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Biden Orders Lifting Of A Summertime Ban On E15 Gasoline; What`s It Like To Live In Locked-Down Shanghai?; What`s Confusing Experts About Neptune? Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired April 14, 2022 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: E15 gasoline, what does it mean? That`s what we`re explaining first today. I`m Carl Azuz.

Shortly after the inflation report we told you about yesterday came out, U.S. President Joe Biden traveled to Iowa to discuss the American economy.

He acknowledged, quote, everything is going up, referring specifically to the prices of gasoline and food. And as he`s done in recent weeks,

President Biden blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin and his decision to invade Ukraine on February 24th for the spike in gas prices.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Your family budget, your ability to fill up your tank, none of it should hinge on whether a dictator

declares war and commits genocide a half a world away.


AZUZ: The president said 70 percent of the gas price increase in March was because of the war in Ukraine, but gas had climbed steadily throughout last

year before the Russian invasion took place. On average, prices rose almost a dollar per gallon between January and December, and President Biden`s

critics have blamed his energy policies for contributing to these higher prices.

In Tuesday`s speech, the president announced one action he was taking to address America`s soaring fuel costs is removing the government`s

summertime ban on E15 gas.


BIDEN: E15 is about 10 cents a gallon cheaper than E10, and some gas stations offer an even bigger discount than that. But many of the gas

stations that sell it here in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania are required to stop selling in the summer. But with this

waiver, on June 1, you`re not going to show up at your local gas station and see a bag over the pump that has the cheapest gas. You`re going to be

able to keep filling up with E15 and it`s going to solve the whole problem.


AZUZ: How much so? Filling up a small car`s tank with cheaper E15 gas could save drivers about a dollar. For larger trucks and SUVs, it could

save $2 to $3 per fill-up.

The E stands for ethanol, a plant-based fuel usually made from corn. The 15 means 15 percent of the gasoline blend can contain ethanol instead of the

10 percent that could be used in regular E10 gasoline. Using more ethanol means using less crude oil which is the biggest factor in the cost of gas.

So that`s why E15 is cheaper.

But there are drawbacks to the president`s plan. For one thing, E15 doesn`t have as much energy as E10 gas. So, if they get less mileage from it,

drivers might have to buy E15 more often. Higher amounts of ethanol can create more ground level smog which can be harmful to people with breathing

problems. That`s why the government usually bans E15 in the summertime. And experts say fewer than 2 percent of America`s gas stations actually sell

E15 gas, so this is not expected to have a noticeable impact nationwide.

Last month, President Biden announced a historic release of fuel one million barrels per day from America`s strategic petroleum reserve an

emergency storage of oil. This didn`t have a significant impact on gas prices but Biden administration officials said it would ensure the U.S. had

enough gas supplies.

From gas to masks, the Biden administration says Americans traveling on planes trains and public transportation will be required to wear masks for

another 15 days. That requirement had been set to expire on April 19th. It`s been extended at least until May 3rd. Several universities are

reinstating their mask mandates as well.

The Centers for Disease Control says it`s monitoring new COVID cases which are rising again in 26 states. An airline trade group says it makes no

sense to require masks on a plane when they`re not required in restaurants or sports stadiums, despite those places not having protective air

filtration. COVID hospitalizations are at record low levels in America and COVID-related deaths are decreasing as well.

Meantime, China maintains its heavy-handed response to the virus.


DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You`d never expect to see people in Shanghai, China`s most affluent and cosmopolitan city screaming for food.

We are starving. We are starving they yell.

But after weeks-long COVID lockdown with no promised end, desperation.

One community volunteer recording the home of an elderly woman. She says neighbors heard the 90-year-old shouting help for three days, pleading for

food. Her fridge empty. Volunteers were finally able to get her a meal.

China`s central government now in charge of managing Shanghai`s COVID outbreak. In a month`s time, the daily case count went from double digits

to more than 26,000.

A Shanghai City leader choked up at a news conference over the weekend, apologizing to Shanghai`s more than 25 million residents for failing to

meet expectations and promising improvements.

Those of us living here kept to our homes. CNN, the only U.S. TV network with a team living through the lockdown. In my community, we`re only

allowed out when summoned by workers using a megaphone and when dark out, a flashlight.

Get in a late evening now request to go get a COVID test. My neighbors and I line up, ready for health workers to scan our QR codes, which link the

results to our ID, night or day. The testing is constant.

Someone in the community tested positive so they`ll test now each of us once again. We can also leave the house to line up for government

distributions or to get approved deliveries, usually the most exciting part of the day.

It looks to be vacuum sealed pork and then several boxes of traditional Chinese medicine. A bunch more face masks, a box that has a bunch of fresh

fruit. On top, they have some frozen meat and then two antigen kits. Food deliveries this plentiful are rare, so most of us spend our mornings trying

to order groceries online but orders sell out quickly not enough delivery drivers to get through the lockdown barriers communities like mine

resorting to group buys. We come together in chat groups and try to source food directly from suppliers in bulk.

Neighbors helping neighbors is a common theme across the city we found a safe drop spot to trade cheese for oranges our community`s volunteers help

us source food where they can though they too are exhausted and hungry.

From above, you see this metropolis, quiet, eerily empty. But on the ground, there are tragedies shared daily online. All of this as a result of

China`s zero COVID policy, a directive from the top.

President Xi Jinping on Friday praising China`s zero COVID approach. State media echoing a glowing narrative, showing an orderly mobilization in

Shanghai with an abundant food supply and rapid construction of more than 100 makeshift hospitals with capacity to treat more than 150,000 people


But patients taken to those government quarantine centers sharing a very different reality online, posting videos of unsanitary conditions and

people using isolation facilities still under construction. Some seen frantically running at distribution sites, scrambling for food and


The uncertainty leaving this man broken, doing the unthinkable questioning the leadership aloud asking, where is the communist party?



AZUZ (voice-over): Ten-second trivia:

What planet is believed to have the strongest winds in the solar system?

Neptune, Venus, Saturn, or Earth?

According to NASA, Neptune`s sustained winds can travel faster than the speed of sound.


AZUZ: Some new observations of Neptune have scientists scratching their heads. Astronomers at Britain`s University of Leicester say the most

distant planet has been seeing dramatic temperature changes. They looked at infrared images from several telescopes and they used the light they could

see to draw conclusions about the planet`s temperature. Neptune`s seasons each last about 40 Earth years and the distant planet entered summer in

2005. So, scientists were expecting to see indications that Neptune was heating up.

Instead, they observed an overall drop in Neptune`s temperatures by 14 degrees Fahrenheit between the years of 2003 and 2018. But then, they say a

dramatic warming event took place on the planet`s South Pole from 2018 to 2020. And because that increase was by an estimated 20 degrees, it

reportedly reversed any cooling the rest of the planet saw before then.

So, is now a good time to visit? No, it`s still frigid, violent and mostly made of gas. But scientists are hoping the new observations will help them

better understand the mysterious planet.


AZUZ: When motion sensors and doorbell cameras are triggered overnight, this is probably not what you expect them to pick up. But a flock of sheep

recently incited some technological mayhem in the United Kingdom. This video of it was posted anonymously to the sharing site YappApp.

The animals are said to have woken up quite a few people in the neighborhood. So, the question is, did people count them to get back to

sheep -- sleep? Of course, if they couldn`t, they could have snagged a midnight snack. It`s like delivery with Uber bleats. There`s mutton wrong

with haggis. True, some might lambaste or completely shun the idea saying you can`t Willy be serious, but it`s tough to beat if you can stomach it.

Pendleton High School in Pendleton, Oregon, gets today`s shout-out. Carl, how did they do that? They subscribed and left a comment on our YouTube


I`m Carl Azuz for CNN 10.