Michael D. Tusiani is wrong ["Diesel Won't Solve Our Gasoline Woes," op-ed, Aug. 8]. The U.S. refining industry can produce enough diesel fuel to accommodate a significant increase in diesel vehicles. Both gasoline and diesel come from the same barrel of crude oil, and refiners can adjust their production to meet market demand.
Sales of diesel passenger vehicles in the United States have increased 56 percent since 2000, but a recent study concluded that "the refining and marketing industry would be able to respond to increased demand driven by expanded introduction of light-duty diesel vehicles."
Diesel vehicles are 20 to 40 percent more efficient than comparable gasoline engines. By making clean diesels eligible for the same tax credits as hybrids, the federal government has recognized that both technologies have an important role in improving U.S. energy efficiency.
Diesel Technology Forum
Michael D. Tusiani left out a critical driving force for the surging popularity of diesels: biodiesel. It's a fuel that can be used in any diesel engine and can be made from vegetable oil or animal fat. Many environmentally conscious individuals are switching to diesel engines and making their own fuel from used restaurant fryer oil.
For those not interested in getting their hands dirty, this fuel is also available for sale in most states. Both Maryland and Virginia have had generous rebate programs to promote this alternative that is free of fossil fuels.