Sioux Falls, SD – The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) is pleased the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee is held a full committee hearing yesterday on bipartisan legislation S. 517, the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act to clarify that E15 and higher blends should be allowed for sale from June 1 through Sept. 15.
“Senators Fischer (R-NE), Ernst (R-IA), and Duckworth (D-IL), all members of the EPW Committee, are providing timely leadership in making sure this priority issue gets the attention it deserves in Congress,” said
Brian Jennings, ACE executive vice president. “We’re encouraged that the hearing can be the first step toward enactment of legislation to give retailers the choice to offer E15 and higher blends to their customers year-round.”
In 2011, EPA approved the use of E15, a fuel with lower Reid vapor pressure (RVP) emissions than E10 and straight gasoline. Unfortunately, EPA refuses to apply the same RVP standard for E15 that applies to E10, handcuffing gas station owners like Mike Lorenz of Sheetz Inc. who wants to offer the fuel to his customers year-round. ACE is delighted Lorenz will be among those testifying during the hearing to provide his firsthand retailer experience as proof that this commonsense legislation is needed to relieve him and other retailers of the RVP regulatory burden.
“This minor fix would be a major relief to retailers offering E15 today and would remove one of the biggest barriers for other retailers who want to offer E15,” Lorenz said. “For consumers, it would provide year-round access and increased availability of E15. Consumers should also benefit from this rule update, since E15 typically sells for less than regular unleaded gasoline and is cleaner burning and higher octane.”
Sheetz is among the increasing number of retailers to offer E15 and higher ethanol blends at their stations. Today, E15 is sold at more than 800 retail outlets across 29 states.
ACE has made lobbying the enactment of legislation to extend the one-pound RVP waiver to E15 and higher blends a priority for years. It’s been the focus of the organization’s messaging to Congress, including two advertisements running in today’s POLITICO and Roll Call newspapers featuring Good & Quick Companies store owner Charlie Good.