A study in Sao Paulo, which has 7m vehicles and the world’s largest gasoline/ethanol flexible-fuel fleet, showed that when motorists used higher levels of ethanol due to lower prices, emissions of dangerous lung-damaging particulates decreased. When ethanol prices increased and drivers used higher levels of gasoline instead, the concentration of nanoparticles increased by 30%. This is the only study to have been done in non-laboratory conditions and shows a clear correlation of ethanol lowering particulates.
The oxygen contained within ethanol helps the fuel to burn better and increases the efficiency of the engine, lowering the hydrocarbons that are released
In its recent report on Improving Air Quality, the DEFRA Select Committee stated that “the Government needs to develop more holistic policies that recognise CO2 reduction and air quality as inter-related issues requiring a joined-up response”