EPA decision on E15 expected soon

Published online: Sep 21, 2010 News www.boating-industry.com
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WASHINGTON - After several delays to allow for more scientific testing, the Environmental Protection Agency is expected to make a decision shortly on a waiver petition to allow ethanol levels of up to 15 percent in gasoline sold in the United States. 

A decision by the EPA is expected later this month or early next month, according to a release from the National Marine Manufacturer's Association. 

NMMA says that reports indicate EPA may grant a "partial waiver" for some on-road vehicles only - meaning E15 would be approved for use in cars of certain model years, but not any marine engines. 

"While we would be pleased that this scenario would exclude marine, we remain concerned about the risk of misfueling for boaters once E15 becomes available at gas stations," NMMA spokeswoman Christine Pomorski said in a statement. "We are also concerned that E15 will be marketed as a less expensive regular-grade fuel, while E10 will be available in premium grade gasoline. As consumers make fuel decisions primarily based on price, this increases the risk of misfueling." 

NMMA, the Marine Retailers Association of America and a group of concerned businesses known as the "Say NO to Untested E15" coalition are encouraging boaters to write an e-mail to President Obama requesting that he urge the EPA to test all gasoline-powered engines, including marine engines, before allowing E15 into the marketplace. 

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