Fuel company issues diesel shortage warning, says conditions ‘rapidly devolving’
By Timothy Nerozzi
A major fuel supply and logistics company is raising a red flag on upcoming diesel foul shortages.
Mansfield Energy issued the alert Friday stating there was a developing diesel fuel shortage in the southeastern region of the United States. The company speculated that the shortage could be generated from “poor pipeline shipping economies” and a historically low supply of diesel reserves.
“Poor pipeline shipping economics and historically low diesel inventories are combining to cause shortages in various markets throughout the Southeast,” the company said. “These have been occurring sporadically, with areas like Tennessee seeing particularly acute challenges.”
States expected to experience serious affects of the shortage include Maryland, Virginia, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina.
The Biden administration says it is keeping a close watch on diesel inventories and working to boost supplies following news that reserves have been depleted and could run out in less than a month if not replenished, sparking fears of shortages and rising prices.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported this week that, as of Oct. 14, the U.S. had only 25 days of reserve diesel supply, a low not seen since 2008. National Economic Council Director Brian Deese acknowledged to Bloomberg that the level is “unacceptably low,” and “all options are on the table” to address the situation.
“Because conditions are rapidly devolving and market economics are changing significantly each day, Mansfield is moving to Alert Level 4 to address market volatility,” Mansfield’s press statement said.
The company continued, “Mansfield is also moving the Southeast to Code Red, requesting 72 hour notice for deliveries when possible to ensure fuel and freight can be secured at economical levels.”
The Northeast Home Heating Oil Reserve (NEHHOR) holds roughly 1 million barrels of home heating oil, and House Democrats from New England are asking President Biden to release some of those reserves to help reduce home heating prices in the region leading into the winter months.
But experts say the developing home heating oil shortage is not going away anytime soon.