In case you hadn’t noticed, gas prices are going up at near-record rates this month. The same is true for heating oil and propane. And that’s all taking place just as the temperatures are beginning to plunge across the northeast and the midwest with winter only a few weeks away. So doesn’t this seem like an odd time for the Biden administration and his Energy Secretary (former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm) to be seriously talking about shutting down yet another pipeline? And yet that’s precisely what’s happening according to a report this weekend from Fox News. Biden is reportedly close to ordering a halt to construction on the Enbridge Line 5 pipeline, located in Granholm’s home state.
The Biden administration is reportedly weighing the potential market consequences of shutting down an oil pipeline in Michigan, drawing criticism from opponents. Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, Biden’s energy secretary, predicted Sunday that heating prices will rise this winter regardless of the Biden administration’s decision on the pipeline. “Yeah, this is going to happen. It will be more expensive this year than last year,” Granholm told CNN.
The administration has yet to decide on what to do with Line 5 and officials were gathering information only to present a clear picture of the situation, according to sources who spoke to Politico.
Line 5 is part of a network that moves crude oil and other petroleum products from western Canada, transporting about 540,000 barrels per day. Petroleum is taken from the pipeline in Escanaba, Michigan.
Notice the quote from Granholm that get’s dropped in the linked article. When asked if the cost of home heating oil and gasoline will be going up she says, “yeah, this is going to happen.” In case you didn’t get the chance to see it, here’s the clip from that interview. She tries to blame the crunch on OPEC, just as Biden has done, but she’s almost entirely casual about the fact that this is just a thing that’s going to happen.
What both Biden and Granholm refuse to acknowledge is that this doesn’t have to happen. We have almost limitless supplies of energy right under our feet. The problem is that we’re facing a supply chain crisis in the form of not having enough drivers to get the oil to the refineries and the gasoline to the stations. (A problem that our vaunted Transportation Secretary has yet to fix.) At the same time, we’re shutting down pipelines for both oil and natural gas rather than expanding them.
And yet, instead of fixing a completely addressable problem, Biden and Granholm are plotting to further reduce the flow of energy. This will not only exacerbate the price spike we’re already seeing but it will further tick off our trading partners in Canada when American relations with our traditional allies are already on the rocks.
If you listened to the full clip above, you also heard Granholm touching on another “fix” for this crisis that Biden has available to him. As Politico also pointed out, Biden is now weighing the possibility that the world’s leading energy powerhouse may tap into the strategic petroleum reserve.
Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Sunday that President Joe Biden is considering tapping into the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve amid rising crude oil prices.
“That’s one of the tools that he has,” Granholm said. “And he’s certainly looking at that.”
She also warned that home heating prices will be more expensive than the same period last year.
That’s not what the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is there for. It’s intended as an insurance policy against a true energy emergency, not a toy to help a flailing politician’s poll numbers. If we’re facing an actual “energy emergency” right now it’s an emergency of our own making.
In the linked article, Politico repeats the lie that “presidents have little to no control over gas prices.” That used to be true back when OPEC effectively ruled the world. But only twelve months ago, the United States was a net exporter of oil and natural gas. When operating at capacity – which requires the cooperation of the government on a number of fronts – we have more than enough fuel to meet all of our needs. We’re just not doing what needs to be done to get it to all of the places where it’s needed. So yes, Joe Biden has significant (though not complete) control over energy prices.
It’s like we went to bed one night in one of the most dominant energy-producing countries in the world and woke up the next morning in the loony bin. But at least thus far, it appears that most of the mainstream media is once again going to give Biden a free pass and try to place the blame elsewhere. Someone should start a timer and see how long it takes before CNN blames the high prices on Trump.
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