This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

March 23, 2005

Illinois Provides $500,000 to Build Ethanol Infrastructure

A photo of a fuel pump labeled 'E-85 Ethanol.'

Illinois intends to make E85 fuel pumps a more common sight around the state.
Credit: Warren Gretz

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich announced on March 8th that $500,000 in funding is now available to establish new E85 facilities at retail gasoline outlets throughout the state. E85 is a blend of gasoline with 70 to 85 percent ethanol for use in flexible fuel vehicles, which are designed to burn E85, unleaded gasoline, or any combination of the two fuels. Illinois' E85 program, run by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, will provide up to $2,000 to convert an existing refueling facility to E85 operation, or up to $40,000 for the construction of a new E85 refueling facility. See the governor's press release.

For anyone wanting to build an E85 refueling facility, DOE's Alternative Fuel Data Center recently launched the "E85 Fleet Toolkit," a Web resource for fleet managers and other interested parties. The Toolkit includes information on fueling equipment and processes; procedures for building new stations or converting existing equipment to be E85 compatible; E85 fuel specifications and suppliers; and much more. See the E85 Fleet Toolkit.

Here's an unusual fleet of vehicles that will soon switch to ethanol: the Indy Racing League's IndyCar Series. Although the vehicles run on methanol today, the IndyCar Series racers will add 10 percent ethanol to their fuel in 2006, then shift to 100 percent ethanol in 2007. That means locally grown fuels will soon be powering the Indianapolis 500. See the Indy Racing League announcement.