Sunday, November 3, 2013


Wrote my Senators to ask them about repealing the ethanol mandate. This law requires the refiners to ass ever increasing amounts of ethanol to the gasoline they make on the assumption that gasoline consumption will continuously increase, thus keeping the mix from becoming overly toxic to your car. Alas, gas consumption has been going down as fewer and fewer people drive to work or can afford to drive anywhere else. The ethanol requirement is not tied to this so the amount of ethanol in your gas goes up.

Sen Udal finally got around to answering. It's in bureaucratese, so maybe I can translate:

(202) 224-5941
United States Senate

November 1, 2013
Dear William,

Thank you for contacting me regarding the renewable fuel standard.  I appreciate hearing your views on this issue.
One of my top priorities in the U.S. Congress has been to reform our nation's outdated energy policies.  As a member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee in the U.S. Senate, I focus on these issues every day. 
I get a lot of attention from Big Corn, Big Oil etc, which I don't want to lose.
I support a comprehensive energy plan that includes responsible drilling for oil and natural gas,
I oppose fraccing,
expanding safe and secure nuclear power
"safe and secure" means 100% risk free. Inother words, I'm against it.
and fast-tracking renewable energy sources.
More money for solar power plants and windmills, a percentage of which comes back to me.
  The development of new vehicles that can run on fuel cells, natural gas and electricity, as well as new fuels such as cellulosic ethanol and other biofuels will help us reduce our dependence on foreign oil while creating jobs here at home.
Terry McAuliffs electric car boondoggle comes to mind. Cellulosic ethanol has never been produced in commercial quantities even though it's required of the refiners. They pay a fine tax for not using it and pass that cost on to you.
I believe ethanol has an important role to play in improving our energy security;
All evidence to the contrary notwithstanding...
however, I also understand concerns about the challenges presented by increasing the amount of ethanol blended into gasoline.  As you know, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will allow the commercial sale of gasoline that contains up to 15 percent ethanol, otherwise known as E15.  Though these mixtures are solely intended for specified vehicles,
It will damage most vehicles on the road today...
I understand the potential for accidentally fueling unapproved vehicles.  The EPA is currently taking measures to avoid this kind of misfueling,
When you fuel up now the pumps have 4 mixes and two hoses including diesel. This would add 3 more selections.
and I will keep your concerns in mind as I monitor this issue.  For further details outlining the EPA's policy, please visit its website:
I will remain attentive to what you and other Coloradans have to say about matters before Congress, the concerns of our communities, and the issues facing Colorado and the nation.  My job is not merely about supporting or opposing legislation,
As a Senator I'd say that that should be a larger part of it than schmoozing the president's favored lobbyists..
but also about bridging the divide that has paralyzed our nation's politics.
Have you ever voted with the Republicans? On anything?
  For more information about my positions and to learn how my office can assist you, please visit my website at
Warm regards,
 Sen Udall is a loyal party hack. Period.

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