May 25, 2022…

SB 1322 (Allen) – a bill that would require oil refiners to disclose their profits on a monthly basis – has passed out of the California Senate by a vote of 22 to 4 and will now be heard in the California Assembly.

In a statement issued yesterday (24 May), Jamie Court, president of the advocacy group Consumer Watchdog, said: ‘Consumers deserve to know how much oil refiners are making off their pain at the pump. Recent quarterly profit reports suggest California oil refiners are pocketing $1 per gallon or more off the recent price spikes at the pump. That's unconscionable.’

Court maintained: ‘Requiring oil refiners to post their profits per gallon month will allow the public, regulators, and legislators to pinpoint periods of gouging and have the opportunity to respond.’

In a statement issued when the bill was first introduced in March, the author Senator Ben Allen – who chairs the California Legislature’s Environmental Caucus and the Senate Environmental Quality Committee – urged the refiners: ‘Let’s end the games of smoke and mirrors. Open your books and show the public your true costs of doing business.’

Senator Allen added: ‘SB 1322 requires every California oil refiner to report monthly (for each of its California refineries that manufactures gasoline) its Gross Refining Margin per barrel, the difference between the price of crude it buys and the cost of finished gasoline it sells, and its Net Refining Margin (the “crack spread” or Gross Refining Margin minus its operational and fixed costs). The reports would be posted on the California Energy Commission website.’

The refiners currently active in California include Chevron, Marathon, PBF Energy, Phillips 66 and Valero.