Should Washington force refiners like ExxonMobil to blend 15 percent ethanol – aka E15 – into the motor fuel supply? (Current policy essentially limits it to 10 percent.)
Check out this chart (courtesy of Mark Green and the Energy Tomorrow blog) before you give your answer.
[Click chart to enlarge]
A battle has been brewing in Washington for several years over what course the federal government should take. Forcing E15 on the nation’s motorists is a big priority for the biofuels lobby. AAA, meanwhile, warns that E15 could damage vehicles, since the vast majority of those in use today – as well as marine and small engines — are not guaranteed to operate safely on ethanol blends higher than E10.
The above chart puts the AAA claim into some perspective. The way people feel about the matter might depend to some degree on what kind of cars they drive.
As Mark writes, “If you’re a lucky owner of a vintage Miata, don’t let E15 anywhere near its fuel tank.” Or, I’ll add, if you own just about any other kind of car.