Truck drivers who haul liquid fuel products in Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota will be able to drive for extended hours and, in some cases, transport heavier loads thanks to the recent emergency measures taken by the states’ governors as the region faces a potential fuel shortage this winter.
According to Natural News, Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota and Gov. Pete Ricketts of Nebraska both issued emergency declarations, providing relief to the trucking industry to keep fuel supplies — especially diesel, heating oil and kerosene — rolling in steadily as the region braces for the winter season.
Gov. Kimberly Reynolds of Iowa issued a similar declaration.
In Noem’s emergency declaration, it was noted that the temporary rules resulted from “extremely low inventories and outages of certain liquid products including gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, propane, ethyl alcohol, natural gasoline, diesel exhaust fluid, and anhydrous ammonia.”
In October, Bloomberg sparked national headlines after reporting that, according to the Energy Information Administration, the nation only had 25 days’ worth of diesel fuel reserves before depletion. The level is a rolling indicator of how much supply is left at any given time, but steady production and importation have helped supplies hold close to that level for several weeks.
The looming possibility of a diesel fuel shortage has been amplified by congressional leaders, including House Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana, who implored the Biden administration to take steps to prevent such a crisis from occurring.
“This diesel shortage is threatening to crush America’s truckers and farmers—the backbone of our economy. The entire supply chain will feel the impact. RT if you agree: Biden needs to wake up to this crisis and unleash American energy production NOW,” Scalise tweeted earlier this month.
This diesel shortage is threatening to crush America’s truckers and farmers—the backbone of our economy. The entire supply chain will feel the impact.
RT if you agree: Biden needs to wake up to this crisis and unleash American energy production NOW.
— Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) November 2, 2022
The fear is that continued supply chain disruption, trucker shortages, inflation, a harsh winter in some areas and other aggravating factors could drop that number further in a perfect storm of conditions, and several governors, including those mentioned above, are prepping ahead of what would likely be a deadly, dangerous scenario for Americans in certain parts of the country.
According to Fox Business, when diesel fuel supplies hit the 25-day mark, it was reportedly the lowest the running supply level has been since 1993.
The report also noted that the decreased supply, combined with the already-surging fuel prices nationwide, would likely continue to drive prices of various fuels, including diesel and home heating oil, higher in the coming months as demand exponentially increases.
“The national average price for diesel today is $5.30 per gallon and is expected to go up 15 to 20 cents in the next few weeks,” said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates, LLC.
Fox Business noted that according to the U.S. Department of Energy, the Northeast, for instance, is already sitting at about one-third of its regular supply of critical fuels.
The White House has reportedly closely monitored the situation, with National Economic Council Director Brian Deese telling Bloomberg in October that “all options are on the table” to bolster the transportation and production of critical fuels, adding that the White House believes the current levels are “unacceptably low.”
In a separate Fox Business report last month, it said a group of Democrats in the Northeast, led by Massachusetts Rep. Lori Trahan, asked President Joe Biden to release supplies from the Northeast Home Heating Oil Reserve, a similar reserve to the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
“These market strains disproportionately impact New England households many of which depend on home heating oil to heat their homes,” Trahan and 18 of her Democratic House colleagues wrote. “Families should not be forced to make hard choices about keeping loved ones warm and healthy and putting food on the table.”
According to the Energy Department, the NEHHOR holds roughly 1 million gallons of “ultra low sulfur distillate (diesel),” spread across three areas of the Northeast.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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