Propane demand causing delay in Minnesota, other states

Demand increasing with cold temperatures, wet crops

WCCO Radio Newsroom
November 07, 2019 - 9:43 am

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An emergency order issued on October 30 by Minnesota governor Tim Walz lifted regulations on trucks and drivers hauling propane and liquid fuels. The move hopes to alleviate the strain on farmers and others in need of propane as a cold and wet fall continues into November.

"Receiving the product into the state, it just can't come as fast as the farmers are using it right now," said Roger Leider, the executive director for Minnesota Propane Association.

Leider says that there isn't a propane shortage in the United States, in fact, he says production remains the highest it's ever been.

The problem this year is propane haulers are having a tough time keeping up with the demand. In November, which usually sees around 190 semi loads of propane per day, Leider says they're seeing close to 300 propane deliveries per day.

"Last spring it was a very late planting season and lead to a cool summer," Leider said. "It's also a very cool, very wet fall."

The weather conditions are forcing farmers to dry more corn, which leads to more liquid propane needed, creating such high demand.

Homes, businesses, and animal barns are the focus for propane suppliers, especially with the early cold being felt in Minnesota.

"We will probably set a record for the amount of propane delivered in the month of November," he said.

Propane and heating oil prices as of Monday, November 4 were $1.44 per gallon in Minnesota. Rhode Island held the highest price per gallon at $2.95.

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