Joe Biden has turned up the heat on oil and gas companies in recent weeks as gas prices have shot up, with the national average climbing above $5 (£4.13) per gallon at one point last week. President Biden and his team have acknowledged in recent weeks that there is not much he can do to address the soaring prices, and the actions he has taken so far, such as a record-breaking release of oil from the country’s strategic reserves, have not worked. On Saturday, the POTUS tweeted: “My message to the companies running gas stations and setting prices at the pump is simple: this is a time of war and global peril.
“Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product. And do it now.”
However, his comment did not go down well with the experts who believed that it was “pathetic” of the US president to lash out at the gas hoarders.
Douglas Carswell, President & CEO, Mississippi Center for Public Policy tweeted: “Bizarre, tragic, pathetic. A US President lashing out at gas hoarders”
President Biden has made Russia’s war in Ukraine his top scapegoat for climbing gas prices but has also called out oil and gas companies, saying they aren’t doing enough to bring down costs and accusing them of profiting off the war.
He repeated some of those arguments on Tuesday, saying the country needs “more refining capacity”.
In response to the President’s criticisms, the oil industry has largely said that it is the Biden administration’s fault that prices are so high because of what they perceive as limits on domestic oil and gas production.
Chevron CEO Mike Worth said in his letter on Tuesday that Biden should stop criticising the oil and gas industry and called for a “change in approach” from the White House.
Mr Worth wrote in an open letter to the President: “Your Administration has largely sought to criticise, and at times vilify, our industry.
“These actions are not beneficial to meeting the challenges we face and are not what the American people deserve.”
There have also been other broadsides from the White House toward the oil and gas industry.
Earlier this month, a White House official strongly criticised Big Oil for banking huge profits in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which the administration has blamed for soaring gas prices, telling CNN it was “outrageous that oil and gas companies are able to take advantage and make four times the profits that they made when there wasn’t a war”.