Engine failures in study require EPA to reconsider upping ethanol content

Study Documenting Engine Failures Requires EPA to Reconsider Increasing Ethanol in Gasoline

I’m not a fan of ethanol in gasoline. I’ve seen the negative affects of it on my own vehicles’ components and mileage, in other people’s vehicles, and my sentiments have been backed by industry specialists on lubrication with whom I’ve heard speak. Granted the following press release from the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) comes from an agency with an interest in keeping ethanol out of engine fuel (pro-ethanol backers likewise have big money in seeing the increased ethanol content), the AFPM president’s  statements ring true from our experience and we hope its recent test results help keep increased ethanol out of fuel.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers President Charles T. Drevna issued the following statement in response to a Coordinating Research Council report issued today on the organization’s extensive testing of higher ethanol blends in vehicles that the Environmental Protection Agency says can handle such blends:

“The Coordinating Research Council’s objective scientific tests have found disturbing evidence that increasing the amount of ethanol in gasoline above the current 10 percent causes serious damage to car engines. The study shows that a significant percentage of cars tested suffered engine damage when refueled with 15 percent ethanol. These are cars EPA has approved to run on E15 and are representative of approximately 5 million vehicles in the nation’s existing fleet.

“This study represents a growing body of scientific evidence concluding that ethanol in blends greater than 10 percent damages vehicles and outdoor power equipment engines and ultimately leaves consumers forced to pay costly repair bills. Auto manufacturers are now labeling gas caps of new vehicles with a warning against using ethanol in blends greater than 10 percent in an attempt to insulate themselves from liability caused by EPA’s approval of E15. Unfortunately, existing vehicles do not contain this warning and consumers may not fully understand its implications, leaving them to foot the bill for damage caused by this alternative fuel.

“Based on this new evidence, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson should reconsider her decision to allow the use of 15 percent ethanol blends in the nation’s gasoline supply. EPA has a responsibility to protect the American people from inadequately tested fuel blends. Consumers have the right to expect federal officials to devote adequate time and funds to follow real science – not political science – and to put the interests of the American people first. No one should be asked to pump first and ask questions later and become a participant in a giant science experiment to line the coffers of large agribusinesses while overlooking the real-world implications of E15.”

About AFPM
AFPM, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (formerly known as NPRA, the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association) is a trade association representing high-tech American manufacturers of virtually the entire U.S. supply of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, other fuels and home heating oil, as well as the petrochemicals used as building blocks for thousands of vital products in daily life. AFPM members make modern life possible and keep America moving and growing as they meet the needs of our nation and local communities, strengthen economic and national security, and support 2 million American jobs.

15 thoughts on “Engine failures in study require EPA to reconsider upping ethanol content

    1. Jerry Holder

      The way to stop it is everyone should boycott an oil company that uses more than 10% ethnol in its gasoline. If all of them add the extra 5% (total 15%) then pick one and have everyone boycott that company until they go back to 10%. When the economic pressure is turned up a notch things will change. Then you pick another, and another until it goes back to 10% or nothing.

      Petitions want work but if you hit them in the wallet they listen.

  1. Steve Anderson

    Just As an item of curiousity why is it that the EPA uses regular fuel to determine the EPA fuel mileage ratings? As you state it is definitely counter to getting the best mileage when the ethanol is added,hence lower real world fuel mileage……When we as a Society trying to better our fuel economy and dependence upon oil why in the world would you use ethanol?? The fact that it takes almost as much fuel to make the ethanol as it does to just use the petroleum instead?? This is not saving anyone but using corn and other food products to create fuel,great if that’s all you have but very counter productive to better fuel economy…..Thank you for the other information it pretty well answers or concludes to the same result as my own conclusions about Ethanol!

  2. Jerry Holder

    In our rush to slow the importation of oil, to reduce greenhouse gas, and keep an ever decreasing supply of oil available we still remain a country without a National Energy Policy (NEP).

    The corporate farmers who are the corn producers have decided its better to produce ethnol than to feed the world. The production of ethnol cost more, uses more fuel and produces more greenhouse gas than using a similar amount of gasoline. Not to mention it reduces the amount of corn available to make food supplies etc. for people.

    With that said, corporate farmers are assigned the task to maximize profits and your automobile engine is not even considered in their thought process. They have a 10% foothold currently. Why not go for 15%. They have nothing to lose and 50+% more profit to gain.

  3. Charlie Peterscappcharlie@earthlink.net

    GOOGLE: Prop 87 (510) 537-1796

    Bill Clinton, Al Gore & Senator Obama supported the California 2006 Prop. 87, a GMO corn ethanol welfare program.

    Bill, Al, have changed opinion on the ethanol mandate, I wonder if Obama will make this the time for CHANGE?

    I support a waiver of the ethanol mandate, voluntary use of ethanol in my gas.

    Federal ethanol policy increases Government motors oil use and Big oil profit.

    It is reported that today California is using Brazil sugar cane ethanol at $0.16 per gal increase over using GMO corn fuel ethanol. In this game the cars and trucks get to pay and Big oil profits are the result that may be ready for change.

    We do NOT support AB 523 or SB 1396 unless the ethanol mandate is changed to voluntary ethanol in our gas.

    Folks that pay more at the pump for less from Cars, trucks, food, water & air need better, it is time.

    The car tax of AB 118 Nunez is just a simple Big oil welfare program, AAA questioned the policy and some folks still agree.

    AB 523 & SB 1326 are just a short put (waiver) from better results.

    GOOGLE: Prop 87 (510) 537-1796

  4. Gene Bethke

    If I could use your coment for fertilizer,my corn could be 20 ft tall by now! Any farmer has to produce what crop will bring profit per acre. Most corn goes for animal feed.Ethanol byproduct gluten or distillers grain goes to animal feed.Wheat and other grain are still available at a bargain cost and there is a surplus of production more than we use.There is never a shortage.
    There is a demand for any alternate energy to oil Its YOUR decision to decide what blend to use in your car.Nobody demands you to use 15% especially a farmer in a field.Pull your head out even if you enjoy the warmth
    Cars in Brazil should have disolved by now using 70%.Ask yourself who is doing the testing? Does big oil have a influence that could make car companies print warnings on a gas cap? Are we intentionally designing vehicles with gaskets that are not compatable with alcohol? How high does Gasoline have to get before you look for a alternative.Henery Ford built a Model T car with a carb that adjusted with a knob on the dash for the use of moonshine in the fuel tank,so the farmers could produce their own fuel. Was it the refinery boys that sugested those knobs disapear?….Nah,couldnt be!

  5. bob

    this is nothing but political issues. The farmers and the Govt. are getting rich while the little guy is getting his engines ruined by this crappy fuel.

  6. Hubert Barr

    I buy NO ethanol if I can possibly avoid it. I oppose it both on a useability level and a political level. The farmers need to be producing corn for tortillas so that poor people can afford to eat. It’s just a way for rich people to get richer (gasahol). Thanks for letting me rant.

  7. William J Toensing

    Please become more political & encourage your subscribers to become more political on this DAMN ethanol being added to our gasoline. Please also write about the the foreign diesels in Europe that get 50, 60, 70, & higher MPG that we are not allowed to import & buy in our “so called free country, the USA” unless they are more than 25 years old & encourage readers to become more political on this too. So what if these cars don’t meet out DOT/EPA regulations. How much can a car that gets 70 MPG pollute? Isn’t an east German Trabant or the Tata Nano made in India safer than a motorcycle or motorscooter that we can legally buy & drive in this country? You may publish my comments in OCW or elsewhere if you like.
    Also, please note that VW sold a 1981 Dasher station wagon in the USA. I know, I own one, a diesel. Your Old Car Price Guides do not reflect such, only a sedan.

  8. Charlie Peters

    A random ‘Smog Check’ inspection & repair ‘secret shopper’ audit, ethanol cap and elimination of dual fuel CAFE credit can cut California car impact over 50% in 2013. (Prevent Over 2000 tons per day of sulfur, PM, HC, O3, NOx, CO & CO2.) Improved performance of AB32 at reduced cost.

  9. Charlie Peters

    Is CA using Brazil sugar ethanol at a premium of $0.16 per gallon so Valero is shipping GMO corn ethanol to Brazil? Is SHELL also moving on the CA natural gas electric market that the people pay at double the national rate? So is CA funding export of energy profit?

  10. Charlie Peters

    Is GMO food / fuel about support for corporate welfare to create a monopoly of food, fuel & water? Is this a game of we pay and they export the profit? Can you spell Federal Reserve? Spell or is it smell?

    Does Mary Nichols have stock in Schnitzer Steel Industries?

  11. Charlie Peters

    California CARB fuel was close to zero ethanol in our fuel in 1992..

    1992 fuel price about $1.40 per gallon.

    Ethanol push from fed EPA and friends pushed ethanol to 5.6% and we paid more for our fuel.

    Fed EPA and Big oil refiners pushed the oxygenate to 10% and we paid more.

    Now BP GMO fuel is pushing for over $1.00 in corporate welfare with 15% of the fuel market while cutting back Oil and refining

    Will BP GMO fuel patents generate credit trade income from the Big oil industry with the Queen Mother help.

    The Queen banker friends may want a share.

    So. how big does California ethanol bill need to be to qualify for the EPA waiver?

  12. CharliePeters

    Will California State Senate confirm a Department of Consumer Affairs / Bureau of Automotive Repair (DCA/BAR) Chief who will make sure (Partial) Zero Emissions Vehicles (PZEV) that fail Smog Check get fixed. Smog Check secret shopper audits would cut California’s smog by 1500 tons per day, this will reduce the cost impact to Californians by $billions$.