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E85 Not Selling Well Even In The Heart Of The Corn Belt - DMR

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 09:51 PM
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E85 Not Selling Well Even In The Heart Of The Corn Belt - DMR
Washington, D.C. - Ethanol producers are lobbying Congress for incentives to get consumers to fill up on higher blends of the biofuel. But the relatively slow sales of E85 even in the Midwest show motorists whose vehicles can use ethanol often don't buy it, critics say.

E85, a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline, was seen as a promising way for the industry to boost its market share. But the fuel is supposed to be burned only in cars or trucks especially equipped to run on ethanol, and most of those vehicles on average use just a few tankfuls a year in states such as Iowa and Minnesota where the fuel is the most available. "Even in states where E85 pumps are concentrated, actual sales of E85 have been stagnant," Shane Karr, a lobbyist for the auto industry, told a Senate committee this month.

Cars and trucks get significantly poorer mileage when using E85 - about 25 to 30 percent less, according to the government - so sales typically fluctuate according to swings in gasoline and ethanol prices. The bigger the price spread between gasoline and E85, the more likely motorists will opt for E85. When the spread narrows, E85 sales drop. "It's hard to get any consistency in E85 sales," said Rick Cummings, vice president of CHS Inc., which sells E85 through 290 Cenex dealers in the upper Midwest.

Automakers are fighting legislation sponsored by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Ia., and others that would require all automakers to ramp up the production of ethanol-capable, "flexible-fuel" vehicles. Only 8.2 million of the 250 million vehicles now on the road can run on higher grades of ethanol, and they are mostly Chrysler, General Motors and Ford products. The number of ethanol vehicles increases about 10 percent a year.

EDIT

http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20110424/BUSIN... |topnews|text|News
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krispos42 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 09:54 PM
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1. The per-mile costs are very similar
In fact, often the costs are a bit higher for E85.

Of course, now that I finally have an E85-compatable vehicle, I live in a state with no E85 stations.

*sigh*
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liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 10:03 PM
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2. In Iowa and Northern Missouri it is difficult to find gas with out E85
Every pump you pull up to has ethanol stickers on it.
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progressoid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 12:08 AM
Response to Reply #2
8. Most of those are a blend of 10% ethanol and 90% gas.
E85 is 85% ethanol specifically for flex-fuel vehicles.
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RC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 10:14 PM
Response to Original message
3. Ethanol needs to be outlawed
When the math is done, very little to no oil is saved by using ethanol. To say nothing of the land used to grow the corn, that should at the very least have the crops being rotated on it, but don't because corn for ethanol is so very heavily subsidized. And corn is fertilizer(from oil) and water intensive. If we continue down this road, we will pay a very heavy price in worn out crop land.
It you really want ethanol, there are much more efficient ways to get it. Sugar beets/cane for starts.
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doc03 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 10:23 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Stupid idea burning food for fuel n/t
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Lugnut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 11:34 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Amen! n/t
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Historic NY Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 11:01 PM
Response to Original message
5. I mix it in my truck.....occassionally but I am not a regular user.
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Old Codger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 11:49 PM
Response to Original message
7. Silly me
I wanted to be a good guy and went and bought a "flexfuel" ford, only to find that not only was there no E85 anywhere in my area but the truck that my friend had with same exact body and engine got 30+ MPG and my wonderful "flexfuel" truck got 17 if I was lucky. got rid of that crap fast.
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