America used more gasoline in 2006, but that increase was entirely offset by ethanol.
According to the American Petroleum Institute’s December 2006 statistics report, gasoline deliveries in 2006 increased a modest 0.8 percent from 2005 to 9.2 million barrels, or 386 million gallons, per day.
The year’s higher volume of gasoline deliveries was, in effect, met entirely by a substantial jump in the blending of ethanol into gasoline. Ethanol use in gasoline rose by more than 1 billion gallons, or nearly 35 percent, to an estimated 5.4 billion gallons in 2006. More than 40 percent of all gasoline consumed in the U.S. now includes ethanol.
That was good news to the Renewable Fuels Association. President Bob Dinneen commented, “The fact ethanol blends are making up for the entire growth in gasoline consumption means our nation is having to import less oil than would otherwise be needed.”