May 23, 2011

'Pumped' for new ethanol choices

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Story from News 2, North Platte, Nebraska - Watch the video by clicking here.

Nebraska's corn farmers are pumped about the new ethanol choice in southwest Nebraska.

In Ogallala, the first gas station to offer four different blends of ethanol based gasoline offered fuel at a fraction of the cost to its customers today.

For Mike Leitz filling his gas tank for $24.47 was a welcome relief.

He makes a special trip to this gas station in Ogallala from his home in Brule.

He says there are many closer and more convenient stations for him but this is one of the few stations where he can get E-85, an 85 percent blend of gasoline.

“Then that way if the price of E-85 is cheap enough where I can fill up a tank then I will go for it,” said Mike Leitz, Brule.

As petroleum prices surge toward $4 a gallon, the federal government says it's going to provide grants and loans to station owners who install E-85 pumps.

“Ethanol is by nature and in many cases twenty cents below the price of regular fuel. In these days of higher priced petroleum fuel ethanol is that much more of a cost savings to consumers,” said Jon Holzfaster, NE Corn Board.

Those in the industry think government incentives will help ensure more flex fuel pumps are installed across the nation in the coming years.

“You can burn a blend all the way up to E-85 and that would be depended upon what you choose to use depending on your type of driving and the type of vehicle you drive,” said Holzfaster.

That's good news for drivers like Mike.

“You burn a little bit more with E-85 but overall it is a savings,” he said.

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