Benefits of ethanol E85 fuels

This information can be utilized to understand the benefits of E85 ethanol fuel to see why ethanol fuel has great potential for large scale applications.

  • E85 is easy to use and handle – E85 fueling equipment is slightly different and of similar cost to equipment used to store and dispense petroleum fuels. In some cases, it may be possible to convert your existing petroleum equipment to handle E85.
  • Ethanol supports our America’s farmers – With the nation’s farmers begining to sell their land to home developers, their land will once again become valuable for growing the corn necessary for ethanol prodcution and will preserve America’s Heart Land.
  • Using E85 reduces petroleum consumption – Use of E85 will reduce a fleet’s overall use of petroleum and replace it with a renewable-based fuel produced ("grown") in the United States.
  • E85 is good for the environment
    – Beyond operational ease, E85 offers considerable environmental benefits. To learn more about fuel economy, greenhouse gas scores, and air pollution scores for individual vehicles, go to the U.S. Department of Energy/U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s on-line Fuel Economy Guide. You can search for E85-fueled vehicles
    by selecting "flexible-fueled vehicles" in the "Select Vehicle Type" pull-down menu. Once you are there, select individual vehicles to get fuel economy, greenhouse gas, and air pollution details.
  • Reduced ozone-forming and overall toxic tailpipe emissions
  • Reduced fuel lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions (carbon dioxide)
  • It is primarily composed of ethyl alcohol (ethanol), derived from renewable resources
  • Ethanol is biodegradable and much less of a spill threat to surface and ground water than petroleum-based fuel spills.
  • Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFVs) are available and affordable
    – FFVs specifically designed to run on E85 are becoming more common each model year, and FFVs are typically available as standard equipment with little or no incremental cost. See the current model year FFVs.
  • FFVs have flexible fueling options
    – FFVs may operate on gasoline, and, in fact, most of the 4 million FFVs on US roadways do today. Although that is not a positive from an E85-use standpoint, it does underscore the flexibility FFVs offer fleets. When E85 is not available, or an FFV travels outside the fueling network, a driver may simply fuel with either fuel as the situation dictates.
  • Alternative fuels. A state by state list.

    Below you will find a listing of Alternative Fuel Station counts by state and fuel type, CNG – Compressed Natural Gas, E85 – 85% Ethanol, LPG – Propane, ELEC – Electric, BD – Biodiesel, HY – Hydrogen and LNG – Liquefied Natural Gas.

    Ethanol has been bolded for every state.
    As of 4/23/2006

    STATE CNG E85 LPG ELEC BD HY LNG Totals
    by State
    Alabama 1 0 74 0 0 0 0 75
    Alaska 0 0 12 0 0 0 0 12
    Arizona 30 5 74 18 4 1 4 136
    Arkansas 4 0 57 0 0 0 0 61
    California 179 3 257 406 18 9 30 902
    Colorado 21 11 72 4 22 0 0 130
    Connecticut 11 0 19 4 1 0 0 35
    Delaware 1 0 3 0 3 0 0 7
    DC 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 2
    Florida 22 2 70 7 4 0 0 105
    Georgia 16 6 51 0 17 0 0 90
    Hawaii 0 0 6 11 3 0 0 20
    Idaho 8 1 28 0 2 0 1 40
    Illinois 11 96 73 0 9 0 0 189
    Indiana 11 18 42 0 10 0 0 81
    Iowa 0 41 29 0 8 0 0 78
    Kansas 3 8 49 0 4 0 0 64
    Kentucky 0 5 36 0 6 0 0 47
    Louisiana 8 0 14 0 0 0 0 22
    Maine 1 0 6 0 2 0 0 9
    Maryland 13 4 19 0 3 0 0 39
    Massachusetts 9 0 28 28 1 0 0 66
    Michigan 15 6 88 0 13 2 0 124
    Minnesota 3 203 34 0 2 0 0 242
    Mississippi 0 0 40 0 6 0 0 46
    Missouri 6 25 88 0 2 0 0 121
    Montana 2 5 31 0 6 0 0 44
    Nebraska 1 27 23 0 1 0 0 52
    Nevada 16 1 25 0 10 1 0 53
    New Hampshire 3 0 14 10 10 0 0 37
    New Jersey 15 0 11 0 1 0 0 27
    New Mexico 8 3 60 0 2 0 0 73
    New York 37 6 28 0 4 0 0 75
    North Carolina 11 9 67 0 36 0 0 123
    North Dakota 4 22 16 0 0 0 0 42
    Ohio 12 7 75 0 14 0 0 108
    Oklahoma 53 4 72 1 5 0 0 135
    Oregon 14 1 34 4 14 0 0 67
    Pennsylvania 31 1 63 0 11 0 0 106
    Rhode Island 6 0 4 2 0 0 0 12
    South Carolina 5 31 34 2 24 0 0 96
    South Dakota 0 33 22 0 0 0 0 55
    Tennessee 6 5 59 0 9 0 0 79
    Texas 29 4 628 2 10 0 2 675
    Utah 63 3 27 0 3 0 0 96
    Vermont 1 0 6 1 5 0 0 13
    Virginia 12 2 25 0 10 0 0 49
    Washington 14 2 60 0 18 0 0 94
    West Virginia 2 2 8 0 0 0 0 12
    Wisconsin 18 13 56 0 2 0 0 89
    Wyoming 11 4 33 0 13 0 0 61
    Totals by Fuel: 748 619 2750 500 348 14 37 5016

    e85 ethanol Safety Concerns

    As in the dispensing of petroleum-based fuels such as traditional gasoline or diesel, E85 should be handled with the highest level of safety in mind. Although E85 use may be lower in some pollutants, E85 fuel is poisonous and flammable. E85 should never be confused with beverage alcohol. Cigarettes and other open ignition sources should never be allowed in fueling areas.

    In general, the same safety measures that apply to gasoline apply to E85. All employees and the vehicle drivers using an E85 fueling system should:

    • Know basic safety practices
    • Understand the purpose and content of your fuel site’s emergency action plan
    • Be familiar with signage and emergency equipment at that site including the emergency shut down button
    • Understand what emergency actions need to be taken in an accident.

    At a minimum, your emergency action plan should include:

    • Identification of what incidents may trigger the action plan
    • Actions to take for specific events
    • Notification procedures
    • Evacuation procedures
    • Safety systems
    • Emergency event action items

    Emergency telephone numbers should be posted at the fueling site, near all office telephones, and in adjoining facilities. These contacts should include, but may not be limited to:

    • #911 (emergency reminder)
    • Fire department
    • Emergency medical
    • Police
    • Maintenance contacts and equipment vendors
    • Contacts for the adjoining buildings and businesses

    E85 has been determined to be a flammable liquid per the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard, and should be handled accordingly.

    The safety standards for handling E85 are the same as those for gasoline. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) codes 30 and 30-A pertain to refueling stations and the handling of motor fuels and other combustible liquids.

    In the event of a fire at your fueling site:

    • Never attempt to disconnect the dispenser nozzle from the vehicle
    • Evacuate immediate area of the fire
    • Trigger the emergency shut down button; which should be located nearby.
    • Contact emergency personnel

    For E85 fires, carbon dioxide, halon or dry chemical extinguishers marked B, C, BC, or ABC should be used.

    For larger fires, water spray, fog or foam (AFFT/ATC) can be used. Only those who are adequately trained and equipped with proper protective equipment should attempt fire fighting.

    Remember that fuel vapors can travel along the ground or be moved by ventilation and ignited by sources such as pilot lights, sparks, electric motors, static discharge, or other ignition sources at locations distant from material handling. For additional fire related information, see Codes & Standards.