The United States is in a battle to reduce the consumption of gasoline. One major weapon to reduce our rate of consumption is to mix ethanol -- biofuel (made from such things as corn) -- with gasoline. Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency approved a mixture of 85 percent gasoline and 15 percent ethanol. This is referred to as E-15 ethanol.
Well, nothing the government does gets 100 percent approval from the populous or business interests. So it is not surprising that the Association of International Automobile Manufacturers has filed a petition against the plan. The association is against the use of E-15 ethanol on 2007 model year and newer passenger vehicles.
The association takes its action as part of a coalition of automobile and engine product manufacturers. The group is arguing that the EPA has authorized the sale of E-15 without doing enough research to determine whether the mixture could adversely effect air pollution or damage engines, seals, fuel lines and other parts.
The EPA said it will review the petition and respond soon.
The groups who are against the use of ethanol contend that the addition of alcohol to gasoline can cause the fuel to become more corrosive. It is said that cars built in 2007 and later have fuel systems that can handle the ethanol-gasoline mixture while cars built prior to 2007 cannot. Moreover, many parts of the country are using a mixture of 90 percent gasoline and 10 percent ethanol called E-10. Generally, reports are that drivers are not experiencing any problems using the blend. Some argue that no one is sure if there is a difference in the performance of vehicles when the mixture of ethanol is increased.