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OPEI Files Legal Challenge to E15 Misfueling Rule
Sep 23, 2011
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The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), along with automakers and marine manufacturers, will make a formal legal challenge to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) “Regulation to Mitigate Misfueling” rule, which was meant to address concerns about 15% ethanol blends and non-road products and older model-year vehicles.

OPEI and partner groups maintain that EPA’s weak labeling effort is inadequate to protect consumers and avoid potential misfueling and damage to millions of legacy products not designed to run on any ethanol fuel higher than E10.

"We are asking that the EPA do more to protect the consumer,” said Kris Kiser, president and CEO of OPEI. "We need to educate the public on a new fuel entering the market that is about to fundamentally change how we purchase and dispense gasoline. And, we need to ensure that consumers can still find E10 for the millions of product - lawnmowers, chainsaws, motorcycles, snowmobiles, ATVs and UTVs, boats and older cars – that still use an E10 legacy fuel."

OPEI points to the EPA’s prior experience with fuel transitions and misfueling as evidence that labeling alone is insufficient to prevent misfueling: when the EPA led the transition to unleaded fuels, it reported a misfueling rate of nearly 15% almost 10 years after the introduction of unleaded gasoline - even with a physical barrier at the pump.

OPEI said a simple E15 label is completely inadequate to avoid misfueling and does not protect consumers and business owners from potential equipment damage and safety risks.

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