At the end of the month, Missouri will begin to allow the sale of the controversial E15 fuel. Currently, most available gasoline is sold as a blend with up to 10 percent ethanol. Missouri will become the 13th state to approve the 15-percent ethanol blend to be sold at the pump.

E15 proponents point out that higher-ethanol fuel blends burn more cleanly and reduce harmful emissions, are more renewable, and can help lessen the country's dependence on foreign oil. Corn growers in Missouri also claim that E15 sales and production will help the state economy. Interestingly and not surprisingly, of the 12 states that have already approved the use of E15, many are large producers of corn, with Missouri typically included in the list of Corn Belt states.

While the EPA has approved E15 for all model year 2001 and newer cars, many consumers and automakers have been reluctant to embrace the cleaner-burning blend. Ethanol is known to be corrosive, and concerns that E15 could damage engines - despite the EPA's blessing - has caused a lot of pushback against its proliferation. Missouri's acceptance of E15 is another battle won for ethanol supporters in the drawn out, back-and-forth fight over its use. Despite resistance from parts of the auto and oil industries, some automakers are reportedly quietly readying new vehicles for E15. As usual, expect for the news and drama surrounding ethanol and E15 to continue.

As it stands, for those who want to fill up their tanks with the corn-fed fuel, options are limited. Concerns over liability have caused many retailers to avoid selling the blend, and most E15 states only have a handful of stations that offer it.


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  • 48 Comments
      Spec
      • 7 Months Ago
      I'm kind of surprised that ethanol keeps going. At this point, almost everyone is against it except corn growers.
        • 9 Hours Ago
        @Spec
        Actually, a recent study of 1000 random people showed that 65% of Americans support renewable fuels. http://ethanolproducer.com/articles/11040/majority-of-americans-support-the-rfs
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          Well, that's certainly a non-biased source.
          • 9 Hours Ago
          1000 *RANDOM* people
      Jason H
      • 7 Months Ago
      Not a day goes by that I don't thank my lucky stars that I live in lake country...Northern MN. Because boat motors (especially older/2-stroke ones) need it, you can still get non-oxygenated premium fuel. It's obviously not needed for newer cars, but it's a godsend for getting older recreational and/or power equipment (lawn mower, dirt bike, my old skidsteer, etc.) to run right...not to mention my old Sea Ray. That, and it doesn't break down in a month or two into un-burnable crap with an inch of garbage/sediment in the bottom of the can like the regular oxygenated gas does. The shelf life on modern oxygenated pump gas is basically nil.
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Jason H
        Firstly, corn based ethanol does not drive up food costs. The corn used is not corn grown for human consumption, it is grown for livestock feed, humans cannot digest it and it has no nutritional value to a humans diet. Only the starch is used for ethanol, the remaining kernels (high nutrient for animals) are sent back into the feed market. Oil prices are more directly related to grocery prices than ethanol. Second, why not instead of boycotting a state and further sounding like an idiot on that aspect you just simply don't use the fuel. Thirdly, ethanol contains a an anti corrosion agent when it is produced thus making ethanol no more corrosive than gasoline or diesel. Source? my job. I make it.
          • 9 Hours Ago
          many have falsely laid blame on ethanol for their typical vehicle and engine problems; like small engines and leaving fuel in the system over storage. They dont understand ethanol and since they dont know, they accuse it. also, sorry for informing people the reality of ethanol. sorry as well for literally trying to damage vehicles and engines with ethanol blended gasoline and having nothing but better running cars and engines from it.
          Fred
          • 9 Hours Ago
          The same field corn used for ethanol production and animal feed is in fact used to make cereal products including corn flour, corn meal, hominy, grits, tortillas, corn bread, and cold breakfast cereals (such as corn flakes). Less than one percent of the corn is processed for human consumption. Do you add the anti corrosive agent. Because ethanol is in fact corrosive to some of the materials that were used in the production of older cars. Just because you make it doesn't mean you know what it can do.
          • 9 Hours Ago
          http://www.idph.state.il.us/envhealth/factsheets/gasoline.htm the illionois health department classifies gasoline as containing 150 chemicals. Ethanol subsidies ended in 2011. The only part of the corn used for production is the starch. the remaining kernels (which are ground) are returned to the feed market; the feed market is the original reason the corn is grown. Humans cannot consume the field corn grown for ethanol production. it has no nutritional value to a humans diet. Shipping costs are the real factor behind grocery costs, not ethanol production.
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          Well that explains it; LAXbro works in the ethanol industry. If history is any indicator; how long will it be before CORRPRO 656 is proven to be a carcinogen ? God, I am so sick of people sticking stuff down our throats that we don't want and don't need. And paying the government to help them do it, and then getting subsidized by the government. FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGG
          • 9 Hours Ago
          i do know what it can do, i have studied its effects for 8 years. yes, our company adds an corrosion inhibitor (CORRPRO 656) to all of the ethanol we make before it is shipped out. it is a chemical that helps prevent corrosion in tanks, piping, and vehicles. Also, according to NCGA only about 1% of total US corn crop goes towards food ingredients. On a fun fact side note, corn flakes only contain about a nickels worth of corn.
          • 9 Hours Ago
          oh, EV, here is the NCGA link http://www.ncga.com/upload/files/documents/pdf/2012_woc_metric.pdf
          • 9 Hours Ago
          its not a big feat figuring out that i work in the ethanol idustry. i even stated i did. you can also quote me on this: the ethanol industry has flaws and benefits like any industry, its not perfect. but research the other side before you attempt to understand ethanol. And your comment on corrpro being a carcinogen, how ironic of you because the 150+ chemicals in gasoline are so great for our air and vehicles. Nearly every chemical in gasoline is a carcinogen. get real.
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          Your Illinois source is so f'ed. Still lists MTBE as being in gasoline (another government abortion). I'd give the writer an F for faulty research and obvious bias. This article, and you, make it sound like there are 150 carcinogens in gasoline. Get real. Benzene is a problem. The other chemicals listed after benzene - sometimes trace amounts in gasoline (about as often as you'd find them in cattle). Corn is not a natural food for cattle. Makes them sick, then needing antibiotics to help them live long enough for slaughter. How do you like the taste of antibiotic-pumped cattle ? How long will take to screw with our immune system (if it already hasn't) ? So meat and corn* prices have not been affected by ethanol production ? *(corn syrup, corn starch, corn , , , , used in all kinds of food and even drink products) So you and the ethanol industry have repealed the law of supply and demand ? excellent Sorry ethanol lobby; you have not made a sale here. and now you are boring me with the same old krap - that you obviously have enjoyed eating nuff said
          • 9 Hours Ago
          just about every state health department lists gasoline as having 150 chemicals which make up gasoline. good eye on the MTBE tho, i really have no clue why they still list that. It pollutes ground water. the state of new jersey lists gasoline as a whole a carcinogen. http://nj.gov/health/eoh/rtkweb/documents/fs/0957.pdf. I agree that corn is not the best feed for cattle, but in colder states (like where i am from) it is obviously difficult to grass feed cattle with 3 feet of snow so corn, silage, hay, etc are the next best thing. However, the starch is the portion of the corn that is bad for cattle, they have trouble digesting it. Thats why distillers grains are a better corn substitute. Distillers grains contain about 2-5% starch (verses 50-70%, depending on the corn) so they are much easier to digest, contain higher protein levels, and higher nutrient levels. here is a study by ohio state that shows some research they did on feeding cattle corn and distillers. http://ohioline.osu.edu/as-fact/distillers.html. On your next item, your denial of grocery costs, according to the national corn growers association the corn use for food ingredients in 2012 (the drought year) was 1.5% of total corn in the US. A total for all of the food grade starches, syrups, sweeteners and even beverage alcohol is still only 9.3% of the total crop. The US exports more corn than what we use for food. As you said "nuff said".
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          Could you please send a list of the 150+ carcinogens in gasoline. I'll help with the only one I know: 1. benzene "but research the other side before you attempt to understand ethanol" It was subsidized with deficit spending for 30 years, and all it has done is driven up the national debt, and made our grocery prices higher. What a deal !
          J P
          • 9 Hours Ago
          You like ethanol. We get it. However, people have legitimate reasons to be concerned since many have had negative experiences. You sound like a brochure.
      James Kash
      • 7 Months Ago
      So they raise the amount of Ethanol per gallon from 10% to 15% and this makes it cleaner burning ? Some B.S. here I believe. Any statement to self serve increase sales seems to make added B.S./deception permissable now. What not ? The Pres. is a known B.S.er, so now everyone can be I guess. I ll not buy it for anything I drive untill the auto companies recant on their statements that its use voids your warrenty.
        • 9 Hours Ago
        @James Kash
        No, only a few stations have added a separate, E15 pump. E10 is still available and all vehicles model year 2001 and newer are approved for E15 use. My parents use E15 in their 2009 scion and it runs better and it gets the same mileage as regular unleaded. And it has been proven multiple times that ethanol blended gasoline reduces emissions. Ethanol contains a higher oxygen percentage than gasoline (hence oxygenate) which allows for cleaner burning ignition.
      Greg
      • 7 Months Ago
      I don't believe for a second that the push for E15 has anything to do with the environment or foreign trade. I completely believe it is all about how to meet the requirement for more ethanol to be produced. E85 has basically failed, and they have to shove all that ethanol somewhere.
        • 9 Hours Ago
        @Greg
        it actually does. if you think logically about the situation a majority of vehicles on US roads aren't flex fuel, however that same majority can use a bit more (about 6 1/2 mL more/gallon) ethanol which helps reduce emissions by up to 20%. It is easier to have more vehicles use E15 without mods than to push E85 harder to only a few. I am all for E85 tho, it saves drivers money even with less MPG and buying more fuel.
      Ziv
      • 7 Months Ago
      I wish the same amount of "energy" went into promoting biobutanol.
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Ziv
        our plant looked into it, it is pretty expensive to adopt onto an ethanol plant. hopefully they start in the next 5-10 years. i will keep bugging them about it.
      Actionable Mango
      • 7 Months Ago
      I am definitely not a fan of this stuff. However, I wonder if it's really so corrosive, why aren't Brazilians up in arms about it? Their two most common automotive fuels are E25 and E100! Are all their cars just succumbing to quick deaths?
        NestT
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        The Brazilian stuff is not corn based but sugarcane.
          Thunderbuck
          • 7 Months Ago
          @NestT
          That's actually very funny. Brazilian (cane-based) Ethanol is chemically identical to midwest US (corn-based) Ethanol, so Actionable Mango's question stands. I can't help but think there's tons of FUD around Ethanol in the US, and I can't help but wonder if the oil companies are in on it somehow. MYTH: It takes more energy to create a gallon of Ethanol than a gallon of gasoline. FACT: It takes more energy to create a gallon of CELLULOSTIC (i.e. grass-and-weed-based) Ethanol; this is a new, experimental process. MYTH: Ethanol's carbon cycle is actually worse than gasoline's. FACT: You actually shouldn't count tailpipe carbon emissions when you talk about Ethanol fuel. Why? Because that's "above-ground" carbon already, taken from the atmosphere by the plants in the feedstock and destined to return there whether out a car's tailpipe or a human's.
          • 7 Months Ago
          @NestT
          that doesnt make a difference. they both are chemically identical. If you buy miller lite and bud light they are both beer arent they? think about it.
          tony
          • 7 Months Ago
          @NestT
          Ethanol is ethanol there non genius.
          NestT
          • 7 Months Ago
          @NestT
          Evidenced by the reaction of the same automakers in the USA vs Brazil it is not. Non einstein.
      EVnerdGene
      • 7 Months Ago
      To stimulate demand, all government employees should be required to use it in their private cars - until further notice. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/07/porn-epa-employee_n_5283106.html (btw: and this guy got a bonus last year - can't make it up)
        • 7 Months Ago
        @EVnerdGene
        a majority of government fleet vehicles are flex fuel and use E85.
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          I said "private cars." see how popular it would be when you shove it down THEIR throat
          • 9 Hours Ago
          they do. considering a majority of senators voted for the RFS and keeping renewable fuels in our nations fuel supply. I read an article a few months ago about a senator who only uses E40 and higher in her vehicle and its not even flex fuel.
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          yet another idiot in the senate
      breid2
      • 7 Months Ago
      takes more energy to produce a gallon of ethanol than it does gasoline. are we tired of government subsidies yet ? we could be feeding the world but we have this mental attitude that we shouldn't be using so much gasoline and should pay corn farmers to produce only so much corn to keep prices higher than they could/should be. now i buy fuel additives to combat the evils of ethanol-especially for my motorcycle and boats.
        • 7 Months Ago
        @breid2
        First, ethanol plants garnish 2.3 times more ethanol than what is used to produce it. So your comment is an outright lie, no offense. Second, the government subsidy program (VEETC) ended in December of 2011, so you are a few years late to blame ethanol subsidies. Third, we do feed the world, the US exports BILLIONS of bushels every year to hungry nations and we still have a surplus of corn. Ethanol uses ~20-25% of the total US crop. Fourth, the main bi product (as ethanol production only uses the starch of the corn grown specifically for livestock, humans can NOT eat it as it has zero nutriional value to humans diet) of ethanol distillation is distillers grains, a high nutrient animal feed. Fifth, corn prices are at the same cost they were in the 2000's ($4 and change) so corn prices are not higher than they should be. Sixth, you are wasting your money on fuel additives. Ethanol contains an anti corrosion agent which makes it no more harmful than gasoline or diesel to engine parts (yes even small engines, i personally use E30 in all my small engines and they run great).
      yuno04
      • 7 Months Ago
      Ethanol (specifically corn-based ethanol) is nothing but a big giveaway to the corn belt. It's less efficient then regular gas (defeats the purpose of using it) and increases the price of food. If the US had gone the way of Brazil, I could maybe get behind it, but as it is now, it's a waste of money and time.
        • 9 Hours Ago
        @yuno04
        you need to further your research if you believe that. BTU counting doesnt offer real vehicle testing on MPG or energy efficiency. E10 offers the same MPG as E0 at a lower cost. Every alterntive fuel is less "efficient" than gasoline, even LPG and CNG, you don't calculate your fuel efficiecny off of MPG with alternatives you base it off of miles per dolla MPD.
      • 3 Months Ago
      rthanol is ruining our cars it also ruins outboard engines we should stop using it or at least give us the option of not using it at the pumps
      goodoldgorr
      • 7 Months Ago
      My car is a 2005 and it was conceive with 100% regular gasoline in mind. Stop this corrosive mess. I won't go to Missouri for vacations. Also it drive up the price of foods, all in all this is greed and misery.
        Thunderbuck
        • 7 Months Ago
        @goodoldgorr
        Nice try. Essentially ANY car sold in North America in the past decade is easily able to use up to E20. A great many (maybe most) can use E85.
          • 9 Hours Ago
          @Thunderbuck
          I use mid to high level ethanol blends in every engine and vehicle i own, thunderbuck. Keep spreading the real truth about ethanol. The more people hear the truth the more they will question their own opinions! You are right about every vehicle as well, i told my parents how to blend E30 in their 2009 scion xd and it runs better. More HP, tiny bit more torque (it is a weedwacker engine sadly lol), and 3-4 MORE MPG! went from 31-32 to 34-35 mpg.
          EVnerdGene
          • 9 Hours Ago
          @Thunderbuck
          'LAXbro, you sound real smart. Someday Toyota will tell you; "sorry, bro, you voided your warranty."
          EVnerdGene
          • 7 Months Ago
          @Thunderbuck
          page 232 of my 2012 Honda CR-Z's Owner's Manual: "Your vehicle is designed to operate on oxygenated gasoline containing up to 10% ethanol by volume." I trust Honda advice much more that the wankers at the EPA. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-05-07/porn-watching-epa-employee-found-by-agency-watchdog.html
          • 9 Hours Ago
          @Thunderbuck
          evnerd, the warranty was 100,000 miles and the vehicle has surpassed that amount.
      DarylMc
      • 7 Months Ago
      Honestly, it's one of the reasons widespread availability of electric vehicles can't come soon enough. Here in Australia there is at least 5 different types of gasoline at the pumps. Unfortunately my new car is only specified to run on 2 of them.
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