It all revolves around the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) plan to allow the sale and use of E15 fuel (a 15 percent blend of ethanol in gas) for late model cars. The decision, already fought in court by several engine makers, got another enemy this year.
The National Petrochemical and Refiners Association (NPRA) announced on Monday it was joining the battle to support the groups and organizations which had already filed a court action against the EPA.
NPRA claims that by raising the content of ethanol from 10 to 15 percent, the EPA has violated the Clean Air Act and the Administrative Procedure Act. More specifically, the EPA is accused of not having the right to approve a partial waiver that allows the use of E15 in some engines but not in others.
"NPRA is taking this action because our members are committed to consumer protection and providing safe, efficient, affordable and reliable fuel to the American people," NPRA president Charles T. Drevna said.
"The organizations challenging EPA's decision believe the agency has acted unlawfully in its rush to allow a 50 percent increase in the amount of ethanol in gasoline without adequate testing and without following proper procedures. As a result, we had no choice but to take this issue to court."
Of course, there more than one vantage point on this matter. While the above groups say the EPA decision can damage engines in cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, snowmobiles, and outdoor power equipment, others may argue that it is more a battle for the money, since most of those opposing the EPA are not car makers (most have not had their say on the matter yet), but engine makers and players from the oil industry.