Bill introduced to prohibit EPA from authorizing use of gasoline containing greater than 10 percent ethanol

Urge your Representative to support today!

On February 28, 2011, Representative Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) introduced H.R. 748. This bill would prohibit the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from authorizing the use of gasoline containing greater than 10 percent ethanol in certain vehicles.

In addition to Rep. Sensenbrenner, Reps. Tom Petri (R-WI), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Dennis Ross (R-FL) and Wally Herger (R-CA) are original cosponsors.

The Energy and Environment Subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, chaired by Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD), will be holding a hearing entitled "Hitting the Ethanol Blend Wall: Examining the Science on E15" on July 7 at 2:00 pm EDT. To watch a live webcast of the hearing, click here.

In October 2010 the EPA approved E15, a new gasoline formulation that contains up to 15 percent alcohol by volume, for use in model year 2007 and newer light duty vehicles (cars, light-duty trucks, and medium-duty passenger vehicles). In January 2011, it added model year 2001-2006 light duty vehicles to the approved list.

As a motorcyclist, you need to be very careful because currently most on- or off-highway motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are not approved for use of this fuel.

The American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) is concerned about E15 because it combusts at a higher temperature than gasoline that contains a lesser amount of ethanol. In engines not designed to dissipate this additional heat, engine damage in the form of premature wear can result. This is a concern for all motorcycles and ATVs, and particularly for the air-cooled engines found in many machines. Moreover, use of E15 can void the manufacture warranty.

Since the approved list includes many light-duty vehicles in use today, refineries, distributors, and fueling stations may choose to offer primarily E15 gasoline because of this action by the EPA. This should be of concern to all motorcyclists and off-highway enthusiasts since this may affect the availability of gasoline with less or no ethanol (E10 or E0).

We need your help to pass H.R. 748. You can find contact information for your Representative at AmericanMotorcyclist.com > Rights > Issues & Legislation, then enter your zip code in the "Find your Officials" box. A prewritten e-mail is available for you to send to your federal elected official immediately by following the "Take Action" option and entering your information.

Be sure to read the August issue of American Motorcyclist magazine, which includes a column entitled "Alcohol and Motorcycles Don't Mix" for more information on this issue.

Again, the AMA urges you to write your Representative today and ask them to support H.R. 748.