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Gov. Kate Brown signs bill approving E15 in Oregon

Royal Farms E15 ethanol gas pump_RoyalFarms-ProtecFuel 014.jpg
Previous law required gasoline in the state to have 10% ethanol, but this bill allows retailers to go higher.

Renewable-fuels advocates are applauding Oregon's Gov. Kate Brown for signing a bill allowing the sale of gasoline with as much as 15% ethanol.

Brown, a Democrat, signed the bill June 23, allowing retailers to exceed the 10% blend previously required the state law. According to Growth Energy, the bill makes the Beaver State the 48th state to approve E15.

“We applaud the state of Oregon and Gov. Brown on clarifying that E15 is approved for sale and giving drivers across the state access to a more affordable, better for the environment option at the pump,” Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said.

“Oregon’s approval of E15 comes just weeks after recent news from neighboring Nevada, who enacted legislation to approve E15," she said. "We look forward to working with West Coast retailers to offer drivers an engine smart, earth kind fuel.”

Currently, E15 — marketed to consumers as Unleaded 88 — is offered at over 2,440 retail sites in 30 states and 230 terminals, according to Growth Energy. Consumers have driven over 21 billion miles on E15 to date, the organization states.

10% minimum

 Oregon law previously required that gasoline sold for use in motor vehicles contain 10% ethanol, or in the cast of anhydrous ethanol, contain in in concentrations of no less than 9.2% and no more than 10 percent, Ethanol Producer Magazine explains.

The Oregon House of Representatives passed the legislation, HB 3051, by a vote of 33 to 25 on June 7, while the Senate passed it by a vote of 17 to 13 on June 10, the magazine notes.

.The Renewable Fuels Association thanked Brown for signing the legislation.

“We are pleased to see Oregon now allow E15 fuel and are grateful to Gov. Brown for her support so Oregon’s drivers will soon be able to choose lower-carbon, lower-cost E15 blends at the pump," said Geoff Cooper, the organization's president and chief executive officer.."Now, we have only two more states that need to take the same action—California and Montana—as well as some key counties in Arizona.

"We will continue to provide technical, regulatory, and legislative assistance as needed so their drivers, too, can drive on E15," he said. "We also continue our work in more than a dozen other states to ensure their rules and regulations are clearer and more explicit regarding the approved use of E15.”

Livestock industry groups have historically been cooler to the idea of higher ethanol thresholds and mandates, arguing they raise the prices of feed.

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