At the end of May, the Trump administration announced it would allow for the year-round sale of gasoline with higher concentrations of ethanol.
That action addressed a rule the Environmental Protection Agency had in place preventing the sale of so-called E15 fuel, which contains 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, between June 1 and Sept. 15. The purpose was to prevent air pollution and curb dependence on foreign petroleum, but the ban has stopped some retailers from selling E15 at all because of the need to change out pumps.
One benefit is that gas prices could come down. As previously reported by FOX Business, E15 is typically priced about 5 to 10 cents cheaper than regular gasoline.
“Now in the summer months when consumers are driving more and oil companies usually jack up their prices,” Iowa Renewable Fuels Association executive director Monte Shaw said in a statement to FOX Business, adding that the new statute will allow drivers to save money at the pump.
According to the Renewable Fuels Association, E15 was approved for use in model year 2001 and newer vehicles by the EPA in 2012. The group says 90 percent of cars on the road are approved to run on E15.
Shaw previously noted that E15 has been in high demand where it is offered. E10, however, is still the default regular fuel sold across most of the country.
The move is also a boon to corn farmers, since corn is widely used to make ethanol domestically. Allowing for the year-round sale of E15 will give farmers more avenues to sell corn, which could bolster revenue especially when prices are low.
Shaw expects Trump’s recent action to create “tens of millions of gallons of immediate demand for ethanol.”
Trump is expected to visit a renewable energy facility and speak at a dinner. Ahead of his flight, he told reporters that no one has treated farmers better than he has.
Iowa – an important battleground state – is the largest producer of corn in the U.S.