Jack Gerard, API President and CEO has said the following about the latest RFS announcements.
“High ethanol blends that EPA is pushing are not compatible with most cars on the road today, and they could potentially put American consumers and their vehicles at risk. Most cars are only approved by the manufacturer to use ethanol blends of 10% or less. Extensive testing by the auto and oil industries shows that higher ethanol blends can damage engines and fuel systems, potentially leaving drivers stranded.
“EPA also suggested that if refiners would produce and sell more E85, a fuel mixture of up to 85% ethanol with gasoline, they would be able to meet the ethanol volume requirements EPA is proposing. But motorists have largely rejected E85. According to Triple A data, E85 costs more money in the long term because it has lower fuel economy than gasoline. A tank of E85 won’t get you as far.
“Consumers have shown they have little to no interest in purchasing increasing amounts of high ethanol fuels, which stands in stark contrast to the consumer demand for E0, non-ethanol gasoline. EPA has ignored the fact that consumers want E0 for their boats, for lawn equipment, and older vehicles. In 2014, E85 demand remained flat at just 0.15% of gasoline demand, while E0 represented nearly 7% of demand, up from 3.4% in 2012. EPA must use its waiver authority to set the final ethanol mandate to no more than 9.7% of gasoline demand, to protect consumers who want to purchase ethanol free gasoline.”
Former Senator, Wayne Allard, American Motorcyclist Association said the following, “Renewable Fuel Standard proposals announced by the US Environmental Protection Agency would increase the risk of misfuelling for motorcyclists and all terrain vehicle owners by forcing the widespread availability of higher ethanol fuel blends, such as E15. The practical effect of the EPA’s action is that ethanol production will exceed the blendwall in 2016. The EPA plans to exceed the blendwall by:
“Increasing the number of retail stations offering E15 and E85 through direct installation of new equipment or providing grants to retail owners, and locating stations offering E15/E85 closest to higher populations of vehicles that can use those fuels and developing contractual mechanisms to ensure favourable pricing of E15 and E85 at retail compared to E10 to boost sales volumes.
“In other words, the EPA is proposing federal grants and price controls to increase amount of the higher than E10 ethanol blended fuels into the marketplace. The AMA strongly disagrees with this approach. Instead, the market should dictate demand and let the consumer choose the proper fuel for each vehicle.
“In the proposed rule, the EPA discounts E0 and does not factor it in its scenarios. The EPA views E0 as a constraint on the volume of ethanol that can be consumed and expects such volumes to be lower than they were in the past as the market strives to expand consumption of ethanol under the influence of the RFS program. This statement contradicts the data from the federal Energy Information Administration shows demand for E0 rose from 3.4% in 2012 to nearly 7% in 2014.
“Consumers want E0 for their motorcycles, ATVs, boats, lawn mowers and other equipment because it does not pose the risk of engine and fuel system damage. Yet, the renewable fuels requirements have marginalised the product in favour of E10 or higher blends. Most importantly, the proposed rule mentions the likelihood of misfuelling only once. The rule states ‘…in June of 2011, the EPA finalised regulations to prevent misfuelling of vehicles, engines, and equipment not covered by the partial waiver decisions.’ This is the same misfuelling mitigation plan that initially mandated a 4 gallon minimum fuel purchase to address the concerns raised by the AMA. It was eventually revised in 2013 to the current plan following our complaints, yet it is still easily understood, misapplied or ignored by state governments and producers, distributors and vendors.”
Edited from speeches by Claira Lloyd
Read the article online at: https://www.hydrocarbonengineering.com/the-environment/25062015/latest-rfs-comments/