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Government Penalizes Oil Companies For Failing to Deliver Fuels That Don’t Yet Exist

you’ve got to love gub’ment. Here’s a story of how the Environmental Protection
Agency made companies that supply motor fuel pay fines because they failed
to deliver alternative fuels.

The companies did have a good reason, which the EPA rejected, as that
kind of fuel actually doesn’t exist yet:

When the companies that supply motor fuel close the books on 2011,
they will pay about $6.8 million in penalties to the Treasury because
they failed to mix a special type of biofuel into their gasoline and
diesel as required by law.

But there was none to be had. Outside a handful of laboratories
and workshops, the ingredient, cellulosic biofuel, does not exist.

In 2012, the oil companies expect to pay even higher penalties
for failing to blend in the fuel, which is made from wood chips or the
inedible parts of plants like corncobs. Refiners were required to blend
6.6 million gallons into gasoline and diesel in 2011 and face a quota
of 8.65 million gallons this year.

“It belies logic,” Charles T. Drevna, the president
of the National Petrochemicals and Refiners Association, said of the
2011 quota. And raising the quota for 2012 when there is no production
makes even less sense, he said.

Matthew L. Wald of The New York Times explains: Link
(Photo: David Eggen for The New York Times)

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January 21st, 2012

Stranger to the World


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