Right to Blend is Right for Iowans
Iowa’s independently owned fuel retailers support the state’s biofuels industry. Following federal approval, Iowa marketers readily embraced gasohol (a blend of 90 percent gasoline and 10 percent ethanol) and helped build the industry throughout the state. Today, more than 84 percent of all gasoline sold in Iowa contains ethanol, and a growing percent of diesel contains biofuel mix.
Maintain Choice to Manage Costs
For more than 30 years, Iowa petroleum marketers have successfully blended gasoline and diesel with biofuels. They have established a long-standing and proven track record of mixing quality fuel products that meet all federal and state specifications and standards, while satisfying record-levels of consumer demand.
With a continuing trend toward concentration in the refinery industry, today there is a concerted movement to take away a marketer’s right to blend fuel products. This approach leaves retailers with no choice regarding the biofuel products they market. Instead, they would be mandated to purchase and sell pre-blended products selected by a refiner or oil company at the pipeline terminal.
An Iowa petroleum marketer’s ability to leave a pipeline terminal with unblended product is an essential component of our free market system. It’s the only way retailers can maintain competitive leverage within the supply chain to guarantee consumers product choice and the lowest possible fuel prices.
Local Retailers Protect Local Interests
Today, many Iowa petroleum marketers mix fuel downstream – or outside of the terminal – by “splash blending” with ethanol and biodiesel from their local biofuels plant. The use of homegrown fuel resources reduces transportation costs and lowers the product-to-market carbon footprint. It also drives our local economy, accommodating consumer demand for locally produced products and as a result supporting Iowa farmers and our state’s leadership position within the renewable fuels industry.
Iowa marketers’ right to blend creates safeguards for Iowans and our economy. Without it, local retailers have no voice in the supply-side process, no say in the products they sell and no control over their fuel costs. Those costs will get passed on to consumers and the responsibility to protect our local interests will move beyond the state’s borders.