As of Wednesday morning, March 9, gasoline prices reached their highest mark in U.S. history, smashing the all-time record set all the way back on—Tuesday.
According to AAA, the national average for a gallon of gasoline is now a whopping $4.31, 14 cents higher than it was just one day ago.
The rapid period of increase in the price of gasoline that Americans are suffering through is truly unprecedented. On Monday of last week (Feb. 28), the price of gasoline was $3.61 per gallon, and according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the price of gas was $2.85 one year ago. That’s a 51 percent increase in just 12 months.
Contrary to many misleading statements from the White House, the Biden administration’s policies have unquestionably helped to contribute to the current energy crisis.
Among other things, the Biden administration has restricted drilling in the Bering Sea, cancelled the Keystone XL pipeline, severely limited new leases for oil and gas development nationwide, and suspended drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Democrats’ domestic COVID-19 spending spree—which was funded largely through money-printing—also helped to spur inflation and drive up the price of energy.
As disastrous as these policies have been, not just for the price of energy today, but for the next decade, other key policy proposals issued by Biden during the past six months will likely make the problem substantially worse.
For example, in November, Biden announced an “ambitious” plan to cut methane emissions in the United States by 30 percent by 2030.
According to the White House, the plan includes “new regulations that will significantly broaden and strengthen methane emissions reduction for new oil and gas facilities.”
“In addition,” the White House added, “for the first time ever, it will require that states develop plans that will reduce methane emissions from existing sources nationwide—including from an estimated 300,000 oil and gas well sites. Overall, the proposed requirements would reduce emissions from covered sources, equipment, and operations by approximately 75 percent.”
An analysis of the plan published by S&P Global Platts Analytics estimates that it will cost $1.2 billion per year for oil and gas producers to bring some 700,000 wells into compliance with Biden’s rule, not to mention time.
Those increased regulatory burdens, coupled with fewer oil and gas leases, will undoubtedly push energy prices increasingly higher in the months and years to come.
Making matters even worse, Biden announced on March 8 a ban on imports of Russian oil and gas, a decision the White House hopes will put further pressure on Vladimir Putin’s government to reverse course in Ukraine.
While banning Russian oil and gas might provide some help to the people of Ukraine—so long as European nations make the same commitment, of course—it will hurt Americans and U.S. businesses by further driving up the cost of oil and gas. About 8 percent of the imports of crude oil and petroleum products in 2021 came from Russia.
Without ramping up domestic energy production or having a valid alternative source of foreign oil already in place, Biden is all but guaranteeing prices to increase well beyond $5 per gallon in the near future. In fact, in California, that has already happened.
This is particularly important because the price of energy impacts virtually all other products and services in the U.S. economy, and it disproportionately affects lower-income and working-class families, who spend a much higher percentage of their paychecks on energy.
For many families, Biden’s policies will surely lead to incredibly hard choices—for some, a decision between paying for gas to get to work and putting food on the table.
On the issues of energy, the economy, and foreign policy, the Biden era has been nothing short of catastrophic. And the worst part is, there’s no sign that the White House is planning to change course soon.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.