Ethanol

 

Ethanol is a fuel produced by fermenting organic materials like corn, grains, crop and forestry waste materials. Did you know that ethanol is already blended into 96 percent of gasoline in the United States? It’s likely that you’ve already used it in your car as virtually all regular gasoline in North Carolina is a blend of 10 percent ethanol!  A higher blend- E85 (85 percent ethanol / 15 percent gasoline) can be used in flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs), vehicle that are capable of utilizing either E85, regular gasoline or any blend in between.

Vehicles running on ethanol fuels emit less carbon monoxide and other toxic chemicals than those running on gasoline. E85 also has fewer highly volatile chemicals resulting in fewer evaporative emissions. (AFDC) Ethanol is also a safer choice. E85 is more flammable than gasoline at low temperatures (32°F), but less flammable at normal temperatures. Pure ethanol is non-toxic, water soluble and biodegradable. Ethanol helps diversify our fuel supply and provides alternative markets for farmers.

What Vehicles are Available?

E10, a blend of 10% ethanol and 90% gasoline, can be used in any gasoline vehicle without modification. E85, however, must be used in a flex fuel vehicle (FFV). Currently, over 50 makes and models are available at no extra cost to the purchaser.  FFVs may be identified by a yellow gas cap or a small badge as indicated in the accompanying images.

A  complete list of available flex fuel vehicles can be viewed in the E85 Flex Fuel Vehicles Guide.

Where Can I Purchase Ethanol?

Currently, there are ten E85 stations throughout North Carolina, view a complete list of E85 Retail Stations.

Additional Resources

Click here for a printable ethanol fuel fact sheet.

Clean Transportation Buyers Book

Alternative Fuel Tool Kit: Ethanol Chapter

Ethanol Case Study