Have you missed the great debate raging over the impending demise of 100LL? Many leading groups — including AOPA and apparently EAA plus others such as the Green 100 Octane Coalition — have endorsed a one-size-fits-all solution. *** But, hey! One size does not fit all. Light-Sport owners are aware their aircraft can operate just fine on 91 octane (premium) ethanol-free gasoline. The same can be said for 70%-80% of all piston-engine aircraft in the U.S. Indeed, more than 60,000 Autogas STCs have been granted from EAA and Petersen Aviation but such added approvals aren’t needed by LSA powered by Rotax or Jabiru. *** Leading aviation alphabet groups show little support for the installation of ethanol-free Mogas pumps at GA airfields. One wonders why? Several benefits follow increased use of E-zero (E0) Mogas: * It’s ideal for the vast majority of American aircraft including virtually all new LSA designs; * It would lead to an immediate reduction in the use of leaded fuels and its impact on the environment; and, * Switching from 100LL to Mogas would dramatically reduce the cost of flying for sport aviators and to flight schools adding LSA to their fleets. *** While FBOs claim that additional pumps are cost-prohibitive, one finds no shortage of 2-3 different fuels (100LL, ethanol-free premium Mogas, and in Sweden, 91/96UL) on most GA airfields in Europe, even though they do less flying than U.S. recreational pilots. Rotax does allow some ethanol but those powerplants are better off using 91 octane (premium) ethanol-free gasoline. *** What can you do to help? Several things: * Ask your state legislators and the EPA to pass laws prohibiting the blending of ethanol in premium gasoline. Refer them to the Ethanol Free Premium Coalition, to Fly Unleaded and to GA Fuels for details; * Speak with your FBO manager and your airport commissioners about the need for a second fuel pump for Mogas in order to assure a future for sport aviation and the 70%-80% of aircraft that do not require a 100 octane fuel; * Locate an E0 supplier by contacting gas stations in your area that sell it. You’ll find a listing of these at Pure-Gas; * Visit local marinas and speak with boaters about the issue as they share the benefits of E0 Mogas. *** If you’re attending Oshkosh 2010 check for a forum on this subject on 11:30 AM on Tuesday July 27th in Dake Pavilion 1. *** […from Dan Johnson: I am pleased to announce a new writer to this website, Kent Misegades. A fuels expert, he will zero in on this important topic. In addition, look for more from Kent on light, recreational airplanes. Please join me in welcoming new ByDanJohnson.com blogger, Kent Misegades.]
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