The EPA has postponed a decision on whether to allow higher ethanol-gasoline blends until next summer.
The federal agency Tuesday said it needs to do more testing. The EPA said preliminary tests show most cars can accommodate a proposed 15 percent ethanol blend. Wesley Clark, with the pro-ethanol group Growth Energy, applauded that finding.
"We think it's a positive answer," Clark said. "It's a very constructive way forward and the letter indicates very clearly that this administration's committing to moving forward with America's commitment in the biofuels industries. It's about jobs; it's about national security for this country and getting us off our addiction to importing foreign oil."
Greg Scott with the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association said the extra time the EPA is taking allows the agency to conduct more tests on how higher blends affect vehicle engines.
"Our message has been throughout this process, follow the science and make sure that the science is completed," Scott said. "And that we're assured that mid-level ethanol blends are safe for use in gasoline powered engines before approving a waiver."