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A 2007 federal energy independence law required companies that supply motor fuel in the U.S. to blend in a certain cellulose-based ingredient starting in 2011 -- even though (as the Environmental Protection Agency well knows) the ingredient simply does not now exist. A New York Times reporter checked with the EPA in January and found that the companies will still have to pay the monetary penalties for noncompliance (and almost certainly the even-stiffer penalties for 2012, since the ingredient is still two or three years from development). "It belies logic," said a petrochemicals trade association executive.