The official reason, I believe, is to make it burn cleaner. Of worthy note is that this also helps the agriculture industry.
The mixing of ethanol and gasoline has been increasing because of federal measures requiring that 36 billion gallons of biofuels per year be mixed with the country’s supply of gasoline by the year 2022. In 2007, 6.5 billion gallons of ethanol were mixed into a supply of 142 billion gallons of gasoline. Ethanol blends are now found in two thirds of the nation’s gas supply. This has been met with controversy because per gallon, pure ethanol contains 10% less energy than gasoline. The ethanol industry has even admitted that an ethanol/gasoline mix composed of 10% ethanol and 90% gasoline reduces mileage by approximately 2%.
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