A new blend of gasoline comprising 15 percent ethanol, approved by the Environmental Protection Agency last month and now available in Kansas, could damage automobile engines, the Kansas Petroleum Council is warning.
“We don’t have a problem with ethanol,” council director Ken Peterson told CNSNews.com. “We use it virtually in every gallon of gasoline that’s produced for sale in this country, but the E15 is kind of a different animal in that both the petroleum industry and the car manufacturers have raised concerns about potential damage from the use of E15 fuel in a misfueling situation [putting the wrong type of fuel in your vehicle by mistake].
“And we’re essentially trying to issue a warning, a caveat emptor type of comment, to just be careful about this.”
According to the Coordinating Research Council (CRC), an auto and oil industry project, gasoline has contained 10 percent ethanol for several years. The EPA has now raised the “approved” level of ethanol to 15 percent, which is a major concern to these industries.
“Although ethanol is known for its solvency and corrosive nature, material changes have made current engines and vehicles robust to ethanol concentrations in gasoline of up to 10 volume percent,” it said in a report.