"Everything in this room would be destroyed," a lobbyist from the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute tells KSTP-TV as he stands in a showroom filled with lawn mowers, chain saws, and other small engines. He is warning of what he calls the "dangers" of increasing the ethanol blend beyond 10 percent.
The Minneapolis-based TV station aired a special investigative report last night on the efforts to increase the ethanol blend level from E10 to E15 or E20. Although the piece wasn't as one-sided as the promotional video posted earlier in the day (the ominous voice-over warning of voided warranties and your family's safety being in grave jeopardy), KSTP still missed some basic facts that deserve a hearing.
First, the government requires volumes of testing to be completed before any new fuel blend is approved, and they're not going to approve anything that is unsafe.
Second, even when E15 and E20 are eventually approved, there will still be choices at the pump for consumers who prefer to use E10 or unleaded. Those with classic cars or small engines, for example, will not be forced to use any fuel they don't want to use. The American Coalition for Ethanol believes in the consumer's right to choose, and we will continue advocating strongly for this.
Third, a point for conversation. Ethanol is being required to provide volumes of scientific proof that these blends will indeed work, yet ethanol's opponents are not required to provide this same volume of evidence when they say things like "Everything in this room will be destroyed." We will continue to work with policymakers and regulators to provide all the documentation they need to make sound decisions on ethanol, because we know the facts are on our side. All we ask is that people -- including the media -- ask for the same amount of information on both sides of the discussion.
Posted by: Kristin Brekke
For more information, take a moment to view this video response to the KSTP story from ACE's Executive Vice President, Brian Jennings: