Bill compelling further study of E15 would cost $1M — CBO

Source: Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter • Posted: Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A bill requiring U.S. EPA to reverse its approval of gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol and commission further study before allowing the fuel back on the market would cost the government $1 million, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

The House Science, Space and Technology Committee approved the legislation two weeks ago, sending it to the House floor for possible consideration. Bill sponsor Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) said it would address concerns that EPA fast-tracked approval of the fuel for use in cars with model years 2001 and newer to expand the domestic market for ethanol.

The legislation would compel EPA to coordinate with the National Academy of Sciences on an 18-month study of the fuel. EPA would be required to submit a report of the findings to Congress before being allowed to re-approve E15.

CBO said that along with the cost of doing the study, the legislation would have a relatively minor cost for the private sector through the suspension of E15 sales; only a handful of gas stations across the country are currently selling the fuel.

The House science panel last year passed similar legislation by Sensenbrenner, but it died on the House floor. Observers of the ethanol industry expect the bill will face a similar fate this Congress.


The ethanol industry says the measure is unnecessary given the testing that the Department of Energy conducted before EPA issued final approval of the fuel.