Application for adoption of E15 is important breakthrough in the U.S.
(Photo UNICA / Niels Andrea)
A key early requirement for the introduction of a 15% ethanol blend in gasoline sold in the United States (E15) has been approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an important decision that will also impact the future of Brazilian sugarcane ethanol, according to the Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association (UNICA). An vital aspect of the decision has to do with the technical viability of using E15 in vehicles in the U.S.
“This technical detail is extremely relevant to progressing towards ratification of E15 in the U.S., because it ends a series of ongoing doubts, one of them being that engines wouldn’t perform well with the new blend, a theory that has been discarded by the EPA findings,” explains UNICA Emissions and Technology Consultant Alfred Szwarc. He recalled that the use of E15 would contribute greatly to the environment, since ethanol provides significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs).
According to UNICA’s North America Representative, Leticia Phillips, approval of E15 in the U.S. is a complex procedure that has been suffering from successive delays: “Companies that wish to offer the new blend must submit to the EPA a detailed plan to clarify the fuel to consumers. But a plan has already been certified by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA).” After that, there is still a series of procedures involving labelling that will be placed on fuel pumps and measures to ensure that the blend is produced according to established standards,” Phillips adds.
“We hope the delays in the process are over. Since the mid-1970s, Brazil has been showing the world that it is possible to use higher blends of ethanol in a safe and efficient manner, while contributing to reduce GHGs. American consumers deserve to have access to this proven alternative,” she concludes.