As gas prices spike, ethanol offers stability and savings

By Growth Energy | August 30, 2012

This Labor Day weekend, millions of Americans plan to hit the open road and enjoy the last bits of summer. But with gas prices spiking toward $4 per gallon, many Americans are electing to stay home. The oil companies are quick to blame Hurricane Isaac for causing the sudden inflation, but the truth is, the increases continue even as reports come in that damage to refineries in the Gulf of Mexico suffered little, if any damage.

"The oil market is so volatile and ethanol has served as a stabilizing factor that can help control costs by providing a level of certainty," stated Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy. "Ethanol currently makes up 10 percent of our nation's fuel supply and it has helped prevent extreme spikes in gas prices. Independent studies have shown that the inclusion of ethanol has saved consumers from $0.17 cents to $1.09 a gallon."

AAA has predicted that 33 million drivers will hit the roads this coming weekend, and with gas prices hovering near $4 a gallon, more and more consumers are turning to higher ethanol blends to save at the pump. Furthermore, consumers who drive flex fuel vehicles can see substantial savings by filling up with E85.

"Without ethanol blended in gasoline, prices would be higher," Buis continued. "It is the least expensive motor fuel on the market and consumers can trust in a fuel that supports the American economy, powers NASCAR and reduces our dependence on foreign oil. Not to mention that it burns cleaner than conventional gasoline, also improving our environment.

In June, Growth Energy launched the website www.ethanolretailer.com, providing consumers with the resources to find the nearest flex pumps to fill up and save money. Additionally, a flex fuel finder app was launched, so that  on the go consumers can find the nearest station with increased blends of ethanol. The app also includes the ability to identify stations along a planned travel route.

"The ethanol industry is committed to giving consumers with a choice when they fill up–they can choose to support foreign oil, which costs more and sends their hard earned dollars overseas to OPEC, or they can choose to support the American economy and energy independence by filling up with less expensive, home-grown American ethanol, and I am convinced they will choose the latter," Buis concluded.