Trump administration backs off plans to end or reduce ethanol policy

The swamp wins: Scott Pruitt, EPA head, has retreated from his plans to reduce or end the program that subsidizes and encourages the use of ethanol in automobile gasoline.

After heavy pressure from lawmakers and other stakeholders, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt on Thursday night sided with pro-ethanol lawmakers and said his agency will abandon many controversial changes to the nation’s ethanol mandate — prompting a top biofuels leader to claim that Mr. Pruitt apparently has had an “epiphany” over the past few days.

In a letter to seven key senators, Mr. Pruitt — who had been critical of ethanol during his time as Oklahoma attorney general — shot down several major concerns about looming adjustments to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), the federal law that requires the blending of ethanol with gasoline.

The letter comes just days after Sen. Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican and perhaps the loudest pro-ethanol voice in Congress, threatened to hold up nominees for top-level EPA posts if Mr. Pruitt didn’t acquiesce to their demands on the RFS.

It is going to take many years to drain the swamp, since it presently holds great power and is willing to use it to maintain its corrupt control over taxpayer money.

EPA never did ethanol studies required by law

The law is such an inconvenient thing: Despite a legal mandate from Congress to conduct studies on the use of ethanol in vehicles the EPA has admitted that it simply ignored the law and never did any.

The Obama administration has failed to study as legally required the impact of requiring ethanol in gasoline and ensuring that new regulations intended to address one problem do not actually make other problems worse, the Environmental Protection Agency inspector general said Thursday. The conclusion in the new audit confirmed findings of an Associated Press investigation in November 2013. The AP said the administration never conducted studies to determine whether air and water quality benefits from adding corn-based ethanol to gasoline. Such reports to Congress were required every three years under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

Instead, they have been pushing to increase the amount of ethanol used in gasoline, even though they have no idea whether this helps or hurts the environment, and have been told by practically every automotive industry expert that increased ethanol will damage car engines.

But then, who cares what the law says? Who cares what other experts say? The EPA is made up of righteous perfect liberal individuals who simply know better. How dare Congress, or anyone for that matter, tell them what to do!

After mandating the sale of 15% ethanol gasoline — that can damage engines and lower fuel efficiency — the EPA is now going to require that you buy at least 4 gallons in order to reduce the damage.

How nice of them: After mandating the sale of 15% ethanol gasoline — which can damage engines and lower fuel efficiency — the EPA is now going to require that you buy at least 4 gallons when you fill your tank in order to reduce the damage.

The entire auto industry has made it very clear its opposition to 15% ethanol because that mixture is harmful to vehicle engines. So, does the EPA back off? No, it instead doubles down, increasing its regulatory control in a manner that is complex, unenforceable, and impractical.

And when this new regulation doesn’t work and vehicles begin to fail, don’t expect the EPA to pay for the repair. Instead, I expect we will soon have EPA regulators standing at every gas station, checking to make sure we use the right gasoline in the right amounts, ready to fine or arrest us if we dare to do something different.

EPA approves 15% ethanol gasoline despite the risk of engine damage

We’re here to help you: The EPA has approved a warning label for its approval of 15% ethanol gasoline.

EPA says tests show E15 won’t harm 2001 and newer vehicles, which have hoses and gaskets and seals specially designed to resist corrosive ethanol. But using E15 fuel in older vehicles or in power equipment such as mowers, chainsaws and boats, can cause damage and now is literally a federal offense.