EPA’s E15 gasoline could cause damage, confusion - survey

30 November 2012 19:43  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Vehicle damage and consumer confusion could result from the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) approval of E15 gasoline, automobile organisation AAA said on Friday.

E15 gasoline is a newly approved blend that contains up to 15% ethanol.

AAA conducted a survey, which showed 95% of consumers had not heard of E15 gasoline. Furthermore, less than 5% of cars are approved by automakers to use the fuel, AAA said.

“Only about 12m out of the more than 240m light-duty vehicles on the roads today are approved by manufacturers to use E15 gasoline,” the survey said.

“It is clear that millions of Americans are unfamiliar with E15, which means there is a strong possibility that many motorists may improperly fill up using this gasoline and damage their vehicle,” said AAA CEO Robert Darbelnet. “Bringing E15 to the market without adequate safeguards does not responsibly meet the needs of consumers.”

According to AAA, unsuspecting consumers using E15 could end up with engine problems that might not be covered by their vehicles’ warranties.

“The sale and use of E15 should be suspended until additional gas pump labeling and consumer education efforts are implemented to mitigate problems for motorists and their vehicles,” said Darbelnet.

In June, the EPA officially approved the sale of E15 in flex-fuel vehicles and 2001 model year and newer cars, light-duty trucks and medium-duty passenger vehicles and SUVs.

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By: Anna Matherne

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