Posted in: Opinion,
by Patrick DeHaan on Sep 21, 2010 02:42 PM
Not a fan of ethanol? Be ready- the EPA will soon announce if they've approved the use of up to 15% ethanol in gasoline. Such an approval would mean increasing ethanol content from the currently allowed 10% to 15%. The EPA has been conducting studies and research attempting to see how older vehicles react to the fuel.
This all stems from a request in 2009 from Growth Energy, a pro-corn ethanol lobby group. They petitioned the EPA to allow up to E15 (15% ethanol) in gasoline sold in the United States. As required by law, the EPA had 270 days to make a decision on the request, which meant a deadline of December 1, 2009. However, on that date the EPA announced it would delay its decision until late summer of 2010 to allow for additional testing.
From industry sources, the EPA may issue a partial waiver for the original request. If this happens, an approval would be made, but only for some on-road vehicles, as many marine engines are not designed for ethanol use. However, any approval of E15 could result in confusion among boaters, since many fuel up at gasoline stations which could dispense E15.
While the decision has NOT yet been made, many organizations are rallying against the waiver request. I urge you to say no (my personal opinion) to E15. Write your lawmakers, President Obama, or the EPA. We already have little choice when buying gasoline that contains ethanol- the last thing we need is forced change that can cost us even more. Hopefully by now everyone knows that ethanol doesn't contain as much energy as gasoline, and so the more ethanol added, the less fuel economy you'll achieve. Not only that, but since ethanol is currently more expensive than gasoline, it could drive gas prices up.
Take action today before its too late- get the word out on E15!