BoatUS backs election of lawmakers who support ethanol reform

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BoatUS is urging boaters and marine industry advocates to vote for politicians who will correct the law that mandates ethanol in gasoline before it wipes out the availability of E0, or gasoline with no ethanol blended in.

In an op-ed, BoatUS president Margaret Podlich said E0’s days are numbered if the Renewable Fuel Standard is not amended or repealed because it will be pushed out to meet the standards.

“As Democrat presidential candidates turn their attention to South Carolina, it is worth considering how a particular federal law that both candidates support wreaks havoc on the state’s boaters,” Podlich wrote. “That law is the Renewable Fuel Standard, and it has led to some significant, albeit unintentional, negative consequences for owners of the roughly half-million boats registered in the Palmetto State.”

“The federal ethanol mandate requires increasing amounts of biofuels — primarily corn ethanol — to be blended into America’s gasoline supply every year,” she wrote. “In part because of the mandate, more than 90 percent of American fuel today is E10, or 10 percent ethanol. In addition, higher ethanol-blend fuels such as E15 are becoming more prevalent in the marketplace, even though federal law prohibits the use of 15 percent ethanol in marine engines, ATVs, motorcycles, lawnmowers or any cars made before 2001.”

Correcting the RFS before E0 is eliminated will be the responsibility of the next president and Congress, she said.

“Thankfully, there are bipartisan ideas to fix the ethanol mandate in Congress, but the question remains whether our elected leaders will act and solve the problem,” she said. “America’s boaters, and certainly those in South Carolina, hope they will.”

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