AMA supports congressional effort for more study of ethanol-blended fuel
October 14, 2011
American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) applauds U.S. Rep. Jim
Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) for introducing a bill that calls for new
research into the effects of certain ethanol-blended gasoline.
"The research sought by Representative Sensenbrenner is badly needed to
ensure that new ethanol-gasoline blends won't damage motorcycle and
all-terrain vehicle (ATV) engines," said Wayne Allard, AMA vice
president for government relations. "We are urging all concerned
motorcycle and ATV riders to contact their lawmakers to ask them to
support Representative Sensenbrenner's bill: H.R. 3199."
Friday, Oct. 14, Sensenbrenner, who is vice chairman of the House
Committee on Science, Space and Technology, introduced H.R. 3199. The
legislation would require the federal Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA) to seek an independent scientific analysis of the effects of E15
-- a new gasoline formulation that contains up to 15 percent alcohol by
volume -- on engines.
"The EPA's decision to allow E15 into the
marketplace will impact every American who owns a car, lawnmower or
boat," Sensenbrenner said. "Automakers insist that using E15 will void
warranties, lower fuel efficiency and cause premature engine failure. In
off-road engines, the effects can even be dangerous for users.
"There are serious concerns that the EPA used only one Department of
Energy test and rushed E15's introduction into the marketplace,"
Sensenbrenner said. "This test was limited in scope and ignored a
plethora of evidence -- albeit inconvenient evidence for the EPA -- that
shows E15 gasoline has a negative effect on engines."
has repeatedly expressed concerns to government officials and federal
lawmakers about possible damage to motorcycle and ATV engines caused by
the inadvertent use of E15 when the new fuel becomes widely available.
In a July 11 letter to the U.S. House Energy and Environment
Subcommittee, the AMA, along with its partner organization, the
All-Terrain Vehicle Association (ATVA), asked "that on- or off-highway
motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles be part of any scientific study"
into the effects of E15 sought by the subcommittee.
2010, the EPA approved the use of E15 in model year 2007 and newer
light-duty vehicles (cars, light-duty trucks and medium-duty passenger
vehicles). Then, in January 2011, the EPA added model year 2001-2006
light-duty vehicles to the approved list.
No motorcycles or ATVs are currently on the list.
The AMA and ATVA have expressed concerns about E15 being mistakenly
used and damaging engines in motorcycles and ATVs, and about 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 organizations have also expressed concerns about the possibility
that "blender pumps" that dispense multiple grades of gasoline through a
single hose might 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.
To contact your federal lawmakers to urge them to support H.R. 3199 go to AmericanMotorcyclist.com.