Definitions, Sources and Explanatory Notes

 Category:   Petroleum Refining & Processing
 Topic:   Weekly Ethanol Plant Production


Key Terms Definition
Barrel A unit of volume equal to 42 U.S. gallons.
Fuel Ethanol An anhydrous alcohol (ethanol with less than 1% water) intended for gasoline blending as described in the Oxygenates definition.
Oxygenates Substances which, when added to gasoline, increase the amount of oxygen in that gasoline blend. Ethanol, Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE), Ethyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (ETBE), and methanol are common oxygenates.
  • Fuel Ethanol: Blends of up to 10 percent by volume anhydrous ethanol (200 proof) (commonly referred to as the "gasohol waiver").
  • Methanol: Blends of methanol and gasoline-grade tertiary butyl alcohol (GTBA) such that the total oxygen content does not exceed 3.5 percent by weight and the ratio of methanol to GTBA is less than or equal to 1. It is also specified that this blended fuel must meet ASTM volatility specifications (commonly referred to as the "ARCO" waiver).
    Blends of up to 5.0 percent by volume methanol with a minimum of 2.5 percent by volume cosolvent alcohols having a carbon number of 4 or less (i.e., ethanol, propanol, butanol, and/or GTBA). The total oxygen must not exceed 3.7 percent by weight, and the blend must meet ASTM volatility specifications as well as phase separation and alcohol purity specifications (commonly referred to as the "DuPont" waiver).
  • MTBE (Methyl tertiary butyl ether): Blends up to 15.0 percent by volume MTBE which must meet the ASTM D4814 specifications. Blenders must take precautions that the blends are not used as base gasolines for other oxygenated blends (commonly referred to as the "Sun" waiver).
  • Petroleum Administration for Defense (PAD) Districts Geographic aggregations of the 50 States and the District of Columbia into five districts by the Petroleum Administration for Defense in 1950. These districts were originally defined during World War II for purposes of administering oil allocation. Description and maps of PAD Districts and Refining Districts.
    Ppm Parts per million.
    Production Petroleum products produced at a refinery, natural gas processing plant, or blending plant. Published production equals production minus input. Negative production will occur when the amount of a product produced during the reporting period is less than the amount of that same product that is reprocessed (input) or reclassified to become another product during the same reporting period.

    For definitions of related energy terms, refer to the EIA Energy Glossary.


  • Energy Information Administration, Form EIA-809, "Weekly Oxygenate Report".
  • EIA Forms & Instructions .
  • Explanatory Notes and Detailed Methods Report .

  •   Explanatory Notes

  • Data may not add to total due to independent rounding.