Fuel Matters Blog

Will Gas-Tax Indexing Fund Infrastructure Updates?

There is a consensus that the United States’ infrastructure, particularly roads, bridges and transit systems, need significant updates and investments, but who is going to pay for these improvements is becoming an increasingly debated issue.  On June 10th, a group of Republican and Democratic Senators said that they are officially opened to consider changing the structure of the national gasoline tax, which would be the first time the tax has been changed since 1993. Read More

Never As EV As It Seems?

Lordstown Motors Corporation warned Tuesday that is it close to running out of cash and may be forced to shut down operations before the end of the year.  The announcement sent the electric truck maker’s shares down 20% in midday trading on Wednesday.  The Lordstown facility was once home to a General Motors plant, which GM closed in 2019. Read More

Keeping Petroleum Flowing

Last month the Colonial Pipeline was targeted by a ransomware group causing the pipeline to be temporarily taken offline.  The pipeline is vital because it provides almost half of the fuel supply on the east coast. Colonial Pipeline’s CEO, Joseph Blount paid the ransom after one day to quickly restore the flow of petroleum. The FBI was also quickly notified.  On Monday, June 7th the FBI managed to recover most of the ransom from the hackers. Read More

National Safety Month

This June marks the 25th anniversary of National Safety Month, an annual observance to help keep people safe at the workplace, at home, in our communities and on roadways. While the month of June focuses on safety in all aspects of our lives, we need to be diligent regarding the safety of ourselves and others year-round. In 2019, the U.S. saw the highest number of fatal workplace injuries since 2007 with 5,333 deaths. In 2020, approximately 42,000 deaths occurred on the nation’s roadways alone. Read More

Tis The Season

As the cold weather moves behind us, it brings a new season and a new list of challenges, hurricane season 2021. Last year still holds the title of a record 30 named storms that stopped 90% of the 1.9 million barrels per day of refineries near coastal waters. 2021 does not forecast to be as bad, but The American Petroleum Institute (API) is preparing stronger in operational security, as oil and gas companies have increased the number of emergency exercises.

Read More

Biden Administration Suspended Oil Leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

ANWR

In August 2020, the Trump Administration opened the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in Alaska to oil drilling for the first time. The U.S. Department of the Interior believes that this area can be drilled in a responsible and sustainable manner only taking up 0.01 percent of the 19 million acres of wildlife refuge. At the time of this decision, nearly 70% of Americans apposed drilling in this protected space. The initial land auction was supposed to take place at the end of 2020, but it was noted that the interest in the sale was quite low as most of the larger oil companies avoided the controversial sale. Read More

Ransomware Attacks on the Rise!

Earlier this week, JBS a global meatpacking company was the latest large corporation hit by a ransomware attack.  According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, “The attack is the latest in a growing number to hit a range of businesses and institutions, including hospitals, the oil industry and local water suppliers. At JBS, the attack halted operations at meat plants that are among the largest in the U.S., according to worker representatives and notices shared with JBS employees. JBS facilities in Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Nebraska and Texas were among those affected.” These activities seem to be ramping up in frequency. Yesterday, a ransomware attack disrupted ferry services in Massachusetts. New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority also revealed Wednesday that it had been hacked in April, although the attack didn’t disrupt operations, including the city’s subway system. As these attacks seem to target highly impactful infrastructure, it is important to remember to be on high alert for suspicious activities. Read More

Sparking the debate on natural gas

Cities across the U.S. are considering banning natural gas hookups in new construction for both homes and businesses.  Berkley, California passed the first ban in 2019 and other cities like San Jose, New York, Seattle, and Denver are following their lead. Read More

Average Price for Used Class 8 Trucks Reaches All-Time High Amidst Surge in Demand for All Used Vehicles

According to ACT Research, the average price for a Class 8 truck sold in April 2021 rose to $57,431, an all-time high. The increase in price is especially stark when compared to the pandemic-low of $38,242 a year earlier. What is causing these previously unseen price tags for 16+ ton trucks? A few grams of silicon and precious metals that we know as a semiconductor. Read More

President Biden’s Budget Proposal

President Biden is expected to propose a $6 trillion budget that would have the highest consistent levels of federal spending since World War II.  President Biden’s proposal looks to provide sweeping economic overhauls including large investments in education, transportation and combatting climate change.  The proposal is also expected to call for total spending to rise to $8.2 trillion by 2031, which will include projected deficits of $1.3 trillion throughout the next decade. Read More