E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol, 85 percent gasoline, is now available in Rochelle, Illinois complements of the partnership between Illinois River Energy and the Rochelle Petro Travel Plaza.
E15 is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for vehicles 2001 and newer and is the most tested fuel in EPA approval history. It has been available for more than 16 months and driven over 45 million miles with no known cases of engine damage. According to data cited by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), ethanol is revitalizing rural communities and saved consumers on average $1.00/gallon at the pump in 2012 and 2013. It has created over 87,000 jobs while sustaining an additional 295,000 and has reduced America’s foreign oil dependence to 41 percent, compared to 48 percent without ethanol.
“Today’s launch of E15 is an example of local businesses coming together to help consumers. We are proud to offer drivers in Rochelle, and all of northern Illinois, another choice at the pump,” said Illinois River Energy Group CEO Rich Ruebe. “We encourage everyone with a 2001 and newer vehicle to come by the Plaza and check out the new fuel.”
Robert White, director of market development for RFA, said, “The E15 offering at Rochelle Petro Travel Plaza is another step forward in E15 use and expansion. I have seen firsthand the hard work and dedication from both Illinois River Energy and Rochelle Petro Travel Plaza to get E15 into the local marketplace. As more companies follow this example, we will see the expansion of E15 across the country.”
Ray Newton, general manager of the Petro Travel Plaza, said the of higher ethanol fuel blend, “The Petro Travel Plaza in Rochelle, Illinois is delighted to be the first retail location in Northern Illinois to offer motorists expanded fuel choice. With our grand opening celebration this week, motorists with any gasoline-powered 2001 and newer light duty car, truck, or SUV will have the choice to purchase a less expensive, higher octane, cleaner burning fuel, E15 containing 15 percent American-made ethanol, which is a better value than the traditional 10 percent ethanol blends.”
Illinois River Energy, owned by GTL Resources USA, Inc., will mark their seventh anniversary next month. Based out of Rochelle, Ill., the company employs over 60 local residents and what began as a 50 million gallon of ethanol facility grew into more than a 120 million gallon per year facility. The local community is vitally important to Illinois River Energy as they receive a majority of their corn from farmers within 40 miles of their processing facility. Additionally, Petro Travel Plaza – the largest full service plaza in northern Illinois – opened their doors in 1992. They offer high level ethanol blends including E85 (85 percent ethanol, 15 percent gasoline) and now E15.