Politics

Oil Companies Slam Biden For Blaming Them For High Prices, ‘We Are Not Setting That Price’

America’s oil and gas companies have had enough of taking President Joe Biden’s blame game for high gas prices as several spokespeople for those companies went on Fox News to lambast the president for blaming them for the spike in prices.

On Wednesday, during an appearance on “Fox and Friends,” Kathleen Sgamma, president of the Western Energy Alliance, basically told Joe Biden he was going to have to choose one or the other, Putin or oil companies, to blame.

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Pick One

Sgamma did not hold back, telling the “Fox and Friends” hosts, 

“Which is it? You can’t blame Putin and us at the same time. The bottom line is we are not price makers, we are price takers. We suffer from low prices and then we have higher prices. That is based on the price of oil globally. But we are not setting that price. We would love to produce more in the United States and help to bring those prices down.”

Sgamma added, “Demand has risen, we’ve had the price shock of Russia invading Ukraine. There are various factors that go into the price of oil, but we are not setting that price.”

As soon as Russia invaded Ukraine, Joe Biden had a convenient boogeyman in Vladimir Putin to blame for high gas prices. But recently, he has taken to blaming oil companies of padding their profits.

The President recently tweeted,

Dan Naatz, executive vice president of the Independent Petroleum Association, pushed back on Biden’s claims, “The frustration starts with the administration. From the very beginning, the President and the Biden administration have had a relentless assault on American oil and natural gas producers.” 

He added:

“Increased regulations, talk of taxes, our members get frustrated when the administration, Jen Psaki just seem to say, now that we are facing an energy crisis, go out and produce like the snap of a finger. It is just not possible and as we face this relentless attack, we will have to do a lot of work. And you want to start a dialogue with the administration to address the challenges.”

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If Biden Is Right, Why Aren’t Oil Companies Pumping More Oil?

While Joe Biden seems to think that all oil companies have to do to increase output is flip a switch, he would be wrong.

There is a bit more to it. Among the first of many things they must do is spend more money on exploration, drilling, and production, as Axios points out. Supply chain issues and input costs (ie, inflation) have made that more expensive.

Components such as steel, labor, and diesel fuel have also seen dramatic rises in cost.

The cost of inputs has risen just like consumer goods have – producer cost inflation has gone up.

America became a net exporter of crude oil and other petroleum products in 2020 for the first time since 1949. 

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Doing The ‘Math’ of Renewable Energy

Add to that, many American energy companies have invested in “renewable energy” ideas. But as with most things labeled “green,” that has come at a price.

In 2018, BP invested $20 million in an Israeli company called StoreDot, which develops rapid-charging batteries. They put $5 million into an American Company called FreeWire, which makes rapid charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.

Shell spent $2 million on setting up a low carbon energy and electricity generation business in 2016. Other gas and oil companies around the world have jumped into the green and renewable energy markets. 

Every bit of capital that goes to renewable energy is capital that isn’t going to increasing oil production, obviously.

Joe Biden promised a whole slew of additional oil production restrictions during a Democratic debate. 

See for yourself:

Becky Noble

Becky Noble, a political blogger and writer for over 10 years, lives by the motto, “Being normal is not necessarily a virtue. It rather denotes a lack of courage.” Becky holds a degree in journalism from Regent University.

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