AMA wants motorcycles included in study of ethanol-blended fuel
July 13, 2011
The American Motorcyclist Association
(AMA) is asking a key U.S. House panel to include motorcycles and
all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) in any future study of ethanol-blended
In a letter sent July 11 to the House Energy and
Environment Subcommittee, the AMA, along with its partner organization,
the All-Terrain Vehicle Association (ATVA), urged subcommittee Chairman
Andy Harris (R-Md.) "that on- or off-highway motorcycles and
all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) be part of any scientific study by the NAS"
related to ethanol-blended gasoline. NAS stands for the National
Academy of Sciences.
The subcommittee held a hearing on July
7 entitled "Hitting the Ethanol Blend Wall: Examining the Science on
E15." The hearing focused on E15, a new gasoline formulation that
contains up to 15 percent alcohol by volume. The U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency in October 2010 approved the use of E15 in model year
2007 and newer light-duty vehicles (cars, light-duty trucks and
medium-duty passenger vehicles). In January 2011, the EPA added model
year 2001-2006 light-duty vehicles to the approved list.
No on- or off-highway motorcycles or ATVs are currently approved.
At its hearing, the subcommittee indicated that it may require the EPA
to arrange with the NAS to study a full range of issues related to E15.
In the letter, AMA Washington Representative Rick Podliska
said the AMA and ATVA have concerns about: E15 being put in motorcycles
or ATVs mistakenly and damaging engines; the continued availability of
gasoline that has no ethanol, or gasoline with only a 10 percent blend
that is safe for use in motorcycles and ATVs; the possibility that
"blender pumps" -- which dispense multiple grades of gasoline through a
single hose -- could introduce enough ethanol into gasoline to be used
in a motorcycle or ATV to damage the vehicle; and that ethanol absorbs
water, which could be harmful to motorcycles and ATVs.
conclusion, to address our concerns, the AMA and ATVA urge that on- or
off-highway motorcycles and ATVs be part of any scientific study by
NAS," Podliska wrote. "Not only should the study focus on the short-
and long-term impacts on vehicles and engines, but should consider
financial implications of increased ethanol use in gasoline on
consumers; fuel producers, distributors and retailers; vehicle and
engine manufacturers, dealers and service facilities; and the
To read the letter, click here: http://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Libraries/Rights_Documents_Federal/Harris_NAS_Ethanol_7-11-2011.sflb.ashx?download=true.