The ugly side of the Transport and Climate Initiative program
The Eastern Connecticut Chamber of Commerce, JuiceBar and the Noble gas station in Hartford got it wrong when they recently held a press conference in support of the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI-P) program where they painted a rosy and unrealistic picture of what a so-called climate initiative would mean for our state and our region.
It didn’t even give half the story, let alone the whole story. Here’s what they didn’t say.
If implemented, the TCI would create gasoline and diesel fuel shortages in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, as under the agreement states would be required to reduce the amount of fuel that could be sold every year.
In Connecticut, that reduction would lead to a fuel shortage in TCI’s third year and the numbers would be staggering. Our state faces a shortage of 41 million gallons by 2026 and over 360 million gallons by 2032.
Not exactly all rainbows and unicorns as supporters would have you think.
Here’s the meat and potatoes of what’s at stake. TCI would cut fuel supply by 30% over 10 years while the federal government only posts a 6.32% drop in demand over the decade. same period.
These numbers don’t exactly work in favor of the automotive public.
TCI supporters are banking on the idea that more people will work from home, ride the bus or buy electric vehicles, but the federal government says the transition to electric vehicles will be slow. Just hoping for more people to work from home is not a solid plan. We could see long lines at the pumps like in the 1970s, or gasoline reserves like we just saw in the southeast of the country.
It is no exaggeration to think that hoarding could occur even earlier before the implementation of TCI, if it is implemented. Think about it. If you know you will have fewer gallons of fuel, wouldn’t you want to fill it up right away? This will lead to shortages and price spikes – think of the people hoarding toilet paper during the pandemic. The same will happen here.
Limiting the number of gallons of fuel that can be sold will only leave businesses and consumers running out of the fuel they need for a living while doing very little to tackle emissions. It will only hurt the hard workers of Connecticut, towns and villages looking to buy fuel for their fire trucks, police cars and school buses. The list is lengthened increasingly!
We have all the data and the math to back up our claims, and we’ve shared it with lawmakers in Connecticut. We obtained this information by comparing the “cap” data proposed by TCI to the fuel demand projections of the Energy Information Administration (EIA), which is part of the US Department of Energy. These are their numbers and not ours. We just took the time to do the math.
We invite anyone to view our analysis, read the TCI Model Rule, and view the EIA projections. The door is always open to discuss it before any real damage is done.
Opponents will say that we are just crying wolf or freaking people out unnecessarily.
We are here to tell you that we are not blowing smoke, but rather sounding the alarm bells. We desperately hope that lawmakers will do the math as well and realize what the cost of TCI would mean for Connecticut – its people, its taxpayers, and its future.
We are not opposed to sensible approaches to reducing transportation emissions, but we are opposed to the way TCI proposes to do it.
If our warnings are not heeded, we would hate to have to say, “We told you. “
Chris Herb is the president of the Connecticut Energy Marketers Association (CEMA), a trade organization that represents more than 1,000 fuel distributors, gas stations and convenience store owners in the state.
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