Opening Cast

Tim HuffmanWhich side are you on? Confusion about gasoline continues to swirl. Both sides cannot be telling the truth. We know ethanol is better than when it first came out but consumers haven’t forgotten having to pay dearly for the early problems. Therefore, ethanol acceptance hasn’t been overwhelming. There have been positive changes. First, the overall improvements have made ethanol a better product. Secondly, motor manufacturers have better parts that are less susceptible to ethanol damage. Three, ethanol is made and manufactured in the U.S. Four, they support competitive crappie fishing. The huge negative of ethanol is terrible shelf life… less than a month without stabilizers. Also, reports from some say ethanol is still creating motor and gas line problems. Ethanol experts say its product is much cleaner than gasoline so it reveals hidden problems created by regular gas. For example, a buildup in a gas line is cleaned out when ethanol is added. They also blame gasoline manufactures for supplying them with inferior gasoline to mix with the ethanol. The Boat Owners Association of the United States (BoatUS) disagrees. It says surveys show 91% of boat owners prefer non-ethanol gas. Ethanol has higher octane but contains less energy and results in lower fuel economy. BoatUS says Boating Industry magazine points to ethanol as playing an even bigger role in boat service issues than the year prior. It quoted a boat manufacturer saying, “Ethanol is a boom for the service departments… it makes (customers) hate boating…ruins their entire boating experience.” Ethanol experts are continuing to push in Washington for higher percentages of ethanol. Where will it end and which group is telling the truth? My heart wants U.S. grown/ manufactured renewable fuels to be a major player. But with conflicting stories it’s difficult to know which ‘proven facts’ are real or lies with either group. Which side are you on? Good fishin’ & God Bless,

Tim Huffman, Editor