WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will extend a waiver allowing gasoline with blends of up to 15 percent ethanol (E15) to be used in cars built between 2001 and 2006.


U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., had called on the EPA to expand E15 use to older vehicles when the agency announced last fall it would allow E15 to be used in vehicles made since the 2007 model year. The decision to include older model years means up to 60 percent of cars and trucks on the road can run on E15 gasoline.


“The U.S. has the ability to be the global leader in energy because of the ingenuity of our farmers and manufacturers,” Klobuchar said. “This announcement will strengthen our homegrown energy economy, help our country utilize more homegrown biofuels, and decrease our dependence on foreign energy.”


Minnesota has 21 ethanol plants that generated an estimated $3 billion in economic output and nearly 8,400 jobs last year. Estimates show the nationwide adoption of E15 could reduce the importation of up to seven billion gallons of gasoline per year and inject an estimated $24 billion into the U.S. economy.