Media advisory: Teleconference on lawsuit challenging California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard

October 9, 2012

A three judge panel in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments next Tuesday, October 16th, in a lawsuit over California’s pioneering Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS).

California’s LCFS was carefully designed to reduce the air pollution that causes climate change, to protect and improve public health, and to drive innovation in business and technology that will benefit the economy. It reduces the amount of carbon pollution released during the production, shipping and use of transportation fuels sold in California by 10 percent between now and 2020. The LCFS is one part of California’s landmark climate and energy law, AB 32, which aims to reduce California’s climate pollution to 1990 levels by the year 2020.

The LCFS is based on the best available science. It uses a “lifecycle” approach to managing emissions from fuels that is the accepted standard used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, other U.S. states and other countries.

Opponents of the ground-breaking anti-pollution standard, including refiners and fuel production companies, sued to overturn it. Last December, a federal court district in Fresno ruled that the LCFS violates the limits imposed on states by the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution. The State of California and environmental groups appealed the decision to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Seven other U.S. States and a wide range of science, environmental, business and national security experts have filed briefs in support of California’s LCFS. (You can read more details and the full court briefs here)  In April, the Ninth Circuit ruled that California could continue to enforce the LCFS while the case is appealed.

This Thursday – October 11th – lawyers and other experts for four of the organizations that are defending this pioneering clean air standard will hold a teleconference with members of the media in advance of the oral arguments. They’ll be happy to answer any questions about the case.


Teleconference with Legal and Environmental Experts about Oct. 16 Court Arguments on California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard


Thursday, October 11 at 10:00 a.m. Pacific time/1:00 p.m. Eastern time


Sean Donahue, counsel for EDF, and presenting arguments for environmental intervenors in the oral argument
Jen Sorenson, counsel for Natural Resources Defense Council
Jennifer Rushlow, counsel for Conservation Law Foundation
Joanne Spalding, counsel for Sierra Club


Call – 800-616-4018


Environmental Defense Fund (, a leading national nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. See

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) ( is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 1.3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world’s natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Livingston, Montana, and Beijing.

The Sierra Club ( is the nation’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization. Founded in 1892 by John Muir, our 1.4 million members and supporters share a common mission to explore, enjoy and protect the planet.

The Conservation Law Foundation ( has worked since 1966 on actively protecting all parts of New England’s environment, including everything from oceans to river to mountains, from parks to forests, from big cities to small towns, from Maine to Rhode Island. Every day, CLF uses the law, science, and the market to develop innovative, pragmatic solutions to New England’s toughest challenges, in order to make New England a better place to live, work, and play for everyone.