Demand for 15 and 85 Percent Blends Growing in U.S.

Source: By Hoosier Ag Today • Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2017

Various blends of ethanol are fueling more and more cars on America’s roads. There has been growth in the number of E15 pumps and if you own a flex fuel vehicle, almost 4,100 E85 stations across the nation can help you travel nearly the entire country on the 85 percent ethanol fuel.

Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White did just that this summer. He made a 2,400 mile, predominantly corn grower fueled tour of national parks and monuments through Kansas, Colorado and Utah, thanks in part to a website and mobile app.

“I did find one station that no longer sells E85 so that a learning experience that also allowed me to update the database so that no one else had that experience,” White said. “For the most part, not only did we have E85, but we saved a lot of money on fuel using E85, and when you break it down we only used about 20 gallons of gasoline to power us through 2,400 miles. That’s always important to someone like myself and should be to anyone who is in agriculture.”

RFA purchased several years ago. It is a website that serves consumers in several ways.

“They can locate E85 and E15 stations and they can also see the pricing experiences other consumers have reported just like themselves. This is a fully crowd sourced website. Consumers use the website or mobile app, they give us the information, and we verify it. We’re one of the few databases out there that actually verifies whether the station does or does not offer E85, and we do routine maintenance to make sure that database stays as current as possible.”

In addition to more E85 pumps, Growth Energy recently announced that motorists have now driven 2 billion miles on E15 and the 15 percent ethanol blend is available at more than 1,000 gas stations, triple the number from this time last year.

“This latest milestone cements the fact that drivers have embraced the tremendous benefits E15 offers and highlights just how rapidly consumer demand is growing,” said Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “E15 is a smart choice for consumers who care about their car’s engines, want a healthy environment, and seek better value at the pump. We’re thrilled to lead the charge with Prime the Pump to bring more and more drivers this option every day.”

Growth Energy is partnering with retailers including Casey’s, Cenex, Family Express, Kum & Go, Kwik Trip, MAPCO, Minnoco, Murphy USA, Protec Fuel, QuikTrip, RaceTrac, Sheetz and Thorntons to offer E15 to their customers.

E15 is approved for use in all vehicles 2001 and newer, as well as, all flex fuel vehicles, which combined represent more than 87 percent of the vehicles on the road.