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EPA approves E15 fuel, raises concerns

Consumer Reports News: January 24, 2011 12:58 PM

On Friday, the EPA released a long-awaited decision allowing the use of 15-percent ethanol in regular gasoline to be burned in cars made from 2001 to 2006.

The move is expected to lead to gas stations selling the fuel, known as E15, at specially labeled pumps around the country--but it does not require a blend greater than E10. (Read: " Move over E85, here comes E15. EPA proposes adding more ethanol to gasoline blends.")

Gas station owners, as well as makers of boats, snowmobiles, and yard equipment, resisted the move, saying the EPA's proposal for signage is inadequate and consumers might use the fuel in non-approved products, risking premature failure.

E15 is still not approved for use in cars older than the 2001 model year. So today's regular fuel, which often contains 10-percent ethanol, or E10, will still be available.

When fueling older vehicles, or other gasoline-powered machines, be careful to look for the signs.

Learn more about ethanol, in "The great ethanol debate."

Eric Evarts

See our guide to fuel economy for advice on saving gasoline. Learn about future technologies in our guide to alternative fuels.


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