California's ethanol

In a showdown looming in Congress over gasoline chemistry, a new report by the Energy Information Administration on California's experience will be helpful. The state's refiners are switching to ethanol as the main source of oxygen in gasoline formulated to combat smog and toxic emissions. They have to replace the former oxygenate, methyl tertiary butyl ether, by the end of this year.California thus represents a test case on use outside the Midwest of fuel ethanol. If Congress passes comprehensive energy legislation this year, it likely will require that 5 billion gal/year of ethanol distilled from grain or cellulose be blended into US gasoline as early as 2012. The ethanol mandat...

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