Biden Policies Bringing Higher Prices to American Drivers

Biden Policies Bringing Higher Prices to American Drivers

December 21, 2021

As Americans hit the road for the holiday season, they should know that once again President Biden is taking action to make their road trips more expensive.

Biden’s EPA recently announced changes to the renewable fuel standard that will lead to increased gas prices and more disruption in the fuel marketplace. Under the renewable fuel standard, refiners are required to blend a certain percentage of renewable fuels into their gasoline. But, as The Wall Street Journal editorialized last week, this creates big problems:

As fuel economy has improved over the last decade, the quotas have become increasingly unattainable. Gasoline blends with more than 10% corn ethanol can erode older car engines. Many refiners thus buy credits to comply with their quotas or turn to expensive advanced biofuels, much of which is imported.

Congress allowed small refiners to petition the EPA for an exemption if the program’s hefty compliance costs threaten their operations. Yet the EPA wants to deny exemptions to all 65 small refineries that have sought one. If these refiners shut down, there could be disruptions in the U.S. fuel supply, especially along the East Coast where small refiners are clustered. More fuel would be imported. But the shutdowns would make prices more volatile, as has happened in California.

In addition to putting small refiners and jobs at risk, the Biden Administration is simultaneously moving forward with new fuel efficiency standards that will further squeeze the American driver. This week, the Biden Administration raised fuel efficiency standards for American vehicles to their highest level in history.

These latest standards are nothing more than an attempt to push Americans into buying electric vehicles, whether or not they are ready – and whether or not our transportation infrastructure is ready. The Washington Times reported on criticism of the new standards, including a quote from PTF:

“Senator Manchin’s statement destroying the so-called Build Back Better agenda indicates there is little appetite for these kinds of policies in Congress, let alone the country as a whole,” said Power the Future Western director Larry Behrens. “It’s clear that President Biden is not willing to let American families choose for themselves because they might just choose to not buy into the green agenda.”

Anthony Watts, senior fellow at the Heartland Institute, raised concerns about auto safety and reliability, saying the standards would incentivize manufacturers to use lighter materials such as high-temperature-resistant plastic instead of metal.

“These additional CAFE standards are going to put pressure on manufacturers for being able to meet mileage specifications, and they’re going to have to lighten and cheapen the way the cars are built,” Mr. Watts said. “From my perspective, this compromises safety and reliability, and to what end?”

Higher gasoline prices. A volatile energy marketplace. Vehicles that are less safe. These are the ongoing impacts of the Biden administration’s ‘energy plans.’ Sadly, they continue to be focused on the desires of coastal elites rather than the real-world impacts felt by the rest of America.