Renewable fuels proponents across the nations are calling upon the Environmental Protection Agency to allow for the year-round sale of E15. The fuel, available for use in 2001 models and newer, is regulated by a federal regulation from June 1 to September 15. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig believes many folks find this regulatory inconsistency very frustrating.
“We’re asking EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to act swiftly to undertake that rulemaking,” Naig said. “Also in the meantime, to provide guidance to fuel retailers like Kum & Go that will allow them to offer E15 year-round. We know that moving from E10 to E15 is a good thing, certainly for consumers, our environment, our industry and Iowa farmers.”
Fuel retailers across the state switched all E15 pumps to flex fuel only ahead of the June 1 mandate. Iowa Renewable Fuels Association executive director Monte Shaw says only ten-percent of vehicles will be able to utilize the one renewable fuel option at the pump throughout the summer months. Shaw stresses the impacts this could have on drivers facing soaring gas prices.
“If you stretch that across the state of Iowa for the entire summer driving season for – as the President himself said – ‘this unnecesscary and ridiculous restriction that is in place,’ that’s like $36 million that are lost to higher fuel costs because we’re forced to buy E10. We don’t even have the choice to buy E15,” Shaw said.