Since the 1970's, we have had repeated oil crises causing consumers and the automotive industry to spend billions of dollars more on gasoline and engineering modifications to vehicles without making us independent of imported oil or significantly lowering CO2 emissions.
The April 2010 oil well blow-out in the Gulf of Mexico cost us 100's of millions if not billions of dollars to clean up. With E100 powering our fleet, the need for imported oil and more oil drilling would drop to nothing.
If the political tension and demonstrations in the Middle East spread to Saudi Arabia and oil supplies are reduced, the price of gasoline will reach unheard of heights in the U.S. We need to make ourselves independent of Middle East politics. E100 engines can do this.
This possibility is currently (September 2020) masked by low gasoline prices in the U.S., but is always underneath the surface.
The government's standard of July 29, 2011 to raise the CAFE limit to 54.5 mpg for 2017 - 2025 light duty vehicles will only tie us to gasoline forever. It is not even clear if this goal can even be reached at any reasonable cost. Additionally, the "54.5" is a calculated number based on CO2 emissions per mile. The actual mileage is someplace in the 30's mpg.
This plan depends upon massive mileage credits for electric and electric/hybrid (EV's) vehicles and assumes that consumers will buy EV's in huge quantities. Absent a technology breakthrough, this is simply not going to happen. See the "Why Not Electric Cars" page.
President Obama announced that when the proposed 54.5 mpg standard is combined with the current 2012 - 2016 standards, we will save 12 billion barrels of crude from 2012 - 2025 (14 years). To obtain the 140 billion gallons of gasoline we use, we have to use 7.4 billion barrels of crude oil (19 gals gasoline/barrel). As a percentage then, we will save only 12/(14*7.4) = 12% of our crude oil consumption over those 14 years.
In short, we are going to spend anywhere from $2,000 - $6,000 per vehicle to save 12% of our gasoline and it is likely we will not even save that. This is not a good bet and does not make sense.
Bill Ford, Jr., the Chairman of Ford Motor, stated publicly at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco on Oct. 27, 2011 that electric cars are "a big bet, a huge bet."
A better bet is to simply ban the sale of new vehicles that burn gasoline or diesel as the primary fuel. Define primary as anything greater than 2% for liquid fueled vehicles. Leave existing vehicles alone to live out their lives on gasoline.
At the most basic level, the government's plans spend billions upon billions of dollars to keep using the problem - gasoline.
We need to replace our gasoline with a motor fuel whose price is not controlled by the oil companies.
Moving to a significant percentage of E100 vehicles capable of burning straight ethanol efficiently will cost less and save far more gasoline than the government's program.
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Last Updated October 5, 2020