It's hard to believe that it was just over a month ago that Hurricane Harvey's devastating effects resulted in widespread shutdowns to key Gulf Coast refineries and energy infrastructure. Yet, while some of the country experienced gas shortages, Pennsylvania did not.
The Keystone State's refineries came to the rescue when our country needed it most, by shipping gasoline and diesel fuel via barge to the areas most impacted by the hurricane while still meeting demand in the northeastern U.S.
The Threat to Pennsylvania Refineries
Buckeye Partners, L.P., a Texas-based company, has petitioned the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) to reverse a portion of the Laurel Pipeline. This pipeline currently runs from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh, supplying western Pennsylvania consumers and businesses with competitively priced fuel. The petition would eliminate Pennsylvania-based refineries as a supply choice for western Pennsylvania fuel distributors, consumers and businesses.
There are a number of reasons why this threat of reversing the flow of fuel via the Laurel Pipeline would be bad for consumers, businesses and Pennsylvania:
- Cuts off supply from the East Coast to western Pennsylvania
Since its installation over 60 years ago, the Laurel Pipeline has always flowed to the west. It's the only remaining pipeline carrying petroleum products from Philadelphia-area refineries into western Pennsylvania.
- Eliminates healthy competition
The proposal would cut off the ability for Philadelphia-area refineries to supply Pittsburgh with fuel, forcing fuel marketers in the greater Pittsburgh region to become primarily dependent on out-of-state market sources.
- Raises fuel prices
Market data shows that for the majority of the year, fuels made right here in Pennsylvania are less expensive than fuels from out-of-state Midwestern refineries. If this proposal goes through, it will raise fuel prices for consumers and businesses in western Pennsylvania. Currently, the cost of supply from Midwestern refineries verses Pennsylvania refineries is nearly $0.10 per gallon higher for diesel fuel and $0.38 per gallon higher for gasoline.
- Impacts jobs
Employees from Pennsylvania refineries could feel the effects of this reversal. It could potentially cause these refineries to close, impacting about 1,500 direct employees along with tens of thousands of indirect employees.
We stand up for refineries, consumers and businesses
When it comes down to it, competition among fuel sources is good news for Pennsylvania. Guttman Energy supports the rejection of the Laurel Pipeline reversal proposal. We are standing up for Pennsylvania refineries, consumers and businesses by fighting against this costly proposal.
We've joined a coalition with other Pennsylvania businesses that play an important part in bringing fuel to consumers across the state - Giant Eagle, Gulf Oil, Monroe Energy, Philadelphia Energy Solutions and Sheetz. Together, we are petitioning our Representatives and Senators to support the rejection of this proposal.
Take action now!
Hearings will begin on this important issue November 6.
You can join us today by signing this online petition to reject Buckeye's proposed reversal.
Watch this video to learn more.