The engine and transmission will be largely unchanged, except for the compression ratio and the fuel system.


Lucky for us Poet,Mascoma and others are already producing cellulosic ethanol here.Hopefully they can weather the misinformation from the oil companies and anti corn ethanol pundits.The next big hurdle will be increasing stations that carry E-85.DOT has recently approved a flex fuel kit.Soon we can all run our current car on E-85.

Harvey D


I almost fully agree with you but I'm not a diesel fan yet.

Flex fuel PHEVs make so much sense (to me) that I could start with a PHEV-10 (miles) if I could add one or two more batteries, at a latter date, or whenever the price drops enough.

Our existing 220 VAC 20 Amps home garage outlet could handle the charging load overnight for battery packs up to about 25 KWh.


As lead goes up, more will look for Lithium powered cars

Robert Marston

$100 oil today...

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