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5 Reasons West Coast Gas Prices Are Surging

By Walter Kurtz, Sober Look

Retail gasoline prices in the US remain elevated – up 14% since the end of June. But as our friends in California know, gas prices depend quite a bit on where you live.  And the West Coast got hit especially hard, with retail prices there at record highs (though coming down slightly in the last few days).

Source: EIA

There are a number of reasons for this, including:

1. The Kettleman–Los Medanos pipeline has been shut down for a while because of environmental concerns.

2. Recent Chevron refinery fire near San Francisco cut some capacity.

3. A recent power outage at the ExxonMobil’s refinery in LA reduced supplies.

4. California fuel blend environmental requirements make the mix more expensive and more susceptible to disruptions.

5. And of course taxes and fees on gasoline on the West Coast tend to be quite high.


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