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Corn growers join petition to SCOTUS over California emissions mandate

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(The Center Square) – A coalition of energy, biofuel and agriculture groups – including the Illinois Corn Growers Association – are taking their challenge of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s emissions mandate to the nation’s highest court.

The group filed a petition for a writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the EPA’s decision to grant a waiver to California for its 2021-2025 electric vehicle mandate. Illinois lawmakers have considered adopting California’s strict EV policies.

The petition asks the high court to throw out an appeals court decision that rejected legal arguments by 17 states over California’s EV mandate. The states had argued it violated their sovereign rights to set their own standards or no standards at all.

“We are asking the Supreme Court to reverse the D.C. Circuit’s erroneous holding that fuel providers lack standing to challenge EPA’s unlawful California waiver, and also to provide long overdue clarity on the authority of EPA and California to mandate electric vehicles,” said Chet Thompson, president of the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers in a statement.

In 2022, California regulators announced a plan to ban the sale of gasoline-powered vehicles in the state by 2035.

The petition also asks the court to clarify that the “California waiver” in the Clean Air Act does not limit consumer access to internal combustion engine technology.

Dave Loos, director of Biofuels with the Illinois Corn Growers Association, said an EPA requirement that up to 56% of all car sales be electric by 2030 is too drastic.

“That’s very, very concerning to us as producers, but it is also concerning for one, we lose these bushels, two, we lose that demand for ethanol, but three, it really takes away options for the consumers,” said Loos.

Connecticut recently followed in Virginia’s footsteps in rejecting California’s EV mandate.

“EPA should not have made California’s vehicle technology mandate a standard across much of the nation,” said Jeff Lenard, National Association of Convenience Stores vice president of Strategic Industry Initiatives. “We need innovations to improve all vehicle technologies to fight climate change.”

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