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Fort McMurray fires cost Canada dearly

FormulanoneFaded from news headlines which caught world attention at the end of May, the Fort McMurray wildfires which shuttered over 1 million barrels of oil production a day for over a month.Though many suggested the effect of the fire would have an impact on North American crude supply, few it would seem could grasp the enormity of its effects on the Canadian economy...

Resistance to tax hike brings NJ highway projects to a halt

Image From . / Nicholas A. TonelliAccording to the American Society of Civil Engineers, there are clear winners and losers when it comes to expediting infrastructure repairs... ASCE says Georgia and Louisiana, for instance, are moving ahead with transportation projects due to intentionally raised state funds and contribution from the FASTLANE grants which are part of the federal FAST Act. 

But, New Jersey has been less fortunate.  Remember that proposed increase to the state's gasoline tax?  An increase to a fuel tax that has not changed in 23 years?  

As popular as it might have been to kick the can down the road, that decision has real consequences...

...

DOT: $55 Million to 'Clean' Bus Grants

Image From ..Flckr user Shou-Hul Wang The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today announced selections for an expanded Low or No-Emission (Low-No) Bus Competitive Grant Program that reflects growing interest in new technology buses. Twenty transit providers in 13 states will receive a share of $55 million for transit buses and related technology that replaces aging diesel fuel buses with battery-electric or fuel cell-powered vehicles and incorporates other innovations....

Best summer ever

Photo by Rongy BenjaminI was talking with my one of my boys after his successful lacrosse tournament. He quipped that this was the best summer ever. Clearly the euphoria and exhilaration of the weekend success was what he had in mind. But for motorists, there's a hint that this truly is the best summer as far as gas prices are concerned, in recent memory. Yesterday, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) in its weekly assessment of the US petroleum industry zeroed in on what's behind the summer savings; increased gasoline production and high inventories combine to reduce global refinery gasoline margins....

EIA data: Oil and gasoline inventories keep on rising

The Energy Information Administration released its weekly report today on the status of petroleum inventories in the United States.Here are some highlights:CRUDE INVENTORIES:Crude oil inventories increased by 1.7 million barrels (MMbbl) to a total of 521.1 MMbbl. At 521.1 MMbbl, inventories are 61.5 MMbbl above last year (13.4%) and are well above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year.GASOLINE INVENTORIES:Gasoline inventories increased by 0.5 MMbbl to 241.5 MMbbl. At 241.5 MMbbl, inventories are up 25.5 MMbbl, 11.8% higher than a year ago. Here's how individual regions and their gasoline inventory fared last week: East Coast (+0.5 MMbbl); Midwest (-2.1 MMbbl); Gulf Coast (+1.3 MMbbl); Rockies (-0.2 MMbbl); and West Coast (+0.8 MMbbl). It is important to note which regions saw increases/decreases as this information likely drives prices up (in the case of falling inventories), or down (in the case of rising inventories).DISTILLATE (diesel, heating oil) INVENTORIES:Distillate inventories decreased by 0.8 MMbbl to a total of 152.0 MMbbl. At 152.0 MMbbl, inventories are up 7.9 MMbbl, or 5.5% vs. a year ago....

Wholesalers Rethink Summer Inventory Strategy amidst Falling Prices

Image From ..flckr user Rennett StoweAs crude prices struggle to gain footing above the $45 per barrel level, the average retail price of gasoline has been in a tailspin that is showing no signs of stopping. The national average topped out at $2.39 per gallon on June 12th. Since then, U.S. prices have fallen to $2.16 per gallon, with South Carolina leading the U.S. with the lowest state average of $1.83 per gallon. As motorists have benefited from the cheapest summer gasoline prices since 2004, the low commodity prices have been problematic for different sectors of the energy industry. Downstream refining margins are poor at the moment. Upstream drilling has seen a slight uptick in activity, but the steady flow of news of various rounds of layoffs can’t make the casual observer too optimistic of the health of the upstream energy sector. High inventories remain the thorn in the side of the energy industry. The high inventories have helped prices beat decade-plus records, but have come at a cost to the energy industry. ...

Are autonomous car companies transparent about technology flaws?

Image From .When Joshua Brown, 40, of Canton, Ohio, was killed in Florida driving a Tesla Model S, it was unclear whether the crash was the fault of the driver, the Tesla, or the tractor trailer that was struck. Sadly, he became the first fatality of a self-driving vehicle. And the New York Times' Anjali Singhvi and Karl Russell have since reported that the accident may have happened, at least in part, because of a technology glitch.  "Tesla's crash avoidance system is designed to engage only when radar and computer vision systems agree that there's an obstacle." While there are multiple integrated technologies operating simultaneously for crash avoidance systems to work ffectively, some may work better than others... ...

Air Might Be Hot, Gas Prices Are Cool

As air temperatures the nation set records this weekend, gasoline prices have continued to cool off, falling 6 cents per gallon to $2.15, according to price-tracker GasBuddy.com.It was another win for motorists filling up as 48 states saw their averages decline versus last week with just Idaho (up 0.004c) and Alaska (up 0.002c) bucking the downward trend, that was led by Indiana (down 15.6 cents), Michigan (down 12.6 cents) and Ohio (down 12.4 cents). Oil prices meanwhile slipped to their summer low to close out last week, and begin this week at $43.56/bbl and falling.Expectations for near record gasoline demand have tapered, leading to more doubt about Americans absorbing the glut of crude oil fast enough, and pushing oil prices lower as the end of the summer driving season comes into sight. Oil inventories remain well above average, as do gasoline supplies, contributing to the falling prices. Oil refiners that had been profitable last year are seeing crack margins erode as supply stacks up....

The GasBuddy Back-to-School Guide

via iStockWith September rapidly approaching, now's the time to prep for the return to school—and all those responsibilities. Feeling a little overwhelmed between the carpooling, commuting, sports practices, club meetings, errands and everything else that seems to hit all at once? Don't worry, we're here to help you smoothly transition into the season....

Hitting the road? Remain diligent about skimmers!

Image From .Late last year we posted an update about law enforcement efforts in Florida and New York to tighten the laws and increase penalties for anyone caught using a skimmer.  These are the devices federal, state and local  law enforcement officials in just about every state are finding with growing frequency at gas stations, ATMs... and anywhere you can pay for something using a credit card or debit card.Specifics about many investigations both open and closed are hard to come by, partly to protect the identities of federal agents, both FBI and Secret Service, and perhaps also to suppress public awareness of the widespread extent of this problem.But we now know that there's a new skimmer development that consumers, banks and convenience store retailers need to recognize... ...

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