NCC Voices Opposition to Liability Protection for E15 Damages

April 22, 2012

NCC last week joined a diverse group of business associations, consumer protection organizations, hunger and development organizations, agricultural groups, environmental groups, budget hawks, grassroots groups and free marketers to oppose the Domestic Fuels Act of 2012, which would provide liability protection for retailers, engine manufacturers and fuel producers for any problems that occur as a result of using 15 percent ethanol in engine fuel (E15), a mix recently approved for use by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

“This bill would leave consumers and taxpayers vulnerable to the potential damages and costs incurred on their engines, public safety, health, and the environment associated with using E15,” the groups wrote in a letter to members of the House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce.  “The ultimate protection for businesses and consumers alike would be to slow the process of moving towards E15 until all of the potential harmful impacts have been addressed.”

The groups point out that there has yet to be a thorough analysis of the environmental and economic impacts of increasing the amount of allowable ethanol content in gasoline and that such a move could also produce another demand shock to our corn market.

“It is clear that the main effect of this legislation is to expand the existing web of government subsidies and regulations that support ethanol while forcing consumers and taxpayers to absorb the real and exorbitant costs,” the letter concluded.

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