Governor Tom Vilsack says there’s too much opposition to a state law that would force Iowa gas stations to dispense only ethanol-blended fuels. Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Nussle and Senate Co-President Jack Kibbie, a Democrat from Emmetsburg, are among the list of politicians who have called for an ethanol “mandate” but Vilsack says it won’t pass. “A mandate is basically a direction to individuals, and I think there’s a resistance to that,” Vilsack says. Instead, Vilsack says the state should grant tax credits and other incentives to build a long-term market for ethanol-blended fuel, especially E-85 which is 85 percent ethanol. “We need a specific goal that all of us need to work towards,” Vilsack says. “Our state ought to go on record and I would suggest that the legislature needs to be encouraged to be as aggressive as possible.” About 75 percent of all fuel sold in Iowa is blended with ethanol, a corn-based fuel additive. Legislators are considering a variety of proposals, including state grants to gas stations to help cover the costs of new storage tanks for the higher-blend of ethanol.
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