A small victory against the ever advancing scourge that is the EPA. A Federal court has struck down the EPA’s mandate that requires fuel manufacturers produce cellulosic biofuels. And why did the court reach this decision? Because cellulosic biofuels don’t exist, at least not in any viable production model.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cannot impose a mandate for a non-existent product and then punish companies for failing to use said non-existent product, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled.
That non-existent product? Cellulosic biofuels, a type of ethanol made from non-food sources such as wood chips, switchgrass, and non-edible feedstock.
The court ruled that the EPA can set renewable fuel production standards as a means to stimulate economic development, but it cannot punish companies who fail to meet those standards.
“Do a good job, cellulosic fuel producers. If you fail, we’ll fine your customers,” the judges wrote.
In 2007, the EPA mandated that 250 million gallons of cellulosic biofuels be produced in 2011 and 500 million gallons in 2012. The problem was that no company could make the product commercially viable, so the EPA lowered its 2012 goal to 8.65 million gallons. Even that didn’t help, because absolutely zero gallons were produced in 2010 and 2011. Companies did manage to produce 22,000 gallons in 2012, but that still meant it was commercially non-existent.
The lack of a product forced the oil industry to pay fines of more than $6 million for failing to use the non-existent biofuels. As you can imagine, this cost was then passed on to consumers.
That’s Washington logic for you. I’ve got an idea! How about we require all cars to run on perpetual energy engines by 2016!