The national average price for a gallon of gasoline rose six cents over the past week to hit $3.38, according to AAA. California has the highest average cost for regular grade gas at $4.54 a gallon, $4.745 for mid-grade unleaded, $4.871 for premium unleaded, and $4.684 for diesel.
While the average price for a gallon of regular gas is already high at $4.54, drivers are paying as high as $8.49 in some California cities. Hawaii is second to California at $4.292 per gallon.
Oklahoma has the lowest gas price at $3.020 with Texas at $3.040.
“The pump price has gone up every day in the past 27 days, adding approximately 20 cents to the cost of a gallon of gas,” AAA said.
What is driving the gas prices up besides California’s environmental regulations, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s executive order banning fracking and oil extraction, and the Biden administration cutting off the Keystone Pipeline?
“The recent rise in the pump price is due to higher demand coupled with a decline in stocks alongside elevated crude prices,” AAA reports. “Global oil production is still below pre-pandemic levels. According to new data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), total domestic gasoline stocks decreased by 5.4 million bbl to 217.7 million bbl last week. However, gasoline demand increased from 9.19 million b/d to 9.63 million b/d. Since the cost of oil accounts for more than half of the pump price, consumers will be paying more as long as crude prices remain high.”
“Today’s national average of $3.38 is 20 cents more than a month ago and $1.22 more than a year ago, and 77 cents more than in 2019.”
The nation’s top 10 largest weekly increases: North Carolina (+14 cents), Florida (+14 cents), Arizona (+12 cents), Rhode Island (+11 cents), New York (+11 cents), New Hampshire (+10 cents), Connecticut (+10 cents), New Jersey (+10 cents), Pennsylvania (+9 cents) and Texas (+9 cents).
The nation’s top 10 most expensive markets: California ($4.54), Hawaii ($4.26), Nevada ($3.92), Washington ($3.87), Oregon ($3.78), Alaska ($3.72), Idaho ($3.71), Utah ($3.68), Washington, D.C. ($3.57) and Pennsylvania ($3.56).
Gov. Newsom has not only greatly expand environmental regulations in California, in September of 2020, Newsom signed an Executive Order banning new sales of gas-powered vehicles by 2035, the Globe reported. This was added to earlier this month with the Governor signing a bill that would enact a sales ban on gas-powered small motor machines such as lawnmowers and chainsaws by 2024. Another Executive Order signed in April by Newsom will also ban fracking in the state by 2024 and end oil extraction by 2045.
Backlash against the new order has already been severe, as the oil industry remains one of the largest in the state and is still the seventh-largest crude oil producing state in the country, the Globe reported. One-third of all gasoline in California comes directly from oil extracted and refined in the state. Warnings of everything from losing thousands of jobs to higher prices for gas and other fuels due to a still-high need for them in the state and nationwide have been given by industry professionals and experts for years.
In September, House Democrats delivered on President Joe Biden’s calls to reform drilling for oil and gas on public lands and waters by raising costs on producers and imposing stricter regulatory requirements, the Washington Examiner reported.
“Democrats on the Natural Resources Committee, which oversees energy production on federal lands, voted 24-13 late Thursday to pass their portion of the party’s $3.5 trillion reconciliation infrastructure and social spending package.”
The 117-page bill “contains a suite of provisions sought by Biden as part of his aggressive ambitions to address climate change. At the start of his presidency, Biden signed an executive order imposing an indefinite pause on issuing new oil and gas leases on federal lands and waters, a step toward fulfilling a major campaign promise to ban new leases altogether.”
California Democrats on the House Natural Resources Committee are Congress members Josh Harder, Jim Costa, Raul Ruiz, Katie Porter, Mike Levin, Julia Brownley, Alan Lowenthal, Grace Napolitano and Jared Huffman.
California Republicans on the House Natural Resources Committee are Congress members Tom McClintock and Jay Obernolte.
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