Ethanol free gasoline

nist7

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So a local gas station owner made the papers recently since he is a vocal opponent of ethanol-containing gasoline. His gas station (in Gardner, KS) even has signs proudly claiming his ethanol-free gas (but apparently due to business/supplier pressure have recently been 'forced' to sell 87 and 89 with E10, but 91 is still pure gas). I was actually researching places around my area that sell 92/93 octane gas when I stumbled upon the anti-ethanol movement. (not anti E-85/ethanol as main fule, but anti ethanol additive in regular gasoline ie the very common E10, which apparently is supposed to be very widespread and almost all drivers fill-up with E10 now a days)

So how founded are the arguments against E10 gasoline? (according to http://www.fuel-testers.com/manufacturer_fuel_recommendations_ethanol_e10.html Ferrari specifically recommends against using any gasoline with ethanol additives) Is it worth the time to find 'pure gasoline' these days?

Heres a website (founded by a motorcycle rider) that attempts to list all the diff gas stations that sell ethanol free gas in each US state: http://pure-gas.org/ Theres a BP station near KC that has 92 octane AND is listed on that website as ethanol-free. Will have to sample their 92 octane and do a home-made method test to see if it has any ethanol in it. Hopefully this method works:
To test for the presence of ethanol in any clear container put in some water up to some line. Add gas and shake. If the water line moves up there's ethanol. A labeled test kit or a graduated flask allows you to determine the percentage.
http://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=1883510
 

argatoga

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Ethanol is a scam. It costs more and is not good for engines.
 

Spectre

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E10 is forcing more frequent and more total carburetor overhauls these days (important for motorcycles), and the ethanol reduces fuel efficiency, power and leave strange residues on spark plugs.

This doesn't even begin to get into the idiocy that is the fact that by law in the US almost all domestic ethanol added to gasoline must come from corn. Why are we burning food?????
 
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GRtak

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While the list is nice, the closet station and apparently the only one in Michigan is south of Detroit.
 

thedguy

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California (surprise surprise) has all sorts of crap like e10 and mtbe and god knows what else in the fuel. Any wonder why the moment I fill a tank of Cali gas in any of my cars it drops by a solid 5mpg? And this from the state that is so environmentally conscious.

I'm not joking either, I actually measured my fuel economy through all of my travel back home for St. Louis 2 years ago starting from Denver heading north to wyoming than cruising back down through utah. My mileage in the miata was 39 in all those states per tank, moment I fueled up at state line, my mileage by the time I hit Orange county showed 34.
 

Spectre

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CA was, if memory serves, among the loudest in demanding lead be phased out and MTBEs be rushed in.
Once they started discovering MTBE in the groundwater, they were among the loudest in demanding it be removed and the first to ban it.
Then they started demanding it be replaced by ethanol...

Which makes you wonder - in the rush to put ethanol in, what did CA overlook in terms of health effects? :p
 

brydie76

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Over here, the only fuel with ethanol added is E10. Then we have regular unleaded 95, then premium 95 and 98. I only put the 98 in my car, the engine runs cleaner, uses less fuel and makes my car generally run better. My car is also carbied, so I wouldn't run any fuel with ethanol added in it. Our motorbikes/scooters are also "premium only" to ensure they don't get any fuel with ethanol in them.

Ethanol is an idiotic concept, like others said it actually makes you use more fuel and the environmental cost of growing the crops to create it is not considered. Premium fuels are actually a better bet for the environment.
 

public

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We're only moving over to E10 next year. I emailed Mazda Finland about it, and they called me saying that I would be better off using the 98E5 which should be readily available then.
 

hansvonaxion

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This doesn't even begin to get into the idiocy that is the fact that by law in the US almost all domestic ethanol added to gasoline must come from corn. Why are we burning food?????
Monsanto!

Not so much food, as feed.

 

Spectre

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More like Arthur Daniels Midland than Monsanto.

Remember that Texas is a large cattle-ranching state. We are sensitive to the price of cattle feed, which is usually corn.

It's still food, even if it's not given to humans. The amount they took out of the feed market for ethanol production purposes has driven the price of raising cattle up, which has raised other prices in turn; such diverse things as milk, other dairy products, hamburger, glue, fertilizer, and leather (always important for bikers) have all gone up as a result of this idiot mandate.

I'll put it to you this way; prior to the mandate, a gallon of milk (3.78L) could commonly be found for less than $2 at retail. As the animal feedstock prices went up, so did the price of milk. It is now averaging just under $3.50, a 75% increase in price in just five years that cannot be explained by inflation alone. Yes, that means that in many parts of the US, a gallon of milk costs more than a gallon of gasoline despite the fact that there is no tax on milk. Other cattle-related foods have gone up in price in similar percentages. That makes it that much harder for my less fortunate fellow citizens to feed their families; the amount of food they can buy for their dollars is more or less halved thanks to this.

Chickens are fed off corn too, so the price for that went up as well. In other words, by taking a food crop, even one only used for animals, out of circulation and burning it as fuel, they have raised the price of food eaten by humans and increased the scarcity of animal feed. Great going.
 
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hansvonaxion

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I understand your point.

I think it could be also argued that it's a sign of things to come, as fossil fuels become more scarce and we attempt to shift to renewable sources of energy there is bound to be price fluctuations for goods and services associated with those new energy sources. In this case it's food prices being affected by ethanol production. I think we're in for shock as we begin to realise the true price of energy, food and water after having it so good for so long.

Why corn, why ethanol? Right now it's cheap and easy to produce.
 
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narf

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In other words, by taking a food crop, even one only used for animals, out of circulation and burning it as fuel, they have raised the price of food eaten by humans and increased the scarcity of animal feed. Great going.
While I'm not going to voice any opinion on the use of Bio-Ethanol as fuel, that rationale can be applied to oil as well. By taking oil out of circulation and burning it as fuel, they have raised the price of any oil-based product such as certain plastics.
 

Spectre

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I understand your point.

I think it could be also argued that it's a sign of things to come, as fossil fuels become more scarce and we attempt to shift to renewable sources of energy there is bound to be price fluctuations for goods and services associated with those new energy sources. In this case it's food prices being affected by ethanol production. I think we're in for shock as we begin to realise the true price of energy, food and water after having it so good for so long.

Why corn, why ethanol? Right now it's cheap and easy to produce.
Corn is being used due to what was essentially bribes given to politicians of both parties here. It is actually far from ideal for use as ethanol base stock and it achieves none of the GHG/globalwarmingbs numbers that were initially claimed. Cellulosic ethanol is more efficient, cheaper (if you take the government subsidies away), and does not involve setting food crops on fire; it also uses plants that do not grow in existing prime farmlands.

While I'm not going to voice any opinion on the use of Bio-Ethanol as fuel, that rationale can be applied to oil as well. By taking oil out of circulation and burning it as fuel, they have raised the price of any oil-based product such as certain plastics.
As you may recall, I've complained about that as well; it doesn't make much more sense to be setting oil on fire either. Though due to how oil is refined and what fractionations are useful for what, it's to a lesser and much less directly impactful degree than what is essentially setting food on fire. (This is different from my own desire to run a waste vegetable oil fueled vehicle, as that is no longer food but food waste.)
 
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hansvonaxion

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Corn is being used due to what was essentially bribes given to politicians of both parties here. It is actually far from ideal for use as ethanol base stock and it achieves none of the GHG/globalwarmingbs numbers that were initially claimed. Cellulosic ethanol is more efficient, cheaper (if you take the government subsidies away), and does not involve setting food crops on fire; it also uses plants that do not grow in existing prime farmlands.
I'm not arguing with you. Actually I didn't say corn was the best source, just that it was cheap and easy... and they have to find something to do with it all.
 

Dogbert

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Corn is being used due to what was essentially bribes given to politicians of both parties here.
While you can probably technically bring both parties into this, the ethanol boom in this country is almost exclusively the doing of George W.

He specifically talked about it in the 2006 and 2007 State of the Union addresses, earmarked $150 million in the 2007 budget for the ethanol lobby in the name of "research efforts" (with taxpayers subsidizing a 51 cent per gallon tax credit to ethanol producers), and signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005, which kickstarted the entire ethanol boom in the first place with its requirements. He was even courting Latin America trying to get them on board with his ethanol kick.
 
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Spectre

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What you are conveniently forgetting (and it's already in your own links) is that Bush and the Republicans' 2005 Energy Policy Act encouraged all forms of ethanol generation, not just corn. The incentives are there for cellulosic ethanol as well as corn; in fact, it's pretty generic about where we should be getting ethanol from.

It was the Democrat-authored-and-passed cynically named Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 that along with other idiocies such as mandating those wonderfully toxic 'curly' compact fluorescent lights (mostly made in China and already causing an increase in mercury found in ground water) and jacking CAFE up to stupidly high levels (so high they had to buy off the manufacturers with 'loopholes' and a fuel credit trading exchange), mandated in the Renewable Fuel Standard portion of the act that the majority of the domestic ethanol come from corn as well as setting the mandatory ethanol production quotas.

On top of which, the current administration shows no interest in moving off of corn ethanol to ease the pain in hard-hit consumers wallets. They're all goddamn equally guilty.
 
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Dogbert

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What you are conveniently forgetting (and it's already in your own links) is that Bush and the Republicans' 2005 Energy Policy Act encouraged all forms of ethanol generation, not just corn. The incentives are there for cellulosic ethanol as well as corn; in fact, it's pretty generic about where we should be getting ethanol from.
... but it's still ethanol. I'm not "conveniently forgetting" anything, I'm addressing the OP and everyone else in this thread who is anti-ethanol, not just anti-corn-ethanol.

It was the Democrat-authored-and-passed cynically named Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 that along with other idiocies such as mandating those wonderfully toxic 'curly' compact fluorescent lights and jacking CAFE up to stupidly high levels (so high they had to buy off the manufacturers with 'loopholes' and a fuel credit trading exchange), mandated in the Renewable Fuel Standard portion of the act that the majority of the domestic ethanol come from corn as well as setting the mandatory ethanol production quotas.
Agreed, that's also a terrible bill... but one which George W happily signed, which just lengthens my list about him in my first post even more.

On top of which, the current administration shows no interest in moving off of corn ethanol to ease the pain in hard-hit consumers wallets. They're all goddamn equally guilty.
http://green.autoblog.com/2010/04/29/obama-visits-poet-ethanol-plant-but-that-doesnt-mean-industry/
Domestic Fuel, a site dedicated to the biofuel, said the speech "lacked substance." This is because Obama didn't talk about the E15 waiver issue or the renewal of ethanol production tax incentives, and that, "Without those actions, the future of the ethanol industry is questionable."
 
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Spectre

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I am, as I've said elsewhere, anti-ethanol for many reasons (environmental, lack of break-even, massive water consumption issues) as discussed elsewhere, but especially anti-corn-ethanol because it's just stupid.

Yes, but Obama and the Dems haven't done one thing either way - they seem happy to let it ride the way it is now - which is bad, hurting the population as a whole and the poor people especially.

Also, if that E15 initiative becomes a reality, something like sixty percent of the US personal vehicle fleet will immediately begin to break down and disintegrate to the point of unservicibility. Why? Because then E15 was tried before, in the 1970s, it turned out to be a horrible mess, to the point where most manufacturers have a warning like this in their owner's manuals, such as this one from a 1998 Honda:



E10 is bad enough, E15 will be a car (and motorcycle and small engine and boat and plane and snowmobile and tractor and generator) killer.

I have a feeling that in order to 'compensate' for this Congress' and President's growing unpopularity that they will attempt to get the farmers back on board with E15 - at the expense of most of the US motoring public.

Edit: And if you think that's just something 'older vehicles' are subject to, here's a shot from the 2009 E-class US market owners' manual:


And the 2010 Infiniti G37S owner's manual:


So, pretty much anything you've got that isn't an actual E85-intended flex fuel vehicle is pretty much going to get eaten by E15. Unless, of course, you spend thousands of dollars retrofitting it... in the middle of a depression.... with money you may or may not have... all to satisfy the corn lobby and an increasingly unpopular and hated Democratic president and Congress.

This would be part of why I will now be obtaining an enormous Ford diesel pickup truck to run around in - I've got to have something that doesn't burn gasoline in order to go pick up the 55 gallon drums of non-ethanol-laced fuel that the rest of the fleet will need to survive until a day when actual uncorrupted heads might prevail.
 
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