More state vehicles in Minnesota are able to use up to 85 percent ethanol in their tanks, according to the American Lung Association in Minnesota.
So far this year, state agencies used 437,063 gallons of E85, a 25 percent increase over last year. Those figures come from the state’s SmartFleet Committee, a group tasked with helping agencies comply with Executive Order 04-10, issued by Gov. Tim Pawlenty.
The Faribault Academies, a campus of educational facilities serving deaf and blind Minnesotans, topped all others in the SmartFleet quarterly report, using E85 75 percent of the time they bought fuel. Another standout was the Minnesota Office of Higher Education, which reported 73 percent E85 use during the first half of the calendar year. In terms of sheer volume of E85 used, the state Department of Transportation used 170,617 gallons of cleaner-burning E85 in six months, compared to 376,312 gallons of gasoline and 690,798 gallons of B5 biodiesel blend fuel.
“This continued progress shows that the State of Minnesota is serious about its stated goal to reduce its petroleum consumption,” said Kelly Marczak, director for the American Lung Association in Minnesota’s clean fuel and vehicle technologies program and a member of the SmartFleet Committee. “In just six months, the state’s use of E85 in 2010 prevented more than 1,745 tons of lifecycle carbon dioxide emissions and harmful pollutants from entering our air.” In addition, the 5% biodiesel blend prevented 290 lbs of particulate matter, 400 lbs of hydrocarbons, 3,000 lbs of carbon monoxide and 700,000 lbs of carbon dioxide emissions.
The American Lung Association in Minnesota supports the use of E85 and biodiesel fuels in both public and private vehicles, as part of an overall strategy to reduce and prevent air pollution.