(Posted Fri. Oct 26th, 2018)
The National Corn Growers Association today emphasized the benefits for fuel economy and emissions reductions from the use of high-octane fuels in comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) on the proposed SAFE Vehicles Rule.
“As producers of the primary feedstock used for ethanol production, corn farmers have a strong vested interest in the future of transportation fuels,” NCGA President Lynn Chrisp wrote.
The organization’s comments urged regulators to consider fuels and vehicles as a system of high-octane fuel used with optimized engines. NCGA also believes high-octane, low-carbon fuel can help support harmonization between federal and state standards.
“Pairing advanced engines with certain higher-octane fuel improves vehicle performance and efficiency while using less energy and releasing fewer emissions, particularly when the octane source is a midlevel ethanol blend,” wrote Chrisp.
Increasing octane requirements now would provide vehicle manufacturers the pathway to further develop technology options to meet GHG emissions and fuel economy standards, lower fuel costs to consumers, and support sustainable job growth in America well into the future. A transition to high-octane midlevel ethanol blend fuel, beginning with model year (MY) 2023, meets consumers’ vehicle preference for increased utility, acceleration and performance; provides automakers the quality liquid fuel needed for their advanced engine technologies; meets agency safety objectives; and reduces environmental impacts related to automobile transportation.
“Using ethanol to meet a higher-octane level would minimize changes in fuel cost, compared to the increased use of costly and harmful hydrocarbon aromatics. While ethanol may not be the only source of fuel octane, it is the lowest cost - and lowest carbon - octane source currently available, and corn ethanol’s carbon footprint is shrinking,” wrote Chrisp.
NCGA’s detailed comments are available here.