Comments were due today to the EPA regarding the Green Jobs Waiver that would allow up to 15 percent ethanol (E15) in gasoline. Just as the clock ran out, The Association of International Automobile Manufacturers (AIAM) filed comments opposing the waiver request. It is no coincidence that AIAM filed their comments at a time when others could not respond. However, it is encouraging to note that support for the E15 waiver is mounting.
Michael J. Stanton, President and CEO of AIAM, outlined the association’s concerns in a public statement that you can read in full here.
“AIAM and its member companies have long recognized the importance of addressing climate change and have supported efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while significantly increasing fuel economy. With so much progress made by government and industry in recent months to meet these goals, we believe it would be premature for EPA to approve the near-term distribution and sale of fuels containing more than 10% ethanol without further testing to prevent unintended negative consequences.”
Stanton continued, “The Clean Air Act requires producers of any new fuel or fuel additive to show that those fuels will not contribute to the failure of vehicles or engines to meet emissions standards. Most vehicles currently being driven by American consumers were not designed to operate on ethanol blends greater than E10. If EPA were to approve the sale of such fuels, we believe a range of problems would result that could jeopardize the control or reduction of automotive emissions.”
The range of problems they cite are harm to emissions systems and drivability problems.
The real reason AIAM opposes the passing of the waiver is that they would lose an opportunity to sell the cars that are aging on dealer lots across the country. Several programs are in place to incenticize people to buy new cars including the Cash for Clunkers program. But what AIAM and other detractors are choosing not to acknowledge is that to ensure the country blends 36 billion gallons of biofuels by 2022 the minimum blend of ethanol must be raised. We cannot let the U.S. auto industry keep us from achieving energy security. Although it’s too late to submit your comments to the EPA, I encourage people to respond to AIAM’s comments. You can learn more about the Green Jobs Waiver at www.GoE15.com.