API: Consumers demand for ethanol free gasoline is strong and rising

WASHINGTON – The American Petroleum Institute (API) released data this week on the demand for non-ethanol gasoline (E0).

The data, compiled using data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), shows that demand for E0 is strong and growing. In 2012, demand in the marketplace was 3.4 and has reached almost 7 percent in 2014.

“The EPA must take this into account as it prepares to release biofuel mandates for 2014, 2015 and 2016,” API Downstream Group Director Bob Greco told reporters in a joint conference call Wednesday with the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA). “Consumers want E0 for their boats, for lawn equipment, for recreational vehicles and for classic cars.”

The 2014, 2015 and 2016 Renewable Fuel Standards proposals were recently sent to the White House Office of Management and Budget. In a tentative court settlement with API and AFPF, the EPA has agreed to publish the proposal by June 1.

“We anticipate, and the EPA has made every assurance, that they will hit the June 1 deadline,” said Greco. “This has gone on long enough and we need the EPA to move forward with this as quickly as they can.”

If the EPA does not meet the deadline, API and AFPF will have to go back to court to compel the EPA to issue it, which would not be a quick process and would result in further delays.

Strong demand for E0 stands in stark contrast to demand for high ethanol blends like E85, which represents 0.15 percent of overall gasoline demand, according to Greco. He said demand for E85 in recent years has been relatively flat, despite more stations offering E85 as an option.

“We remain concerned the EPA may raise the ethanol requirements based on the specious reasoning [that] E8, a mixture of up to 85 percent ethanol with 15 percent gasoline, is a workable solution. It is not,” Greco said. “EPA should not try to mandate a market for fuels like E85 for which there is no demand while trying to eliminate fuels like E0 for which actual consumers have shown a substantial demand. … Consumers’ interest should come ahead of the ethanol interests.”

Over 87 million Americans participated in recreational boating in 2014, which means boating is enjoyed by roughly one-third of the population. The industry has an economic impact of about $121 billion, 650,000 jobs and 35,000 businesses, according to Nicole Vasilaros, vice president of federal and legal affairs for NMMA.

As a result of the damaging effects ethanol blends have on marine engines, many boaters have turned to E0 in an attempt to reduce the risk of misfueling. Valisaros said hat if E0 were to disappear from the marketplace and E15 ontinued to expand as a result of the RFS, boaters will be forced to face significant consequences.

“Many boaters rely on E0 to power their vessels,” said Vasilaros. “E0 is not guaranteed to remain available as a result of the RFS and the influx of higher ethanol blends. An inability to find E0 or a simple misfueling mistake could cause boaters to see engine stalling, corrosion leading to oil or fuel leaks, increased emissions and damaged valves, rubber fuel lines and gaskets.”

Source: API

Source: API

One comment

  1. Bobby Fontaine

    The kind of ethanol added to gasoline is anhydrous, which is basically moonshine with the last few percentage points of water removed because gasoline (oil) and water don’t mix. You say ethanol has a third less energy content than gasoline, which translates into a 33% mileage loss over gasoline. When added to gasoline at a ratio of 10% (E10), it’s claimed to cause 3% mileage loss. But that doesn’t explain how 100% ethanol, even hydrous ethanol (moonshine with the water left in it), does not cause a 33% mileage loss in a high compression engine.

    What’s really behind the loss of mileage with E10 has already been mentioned, oil and water don’t mix, meaning the hydrocarbon chain connecting gasoline to ethanol is very weak, so weak that too much water causes a “phase separation”. This is where the ethanol and water sink to the bottom of the tank with the gasoline floating on top of it, which causes a great deal of damage to engines. What no one talks about is what happens even with the bare minimum exposure to water, even normal water vapor in the atmosphere that fuel is exposed to in the piston chamber. This causes that weakly connected hydrocarbon chain to break so there are too distinct fuels being fired. So when the spark plug ignites what is supposed to be 87 octane fuel, the ethanol is now at 113 octane and the gasoline 83 octane. This is because in order to achieve an 87 octane balance when adding 113 octane ethanol at 10%, the gasoline it’s added to is 83 octane.

    Low compression engines, like those that use regular gasoline, cannot compensate for a fuel mix of 113 and 86 octane at the same time, it’s impossible. This results in the claimed 3% mileage loss along with high emissions of acetaldehyde and formaldehyde. I t also causes hotter running engine because so much of the fuel is not combusting, it’s rather burning. The truth however is it causes a greater loss than 3%. Depending on the type fuel, engine, and ignition system, most suffer a 10% mileage loss or greater, meaning adding ethanol to gasoline at 10% by volume is a total wash even if it didn’t require any energy to produce. This is while hydrous ethanol causes no mileage loss, meaning the whole Midwest could be gasoline free using their own self sustaining 100% ethanol fuel rather than lobbying the federal government to force the rest of us to truck or train it to our regions so it can be used to ruin our fuels.

    To sum it up, even if ethanol came out of the ground ready to be added to gasoline, even if it fell like rain or magically appeared in our fuel tanks already mixed with our gasoline, it would still do more harm than good.

    On federal mandates driving commodities markets, ethanol forces high demand for corn, which means higher corn prices. So more farmers will grow corn over other crops. This means less of other crops coming to market, which drives their prices up as well. And the fact that ethanol is not just a drain on the economy because it requires more energy to produce than gives back in power, that is if we believe it works as a fuel, which it does not, this means our cheap energy model is broken, which drives down the value of the dollar. “That’s absurd, if this was true, the dollar would have started sinking as quick as mandated ethanol use began in the Spring of 2006,,,,,,, well I’ be, I just checked and that’s where the dollar started to decline, and kept declining the more ethanol was produced and making it’s way into gasoline supplies”

    Exactly, and a weaker dollar means higher prices for imports like oil. Not only that, but with all these federal mandated forces pushing markets in directions that can’t be stopped, it invites speculators into commodities so already rising prices went that much higher.

    Cheap energy and food are hallmarks of our economic model. Our formally unsubsidized low wage work force was founded on three floating variables, cheap energy, especially gasoline so workers can afford to drive to work; cheap food so they can feed themselves and their families; and affordable rent. Also a strong second hand market in cheap hand me down products like used cars, thrift stores, classifieds, and yard sales, all allow low wage workers a full flavor taste of the American Dream. Change any of them so workers can no longer afford to sustain themselves on unskilled wages and our financial markets start to come unraveled. We either have to import cheap labor or subsidized the work force we have, or both, which is what we’ve been doing.

    This is all predicated on one central factor working against all the rest, not just a fuel additive that doesn’t work, and would be a bad idea even if it did what it’s promised to do, it’s a federal mandated fuel product that can’t be competed against. So when it points markets downhill, that’s where they will go, not only meaning nothing can stop it, but everyone knows where’s it’s all heading. So of course markets respond by investing somewhere else, which is correct, why back a dying horse, a horse that’s being poisoned by it’s owner when it’s safer to take chances overseas or betting against US markets. *

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