Hawaii lawmakers vote to get rid of ethanol in gas mandate - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Hawaii lawmakers vote to get rid of ethanol in gas mandate

By CATHY BUSSEWITZ
Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) - Hawaii is poised to join an odd coalition of environmentalists, fuel manufacturers and chicken farmers who want to do away with a mandate to mix fuel with ethanol.

The state has required that gasoline sold on the islands contain 10 percent ethanol since 2006. The original idea behind the mandate was to support alternative energy and boost local agriculture through ethanol production.

But even though there are tax credits to produce ethanol, local companies aren't doing it. Instead, Hawaii has been importing the blended fuel.

Meanwhile, higher corn prices are frustrating chicken farmers. And some motorists complain of lower fuel mileage using the ethanol blend.

The Hawaii Legislature passed the bill. If Gov. David Ige signs it, Hawaii would become the second state behind Florida to end its ethanol mandate.

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