Fuel Retailers Urge EPA to Authorize Summer Sales of E15

High inflation, geopolitical unrest and lingering supply chain issues have created a volatile fuel supply market.

April 06, 2023

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—NATSO, representing truckstops and travel plazas, SIGMA: America’s Leading Fuel Marketers, and the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) urged the EPA to authorize the summertime sale of gasoline blended with up to 15 percent ethanol (E15) to ensure consistent gasoline supply and lower fuel prices for American consumers during the summer driving season.

NATSO, SIGMA and NACS, which collectively represent 90 percent of the motor fuel sales in the United States, said in a letter to the EPA that high inflation coupled with lingering supply chain disruptions and continued geopolitical unrest have created a volatile fuel supply market that is unlikely to change in coming months.

“Total gasoline inventories are lower today than they were last year when EPA issued waivers to address the nation’s fuel supply,” the organizations told EPA. “None of these trends appear likely to dissipate in the coming months. This will result in continued, increasing pressure on transportation fuel markets that will make it challenging to ensure consistent gasoline supply across the nation.”

EPA alleviated summertime fuel concerns in 2022, when fuel inventories were higher than they are today. Selling E15 during the summer months allows fuel retailers to diversify fuel options while lowering fuel prices for consumers and improving the carbon intensity of fuel.

While current fuel supplies are adequate to meet demand, summertime E15 sales will help to ensure the nation does not experience disruptions in the fuel supply or higher costs for consumers should unforeseen circumstances tighten supplies.

NACS Magazine looked at ethanol and other biofuels’ role in emission reductions in “Biofuels in the Mix” in October 2022.