The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule to update fuel pump labeling for E15 and improve the process for retailers to demonstrate compatibility of their equipment so they can offer higher ethanol blends.
“As producers of the primary feedstock for ethanol, corn growers support expanding availability of higher ethanol blends such as E15, an immediate, available, and affordable solution to lowering carbon emissions in transportation,” NCGA President John Linder wrote in the organization’s comments. “Finalizing this proposal will remove additional barriers to retailers offering E15 and provide an immediate fuel decarbonization opportunity.”
Updating EPA’s fuel pump label and supporting compliance demonstration for underground storage tanks (USTs) will benefit both consumers and retailers. NCGA’s comments urged EPA to adopt proposed updates to the E15 label and make further revisions to the label statement to keep it fact-based and avoid speculation and confusion.
“NCGA believes the E15 label must clearly and factually inform consumers which vehicles E15 is safe and approved for use in and identify the limited engines in which E15 is not approved for use. Because more than 95 percent of light duty vehicles on the road today are 2001 and newer and can use E15, the label should inform consumers that E15 is safe for use in their vehicles,” stated Linder. “EPA is not only proposing changes to E15 fuel labeling requirements but is also seeking input to revise and streamline methods for retailers demonstrating UST equipment compatibility. As NCGA’s comments noted, equipment compatibility has not been an issue for retailers because an extensive amount of equipment is fully compatible with E15 and higher blends, but demonstrating compatibility has been an issue. Through NCGA and state corn grower associations, farmers have invested their resources in support of biofuels infrastructure.
“We appreciate EPA’s proposals to expand options for UST owners and operators to meet compatibility requirements and the forward-looking proposal for new UST systems and replacement equipment and components to be compatible with up to 100 percent ethanol, cost-effectively future-proofing UST investments for changing fuel markets and new, low carbon fuel choices.
“We urge EPA to expand the allowances for already compatible equipment to do more to make compatibility demonstration less burdensome for retailers that want to offer consumers greater choice and value and meet the objective of allowing E15 use with existing compatible infrastructure. Listing these tanks and piping is a good first step, but EPA must ensure the greatest possible extent of equipment known to be compatible is included in the final rule,” the submitted comments went on the say.
Read NCGA’s submitted comments here.