Ethanol rally crowd

Doug Berven of Poet ethanol addresses a crowd gathered at Falls Park in Sioux Falls Wednesday, June 13, in protest of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's stance on renewable fuels.

The South Dakota Corn Growers Association welcomed the Environmental Protection Agency’s Tuesday release of a proposed rule to allow year-round sales of E15.

“We’ve been looking forward to this day for a long time. This is something our organization and the ethanol industry have been fighting for,” SDCGA Vice President Doug Noem said in a news release. “We’ll be involved throughout the upcoming process to help ensure the final rule is in place by June 1, the unofficial start of the summer driving season.”

E15, a high-octane blend of gasoline and 15 percent ethanol is approved for all vehicles 2001 and newer – nearly 9 out of 10 cars on the road today. Under the current regulation, E15 sales aren’t allowed from June 1 to Sept. 15, except for use in flex-fuel vehicles.

South Dakota Corn and its partners in the ethanol industry sponsored and organized a tractor rally last June in Sioux Falls in support of year-round E15 sales.

“By eliminating the outdated ban on summer sales, we are creating an opportunity for increased ethanol sales, which is a boost to South Dakota’s economy and our 16 major ethanol plants,” Noem said. “It’s also good news for consumers, providing another lower-priced choice at the pump.”