8 Midwest governors seek authority to let E15 be sold year-round

DES MOINES — Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is among a bipartisan group of eight Midwest governors asking the Biden Administration to let gasoline with a 15% blend of ethanol be sold in their states year-round.

This summer, a federal appeals court struck down a 2019 rule allowing year-round E-15 sales nationwide. The governors say under the Clean Water Act, they can authorize E15 sales within their states’ borders all year long. Iowa Renewable Fuels Association executive director Monte Shaw says the future of the ethanol industry depends on getting higher blends into the marketplace.

“If we are capped at E10, we are best stuck in neutral,” Shaw says, “but in reality with better mileage cars, changes in driving habits and the penetration of electric cars we are actually in reverse and we will wither away.”

Shaw says E15 is as much as 20 cents per gallon cheaper than E10 for consumers and an additional 225 million bushels of corn would be needed for ethanol production if E15 is sold everywhere all year.

“The amazing productivity of our farmers needs and deserves a home,” Shaw says. “And why shouldn’t that be fuel that’s lower carbon and lower cost?”

The letter from the governors asks the EPA what documents they need to provide in order to ensure E15 can be pumped year-round in their eight states.