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PA Bill on Ethanol...Need your help!

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Texas had a bill to get rid of ethanol in gasoline this last legislative session.  It didn't make it.  The financial analysis of the bill's impact upon gasoline taxes was several million $$$ NEGATIVE.  The reason was that if the non-ethanol gas resulted in DOE estimated 3+% better fuel economy, drivers would not drive more if they got better fuel economy, so with the then-current level of driving, with projected fewer gallons of fuel being used, then gasoline taxes (to help pay for roads and such) would decrease by the same amount.  So, can't have anything to decrease gasoline tax amounts!  So that's why it failed AND might also fail in other states.


When we got RFG (the first ethanol-blend fuel in the 1990s), Chevron had stated that it would result in about 3.67% less fuel economy.  But later research indicated that E10's fuel economy loss was more like 6%.  In that orientation, the actual decrease of gasoline taxes in TX would have been greater than the particular Bill Analysis indicated.


The ethanol-ban legislation DID pass in Hawaii, though, according to the SEMA website.


There ARE and have been several EPA-approved ethanol substitutes (as biobutanol), for many years, BUT state legislation usually mentioned "ethanol" specifically, which makes the use of these alternative oxygenates (some without the affects on automotive fuel systems and such) illegal to blend in the gasolines of the particular states.  A 16.5% blend of biobutanol yields the same emission results as the desired E15 fuels, but as the state laws were written for ethanol, such vehicle-non-injurious blends can't happen.  Getting new legislation to update the particular state laws might be the best way to get rid of ethanol and how it damages older vehicles.



Edited by NTX5467 (see edit history)
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I know the fuel mileage estimate for using ethanol free vs 10% ethanol are way off.   I generally use ethanol free gas in my daily driver and antique cars and get 10% better mileage in the daily driver 2002 BMW Z3.  I keep very accurate mileage records and generally get 28.3 MPG with ethanol free gas vs 25.5 MPG with 10% ethanol.


I generally pay 30 cents per gallon more for premium ethanol free gas, but with the extra MPG the cost per mile is less.


All I can say is write or email your state representative and tell them you won't vote for them the next time if they don't vote for this bill.  Elected official live for votes.


Find your representative in the following list and click on the envelope next to their name to send an email.  http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/home/member_information/contact.cfm?body=H


When the Year of Manufacture license plates came up for a vote, there were a lot of AACA members like me bugging them about passing that bill and it went through. 

Edited by Vila (see edit history)
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i drive 80 miles to get ethanol free fuel for my old cars i buy 100 gallons at a time.since doing this i have not lost a fuel pump ,they start bettet

run better an milage is up.i fill my dodge ram1500 up while there and after running about 20 miles it runs great and 4 to 8 miles more depending on my

right foot.

my cars are

24 reo t6 speedster

23 reo t6 touring

58 ford s.w.

66 lin. convert.

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Just saw this after posting in the general forum.  This bill has passed the House and is now in Senate committee review you now need to start working on your state senators, it is already approved by the house.  See the following link  ....



I wrote to my state Senator and the committee members this evening.  Ethanol in the past 5 years has cost me two Jaguar fuel pumps, a Cutlass fuel sender, a Porsche fuel tank, a John Deere carb, a buick fuel sender, the list goes on.  Every single PA based AACA member should be on this.
Here is the letter I sent to my state rep and the committee members.

The Honorable Senator John Rafferty
Harrisburg, PA

22 January 2016

Dear Senator Rafferty,

I am writing you to request your support for House Bill 471 which removes the ethanol mandate for gasoline. I realize that this bill is currently in review by the Senate Environmental Resources & Energy Committee, I have already contacted all members of that committee via email.

As an owner of several antique and classic vehicles, I have experienced first hand the damages resulting from ethanol blend fuels. Fuel pumps, carburetors, sending units, and most recently a fuel tank have all been severely damaged or destroyed resulting in thousands of dollars in unnecessary repairs. To preserve some equipment, I now travel over 100 miles twice a year to fill fuel cans with ethanol free gasoline.

Of even greater significance are the ethical implications of turning food into fuel. Studies have shown that the claimed environmental benefits are based on unrealistic crop yields and thus, the environmental impact of producing ethanol actually exceeds the benefit. Clearly the introduction of ethanol into fuel was not based on good science but was designed to placate the farm lobby at the expense of the public.

I appreciate your help and ask that you support the passage of HB 471.

Thank you for your time and considering my request.


Edited by amphicar770 (see edit history)
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Less mileage is interesting but to me not the driving force to get rid of ethanol.  My pre-war cars vaporlock on it driving down the road at 50 mph when it is 90 degrees.  I had to install an electric fuel pump on a switch and wrap the steel fuel lines in foam insulation to use my cars here in Florida.


In addition, if we don't treat the gas with Startron while they are sitting the gas goes bad quickly and gums up the fuel system, causes rust in the fuel system, sucks up water into the fuel system.  This is awful stuff friends.  My more modern antiques experience all of this except the vapor locks.


We collectors are a miniscule segment of the American driving public.  The politicians who dream of MONEY to be made by forcing everybody to use ethanol could care less about we collectors.  Or, for that matter the American driving public who might like better gas mileage.  They all only care about taxes and the money to line the coffers.


Global warming?  Even if you believe in that being a problem, and in fact I do, its not going to be solved or fixed by the public being forced to use ethanol, which is only trash.  If they really care about global warming, they other ways to improve that problem.....after all, we went to the Moon in 1969.

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A few facts on making ethanol:


A typical "100 million" gallon/year ethanol manufacturing plant


115 million gallons denatured ethanol/year

384 million tons of dried distiller grains (with solubles)/year (used for livestock feed)

360 gallons per minute wastewater containing negligible COD (from boiler & cooling tower blowdown)

Particulates: 63.6 tons/year

CO2: 300,000 tons/year

SO2: 12.17 tons/year

NOx: 90.5 tons/tear

CO: 91.4 tons/year

Total Volatile Organic Compounds: 98.8 tons/year



41million bushels of corn per year (about 30 rail cars of corn per day)

2.8 million pounds of enzymes per year

1.7 million gallons of water per day

7.5 million pounds of Urea per year

5.9 million pounds of Sulfuric Acid per year

3.9 million pounds of Ammonia per year


One acre of corn can produce 300 gallons of ethanol -- enough to fuel four cars for one year with a 10% ethanol-blend


Every 100 BTUs of energy used to produce ethanol (including planting, cultivating, harvesting, and processing) yields 167 BTUs of ethanol so it isn’t a very efficient process


Seems like a rather polluting process although a comparison on air emissions shows that this plant would emit about  the same air pollutants as running 11 average lawn mowers for the same period of time.


Engines designed to run on ethanol, such as those in modern cars that can use E85, make more horsepower using ethanol.  For these engines, fuel economy is reduced about 20% when running the summer blend of E85 (which contains 85% ethanol, as compared to winter blends which can be reduced down to 70% and 74% spring/fall)


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