Expanding Consumer Access to Biofuels in New York

The New York Department of Agriculture and Markets may soon update the state’s fuel regulations to allow the sale of E15 – fuel mixed with 15 percent ethanol. The change would represent an important step toward clean, sustainable economic growth for New York communities, farmers, and drivers. Right now, almost every gas station in America sells a 10 percent ethanol blend, but many more are starting to offer E15, which means lower prices, cleaner air and better engine performance.

E15 at a Glance: 

Biofuel Benefits:

  • Reduces carbon emissions by 43%
  • Displaces chemicals in fuel that cause cancer and asthma
  • Spurs innovations in advanced biofuels
  • Promotes economic growth in rural communities

E15 in New York

E15 will provide New Yorkers an additional choice at the pump that can cut carbon emissions, grow the state’s rural economy and farm communities, and limit the need for toxic gasoline additives associated with cancer and smog.

E15: Saves drivers money with an affordable, green fuel option

New York is the fourth largest gasoline market in the nation, which means that even a modest change in fuel consumption could deliver big benefits. According to the Department of Energy, New York consumed more than 5.7 billion gallons of motor gasoline in 2017, at a cost of $13.867 billion dollars. The Federal Highway Administration reports that New York motorists traveled 123 billion miles in 2017. At five to 10 cents less per gallon than standard gasoline, E15 could save New York drivers $285 to $570 million each year.

Biofuel blends like E15 are already used in New York at the Watkins Glen racetrack, where NASCAR drivers have helped to rack up more than 14 million miles on the high-performance fuel. That’s because E15 delivers more octane for better performance – at a lower cost. It also burns cleaner and cooler than regular gasoline.

E15: Gives consumers choices at the pump

New York drivers want more affordable options at the pump. New York is already home to 64 stations that offer E85, according to the Department of Energy. While E85 is an option for those with flex fuel vehicles, E15 provides another option at the pump for nine in 10 cars on the road.

Cumberland Farms operates 81 locations in New York state alone. In late 2018, they announced plans to launch E15 at more than 120 stores and could soon bring those same options to New York motorists.

E15: Supports New York jobs and drives the rural economy

There are currently two ethanol plants in the state, and the broader biofuel sector supports more 21,000 New York jobs and contributes $4 billion to the state economy. In fact, many motorists in the northeast already benefit from cleaner, more affordable blends of high-octane ethanol produced by businesses like Western New York Energy.

Ethanol supports a robust supply chain in New York including both trucks and rail. For example, CSX railroad is the primary supplier of ethanol transportation in the northeast, serving 18 unit-train terminals in the region, including the Buckeye Terminal in Albany, New York. According to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Buckeye is one of CSX’s largest and most efficient rail terminals, and it supports much of the ethanol consumption in New York State and New Jersey, as well as surrounding areas.

Statewide adoption of E15 would generate demand for an additional 285 million gallons of ethanol annually, creating a market for 101 million bushels of corn and driving revenue for New York farmers.