A petition hosted on ethanol.org has gathered more than 5,000 signatures from people in all 50 states who are in favor of the government increasing the amount of ethanol allowed per gallon of gasoline to 15% (E15). The petition was launched one month ago by the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE), a national advocacy association for ethanol with more than 1,500 grassroots members across the country.

“People want more ethanol, and the number of names signed to this petition in just a month’s time demonstrates widespread grassroots support for ethanol,” says Brian Jennings, executive vice president of ACE. “It’s significant that the people who have signed the E15 petition come from all 50 states, because this shows that ethanol is not just a Midwestern issue. People all across the country recognize that big oil’s monopoly at the pump must be broken and that more ethanol represents meaningful consumer choice.”

The petition and all of the names, listed by state, can be viewed at ethanol.org/petition.

Since the 1970s, the federal government has limited the ethanol content per gallon of gasoline to just 10%. On March 6, the ethanol industry brought a formal waiver before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to allow up to 15% ethanol/gal., and the EPA is currently holding a public comment period on the proposed rule change.

The online petition can still be signed through May 21, which is the end of the EPA public comment period. People are also encouraged to send comments in favor of E15 to the EPA; a Web form has been set up at capwiz.com/ethanol that provides an easy way for comments to be sent to the agency electronically.

The EPA waiver process requires proof that increasing the ethanol blend level would not increase auto emissions or harm the vehicle’s emissions control systems. The scientific evidence behind the use of blends beyond E10 in standard, non-flex-fuel autos has been overwhelmingly positive; many of the research studies can be reviewed in ACE’s E15 Action Center, including Minnesota’s extensive research on E20. In addition, Brazil brings many years of successful real-world use of ethanol blends 20% and higher.

The petition states: “I believe we should be allowed to choose more clean, American-made renewable fuel for our cars. The federal government arbitrarily limits the use of ethanol in a gallon of gasoline to just 10%, a regulation that is standing in the way of new green jobs, jeopardizing progress toward advanced biofuels and putting energy security at risk. The EPA is currently considering whether to allow the use of up to 15% ethanol, which would enable consumers to choose between fuels that contain no ethanol and any blend up to 15%. By signing this petition, I join thousands of other voices to express my strong support for EPA approval of up to 15% ethanol in gasoline.”