Nevermind that gas prices continue to hover near record highs and consumers need fuel to keep their lives and the economy going. Several California cities are banning the construction of new gas stations to battle climate change.
In the state that has the highest pump prices in the U.S., the laws of supply and demand are now replaced by woke city governments.
The small city of Petaluma was the first to make the move, blocking the approval process for a new station along with subsequent others. Then came four other cities in the Bay Area, and the movement is now targeting Los Angeles.
That there is no evidence of gas stations themselves having any significant effect on global thermometers is irrelevant. That applies to removing options for fillups forces drivers to travel further, but that’s not accounted for either.
The Safe Cities campaign, which spearheads these measures to halt gas station construction, is supported by the environmentalist Stand.Earth organization. Their next target is a much bigger fish than what they’ve reeled in so far — Los Angeles.
A proposal by LA city councilmember Paul Koretz to stop the municipality from issuing permits for construction may get a committee hearing as soon as next month. In his words, “we are ending oil drilling in Los Angeles, we are moving to all-electric new construction.”
It would only allow existing stations to add electric vehicle chargers. Already, the sprawling city approves no more than three new stations annually.
This comes in a state whose governor has already set a deadline for sales of new vehicles powered by fossil fuels. Democrat Gavin Newsom issued an executive order last September that by 2035, the state will only allow zero-emission new vehicles to be sold there.
There are other efforts in North America, namely in New York and British Columbia, to enact moratoriums on new gas stations.
There is short-sighted, and there’s a moratorium on gas stations in an era of record high prices and limited supply. All the feel-good measures in the world do not replace a sound and rational energy policy that acknowledges real world economics while preparing for the future. This isn’t it.