Fuel retailers want to offer their customers E15 – a federally approved fuel with 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline. It is approved for almost 90 percent of American vehicles, can save motorists money and increase a vehicle’s performance. That is why E15 can be found in 29 states, where it is sold at over 1,300 stations. Growth Energy expects that number to double in 2017, yet many fueling stations are in regions of the country where unnecessary regulations limit sales of E15 during the summer fueling season (June 1 – September 15).
This regulation is tied to Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) – a measure of how quickly fuel evaporates. In 1990, Congress provided a one-pound RVP volatility waiver to 10 percent ethanol blends because ethanol fuels reduce tailpipe emissions. While the EPA has extended this waiver to blends below 10 percent, the agency has maintained they cannot provide RVP relief for E15.
Enacted before E15 was part of the conversation, the current rules remain hopelessly out of date, barring many drivers from accessing cleaner fuels during summer months when Americans spend the most time on the road.
Growth Energy has led the way along with our retail partners to gain support for legislation to extend the RVP waiver to E15 and ensure American drivers have access to this affordable option year-round. Congress should act quickly to send it to the president’s desk.
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