DOE announced the availability of up to $5.5 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to increase the use of higher ethanol blends up to E85 (85% ethanol/15% gasoline) by expanding refueling infrastructure.

The U.S. Department of Energy funding opportunity targets two areas:

  • Refueling infrastructure ($3.5 million): DOE seeks to fund 15 to 30 cost-shared projects that will expand the infrastructure at retail fueling locations to accommodate blends up to E85. Potential projects may include modifications, upgrades, or expansions of existing fuel pumps and other infrastructure at retail stations, or the installation of new equipment to accommodate the higher ethanol blends.
  • Outreach ($2 million): DOE will select up to five national campaign projects that will raise public awareness of the benefits, safety, and use requirements of higher ethanol blends up to E85. This effort will help promote the use of renewable fuels to decrease dependence on petroleum.

Funding applications are due September 30, 2009.