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Cheap CA Gas: RIP July 20, 2015 8:00 AM | Tagged as Gas Prices, Renewables, RPS, Steyer

WSJ July 18, 2015, Page A9: “Sky-High California Gas Prices Have a Green Additive” By Allysia Finley

Dovetailing with The Biz Bucks Guy’s last blog post, renewable portfolio standards for electricity in California are partially responsible for the extremely high gas prices the Golden Staters “enjoy”.  In tandem with a host of other green initiatives, renewables continue to plague all states that have taken the RPS KoolAid with their resulting high energy prices. Consider the CA story:

Nationally, gasoline prices have dropped nearly 25% to $2.76, compared to last year. This is partially driven by the US shale-oil boom. How about CA? Statewide, it’s $3.88 per gallon with LA at $4.30, some 20 cents greater than last year. In downtown LA, gas prices are over $5.00. Local consumer groups blame the oil companies. To quote Finley, “The real culprit is anti-carbon regulation promoted by a cartel of green activists and liberal politicians that is aimed at raising energy costs to discourage consumption.”

In 1999, Democrats took over the governorship of CA. Since then, CA’s gas prices have steadily risen above the national average. What drives gas prices, next to the cost of crude to refine, refineries largest production cost of the price of electricity. Enter the Renewable Portfolio Standards in CA. CA’s RPS laws mandate 33% renewables by 2020. Gov. Jerry Brown wants to increase it to 50% by 2030. As lower cost generation has been shut down in favor of renewables, electric rates have increased 2.18 cents per KW-hr. About four times the rate of the average of other states.

Finley goes on to explain gas prices are also high because environmental regs have driven smaller refineries out of business. Thus, supply is off. Any disruption at a refinery automatically leads to a jump in gas price. She also bemoans the rhetoric of uber-rich environmentalist Tom Steyer who is demanding a full investigation of the oil companies and is advocating  a new oil-extraction tax to penalize them. What a farce! It’s the policies of Steyer and his cronies that have caused this mess in California.

[Although opinion is included, The Biz Bucks Blog is primarily written to former students of Biz Bucks training courses to encourage their daily reading of the three opinion pages of the WSJ. This refreshes principles of Biz Bucks courses and improves business acumen on topics not discussed in Biz Bucks training.]

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