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Monday, October 8, 2012

Californians Only Have Themselves to Blame...

... for high gas prices. The New York Times had mentioned this issue as a side note the other day. Now NBC News is making it the topic of an article. It states:
For years, California's gasoline supply chain has been tighter than just about every state except Hawaii, leaving motorists vulnerable to even minor crimps in the supply chain. That, along with the second-highest gasoline tax in the country, is why it costs more to fill up in California than it does elsewhere in the U.S.

And the reasons are almost entirely the result of policies and regulations enacted at the behest of California's voters.

. . . One reason is that state regulators insist refiners produce a specific blend of gas to meet tough state air quality standards. That means refiners and wholesalers can’t make up temporary shortages with gas that can be sold elsewhere in the U.S.

And while refiners in other states have gradually expanded output over the years to keep up with demand, no California politician would dream of campaigning on a platform of building new oil refineries. The result is that supplies in California have gradually tightened as refiners have been unable to win approval to expand production, said Tom Kloza, publisher of the Oil Price Information Service.

. . . The price spike also comes as California refiners enter the final weeks before a state-regulated switchover to a different blend of fuel sold only in winter months, when lower temperatures create different conditions that alter the way combustion of gasoline contributes to air pollution.
The article also notes that California has the second highest gasoline tax in the nation.

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