Governor signs clean fuels bill, oil companies set to sue
This morning, in one of her first acts as governor , Kate Brown signed Oregon's Clean Fuels Standard into law.
"I appreciate the years of work by countless Oregonians who helped develop this law, and I applaud the Oregon Legislature for its thorough examination of these issues." Said Governor Brown in a press release today.
The low-carbon fuel standard requires fuel importers to reduce the carbon content of their fuels by 10 percent by 2025. They can do so by blending cleaner biofuels into their products, or by purchasing "clean fuel" credits from alternative fuel producers or projects.
Oregon has had a clean fuels standard in the works for several years but the law was set to sunset this year. With the Governor's signature today, Oregonians can continue on the path to better health, more in state clean fuel jobs and a less polluted environment. But that's something that just doesn't sit right with oil companies.
Lead by the Western State Petroleum Association, oil interests are set to sue over the standard in the Oregon State Court of Appeals.
"It is the position of WSPA and its member companies that Oregon's low-carbon fuel standard program is infeasible and could do irreparable damage to the state's energy market," said WSPA President Catherine Reheis-Boyd in a prepared statement.
I guess someone forgot to tell WSPA that clean fuels standards have been working in California since 2007 and in British Columbia the EU and the United Kingdom since in 2008. More likely than having Oregon's best interests in mind, out of state oil companies are suing to bar competition. We've seen this with oil backlash against electric vehicles and now with cleaner fuels, they are trying to keep control of how we fuel our tanks by trying to convince us that they won't work.
To compete for the best and brightest companies and entrepreneurs, Oregon has to have the right laws. Oregon already has clean fuels companies looking to expand locally; "The Clean Fuels Program is the key to unlock investment and amplify growth in Oregon's renewable fuels industry," said SeQuential Biofuels run out of Eugene, OR.
This bill sets Oregon on the same path as our regional neighbors and grows an industry ripe for rapid success. Oil companies see the writing on the wall. They know the future will see a host of different fuel sources that are cheaper and cleaner. Suing to stop or simply slow down the standard is a move that smells of desperation, sometimes its best to know when you're beat.
Nick Abraham - editor and lead contributor of Oil Check Northwest