Legislative Watch: E15 Update

by John R. Paul

April 16, 2013

Ethanol is back in the news this month with a number of state proposals that seek to limit E15's presence in the marketplace. Here's the latest on the bills to watch in 2013.

The debate over ethanol has again begun to boil over with legislation being considered in a number of individual states, as well as on the national level. Florida, Oregon and West Virginia have all drafted legislation proposing the removal of the requirement of ethanol and, more specifically, E15 from the marketplace. Additional states, including Maine, have been discussing similar legislation; however, as of this publication, they have not drafted or submitted any language for review.

Most strikingly, Florida Senate Bill 320 (House Bill 4001) has been approved by committee and will be reviewed by the Environmental Preservation and Protection committee. This has been a fairly quick process. The bill was only filed this past January and has a proposed effective date of July 1st.

On the national level, Wisconsin congressman Jim Sensenbrenner (R) has submitted H.R. 875 (S. 344), which requires further ethanol testing on the part of the EPA to determine its safety and sustainability. Sensenbrenner’s bill requires a minimum of 18 months of rigorous testing to determine, among other things: tailpipe emissions; engine and fuel system durability; materials compatibility; operability and drivability; fuel efficiency and economy; as well as durability of storage tanks, piping and dispensers for retail.

Following up on last year’s dismissal by the United States Court of Appeals, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, Association of Global Automakers, Outdoor Equipment Institute and National Marine Manufacturers Association have filed a petition with the Supreme Court to overturn the decision. The group is again challenging the EPA’s 2011 decision to grant partial waivers approving the sale of gasoline containing up to 15 percent ethanol for vehicles 2001 and newer.

The HVA will continue to monitor these developments and will keep you updated in the months to come. To check out the latest on ethanol and other historic vehicle legislation impacting you, head on over to the HVA’s Facebook page.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The bill that has been proposed in Oregon is H.B. 3107 which would repeal the requirement for retail dealers, nonretail dealers and wholesale dealers of gasoline to sell only gasoline blended with a specified percentage of ethanol. It was first introduced on 22 February and was referred to the Energy and Environment committee on 1 March. No further action has transpired at this time.

 

Comments

  1. Dean Billilng Sisters, OR

    Oregon does not have any bills that would limit E15 in the state. On the contrary, our mandatory E10 law limits auto fuel to E10 only. However we have two bills that would repeal our mandatory state E10 law, which would open the state to the federal E15 waiver. Luckily these two bills are symbolic, and won't get out of the committee they were first assigned.

  2. Dave Phoenix

    Adding ethanol robs a car of mileage you must use more of it to go the same distance on pure gas. See no point in adding it to gas. Straight gas gets better mileage that this E-10 and E-15 crap.

  3. Irene Georgia

    If E10 or even E15 is made mandatory for the newer cars where does it leave the people that have older cars. Especially classic cars that don't run well on even E10. This additive leaves water in the gas tank that will makes it rust out. It eats the rubber in fuel lines causing leaks, as well as other nasty things. Try and find a gas station that sells real gas, it's almost impossible. More testing is necessary before anymore of this stuff is added to our gasoline.

  4. shiri Atl

    The people who are making these rules have no idea how an engine works . Let them fill up with E-15 gas and drive a car that only uses 91 - 93 octane for a while. See how long the seals and fuel pump last..

  5. lynncavin charlotte NC

    E-10 has caused me to replace a fuel tank and other items in my fuel system. Poor milage also. Use Corn for FOOD and not gas. I'm sure E-15 will be worst on all systems.

  6. Andrew Peck Woodstock, New York

    Talk about robbing mileage! Our 1987 Rolls-Royce Corniche has gotten 13.5 MPG consistently on highway trips over the years with 10% ethanol gas. Returning from Florida to New York, we encountered a gas station with ethanol free gas. Our tank was nearly empty, and after the fill-up, we travelled 341 miles and filled up with 21.97 gallons. That's 15.52 MPG or 15% better. Ethanol is worse than useless, what an expensive scam!

  7. Bruce Texas

    I'm sure if you look behind the curtain, it is big agribusiness behind this mindless scheme. Follow the money - who is to gain? It consumes much of the corn driving its price up and then food and livestock prices. It's not about the environment but who owns government.

  8. lenny lake mary fl

    you need to get rid of that E10 out of the gas,worst thing they have done.cars run louse,plays hell with the car computers an bad for rubber parts in fuel systems.eats at the tanks unless they are plastic,causes water to form in tanks, now you have to use an additive to over come it so it costs more to run a car.corn oil is for frying not to run cars.an yes it sucks in truck fuel to.you over price the fuel so the executives make big bonuses which they are not worth.most only got that job from friends in the business.

  9. Doug Spokane, Wa.

    E10 gasoline is a terror on small engines, especially the carburator. If you don't shut off the fuel and run out the fuel left in the fuel line & carb, E10 eats the aluminum. It is plain junk and if it becomes mandatory to use E15, everyone who has a small engine, ie; lawnmower, outboard etc. will have to waste money on additives to eliminate the E10 or E15 in the gas you use and replace carbs yearly.

  10. Andrew Micklos United States

    Ten percent alcohol in gasoline reduces efficiency about 20% To make that up we have to import more foreign oil. My 64 Mustang is almost imposible to tune because the mixtures change constantly from station to station.

  11. Art Lynden, WA

    Ethanol was tried back in the '30s (promoted by corn farmers); it wasn't popular then, either. The power generated from ethanol is less than that of gasoline so it will take more ethanol blend to travel the same distance as with pure gasoline. The real world mileage reduction is usually in the 10-20% range. Passing power and towing power is also reduced, particularly noticeable in hilly or mountainous roads.

  12. ted seattle

    find your local real gas station and support http://pure-gas.org/index.jsp?stateprov=WA

  13. Jess Olesen Sun City Center, FL 33573

    E-10 Its proven to harm all engines and get less mileage. Check out what it does to outboard motors. Plus, my Old Car 1930 Ford doesn't run well with it, because of the water built up from sitting too long between fill ups.

  14. BATMAN OHIO

    THE GOVT. IS GETTING CRAZIER AND CRAZIER. WONDER HOW MUCH KICK BACK THEY ARE GETTING FROM FARMERS? BETTER OFF BUYING AV-GAS. MORE MONEY, BUT NO ADDITIVES. PURE GAS . AIRPLANE WON'T RUN ON GAS WITH ETHANOL.

  15. Jerry NC

    I have driven in excess of 50,000 miles per year for years and check the mpg on every tank of gas. I get 10% less MPG on the ethanol blends. It is forced on us by the Government, to the determent of our vehicles performance, while at the same time demanding better millage from the car manufactures. Typical Gov program, demand us to do something to help us while actually hurting us.

  16. Dan California

    We have been forced to use E 10 in California since MTBE was banned. Since then I have only used E-10 and the gas tank filler neck has corroded due to the ethanol. This is the power of the corn lobby and regardless of the damage caused your state rep will be on board, especially if you live in a state tainted with Democrat anti gasoline morons. Say no to E-15 because I have seen first hand the damage it causes.

  17. Stephen Mac Nish Mid-Hudson Valley, NY

    Aside from the damage done to the carb on my '51 Chevy and to my numerous small engined yard equipment, it was interesting to note the warning on the gas door of my newly purchased 2012 Prius which says that use of E-15 will void the warranty. And this is a 2012 vehicle. Frankly, I think that ethanol is a giant taxpayer subsidy of Big Ag.

  18. Ray Hulick Liverpool NY

    In our area Fast Track Hightest 91 octain fuel has NO ETHANOL. I use it in my 1992 chevy. gives me better MPG.

  19. oldcarman Oakland MI

    Follow the money! Corn producers & lobbyists threw a lot of money at politicians to get the subsidy. Ethanol producers the same. Rather than use non-corn based stuff, or buy ethanol from Brazil, they put tariffs on it, then take corn out of the food chain driving up prices around the world. All in the name of reducing dependence on foreign oil. Hypocrite politicians have slowed domestic drilling to a standstill, block CNG technology, force fuel on us that actually increases the demand for gasoline due to worse mileage, then block any pipelines so China can buy the oil we should be getting from Canada. Then the EPA declares CO2 a pollutant! The EPA should be cut to 1/4 of its size and make those people earn their cush pay & jobs. With all of the collectors & poorer people in this country, we should be demanding better policies from our so-called representatives, than this abomination!

  20. Lionel United States

    Plus the ethanol does serious damage to car with older tanks that have years of gums settled at the bottom. The ethanol softens and loosens the gums and varnishes and they flow into the fuel lines, filters and carbs. I drained a tank of fresh gas in a 1947 truck last year after it sat for 6 months without running: the gas was the color of coffee with globs of sticky molasses looking stuff clogging the drain hole. I maintain a friend's collection of 24 cars, anything not on injectors and catalytic gets Avgas or ethanol free when we can find it. Any tank older than 30 years gets Avgas only, which BTW still has lead in it and is better for engines designed to run on it. Not worth the hassle...

  21. R. Dean Kaul Kalamazoo, MI

    I'd like to see at least one pump in each gas station that would dispense gasoline with NO ethanol in it.

  22. Ernest Ellard United States

    While I agree with the need to run straight gasoline in our classics, I also believe we need straight alcohol fuel (made in the USA) at our gas stations, to compete w/gasoline (OPEC) as the only fuel (as in m-o-n-o-p-o-l-y) we have for our newer cars. Only legitimate competition will bring down the cost of fuel, and allow us to be independent of foreign oil.

  23. John MA

    Fundamentally, using data and facts, objective questions need to be asked. Have the original goals of adding ethanol to fuel been met? Are there net benefits? If there are net benefits, do they outweigh the costs? If not, then the addition of ethanol to fuel should be reevaluated and reconsidered. These questions may be even more relevant if new US domestic oil resources are realized.

  24. Will Charlotte nc

    Obama help us ! This stuff kills fuel economy . Us poor people dont need gas that cost us more and run out quicker .we should only go we're there is real gas , it's a shame that they force us to put this crap in our cars what will they force on us next bad water or food that hurts us like that gas hurts our cars but oh well all government cares about is money!

  25. Charlie Western Massachusetts

    E10 is bad enough. It is reaking havoc with older (classic) cars as mentioned in another post. It is also very harmful to small engines like those we all run on our lawn mowers, generators, chainsaws, power washers, and the list goes on and on. There are specific warnings on these devices that NO MORE than E10 can be run in these engines and non-ethenol is advised. E15 will ruin there engines and would be foolish to even run it in these small engines and vintage cars don't have hardened valve seats and the unlead and E10 ruins the valve seats. E15 will make it worse. Who decided we needed ethenol in our gasoline? Obviously someone who know nothing about engines!! I'm betting is was someone who has a large share of the ethenol stock interests. Sicking how the almighty buck rules, regardless of the concequences to everyone else. VOtE NO TO E15!!!!

  26. johnny w. riley Alabama

    Ask about bacterial lung infections caused by handling and exposure to ethanol fumes. The Govt. knows about this and so does E.P.A They have informed fuel workers of this problem!

  27. Robert Michigan

    Experts in the field of energy have proclaimed that the energy use to produce ethanol exceeds the amount produced but raises the prices of agricultural produced commodities.. This is in addition to the harmful effects to the users equipment. It is neither cost effective or energy effective.

  28. Pamela Florida

    I have a classic car, a 1980 MGB. It doesn't run as well on the new gas as it did before ethanol was added. And another big problem is with our gas tools and lawnmower. They constantly are having to be repaired because of the ethanol. It rots & gums up everything! We've been buying marine gas because it works better. But it's more expensive.

  29. gary reynolds missoula mt

    Luckily, there are a few stations around MT that offer premium grade non-ethanol fuel, which I use exclusively in my stock 1941 Ford.

  30. Chip Texas

    Once a few law suits are filed alleging vehicle fires from deterioration of the fuel system caused by ethanol in gasoline, the situation will get HOTTER. They can range from side of the road to garages. Hopefully no one will be killed or injured before some action is taken. Claims to fuel suppliers (with copies to congressmen [and women]) for replacement of fuel system components might also help in the fight to keep pure gasoline available for antique cars, marine and small engine equipment.

  31. Les Riddell NC

    E-10 has already destroyed most of my small engine powered lawn equipment aluminum carbs and caused excessive rust problems in the fuel systems. These fuel related corrosion problems are a fire hazard that is usually not detected, as the equipment stops running before there is a hot exhaust to ignite the leaking fuel!!! What a way to jump start the economy, force us to buy corrosive non-efficient fuel to destroy equipment!! If E-10 is 20% less efficient than regular gasoline, why pay more to have it destroy our equipment ?? Follow the money and vote these greedy ignorant government self serving lazy oxygen wasters out of office!!!

  32. ANDY Canada

    Is there any real net savings on energy? Farmers have to use fuel to grow corn. Lets not forget the cost of fuel for transporting it..

  33. Jerry Rivers Georgia

    I work at a large coal fired powerplant that uses diesel fuel to light off the coal. I have talked to many of the fuel truck drivers and they say half of thier business is moving ethanol around. So it has become big business for the trucking companies.

  34. wil johnson st. pete. fl.

    if i'm not mistaken, taxpayers are also subsidising the production of ethenol by .50 cents a gal. salt in the wound.

  35. JERRY Maryland

    Our cars , O rings, rubber components, carb or FI are not designed to run this garbage. Let alone E10 is riuning our engines. Let alone Motorcycles. It cost more to make, and taking corn away from our farmers. In which it should be going to. Leave corn to the farmers and have the govermment to keep there nose out of fuels in which we burn. Once again E10 or E15 is not designed for our engines.. Its a joke. Too many bird watchers and environmentalists are in the game

  36. J D CA (e-10 only state)

    I feel trapped! I have no regular choice of fuel. I like nothing about E-10 fuel. I have some infrequently used autos both new and old and the fuel goes sour in a very short time. It is very toxic smelling fresh and putrid when 4 to 6 weeks old.(remember new cars are sealed not vented fuel systems) So it is only when the old fuel is burned (exhaust) that it smells very bad.I have been told that there are so many additional additives in the gas to try to make it perform with E-10 that any environmental improvement is nil.I agree that every station should have at least one pump dedicated to pure gas. It would not take long to see the line form one more thing the only way the new cars can perform on the E-10 is by extensive use of computer control and monitoring (sensors). So what happens when the computers start failing. I do not think that cost of E-10 has been considered.