WASHINGTON D.C. – In response to last month’s BP refinery in northern Indiana unexpectedly shutting down and raising gas prices by as much one dollar in the region, Rep. Jackie Walorski (IN-02) today introduced legislation to expand the EPA’s waiver authority to allow retailers to buy and sell any fuel blends on the market during a supply disruption, which would reduce price spikes and protect consumers.
“It’s unfair for hardworking families to constantly worry about unpredictable spikes each time they pull into the gas station,” Walorski said. “While we can’t prevent natural disasters or unforeseen disruptions like the emergency maintenance at Whiting, we can try and do everything in our power to mitigate the ripple effects to consumers by waiving fuel mandates to stabilize gas prices.”
H.R. 2823, the Gas Accessibility and Stabilization Act, would help stabilize gas prices during periods of supply disruptions in the market by expanding the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ability to waive fuel mandates. Currently, the EPA requires different blends of gasoline to be sold in different parts of the country, which can complicate the supply chain and drive up prices when fuel is in short supply–which is exactly what happened in Indiana this summer.
Last month, the BP refinery in Whiting, Indiana, the largest in the Midwest and seventh-largest in the country, shut down the largest of its three crude distillation units, causing gas prices to rise by as much as one dollar in a matter of days across the region.
Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District in Indiana, where she serves as a member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, House Armed Services Committee and House Committee on Agriculture.