TOPEKA – (March 11, 2011) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has joined other regional states in opposing a California air-quality regulation that would unfairly discriminate against ethanol produced in the Midwest.
Schmidt joined in filing a legal brief opposing the California regulation. The court accepted the brief yesterday.
“The effect … [of the California regulation] will be exactly what California intends: It will close the California border to ethanol produced in … [Midwestern states] in favor of chemically-identical ethanol produced within California, without any legitimate justification,” the states wrote. “This extra-territorial reach of the regulation violates the Commerce and Supremacy Clauses of the U.S. Constitution.”
The lawsuit, brought by the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union against the California Air Resources Board (CARB), challenges the constitutionality of a California regulation intended to lower carbon emissions in motor vehicles in California. The regulation assigns a higher carbon-emission value to Midwestern corn-based ethanol, effectively banning it from use in California. Because of its large population and number of cars, California is a major market for Kansas-produced ethanol and the regulation would have a severe impact on the Midwestern corn ethanol market.
Schmidt joined attorneys general from Nebraska, Michigan, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota in filing the brief asking the court to block the regulation. The case is currently in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California.