Latest on the US gas demand spikes

By Melissa Mahtani, Melissa Macaya, Mike Hayes and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 9:25 AM ET, Wed May 12, 2021
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11:22 a.m. ET, May 11, 2021

Georgia governor suspends state's gas tax to help with gas prices in wake of Colonial cyberattack

From CNN’s Gregory Lemos

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed an executive order Tuesday that suspends the gas tax in the state “to help with higher prices as a result of the Colonial cyber-attack.”

“Today I signed an executive order suspending the gas tax in Georgia to help with higher prices as a result of the Colonial cyber-attack. We are working closely with Colonial and expect for them to recover by the end of the week,” Kemp said in a tweet.

Kemp also announced the order allows for increased weight limits for trucks transporting fuel, “providing more supply for stations as they receive deliveries.”

The order prohibits price gouging as well, according to the statement from the governor.

Kemp said his office has been in close contact with Colonial Pipeline and other industry officials and blamed the media for causing people to “panic.”

“Unfortunately, extensive media coverage has caused people to panic which has resulted in higher gas prices,” the governor said.

 

11:05 a.m. ET, May 11, 2021

US gasoline demand jumps after pipeline hack

From CNN's Matt Egan

American drivers on the East Coast are filling up aggressively following a ransomware attack that shut down the Colonial Pipeline, a critical artery for gasoline.

US gasoline demand jumped 20% on Monday compared with the prior week, according to GasBuddy, an app that tracks fuel prices and demand.

In just five states served by Colonial Pipeline – Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia – demand was up by a collective 40.1%, GasBuddy said.

Meanwhile, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency Monday evening, a move that allowed him to temporarily suspend some fuel regulations in a bid to ensure adequate supply.

The Colonial Pipeline, which supplies nearly half the diesel and gasoline to the East Coast, said Monday it hopes to be substantially operational by the end of the week after a hack that authorities believe was carried out by a criminal group called DarkSide.

The national price at the pump hit $2.985 on Tuesday, the highest level in nearly six years, according to AAA.

However, investors are taking the supply shock in stride. RBOB gasoline futures are little changed from Friday.