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Lawsuit Seeks to Block Leaded Avgas Ban in California

July 7, 2011 –In response to a notice of an intended lawsuit to ban leaded avgas in California, a coalition of FBOs and fuel distributors there have sued the Center for Environmental Health (CEH) and the state’s Attorney General, aiming for an injunction against the attempt at an outright ban. The coalition is asking for a U.S. judge to issue an injunction to stop Prop 65 enforcement actions from proceeding. Prop 65 is the California Safe Drinking Water & Toxic Enforcement Act.

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has engaged common counsel with the coalition and is supporting the coalition with facilitation and administrative services. The coalition has also received significant support from EAA, GAMA, and AOPA, all of whom share a common interest with the coalition in protecting the GA community.

According to coalition’s complaint, the Prop 65 lawsuits will disrupt ongoing efforts by the FAA and EPA, who are working with industry groups including EAA to identify an alternative to leaded fuel that can be safely and reliably used by piston-powered airplanes. Any lawsuit under Prop 65 initiates state enforcement proceedings in California and can lead to imposition of potentially crippling civil penalties, essentially shutting down GA in California. The complaint seeks immediate relief to protect the rights of coalition members to sell avgas under federal law and the U.S. Constitution.

EAA is also a member of the GA Avgas Coalition and serves as a member of the FAA’s Unleaded Avgas Transition ARC, which is working to identify and develop a safe, stable alternative to leaded avgas. Learn more about the coalition here.

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