California Low Carbon Standards Unconstitutional

Court rules that standard excessively restricts interstate commerce.

Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California has issued a temporary injunction blocking the California low carbon fuels standard.

This is welcome news to the California Independent Oil Marketers Association (CIOMA) who have described the standard as unjustifiable, costly and impractical.

The court ruled the standard violates the Commerce clause by unduly restricting interstate commerce. The ethanol industry argued that the standard unfairly discriminated against corn-based ethanol produced out of state. Additionally, the petroleum industry argued that the standard unfairly restricted out of state supplies of crude oil.

O’Neill found that CARB failed to establish that there are no alternative methods to advance its goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

It is likely that California will file an appeal and PMAA (Petroleum Marketers Association of America) will issue subsequent reports.

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