Op-Ed: Is our gasoline making us sick? Ethanol is a healthier option.

Source: By Steve Roe, Des Moines Register • Posted: Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Is our gasoline making us sick? It’s a question you may not have thought about, because unlike other countries with a visible haze in the air, we live in almost constant blue skies. But even blue skies carry invisible emissions that harm our health.

A significant amount of these emissions are coming from our vehicles. For example, toxic aromatic compounds, which include known carcinogens like benzene, are added to gasoline to boost octane. The aromatics escape from tailpipes as tiny particulates that are as dangerous as smoking a cigarette.

While that’s scary to think about, it’s a relief to know that a solution is readily available. A solution that a world renowned cancer expert supports. Dr. Zigang Dong with the Hormel Institute says ethanol is a potent tool that can be used to reduce cancer rates.

While speaking at the Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit, Dong said more ethanol in the fuel supply can help prevent cancer. Ethanol can replace the 25 percent of toxic aromatics in gasoline.

So you may be asking, how does ethanol make a difference? Simply adding ethanol to gasoline displaces a majority of the aromatics, reducing tailpipe emissions and our cancer risk. The higher the ethanol blend, the better.

— Steve Roe, General Manager of Little Sioux Corn Processors, Marcus