E85 Goes to Washington, Thanks to VeraSun and GM

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E85 Goes to Washington, Thanks to VeraSun and GM

WASHINGTON -- VeraSun Energy Corp., one of the nation's largest ethanol producers, yesterday announced the opening of the first E85 retail fueling location here. The opening was the result of a collaboration between VeraSun and General Motors to expand the availability and consumer awareness of E85, according to a written statement.

VeraSun's branded VE85, a blend of 85-percent ethanol and 15-percent gasoline, is now available at the Georgetown Chevron on Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., and in Arlington, Va., increasing the number of stations selling VE85 to more than 90 in nine states and the District of Columbia.

For 185 minutes today -- from 11 a.m. to 2:05 p.m. -- E85 will be sold to flex-fuel vehicle owners for 85 cents per gallon at the Georgetown location.

"This partnership exemplifies the efforts being made to improve the quality of E85 in our nation," said Don Endres, VeraSun chairman and CEO, in a written statement.

Yesterday's announcement marks the fifth collaboration VeraSun and GM have entered into with a retailer since they started working together to increase awareness and expand availability of VE85. The first initiative, launched in May 2005 with pilot stations in Sioux Falls, S.D., now includes locations in Chicago, Minneapolis-St.Paul and Pittsburgh.

"Renewable fuels like E85 give us the greatest near-term potential to actually reduce gasoline consumption and vehicle emissions," said Elizabeth Lowery, GM vice president of environment, energy and safety policy.

Enterprise Rent-A-Car joined the project by designating its premier rental location in Washington as an official E85/FlexFuel branch. The company is the owner of the world's largest fleet of flex-fuel vehicles -- more than 41,000 cars and trucks.

"I appreciate VeraSun's initiative in opening the first E85 retail fueling station in our nation's capital," said Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), chairman of the Senate Energy Committee.