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API on setting the ethanol mandate

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

In a letter, the API has asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to build in an adequate margin of safety when setting the final ethanol mandates for 2014 because projections of gasoline demand often miss the mark.

The overwhelming majority of vehicles and refuelling infrastructure have not been certified or warranted for ethanol blends above 10%, and the Coordinating Research Council testing shows that ethanol concentrations in gasoline that exceeded 10% can lead to engine and fuel system damage. The API asks for an ethanol mandate of no more than 9.7% in order to preserve consumer choice for ethanol free gasoline, which represents approximately 3% of the market.


API downstream Group Director Bob Greco has said, ‘given the uncertainties in gasoline demand projections, a 9.7% ethanol mandate represents the minimum buffer needed to protect consumers against economic harm and safety concerns associated with the ethanol blend wall.

‘EPA shouldn’t try to micromanage ethanol mandates based on slight changed in gasoline demand forecasts. These mandates set the minimum amount of ethanol that must be used each year, not the maximum. So it’s better to err on the side of caution with the final rule rather than force more ethanol into gasoline than is safe.’

New campaign

The API has also announced a new TV, radio and online campaign that will run inside the beltway, beginning next week. Greco said, ‘the ads will urge EPA and the White House to follow through with the proposal and cut back on ethanol mandates to protect consumers from the impending blend wall.’

Adapted from press release by Claira Lloyd

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