Lindsay Mitchell

Oct 23, 2013  |  Today's News

It’s almost as if the Illinois General Assembly has extra time on their hands with nothing valuable to do.

Instead of fixing some pressing issues in Illinois like the budget, the pension system, or even our redistricting procedures, they have chosen instead to consider H.R. 0524 and S.R. 634, a resolution to support an effort in the U.S. House of Representatives to revoke the approved use of E-15 and to encourage further research.

H.R. 872 offered by James Sensenbrenner from Wisconsin requires a comprehensive assessment of the scientific and technical research on the implications of the use of mid-level ethanol blends.  It further seeks to revoke the approved use of E-15.

Perhaps they haven’t heard, but E-15 is the most researched fuel in the marketplace.

A new study just out this month from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory finds that the available literature “…did not show meaningful differences between E15 and E10 in any performance category.”  This, from their assessment of 33 unique research studies.

That there are 33 unique studies focused on materials compatibility, engine and fuel system durability, exhaust emissions, catalyst durability, effects on on-board diagnostics and evaporative emissions, including only one study that questions E-15’s viability is telling.

And now, because the rest of the country needs one more reason to laugh at Illinois, we are considering supporting a bill in the U.S. House that calls for still more studies.

We’ve forgotten that the entire Illinois economy is built on a backbone of agriculture.  And ethanol is good for agriculture; therefore, it is good for rural economies and the rest of the Illinois economy.  By the way, it’s also good for consumers who want to save money (who doesn’t!?) and for the air quality in our urban areas for those of us that like breathing.

If you happen to be in any of those categories (live in a rural area, like to save money, or enjoy breathing) you might want to consider calling your Illinois House and Senate member to speak to them about H.R. 0524 and S.R. 634.  Supporting Sensenbrenner’s bill is NOT good for Illinois.