WASHINGTON — The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is gearing up for summer by launching a new $1 million consumer-focused educational campaign called “Fuel Your Knowledge.” The campaign will educate and inform consumers about the proper use of ethanol-blended fuels in boats, motorcycles, lawn and garden equipment and other off-road engines. This effort is intended to correct the record on the use of ethanol blends in small and off-road engines, educate the owners of these engines on what fuels they can legally and safely use, and highlight the benefits of choosing ethanol blends.
The RFA intends to enhance existing efforts that include a co-title sponsorship of the Crappie Masters Tournament Trail professional fishing series, involvement with an upcoming reality TV series, and the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. There are also plans for several additional projects over the next 18 months that involve mechanics and more third-party validators. As part of the effort, there will be new online content, videos, promotional materials, sponsorships, trade show exhibits and attendance at larger consumer events across the country. Through RFA’s partnerships with non-traditional stakeholders, this effort to educate consumers will be amplified to ensure wide outreach is successful.
It is a well-known fact that small engine, marine and motorcycle advocacy groups have declared opposition to E15 (15% ethanol blends) as a top policy priority and falsely argue that the ethanol industry is not taking proper steps to educate consumers or prevent purported “misfueling.” Because these sectors remain vigilant in their opposition, RFA feels it is important to demonstrate the industry’s commitment to consumer education and directly address their concerns.
“It is unfortunate our opponents continue their misinformation campaign about ethanol,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “The boating and motorcycle industries have made prohibiting the use of E15 their top issue, a move that would limit consumer choice and increase prices at the pump. Frankly, they are using old, tired arguments that are recycled year after year. RFA feels strongly that a constructive dialogue and educational effort is the best way to inform consumers, and so far those groups have not been willing to do engage in a good-faith effort to educate consumers on the facts about ethanol.”
Currently, RFA has the only Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved E15 Misfueling Mitigation Plan (MMP), and plans to remain engaged with the agency as new technologies are identified to minimize concerns of boat and motorcycle owners, as well as any needed adjustments to current guidelines. RFA will continue outreach to the boat, motorcycle, and outdoor power equipment communities to work together.