Ethanol Producers Climb to New Highs
Shares of ethanol producers extended their recent rally Monday, as oil refiners continued their rush to substitute ethanol for a toxic gasoline additive before the summer driving season shifts into gear.
The enthusiasm for ethanol is tied to the fate of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), an additive mixed into gasoline to reduce pollution. However, studies have found that MTBE to be carcinogenic if it seeps into a water source.
States are increasingly banning MBTE due to contamination concerns. Companies wishing to comply with new laws -- and worried about the potential for legal liability -- are turning to ethanol as a replacement for the additive. [ more ]