Story at a glance

  • Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm urged Americans to refrain from hoarding fuel amid fears of a gasoline shortage after the Colonial Pipeline shutdown.
  • A ransomware attack shut down the largest oil pipeline in the U.S., which runs from the Gulf Coast to New York, since Friday.
  • Granholm also addressed fears that the expectation of any oil shortage could lead to price gouging, which she says will be forbidden and investigated if it is suspected.

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm urged Americans to refrain from hoarding fuel amid fears of a gasoline shortage after the Colonial Pipeline shutdown. 

"It's not that we have a gasoline shortage, it's that we have this supply crunch, and that things will be back to normal soon," Granholm told reporters at the White House, according to Reuters. "We are asking people not to hoard.”

A ransomware attack has shut down the largest oil pipeline in the country, which runs from the Gulf Coast to New York, since Friday, Reuters reported. Granholm told reporters the administration has communicated with governors in affected states. 


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Granholm also addressed fears that the expectation of any oil shortage could lead to price gouging, which she says will be forbidden and investigated if suspected. 

"We expect that gas station owners are and should act responsibly," she said. "We will have no tolerance for price gouging. Federal and state officials will be investigating those actions if they see price gouging."

The energy secretary said there is enough gasoline to fit consumer needs, but the government is looking to ease transportation measures to mitigate logistical issues. Granholm added the administration expects the pipeline to be up and operating in a few days, according to Reuters. 

On Sunday, the Department of Transportation issued a temporary hours-of-service exemption for transporting gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, Reuters reported.


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Published on May 12, 2021