Photo by: edwardleger
First, I want to thank all the Fuel Station owners who opt not to put ethanol in our gas if they are not required to do so by law.
Many areas of the country are required to use oxygenated gasoline because their air quality is so poor. For a long time this was done with MTBE when that became illegal, or at least frowned upon, in most parts of the country due to concerns about contaminated groundwater gasoline retailers switched to Ethanol from MTBE.
Ethanol is cheap and it does the intended job, I respect that. Most of the ethanol we use in our gasoline comes from corn, yes not necessarily food grade corn, but we are wasting resources on a product that diverts resources from our livestock feed or even other food grade crops. That is the part that causes me concern; the part that makes me angry is that as a consumer is in cars not designed for E-85 running E-85 all ethanol does is make us buy more gas. Not just the pedal to the medal, racing stoplight-to-stoplight crowd either people like me able to wring crazy mileage out of each gallon of fuel in everything we drive.
E-85 is 85% ethanol 15% Gasoline, and the cars that can run that are essentially Ethy cars that can run both E-85 and E-10 and 100% gas are Flex-Fuel Vehicles (FFV). FFVs are not done for the consumer’s fuel choice as they are marketed, rather because the manufacturer gets credit for a large SUV or truck running nearly as clean as a small hybrid (it doesn’t really) and can build more big trucks that are all Hat and no Cowboy. Because ethanol absorbs water, we will not see 100% ethanol marketed any time soon.
E-10 is 10% Ethanol and 90% Gasoline; if pure water didn’t damage our vehicles, it would be cheaper for us than ethanol. This stuff lowers our fuel economy by 3-10% and the reason it is used instead of the other oxygenates is cost and availability. Stations that use it that are not required to do so, tell us that they do it to keep costs low. If that is the case, why do I pay the same amount at an ethy station and a 100% Gas station? The only good thing that comes out of this abomination is that our farmers get a 10% cut of all gasoline we burn, and the governments (Federal, State, and Local) can collect more fuel taxes to keep our roads up to snuff.
Do not even get me started on splash blending.
for the Midlands Hybrid Club
"Promoting the spread of clean personal transportation technologies."
My fuel economy, tracked at every fill-up since purchase, your mileage will vary.
The Midlands Hybrid Club, the home of the hybrid club and hypermiling of the Carolinas, based in Columbia, SC.