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Overnight Energy: Colonial Pipeline restarting operations after cyberattack | Gas shortages spread to more states | EPA relaunches website tracking climate change indicators

Overnight Energy: Colonial Pipeline restarting operations after cyberattack | Gas shortages spread to more states | EPA relaunches website tracking climate change indicators
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Today, the Colonial Pipeline is finally restarting operations, the EPA is relaunching a long-dormant climate change indicators website and gas shortages hit more states.

 

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OUR LONG NATIONAL NIGHTMARE IS OVER: Colonial Pipeline restarting operations after cyberattack

Colonial Pipeline announced Wednesday that it has begun a restart of its operations after a cyberattack forced the company to shut down late last week, leading to gas shortages on the East Coast.

It began the restart at about 5 p.m. on Wednesday, but it will take "several days" for product delivery to return to normal, the company said in a statement.

"Colonial will move as much gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel as is safely possible and will continue to do so until markets return to normal," the company said.

Colonial did not provide specifics on exactly how much of its product would be able to move again.

What’s next?: It noted that some of the markets it serves may experience intermittent interruptions during its start up and called the news a "first step" in the restart process, saying it would keep providing updates on the issue.

Read more about the pipeline here.

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DON’T PANIC: Gas shortages spread to more states

More states in the Southeast are facing major gasoline shortages and long lines at the pump due to the Colonial Pipeline shutdown.

On Wednesday afternoon, 65 percent of gas stations in North Carolina, 44 percent of stations in Virginia and 43 percent of stations in both Georgia and South Carolina were out of fuel, according to the gas price website GasBuddy.

Other states are reporting fewer shortfalls, with 16 percent of stations in Tennessee, 11 percent of stations in Florida and Maryland and 7 percent of stations in Alabama saying they were dry.

Analysts say the shortages are largely caused by panic buying as people fear they may not be able to fill up their vehicles in the coming days.

Industry figures say to avoid hoarding: Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis at the Oil Price Information Service, said the overall chaos is reminiscent of when Americans were frantically buying toilet paper at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, creating widespread shortages as lockdowns were imposed.

“To me, this is like the toilet paper problem,” he said. “People observe the behavior and they feel it’s incumbent upon them to load up their tanks.”

Read more about the surge in demand here.

 

CH-CH-CH-CHANGES: EPA relaunches website tracking climate change indicators

Major indicators of climate change in the past three years include the loss of Alaskan permafrost, more severe summer heat waves in U.S. cities and the recession of winter ice in the Great Lakes, according to data released Wednesday by the Environmental Protection Agency.

The EPA on Wednesday announced the relaunch of its website tracking climate change indicators in the U.S. for the first time since the beginning of the Trump administration. The assessment, delayed under the Trump presidency, includes information on 54 phenomena associated with climate change, including temperature increases, flooding, droughts, rising sea levels and ocean acidity.

The data indicate that U.S. heat waves have increased from an average of two per year in the 1960s to six per year in the 2010s, while sea levels have risen relative to land as high as 8 inches on parts of the U.S. coastline since 1960. Another indicator, the average length of growing seasons, has increased an average of over two weeks in the 48 contiguous states since the early 1900s.

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Regan touts return of indicators website: “EPA’s Climate Indicators website is a crucial scientific resource that underscores the urgency for action on the climate crisis,” EPA Administrator Michael ReganMichael ReganOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Manchin-led committee puts forth sprawling energy infrastructure proposal | House to take big step on eliminating Trump-era rules | Controversial St. Croix oil refinery to shutter 'indefinitely' A healthier planet and economy is worth fighting for Controversial St. Croix oil refinery to shutter 'indefinitely' MORE said in a statement. “With this long overdue update, we now have additional data and a new set of indicators that show climate change has become even more evident, stronger, and extreme – as has the imperative that we take meaningful action.”

Read more about the relaunch here.

 

GAS ON THE FIRE: US average gas price rises just above $3 per gallon

Gasoline prices rose to above $3 per gallon on average Wednesday as parts of the Southeast saw significant shortages on Wednesday. 

According to the American Automotive Association (AAA), the average gasoline price around the country was $3.008. 

The last time the country averaged $3 per gallon was 2014, though it has come close since then, reaching $2.97 at one point in 2018. 

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Prices are up by a little more than a cent from Tuesday, when they averaged $2.985 per gallon. Prices are up nearly 15 cents from a month ago. 

Read more about the surge here.

 

ON TAP TOMORROW:

  • The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing to consider the nomination of Tommy P. Beaudreau, of Alaska, to be Deputy Secretary of the Interior
  • The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing to examine offshore energy development
  • The House Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing on environmental justice in Native American communities

 

WHAT WE’RE READING:

EnergyEU confirms carbon market permit surplus grew in 2020, Reuters reports

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Facing rising temperatures, Miami appoints chief heat officer, The Washington Post reports

Germany maps path to reaching ‘net zero’ emissions by 2045, The Associated Press reports

Revival planned for conservation network dismantled by Trump, E&E News reports

 

ICYMI: Stories from Tuesday...

EPA relaunches website tracking climate change indicators

Colonial Pipeline restarting operations after cyberattack

Biden predicts 'good news' on Colonial Pipeline in 24 hours

Interior secretary approves new Cherokee constitution providing citizenship rights for freedmen

EPA rescinds Trump rule allowing public to weigh in on agency guidance

Gas shortages spread to more states

Biden officials warn against hoarding gasoline amid shortages

EPA water nominee commits to 'enduring solutions' in confirmation hearing

US average gas price rises just above $3 per gallon

Feds consider shipping waiver for fuel after Colonial Pipeline cyberattack

 

FROM THE HILL’S OPINION PAGES: Philanthropists and billionaires must walk the talk on climate change by Alan S. Davis of Patriotic Millionaires

 

OFF-BEAT AND OFFBEAT:  Bear with me.