Gas Prices Increase in California Due to Possible Pipe Corrosion in Refinery

Refinery FireIf you live in California, then you have watched gas prices go over $4 the past couple of weeks. For the most part prices had remained stable throughout the summer, but Californian drivers are currently looking at an average of $4.11 a gallon. Why is that?

Chevron, the USA’s second largest gas and oil company,  shut down one of their unit due to a possible corroded pipe. There was a fire that occurred at their Richmond–about 10 miles northeast of San Francisco–refinery. As a result, the blaze reduced California’s daily fuel supply.

A company spokesman told the Associated Press (AP), “We are cooperating with all regulatory agencies and are committed to better understanding the root cause of this incident.” This blaze comes just as the EPA handed out fines in a 70 plus page complaint to many gas companies in Buffalo, NY for failure to inspect their underground tanks. The complaint states:

Failure to Inspect Cathodic Protection System of the UST systems within 6 months of Installation and Every 3 years Thereafter and To Maintain Records of Results of Testing from Last 2 Triennial Inspections

According to Chevron, they had inspected the pipes back in November 2011, and they found corroded pipe; however, the pipe was replaced. The Richmond refinery is one of the oldest in the west coast, and inspectors assume that it might be the reason for the fire.