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Department of Energy Reports
Show Severe Damage to Marine
Engines from E15,
WASHINGTON, D.C. – October
25, 2011– On Friday the U.S. De-
partment of Energy’s Office of En-
ergy Efficiency & Renewable En-
ergy released the results of two
studies on the effects of using fuel
that is 15 percent ethanol in vol-
ume (E15) in marine engines. The
studies were conducted on en-
gines provided by two marine en-
gine manufactures; Both are mem-
bers of National Marine Manufac-
turers Association (NMMA).
The long-awaited reports show
significant problems with outboard,
stern drive and inboard en-
gines. Results of the reports show
severe damage to engine compo-
nents and an increase in exhaust
emissions, reinforcing the recrea-
tional boating industry’s concern
that E15 is not a suitable fuel for
marine engines.
Emissions and durability testing
compared E15 fuel and fuel con-
taining zero percent ethanol (E0)
and examined exhaust emissions,
exhaust gas temperature, torque,
power, barometric pressure, air
temperature, and fuel flow. Spe-
cifically, the report showed de-
graded emissions performance
outside of engine certification lim-
its as well as increased fuel con-
sumption. In separate testing on
engine durability, each tested en-
gine showed deterioration, includ-
ing two of the three outboard en-
gines, with damages severe
enough to prevent them from com-
pleting the test cycle. The E0 test
engines did not exhibit any fuel
related issues.
NMMA worked with its manufac-
turer members in securing the re-
sources and facilitating the testing
for these reports. NMMA supports
further testing that will provide ad-
ditional understanding about the
negative effects of E15 on marine
NMMA President Thom Dammrich
says, “Current proposals by the
ethanol industry to increase the
amount of ethanol in gasoline
should seriously concern all boat-
ers and owners of other small en-
gine equipment. Although NMMA
strongly supports renewable fuels
as a means to reduce America’s
dependence on foreign sources of
oil and improve the environment,
there is growing evidence that
ethanol is not the answer to Amer-
ica’s energy challenge.”
For more information, please read
the full versions of the Emissions
and Durability test or the Fuel En-
durance test from the Department
of Energy. For questions or media
inquiries please contact Lauren
Both Volvo Penta and Mercury
Marine provided test engines as
well as the testing facilities. The
U.S. Department of Energy ap-
proved the final analysis of the re-
For more information, please read
the full versions of the
the Fuel
Endurance test
and the
sions and Durability test
the Energy Department
Source: NMMA 10/25/2011
Promise in Bio-
fuel Alternative
Posted on 21 November 2011
Findings on preliminary evalua-
tions released by The National
Marine Manufacturers Associati
indicate that isobutanol-gasolin
blends supplied by Gevo, a lead
ing renewable chemicals and a
vanced biofuels company, indi-
cated that this could be a
"promising biofuel alternative to
Tests exploring alternative biofu
in response to the U.S. introduc
tion of gasoline containing 15 p
cent ethanol were conducted by
NMMA and the American Boat
and Yacht Council
Recently, The U.S, Environmen
Protection Agency has conclud
and approved E15 for model-ye
2001 and newer cars and trucks
However, the marine industry h
found that fuel containing more
than 10 percent ethanol causes
severe damage to boat engines
Even though the EPA has not a
proved for marine engines, the
possibility of misfueling at the
pump is a present danger.
The NMMA and ABYC isobutan
evaluations tested components,
including older fiberglass tanks,
and engines during on-the-wate
testing on inboard, outboard, jet
pump and two-stroke outboard
engines. The tests showed isob
tanol produced no more emissio
than pure EPA-approved test
gasoline while producing 30 per
cent more energy than ethanol.
Bombardier Recreational Produ
and Volvo helped by supplying
product, personnel and testing
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