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Groups seek more time on proposed E15 rules

A diverse group of 24 organizations, including those representing the marine industry, this week asked the Environmental Protection Agency to allow an additional 60 days for public comment on proposed regulations designed to prevent misfueling with gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol.

The deadline is currently Jan. 3.

The letter says the extension is needed "to allow stakeholders the opportunity to offer complete and thoughtful comments" on the proposed misfueling regulations. Three of the eight weeks the EPA designated to receive comments fall around holidays, when many people are out of their offices, the letter said.

Marine organizations included in the letter are: American Boat Builders & Repairers Association; American Sportfishing Association; Association of Marina Industries; BoatU.S.; Marine Retailers Association of America; National Association of State Boating Law Administrators; National Marine Manufacturers Association; and the Personal Watercraft Industry Association.

The EPA approved the use of E15 on Oct. 13 for cars and light-duty trucks produced for the 2007 model year and later, but did not approve E15 for older cars and light-duty trucks or for any model-year boats, motorcycles, heavy-duty trucks, buses, snowmobiles and outdoor power equipment.

Misfueling occurs when the wrong gasoline is put into an engine. Proposed EPA regulations designed to prevent misfueling include fuel-pump labeling requirements to make consumers aware when a pump dispenses E15 and to educate them about the limited number of vehicles the EPA says can use E15.

The EPA also has proposed a quarterly survey of gasoline retailers that is designed to help ensure gasoline pumps are properly labeled.

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