The government of Democrat Joe Biden, after accusing US refiners of making juicy profits at the expense of motorists who pay high prices for gasoline, adopted a more conciliatory tone after a meeting with the sector this Thursday, in which he asked to increase production to reduce fuel prices.
(Read: Why mining does have a place in the energy transition)
The meeting ended, however, without concrete solutions. The increase in rates at gas stations, a symbol of the general rise in prices in the United Stateserodes the popularity of the president, who for weeks has been active trying to find solutions to lower the cost of a gallon of gasoline (3.78 liters).
Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm “clearly indicated (to representatives of seven of the country’s large refiners) that the government considers it imperative that companies increase their productionAccording to a summary of the meeting released by his office.
They discussed various alternatives, such as better preparing East Coast refineries for hurricane season. It was “a first stage,” said White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre.
We obviously want to reach solutions and there will be multiple stages to reach them
The meeting was “constructive”, they limited themselves to indicating in a statement the two organizations that represent the sector, the API and the AFPM.
Philipps66 president Greg Garland hailed “a good start” and his Chevron peer, Mike Wirth, a “constructive conversation.”
The Secretary of Energy adopted “a collaborative tone from the beginning, recognizing that the oil market is by nature global and that certain companies, including Shell, reduced their refining capacity” in order to produce more biofuels, the president of Shell said on her side. USA, Gretchen Watkins.
Biden repeatedly urged refiners to increase their production capacity, at a time when a gallon is at 5 dollars, a historical level.
Joe Biden had last week included ExxonMobil, Marathon, Valero and Shell in a letter asking refiners to take “immediate” measures to increase the production of gasoline, diesel and aircraft fuel.
Obtaining “historically high” profit margins by making Americans pay “is not acceptable,” the president then launched.
American refineries are operating at 94% of their capacity, a very high level, retrucked the API and the association that brings together refiners, the AFPM.
The definition of out of touch:
Joe Biden just went on national television and bragged about depleting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve to its lowest point in 35 years. pic.twitter.com/aY02zHfDS4
— Congressman Fred Keller (@RepFredKeller) June 22, 2022
“If refiners could produce more now, they would, seeing the unbelievable margins they can get,” Andrew Lebow, an energy sector specialist at specialist consultancy Commodity Research Group, said before the meeting.
Production may pick up a bit in the coming weeks once some operational issues at its facilities are resolved, he said.
Oil prices were initially buoyed by a sharp rise in demand following the Covid-19 pandemic, and then by sanctions imposed by Western powers on Russia following its invasion of neighboring Ukraine on February 24.
To bring prices down at gas stations, Joe Biden asked Congress on Wednesday to suspend a federal tax on gasoline of 18 cents per gallon for three months, an idea that generated skepticism among many experts who maintain that this measure will increase demand. by reducing the price during the peak consumption season.
*With information from AFP
More world news
– Before dying, bear killed the hunter who shot him
– Mama Coco exists in real life: she is 108 years old and lives in Mexico
– Young man denounces that his girlfriend stabbed him in the abdomen out of jealousy
#Biden #meets #oil #companies #reaching #agreements #face #high #prices