AFPM Applauds Bill Requiring Further Testing of Mid-Level Ethanol Blends

Feb 28, 2013, 10:22 ET from American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers

WASHINGTON, Feb. 28, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) lauds proposed legislation recently introduced by Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) that would effectively halt the sale of gasoline blends containing more than 10 percent ethanol. The bill (H.R. 875) would prohibit the sale of so called "mid-level ethanol blends" – fuels containing more than 10 percent and up to 20 percent ethanol – into the general fuel supply pending a comprehensive assessment of the impact of such fuels on all gasoline engines, vehicular and non-road.


H.R. 875 would halt an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) waiver that allowed for the sale of gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol, or E15, in cars made in 2001 and later. It would also prohibit EPA from granting any waivers aimed at overriding a provision of the Clean Air Act preventing the introduction of any fuel that could adversely affect the ability of vehicles and engines to meet emission standards.  

"It defies logic to allow the introduction of E15 for sale into the general fuel supply.  Independent studies have shown that E15 can damage multiple classes of engines, leaving consumers vulnerable to costly repairs and potential safety hazards, and companies unnecessarily exposed to lawsuits," said AFPM President Charles T. Drevna

In October 2010 EPA issued a partial waiver of the Clean Air Act to allow the use of E15 gasoline in light-duty motor vehicles model year 2007 and newer, and extended the waiver in January 2011 to include 2001-2006 vehicles. If passed, the Sensenbrenner bill would rescind EPA's waiver and require the Agency to work with the National Academy of Sciences to evaluate the body of scientific and technical research on mid-level ethanol blends and to consider the environmental, safety, durability, and performance impact on engines.

"EPA inappropriately approved a fuel that has not been extensively tested for use in the entire fleet of existing vehicles and engines. The Agency also failed to consider that E15 could potentially damage billions of dollars of gasoline refueling infrastructure in this country. Rep. Sensenbrenner's bill is a welcome remedy and highlights just one of the many problems that beset the entire Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) program," Drevna said.   

E15 was also the subject of additional Congressional action this week when the House Science Subcommittee on the Environment held a hearing on Tuesday to consider the safety and economic consequences of allowing the sale of mid-level ethanol blended gasoline. AFPM commends the Subcommittee for its attention to an issue that carries potentially broad safety and economic consequences.    

"While regulations can't change the laws of chemistry, physics or economics, Congress can mitigate EPA's overly aggressive agenda by repealing the unworkable RFS program," Drevna concluded.  

AFPM, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers is a trade association representing high-tech American manufacturers of virtually the entire U.S. supply of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, other fuels and home heating oil, as well as the petrochemicals used as building blocks for thousands of vital products in daily life. AFPM members make modern life possible and keep America moving and growing as they meet the needs of our nation and local communities, strengthen economic and national security, and support 2 million American jobs.

SOURCE American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers