According to data provided by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) and National Economic Council Director Brian Deese, a top adviser to President Joe Biden, told Bloomberg News last week that current diesel levels are “unacceptably” low and that “all options are on the table” to increase supplies.
The EIA data shows that diesel stockpiles are at their lowest level for October in records that date back to 1993. As of October 14, the EIA data shows the U.S. has 25.4 days of supply, down from 34.2 days of supply four weeks prior.
The diesel crunch comes just over two weeks before the November 2022 midterm elections and will likely drive up prices even more. Diesel is the fuel used by freight trains and long-haul truckers to transport goods and food.
The EIA’s website states, “Most of the products we use are transported by trucks and trains with diesel engines, and most construction, farming, and military vehicles and equipment also have diesel engines. As a transportation fuel, diesel fuel offers a wide range of performances, efficiency, and safety features. Diesel fuel also has a greater energy density than other liquid fuels, so it provides more useful energy per unit of volume.”
Prices remain relatively elevated, according to AAA data. The average price for a gallon of diesel stands at around $5.33 nationwide today, October 23, or up nearly $2 since the same time in 2021, the data shows.
This diesel shortage comes just after President Biden announcement that he would release another 15 million barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), part of the 180 million Biden authorized in March. Republicans are saying it is a bid to keep Democrats politically afloat ahead of the midterms, by trying to keep the fuel prices lower until after the election.
Biden said on October 19, “The United States government is going to purchase oil to refill the SPR when prices fall to $70 a barrel. And that means oil companies can invest to ramp up production now, with confidence they’ll be able to sell their oil to us at that price in the future: $70.”
I have a quick question, “What if oil doesn’t go back that low?” Today’s price of WTI Crude Oil Spot price is at $86.00 per barrel.
The move came after the International Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries Plus (OPEC+) announced that it would cut oil production.
Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) told the New York Post last week, “Now, after draining our emergency reserve to a40-year low, Democrats want billions more of taxpayer dollars to refill the SPR at more than double the price. This is a direct attack on every single American struggling to fill their tanks and heat their homes.”
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