Clean, green fuel stations see brisk growth in Minnesota

E85 stations have been added to the DOE's Alternative Fuels Data Center, which now lists 439 public and private biofuel stations in Minnesota.

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SAINT PAUL, MINN. – The number of biofuel stations in Minnesota grew at a remarkable pace in 2019, according to the American Lung Association in Minnesota. In the past 12 months, 32 E85 stations have been added to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center, which now lists 439 public and private biofuel stations in Minnesota. The alternative fuels available at these stations include ethanol and biodiesel. Both are considered to be less polluting than traditional petroleum fuels.

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“Vehicle exhaust is now the single largest source of both air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions in the state,” said Robert Moffitt, communications director for the American Lung Association’s office in St. Paul, Minn. “Minnesota has taken some important steps toward cleaner fuels and vehicles. We encourage these efforts to continue in 2020.”

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Thirty-two new E85 stations opened in Minnesota in 2019. E85 is a cleaner-burning, ethanol-based fuel that can be used in flex fuel vehicles, which are designed to run on either gasoline or on ethanol blends. Choosing E85 is an easy way for flex fuel vehicle drivers to reduce tailpipe emissions. There are now 423 stations selling E85 in Minnesota, more than in any other state.

Another type of ethanol fuel also saw growth in 2019, as another 28 stations began selling 88 octane gasoline, also known as E15. This higher octane fuel consists of 85 percent gasoline and 15 percent ethanol. Approved by the U.S. EPA for use in vehicles 2001 or newer, Minnesota now has 340 stations offering 88 octane.

Minnesota was the first state in the country to require virtually all of the diesel sold in warm weather months to contain a 20 percent biodiesel blend. During the winter months, Minnesota stations sell a five percent biodiesel blend. Each year, cleaner-burning, renewable biodiesel displaces roughly 130 million gallons of petroleum diesel in Minnesota. This is particularly important for the older vehicles that lack the pollution control devices now required for all diesel vehicles sold in the United States. Biodiesel also significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

The American Lung Association in Minnesota has advocated for cleaner fuels and vehicles for more than two decades. It coordinates Twin Cities Clean Cities Coalition, a statewide alternative fuel organized and supported by the U.S. Department of Energy. For more on the alternative fuel choices available in Minnesota, visit CleanAirChoice.org.

About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving
lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.

The Mid-Atlantic Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership (BIP) installed biofuel fueling pumps at 40 fueling stations.

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