PITTSBURGH – VeraSun Energy Corp., has expanded its initiative with General Motors Corp. to boost the availability and awareness of E-85, a fuel blend of 85-percent ethanol and 15-percent gasoline. Together with convenience store retailer Sheetz, Inc. and the State of Pennsylvania, the companies announced plans for the addition of three new fueling stations offering VE85, VeraSun's branded E-85, at select Sheetz locations in the Pittsburgh area. Presiding over the event, Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell said, "One of the biggest obstacles to greater use of E-85 ethanol is availability – especially at the retail level. Here in Pennsylvania, we are leading the charge to greater accessibility as the first state in the Northeast to open publicly available retail E-85 stations. VeraSun will be supplying VE85 to select Sheetz stores, beginning this week at the new Pleasant Hills location, and expanding to two additional stores by later this year. Sheetz, based in Altoona, Pa., is a family- owned and operated convenience store chain with more than $3.4 billion in revenue in 2005, 322 locations, and more than 10,000 employees. The announcement marks the fourth collaboration in four states that GM and VeraSun have entered with a third-party retailer since the companies began working together to promote awareness of E-85. The first initiative, launched last May in Sioux Falls, S.D., put VeraSun's VE85 pumps in seven prominent local stations. In the Chicago metro area, what began as a 20-location effort in February has already expanded to include 32 sites, and the initial four outlets in Minneapolis-St. Paul have grown to 16 in the past four months.

Originally posted on Fleet Financials