According to researchers at Stanford University in the US the inclusion of ethanol in our fuel is doing more harm than good.
While we all know that ethanol can do some serious damage to the fuel systems of some older vehicles no one ever told us that ethanol can do some serious damage to us humans but it seems that research at Stanford University has now shown that it can.
Even in the small quantities that we see in E10 ethanol can do serious damage to our health because, as it burns, it produces something called Aldehydes and these Aldehydes are precursors for the creation of ozone.
Burning normal fuel produces ozone but burning fuel mixed with ethanol produces even more and it can be enough to push the ozone levels at ground level beyond what is considered safe for humans. And in cold climates the amount of Aldehydes produced by burning E10 is increased considerably.
Currently the US considers that ozone levels of 75 parts per billion are safe for humans but burning ethanol in warm climates can increase the ozone levels down here on the ground by 7 parts per billion and in colder climates by a whopping 39 parts per billion
Of course ozone … when it’s kilometres above us in the ozone layer … is good for us. It filters out harmful rays from the sun and protects us but when it’s down here at ground level it can produce asthma, bronchitis, heart attacks and other cardio-pulmonary diseases.
Have we once again rushed in to safe the planet and only managed to do more harm than good?
You can read more about the study on the Stanford University website by following this link.