Americans Concerned with Higher Level Ethanol Blends: API

Source: By Molly M. White, OPIS • Posted: Thursday, June 23, 2016

American voters are concerned about using higher ethanol blends in fuel and would support a presidential candidate who backs more oil and natural gas production, according to a survey released Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute (API).

The survey found 77% of U.S. voters are concerned about government requirements that aim at increasing the amount of ethanol blended with gasoline, with 50% of those voters being very concerned. On the other hand, 20% of those polled are not concerned.

The survey, conducted by Harris Poll, contacted 1,001 registered voter between May 10 and 15.

“Broadly, the poll makes clear that when it comes to energy, what matters to most Americans is that they want and expect reliable and affordable energy,”
said API President and CEO Jack Gerard. “During this election season we are backing our candidate ‘energy’ and the broad support by the American electorate for more oil and gas production.”

The survey respondents were asked also about increasing the amount of corn used for producing ethanol. It found that 59% of voters believe increasing corn used for ethanol production would boost consumer prices in the U.S. and add to world hunger.

Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor called the survey propaganda API is using to distort reality.

“The most recent push poll from API is just that — a push poll aimed at distorting the reality that American consumers have embraced biofuels, like ethanol, because they increase their cars’ performance, help clean up our air, and save them money at the pump,” she said. “American voters can see through the propaganda and tired tactics from API — another push poll won’t do anything to change the fact that Americans want a cleaner choice at the pump instead of fuel laden with toxic chemicals that have been proven to cause cancer and smog.”

API, an oil trade group which has made repeal of the Renewable Fuel Standard
(RFS) one of its top legislative priorities, “is yet again relying on push polling to foster its narrative that the public doesn’t support biofuels,”
Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Bob Dinneen said.

“The API’s poll is bunk and stands in stark contrast to a poll that Morning Consult, on behalf of RFA, conducted last week, which found that by a greater than 3:1 margin, voters support the renewable fuel standard and continuing the nation’s commitment to biofuels,” Dinneen added. “Additionally, the RFA found by a 2:1 margin, voters oppose efforts to reduce or repeal the RFS. The polling, of
2,001 registered voters, was conducted June 15-18, and has a margin of error of
+/- 2%.”

“API posed its two biofuel-related polling questions in a callously misleading way. By contrast, the RFA asked no leading questions. When voters are given a question devoid of prejudice, it’s amazing what happens. The American public clearly wants alternatives to Big Oil, and biofuels can help reduce our petroleum dependence, while cleaning the environment and boosting the rural economy,” Dinneen said.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last month proposed a 2017 Renewable Volume Obligation of 18.8 billion gal of renewable fuels, up from the 18.11 billion gal target it set for 2016, under the Renewable Fuel Standard. Of that amount, the agency said conventional biofuels, mostly ethanol produced from corn, would account for 14.8 billion gal, up from 14.5 billion gal this year, but still short of the congressional goal of 15 billion gal.