Eighteen senators have signed a letter calling for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt to allow 15% ethanol blends to be sold all year.
The politicians asked for a timeline of the rulemaking process to clarify how the agency will permit E15 wholesale. They also asked to allow E15 to be sold while that process happens.
Currently, the agency regulates the Reid vapour pressure (a measure of volatility) of fuels from 1 June until 15 September to limit ozone emissions. This applies to E15 blends of gasoline, which exceed these limits.
“Congress never intended the RVP waiver to effectively be a market cap on the amount of ethanol blended in gasoline,” reads the letter. “The current interpretation is outdated and has created an untenable regulatory barrier to E15 as a readily available option for motorists.”
Earlier in April, President Trump said that he would ‘probably, probably’ permit year-round E15. The Senators appealed to this statement in their letter, calling on Pruitt to make good on Trump’s promise. They also said permitting E15 would benefit the farm economy and would encourage greater market competition, driving down prices for consumers.