Log in Subscribe Join Grass Roots Action

Mid-Level Ethanol Blends Act of 2009 Introduced in Senate

Thursday, September 17, 2009

(American Meat Institute)

A bill to ensure that new fuels introduced into the marketplace are compatible with the inventory of gasoline-fueled engines in widespread use at the time of introduction was introduced September 14 in the U.S. Senate.

The measure entitled, the “Mid-Level Ethanol Blends Act of 2009” (S.1666), was introduced by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA). 

The Clean Air Act (CAA) currently prohibits the sale of mid-level ethanol blends, but the ethanol industry is seeking a waiver from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to sell E15 as a general purpose fuel.

The new bill requires that, before the EPA can issue such a waiver, it must have its Science Advisory Board (SAB) study the compatibility of such fuels with current engines. The SAB study would include a comprehensive review and analysis of available independent scientific evidence on the compatibility of mid-level ethanol fuels with the emission requirements of the CAA and the operability of engines.

Under the bill, the SAB would offer recommendations to the EPA on the soundness and feasibility of permitting the sale of mid-level ethanol blends. The EPA, when responding to requests for waivers from provisions of the CAA for mid-level ethanol blends, would be required to explain how its decisions are compatible with SAB recommendations. The SAB would be required to address the expected availability of alternative fuels for up to five years after the introduction of a new fuel and the ability of fuel delivery systems to guard against misfueling engines with an incompatible fuel.

 share on facebook  share on twitter