The American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) responded recently to the recent U.S. Court of Appeals decision to deny petitions to rehear a case on the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) decision to allow gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol – called "E15" – to be sold into the general fuel supply for use in some motor vehicles and engines.
I'm in general agreement with the ARPM and other organizations that are lobbying against the increased used of ethanol, mean while corn growers continue to rally for the increased use of ethanol, which is not a shock given what ethanol has done to boost the price of corn.
Americans should not be forced by any organization to consume gasoline that contains ethanol, and it is my belief that forcing the consumption of ethanol is bad for this nation, putting upward pressure on corn prices as the use of ethanol is mandated by the RFS, passed years ago.
"We are disappointed that the DC Circuit will not rehear the case and will let stand a procedural block that prevents the court from reaching the merits of this important issue. We remain concerned that EPA's partial waiver will result in significant misfueling and will harm consumers. EPA has authorized the sale of an ethanol blend that virtually every automobile manufacturer has warned will damage existing vehicles," said AFPM General Counsel Rich Moskowitz.
AFPM on October 1, 2012 filed a Petition for a Rehearing of the Grocery Manufacturers of America, et al. v. EPA, reasoning that EPA overstepped its authority under the Clean Air Act by granting partial waivers to allow the use of E15 in certain engines, including vehicles model year 2001 and newer.
Several studies have shown that E15 causes engine damage to passenger vehicles, boats and outdoor power equipment, including chainsaws and lawnmowers, and has led AFPM and other industry groups to raise concerns about a fuel not approved for use by the manufacturers of more than 228 million vehicles on the road today. A recent survey by the American Automobile Association (AAA) reported that 95 percent of consumers surveyed had not heard of E15 gasoline which lends credence to the potential for misuse and engine harm as well as creating safety, liability and warranty issues.
"We are analyzing the decision and will determine whether to seek review by the Supreme Court. Judge Kavanaugh issued a strong dissent based on EPA's acknowledgment that E15 damages cars and specifically referenced a recent AAA warning calling upon EPA to block the sale of E15," Moskowitz concluded.
In addition, a GasBuddy poll conducted in 2012 found that 68% of responding motorists said that the ethanol mandate should either be suspended or repealed. In the same GasBuddy poll, just 11% said they'd like to keep the ethanol rules as they are.