President Joe Biden has proven that he can bumble virtually everything he touches. Gas prices are no exception. Historically, American presidents have been the scapegoats for high gasoline (and other petroleum-based products) prices, even though they had little control over them. But the Biden administration has stepped in to don the mantle of price blaster. According to Mike Sommers, president of the American Petroleum Institute, Biden administration policies are directly responsible for most of the price increases. According to Sommers, “Certainly one of the key factors is that the Biden administration has made an effort to reduce production in the United States.”
Specifically, cutting off the Keystone XL Pipeline, reducing leasing and permitting on federal lands and eliminating access to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska have had a significant influence on energy prices. And according to the Energy Information Administration, the cost of heating oil is expected to rise 43% compared to last year and the cost of natural gas is expected to rise 30%.
Part of the strategy used to establish the current price of a commodity (including oil and gas) incorporates estimates of future supply and demand. Biden’s cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline and reduction of leasing and permitting on federal lands is a clear signal that the administration is attempting to limit supply. It’s also a signal that future production costs will likely increase.
Biden’s policies that increase oil and gas prices is designed to reduce oil production no sense. Biden is attempting to reduce oil production as part of his climate change initiative. Consequently, we will become more reliant on oil produced in other countries, where production processes have a greater negative effect on the environment.
Then there’s press secretary Jen Psaki who seems locked in a contest to prove whether she or Biden is more out of touch with reality. Psaki stated, “Our view is that the rise in gas prices over the long term makes an even stronger case for doubling down our investment and our focus on clean energy options so we are not relying on the fluctuations and OPEC and their willingness to put more supply and meet the demand in the market”.
In Psaki fantasy land, clean energy options will reduce our dependence on OPEC but limiting domestic oil production won’t increase our dependence on OPEC. For the foreseeable future, “filling your tank” with an alternative fuel will be more expensive (directly or indirectly) than gasoline. Consequently, Psaki’s solution is no solution, it’s just a false sales pitch.
Just what you would expect from anyone associated with the Biden administration, where failure is the stock in trade.