The U.S. energy policy is clear about its intention to phase out fossil fuels.
This has forced refiners to exercise caution in order to stay afloat.
It has also resulted in a loss of U.S. refining capacity.
One of the under-reported factors behind the ongoing diesel shortage is the loss of U.S. refining capacity since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Today I will discuss the factors that led to this loss.
According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), at the beginning of the pandemic U.S. refiners had 19.0 million barrels per day (BPD) of operable refining capacity (Source). This was the highest number ever reported by the EIA.
By December 2021, that number had fallen to 17.9 million BPD — a loss of 1.1 million BPD of capacity in less than two years.