Oil industry: Voters worried about Trump’s ethanol plan

Oil industry: Voters worried about Trump’s ethanol plan
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Voters are concerned about President TrumpDonald John TrumpPaul Ryan defends Navy admiral after Trump's criticism Trump discussing visit overseas to troops following criticism: report Retired Army General: Trump is ‘acting like an 8th grader’ in attacking ex-Navy SEAL who led bin Laden operation MORE’s plan to allow gasoline with higher ethanol volumes to be sold year-round, according to a new poll commissioned by the oil industry.

The survey, conducted by Harris Poll, was released Monday by the American Petroleum Institute (API), a group that announced its opposition to Trump’s proposal announced earlier this month.

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Poll participants were told that E15 — gasoline with up to 15 percent ethanol — could be sold in the summer months under Trump’s plan, and the fuel “has been shown to damage vehicle engines and fuel systems, and most cars on the road today are not designed to run on E15.”

After asking voters “how concerned” they would be with that approach, 79 percent said they were either “very” or “somewhat” concerned, compared to 17 percent who said they were “not very” concerned or not concerned.

API said the results show voters don’t like the idea put forth by the administration.

“These numbers reinforce the need for the administration to reconsider this decision to allow year-round sale of E15,” said Frank Macchiarola, API’s vice president for downstream operations. “American families should not have to be burdened with an unexpected car repair bill because of a fuel that our government essentially pushed into the marketplace against the clear letter of the law.”

The Renewable Fuel Association, which represents ethanol companies, slammed API’s survey.

“API’s newest poll is so manipulative it can’t even be called a ‘push poll.’ It’s more like a ‘shove poll’ that bullies respondents into answering the questions exactly the way API wants them answered,” said Geoff Cooper, RFA’s president. “These results are meaningless and do nothing to objectively represent consumer opinion on E15.”

Cooper said all cars made in 2001 or later are legally allowed to use E15.

Trump instructed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) this month to, through a regulation, repeal current standards that prohibit E15 sales during the summer. The ethanol industry has long been pushing for the change, but the EPA had previously resisted, citing air pollution and legal concerns.