The study found that gasoline blended with 30 percent ethanol is safe for use in non-flex-fuel vehicles.

The year-long study tested 50 Nebraska State Patrol vehicles and found no decrease in energy efficiency or performance during the study among those that used what’s known as E30 fuel.

The research, which was conducted in coordination with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, ran 26 of the vehicles on a lower ethanol blend and 24 on the high-blend E30 fuel. The vehicles using the higher blend fuel performed just as well as the other vehicles in the study.

If history hold true, there will be skeptics. They may be the same individuals who, years ago, were convinced that gasoline with 10 percent ethanol was going to cause major engine and performance problems in vehicles.

That may have been the case with some engines from decades ago, but ethanol-blended fuel has been proven — on many occasions — to burn cleaner and not be the source of any engine woes.

Yet the false perception has been difficult to quash.

Adil Alsiyabi, the primary researcher for the UNL project, said the public has seen inconsistent messaging about E30 fuel, including suggestions that it reduces fuel efficiency or wears down parts. He said his team’s research found that to be untrue, but critics continue their misplaced distrust of ethanol-blended fuel.

In Nebraska — and other corn-producing states — ethanol production provides an important market for farmers’ grain. Having research that indicates the use of 30 percent ethanol in fuel doesn’t cause engine or performance problems is huge for the future of biofuels.

The research is currently in the stage of peer review among scientific colleagues. Although the findings were recently unveiled at a press conference involving Gov. Pete Ricketts and others, more publicity is likely after the peer review process is completed.

If that’s the case, that’s good. Because while we’re pleased that the research revealed what it did, it now will be just as important to make sure that message gets reinforced among the gasoline-buying public.