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Mexico court temporarily blocks higher ethanol in gasoline

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) — A Mexican judge on Wednesday granted a temporary injunction against an increase in the ethanol content in gasoline for domestic consumption to as much as 10%, according to an environmentalist involved in the case.

Gabriel Quadri, a former presidential candidate for one of Mexico’s smaller opposition parties who helped file the suit, said the ruling would force the government to keep maximum ethanol content at 5.8% for now.

Mexico’s energy regulator, CRE, gave the go-ahead in June to raise the limit on ethanol content over objections of environmental groups who warned the action would worsen pollution in the country.

US ethanol producers have closely followed the regulations in Mexico and supported the higher content rule, because it would make the gasoline imported and sold in Mexico more similar to that sold in the United States.

The CRE was not immediately available to comment on the court’s ruling halting the increase.

Quadri did not know how long the provisional injunction would hold, but he said there were several other legal challenges to the regulation and that he expected the judge to eventually impose a definitive injunction against the measure.

Reporting by Adriana Barrera; Editing by Tom Hogue

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