Description: Challenge to the City of Portland laws and policies that allegedly prohibit new fuel-export infrastructure in the City.
Montana v. City of Portland
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 02/14/2023 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Lawsuit in Oregon Federal Court Challenged Portland’s Restrictions on Fuel-Export Infrastructure. The State of Montana, several trade groups, and a Washington-based fuel distributor filed a lawsuit in the federal district court for the District of Oregon challenging City of Portland laws and policies that allegedly prohibit new fuel-export infrastructure in the City. The plaintiffs asserted that the laws and policies “intentionally discriminate in favor of local users, unreasonably burden interstate commerce, interfere with intermodal/rail transportation, and serve no legitimate local purpose” and therefore violate the Dormant Commerce Clause, Foreign Commerce Clause, and Due Process Clause, and are preempted by the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995. The complaint’s allegations included that the City’s “categorical prohibition on all new infrastructure for transportation of combustible fuel” was intended to advance an illegitimate extraterritorial goal of decreasing global emissions but that the prohibition did not advance this goal because it applied overbroadly to fuel that is “transitional, clean, renewable, and/or results in lower emissions.” The plaintiffs also alleged that that the laws and policies would not lower emissions within the City because they did not limit distribution and use of fuel within the City and surrounding areas.