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H.Con.Res. 256 (106th): Expressing the sense of Congress with regard to the use of reformulated gasoline fuels, and for other purposes.

The text of the bill below is as of Feb 29, 2000 (Introduced).



2d Session

H. CON. RES. 256

Expressing the sense of Congress with regard to the use of reformulated gasoline fuels, and for other purposes.


February 29, 2000

Mr. EWING (for himself, Mr. HASTERT, Mr. SHIMKUS, Mr. MANZULLO, Mr. PHELPS, Mr. BARRETT of Nebraska, Mr. BOSWELL, Mr. LEACH, Mr. WELLER, Mr. GUTIERREZ, Mr. COSTELLO, Mr. EVANS, Mr. TERRY, and Ms. SCHAKOWSKY) submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Commerce


Expressing the sense of Congress with regard to the use of reformulated gasoline fuels, and for other purposes.

Whereas ethanol is a domestically produced renewable fuel additive which makes the United States less dependent on foreign oil, provides one of the few bright spots in the Nation’s balance of trade, improves air quality, and stimulates rural economies;

Whereas the widespread use of ethanol in Illinois has made it one of the only successful reformulated gasoline markets in the country, according to the American Lung Association of Metropolitan Chicago;

Whereas more than 95 percent of the fuel sold in Chicago and surrounding counties contains ethanol in which it is used to increase octane and as an oxygenate in reformulated gasoline;

Whereas ethanol demand in the Chicago reformulated gasoline market accounts for 400 million gallons each year, or one quarter of the United States ethanol industry’s annual production;

Whereas Illinois uses 17 percent of the State’s corn crop for ethanol production, or 1 in every 6 rows of corn grown in the State, adding approximately $870 million in gross income to net farm income each year;

Whereas investment by the ethanol industry in Illinois exceeds $1 billion, generating 800 jobs in plant operation and 4,000 jobs in the industry-related service sector;

Whereas Illinois ethanol production alone has increased the national market price for corn by 25 cents per bushel;

Whereas ethanol reduces carbon monoxide emissions by as much as 25 percent, more than any other petroleum-based transportation fuel;

Whereas according to the Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, ethanol fuels reduce greenhouse gases that cause global warming by approximately 40 percent, as compared to traditional nonblended gasoline;

Whereas serious concerns about the use of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) have been raised by States in which it is currently used as the primary oxygenate, such as California and New Jersey;

Whereas the city of Chicago has raised legitimate concerns about the use of MTBE in the State of Illinois;

Whereas if the Environmental Protection Agency does not change its Phase II reformulated gasoline regulations, refiners supplying the Chicago reformulated gasoline market could be forced to replace ethanol with MTBE, causing Illinois to lose an important value-added market for corn; and

Whereas if MTBE replaces ethanol in Chicago reformulated gasoline, consumer gasoline costs will rise and public health could be jeopardized by leaks or spillage of MTBE-enhanced gasoline, which could contaminate drinking water supplies: Now, therefore, be it

    Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of Congress that the United States Government should--

      (1) promote the continued use of renewable ethanol in the Chicago reformulated gasoline market and in other reformulated gasoline areas as a means of enhancing energy security and supporting farm income;

      (2) allow State and local governments the option of limiting the use of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) as an oxygenate until those governments are certain that MTBE will not harm their environments; and

      (3) require the Environmental Protection Agency to revise the Phase II reformulated gasoline regulations under section 211 of the Clean Air Act to allow ethanol to remain a viable oxygenate within the Act’s reformulated gasoline program.