MRAA Opposes E-15
Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Posted by: Larry Innis
Increasing ethanol content in
gasoline is bad for boats and the boating business. The Marine Retailers
Association of the Americas (MRAA) opposes attempts to increase the Renewable
Fuel Standard, which would enable the level of ethanol in gasoline to reach 15
percent (E-15) or higher, and asks Congress to support legislation reducing the
ethanol content in gasoline to just 10 percent (E-10) by co-sponsoring S. 334
and H.R. 1462.
S. 334, introduced by
Senators Roger Wicker (R-MS) and David Vitter (R-LA), along with five
co-sponsors, prohibits the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from
approving gasoline containing ethanol levels greater than 10 percent (E-10).
MRAA likewise supports H.R. 1462, introduced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and
59 co-sponsors, which requires a comprehensive assessment by the National
Academy of Sciences of the effects mid-level ethanol blends have on engines of
all kinds and suspends the current EPA waiver that permits the sale of E-15.
Serious and well-documented
safety problems, technology breakdowns and environmental issues result when
gasoline is blended with more than 10 percent ethanol in recreational marine
engines, outboard motors and marine fuel systems. Tests conducted by marine
engine manufacturers under guidance of the U.S. Department of Energy have
demonstrated that for marine engines designed to run on gasoline at E-10 by
volume, higher concentrations of ethanol (such as E-15) will pose serious
problems, including damage to valves, push rods and bearings; performance
issues, such as problems with starting and stalling; increased water absorption
and phase separation in the fuel tank; fuel tank corrosion, resulting in leaks;
increased emission of Nitrogen Oxide, causing smog; and passenger safety issues
when breakdowns occur underway and out of port.