September 28, 2012
Letter: Contrary to writer, E15 has been widely tested
Published in Des Moines Register
No Iowan should be surprised that Big Oil and its front groups would seek to undercut ethanol — even here in The Des Moines Register, where readers are very familiar with the benefits of renewable fuels (letter to the editor, “Drivers Should Beware of Using E15 Fuel,” Sept. 27).
The writer fails to point out that the U.S. Department of Energy conducted years of research on the safety and use of E15 in vehicles and permitted higher blends of ethanol in gasoline only after this exhaustive on-road testing had established that E15 does not affect drivability, harm engines or increase emissions.
In fact, the Energy Department issued a detailed response to the Coordinating Research Council analysis cited by the writer. Not coincidentally, the Coordinating Research Council is a research organization for jointly-funded work by the auto and oil industries.
Also of interest to readers is the fact that, according to a recent article by Politico, the writer is a former lobbyist for Koch Industries. Both the Institute for Energy Research and the American Energy Alliance, the institute’s political arm, are funded partly by the Koch brothers and their donor network, which have a financial stake in oil.
The reality is that renewable fuels — both wind and ethanol — have been a boon to the state of Iowa. Iowans should be celebrating the fact that a retailer sold the state’s first gallon of E15 this week.
— U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, Cumming