California Court Rules Against LCFS

A California appeals court this week overturned a regulation implementing the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard.

poetCalifornia’s Fifth District Court of Appeal issued its decision in POET, LLC v. California Air Resources Board (ARB) on Monday, ruling for POET on every one of its substantive challenges and reversing the decision of the Superior Court affirming the LCFS. The Court also ruled that ARB must, among other things, re-evaluate the LCFS’s overall environmental impacts, and allow public comment on several controversial issues including the carbon intensity values attributed to ethanol based on the theory of indirect land use change.

South Dakota-based ethanol producer POET issued the following statement about the ruling:

“We are pleased the court recognized the fundamental flaws in ARB’s process for implementing the Low Carbon Fuel Standard. The Court ruled in our favor on every challenge we raised on appeal, each of which went to a different problem with the approval process. The Court has also made clear that ARB must re-evaluate the LCFS’s recognized potential to increase smog-forming pollutants, recirculate its environmental document evaluating the impacts of the LCFS and, significantly, allow public comment on several controversial issues, including the carbon intensity values attributed to land use changes.”

The Court ruling allows ARB to continue to enforce the LCFS regulation at the moment, but prohibits the agency from ramping up enforcement of the regulation beyond the current 2013 levels

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