California’s climate policies are spiking gasoline prices for the state’s drivers—and putting energy security at risk, Bloomberg reports.
What’s happening: “The premium California drivers pay for gasoline over the national average is likely to rise significantly if state legislators continue enacting policies to discourage petroleum production, Andy Walz, who leads [Chevron’s] U.S. refining division, said in an interview.”
- Drivers in California, the country’s second-largest consumer of gasoline, paid an average of $4.94 per gallon of gas in the last quarter of 2023. That’s about $1.72 higher than the national average.
Why it’s happening: “Ever-tightening regulations” are making it more costly to do business.
- Among these regulations: a proposal to cap oil and gas companies’ refining capacity.
- Walz told the news outlet the rule is making Chevron rethink the number of resources the company puts into California.
Why it’s problematic: “The problem is magnified because California is essentially an island when it comes to fuel [due to] a lack of pipelines connecting it with the rest of the country.”
Part of a larger onslaught: California’s refining-limit proposal joins a number of other problematic measures in that state and at the federal level.
- In October, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill requiring large companies doing business in the state to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions—including, by 2027, so-called “Scope 3” emissions—to state regulators.
- Last year, the Biden administration proposed changes to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards that would lower the primary annual particulate matter standard drastically, from 12.0 µg/m3 to between 8.0 and 10.0 µg/m3. The stricter standard would create permitting gridlock nationwide.
What we’re doing: The NAM continues to fight overregulation handed down by federal agencies.
- It recently formed Manufacturers for Sensible Regulations with members of the NAM’s Council of Manufacturing Associations and Conference of State Manufacturers Associations to address the rulemaking deluge.
Further reading: Learn more about the high costs of regulations and the extreme burden on small manufacturers in this recent NAM study.