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Author Archives: Stephen Bennett

Report: Best States for Home Solar Are In the East

A report that ranks the 50 states by “friendliness to rooftop solar” finds that, for 2019, the top four are Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Maryland, plus Washington, D.C. Solar Power Rocks (SPR), an organization in Portland, Ore., that collects and disseminates information for homeowners about state and national solar policy, incentives, and financial estimates, announced Jan. 16 that its 2019 State Solar Power ...

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Tips for Accepting Payments

Payment products can reduce overhead costs for fuel marketers. Fuel marketers are switching gears to prepare for peak season, and part of that preparation includes closely reviewing contracts, including those for credit card rates. As the industry goes through its yearly rate review exercise, keep in mind that it’s not only about reducing costs, it’s also about adding simplicity, writes ...

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TuSimple Operates Self-Driving Trucks in U.S.

TuSimple, a self-driving truck company, announced that it has 11 trucks in the U.S. and will have 40 trucks in fully-autonomous operation by June. The company said that it had 12 contracted customers, including Fortune 100 and “large international” companies. The company is making makes three to five fully-autonomous trips per day for customers on three different routes in Arizona, it said in ...

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Bergquist Hires Customer Support Specialist for Remote Tank Monitoring

Wholesale propane equipment distributor Bergquist, Toledo, Ohio, hired Jim Schwartzfisher as customer support specialist for remote tank monitoring, a new position. Schwartzfisher will field current customer inquiries pertaining to remote tank monitoring, with the goal of providing expertise and facilitating growth for this subdivision throughout the country, the company said. Schwartzfisher has a background in manufacturing, as well as information ...

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MEMA Expands Technical Education Center

The Maine Energy Marketers Technical Education Center (MTEC) in Brunswick, Maine, celebrated a grand opening for its $250,000 state-of-the-art expansion, which doubles student capacity and helps meet a growing need in Maine for professional heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) technicians. “The trades are hot right now,” Jamie Py, president of the Maine Energy Marketers Association, said in a ...

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Consolidation Continues

In the 1970s, writes columnist Steven Abbate, many believed the world would soon be running out of oil: In the 1980s I remember hearing that all the small family-owned propane and heating oil companies would be gobbled up by a few large companies.  Neither of those projections held true. The world is producing more oil and propane than ever. I ...

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How to Build ‘Will Call’ Business on the Web

Many fuel marketers have tended to take a dim view of the COD and will-call business. But COD and will-call customers are playing a new and more important role in the profit picture, say Mark Stillman and John Vrabel, co-founders of Energy Engine in Stroudsburg, Pa. The company provides a web-based platform designed to help fuel marketers sell heating oil, ...

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MiX Telematics Launches MiX Now

MiX Telematics, Boca Raton, Fla., introduced “Mix Now,” describing it as a “simplified, self-service fleet software” designed to enable business owners to manage their vehicles and drivers more easily. The system tells business owners or managers where their vehicles and drivers are, reveals how vehicles are being used, and sends useful reminders and alerts, helping to improve safety, efficiency and ...

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OBITUARY: Star Group CEO Steven Goldman, 58

Steven J. Goldman, president and chief executive officer of Star Group, died suddenly on Dec. 22, the company announced. He was 58. “It is with great sadness that we mark the passing of our long-time CEO and colleague, Steve Goldman,” Paul Vermylen, Star’s chairman, said in a Dec. 24 statement. “Having known Steve for almost fifteen years, I can speak for the ...

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Sharp Energy Acquires Propane Sales and Delivery Business of R.F. Ohl

Sharp Energy acquired the propane sales and delivery business of R.F. Ohl, Lehighton, Pa. “This acquisition is a strategic fit for our family of businesses and will extend Sharp Energy’s reach to new customers, communities and businesses in Pennsylvania,” Michael P. McMasters, president and chief executive officer of Chesapeake Utilities Corp., Dover, Del., the parent company of Sharp Energy, said ...

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