EPA approves E15 for 2001 and newer cars and trucks

The Environmental Protection Agency approved E15 gasoline for 2001 and newer cars and light-duty trucks Friday, a measure that has, in the past, been opposed by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) and the Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC).

The agency approved the fuel, which contains 15 percent ethanol, for 2001-2006 automobiles in its recent decision, according to The Associated Press. It had been OKed for 2007 and newer vehicles in October.

Though approval has been given for about two-thirds of vehicles driven in the United States today, a decision on autos manufactured before 2001 and on motorcycles, heavy-duty vehicles and non-road engines, including those in snowmobiles and boats, will not be made any time soon, the EPA said. Because of a lack of testing in those areas, approval cannot be given. The EPA said 2001-2006 cars and trucks have more durable emissions systems that can support the hotter burning ethanol.

The AMA and MIC have in the past issued calls to the EPA to delay its decision because the organizations are concerned that motorcyclists could be confused at the pump and accidentally use the E15, causing damage to engines. Neither organization had released a statement as of Friday morning.

Critics expect many fuel retailers not to sell E15 because of the cost associated with adding new pumps and signs, according to The Associated Press.

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