Can't Find Gas? What Joe Biden is Doing about the Pipeline Crisis.
"I think you're going to hear some good news in the next 24 hours,” Biden said Wednesday afternoon, of the pipeline issue. “I think we’ll be getting back on under control.”
Last Friday, the Colonial Pipeline, one of the most important in the country, suffered a ransomware cyberattack, which caused the pipeline itself to shut down. This has caused shortages, higher prices, and even closed gas stations in some parts of the Southeastern United States. The Russian ransomware group known as Darkside has claimed responsibility for the attack, and the FBI agrees that they are responsible.
What is the Biden Administration doing to deal with the crisis?
"I think you're going to hear some good news in the next 24 hours,” Biden said Wednesday afternoon, of the pipeline issue. “I think we’ll be getting back on under control.” He added that he has been in close contact with the owners of the Colonial Pipeline, and that “I think we have to make a greater investment in education as it relates to being able to train and graduate more people proficient in cybersecurity.”
The president had earlier in the day announced a new lifting of restrictions on the transportation of fuel.
Biden had addressed the issue in a briefing earlier this week, which was ostensibly about discussing economic policy.
“I’d like to start by saying a few words about the ransomware cyberattack currently impacting Colonial Pipeline. This is something that my administration — our administration have been tracking extremely carefully. And I have been perfectly — personally briefed every day,” the president said, per a White House transcript.
“The Department of Energy is working directly with Colonial to get the pipelines back online and operating at full capacity as quickly and safely as possible. The FBI also is engaged to assess the — and address this attack. The agencies across the government have attacked [quickly] — quickly to mitigate any impact on our fuel supply.”
Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Tuesday alleged on his show that the Biden Administration “approves of” the pipeline shutdown, because of the administration’s policies that support a transition to clean energy. However, it’s very clear that the pipeline attack is a major political headache for the administration, which hopes to resolve the crisis as soon as possible.
The Biden Administration has come out in support of transitioning long-term into greener energy, but it has not advocated for immediately shutting down gas stations or fuel pipelines.
The pipeline disaster has helped lead the average price of gasoline over $3 for the first time in seven years. However, GasBuddy predicted that gas prices are unlikely to hit record levels this summer, and are probably mostly a result of rising demand for gasoline as the coronavirus pandemic recedes. One reason why gas prices are so much higher than they were this time last year is because gas prices were at historical lows in the early months of the coronavirus pandemic.
Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.