The official comment period to speak out against the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposal to slash the amount of homegrown ethanol blended in our fuel supply as called for by Congress in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is now over.
But that doesn’t mean our voices should go silent. Until EPA’s numbers are finalized, continue speaking out in support of maintaining a strong RFS and keeping America’s energy policy moving forward, not backward.
Let your congressional representative and senators know about the importance of having fuel choice, as well as ethanol’s positive impact on air quality and Minnesota’s rural economy. Take to social media to tell EPA not to mess with the RFS. Fill up with higher ethanol blends and dispel myths about ethanol among family and friends.
We must continue standing up for homegrown biofuels at all times, regardless of open comment periods or what EPA might be doing to put up obstacles to renewable fuels.
Ok, now that that’s out of the way, let’s check out the latest news and happenings from the world of ethanol:
MCGA, others speak out for RFS
If you missed it, be sure to read the official RFS comment letter the Minnesota Corn Growers Association sent to EPA.
200,000 sign Fuels America petition
More than 200,000 people from all 50 states signed a petition led by Fuels America to stand up to the oil industry and tell EPA to maintain a strong RFS. Signed petitions in boxes stacked over 5 feet high were hand-delivered to EPA by leaders from National Farmers Union and I am Biotech.
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Fuel America campaign.
Less ethanol, more toxic emissions
A new video from the Urban Air Initiative (UAI) demonstrates how removing ethanol from gasoline results in higher toxic emissions and increased prices at the pump.
When UAI compared fuel that contained no ethanol to fuel that contained the standard 10 percent ethanol in Wichita, Kan., they found that toxic aromatics like benzene and toluene were about 45 percent higher in the ethanol-free fuel.
Here’s a video that demonstrates the findings. After you’ve watched it, be sure to share on social media and with others.:
Ethanol blends = cleaner engines
Another UAI study shows that ethanol-free fuels actually increase wear and tear on engines, including hoses, seals and fuel tanks. From the report:
“…Vander Griend explained that extensive testing was conducted on fuel lines, gas containers, and plastic components. The materials were each soaked in straight gasoline (E0) and a 10 percent ethanol blend (E10) for extended periods of time. In every case, said Vander Griend, the ethanol free gasoline increased the damage to fuel lines, gas containers, and plastic components, while the materials soaked in E10 were impacted less.
“The notion that somehow ethanol free gasoline is a superior product could not be further from the truth,” continued Vander Griend.”
Here’s a video summarizing the study’s findings:
If you’re looking for a smart, insightful, honest and often humorous website to refer people to for information about ethanol, we can’t recommend “The Ethanol Chronicles” enough.
Marc J. Rauch, executive vice president at the Auto Channel, answers any and all ethanol-related questions from people who write in. No matter how angry, off-base or misinformed the “questions” Rauch receives, he takes the time to answer them. Politely. Often with a does of humor or irony mixed in.
Be sure to check out “The Ethanol Chronicles.”
POET Summer Sizzle event
If you’re looking for something fun to do on Monday, Aug. 3, POET is hosting its “Summer Sizzle” event from 4-8 p.m. at the Worthington Event Center (1447 Prairie Dr., Worthington, MN). Come for a social hour, meal and hear from regional leaders in the ethanol.
To RSVP, call POET at (712) 724-6604.
Where to find higher ethanol blends
If you’re wondering where you can fill up with E15, E85 or other higher ethanol blends, go to www.mnfuels.com for a map and list of stations. You can also download the Minnesota Biofuels Association station locator app.