Originally Posted by Bowser
Refineries here, or refineries worldwide?
See, I'm not sure what all is the reason gas has risen so sharply. First, it was the whole Iraq ordeal. Then, it was the hurricanes. Then, it was China and Indonesia and their consumption rates. Then, it was the threat of Iran doing something stupid. Now, OUR refineries aren't being used at full capacity. I count two of those five reasons being domestic problems.
I call bullshit. Have they given a plausible reason as to why our refineries are operating at a reduced capacity?
Our domestic refineries. When you have any machine that's operating 24/7 at 100%, it's eventually going to break or occasionally need significant maintenance. That's happening now.
The price of crude is still the primary culprit behind high gasoline prices, but this is an example of how the refining component can come into play.
Here are some fun facts:
The current refinery squeeze has been building for years. For the past two decades, deregulation and low profits have combined to push the industry into consolidation. Partly because of environmental regulations, it was cheaper to expand existing refineries than to build new ones. In 1981, the US had 324 refineries with a total capacity of 18.6 million barrels per day, the Department of Energy reports. Today, there are just 132 oil refineries with a capacity of 16.8 million b.p.d., according to Oil and Gas Journal, a trade publication.