Energy Prices: How a truck driver shortage in Europe can hit your wallet in the US
What is happening? There are specific and complex reasons for the price hike.
- The cold spring depleted natural gas stocks.
- Rebuilding supplies has been tough, thanks to an unexpected jump in demand as the economy recovers from Covid-19.
- There is a growing appetite for LNG in China.
- Russia is also supplying the market with less natural gas than it was before the pandemic.
- Meanwhile, other sources of energy were less available, as cool summer weather cooled wind farms in the North Sea.
- Countries are abandoning coal as pressure mounts to tackle the climate crisis.
- Germany is also working to phase out nuclear power by 2022.
Countries like Spain and France are stepping in to subsidize energy bills.
No wonder US diplomats are raising their voices in disappointment with Russia’s plan to join Europe with a new pipeline that will make Russia a natural gas booster on the continent.
“The world’s biggest polluter is trying to make good on a pledge that its carbon emissions will peak before 2030. This requires its counties to use less fossil fuels per unit of economic output, for example by burning less coal for power generation. At the same time, demand has soared. on goods made in China with the global economy emerging from the epidemic, and the result: there is not enough energy to continue.
The shortage of drivers may lead to the closure of gas stations. In the United Kingdom, where Prime Minister Boris Johnson was proud to take his country out of the European Union with his Brexit plan, they are now offering emergency visas to foreign truck drivers to keep gas stations open.
Don’t make fun of them for that. In the US, Massachusetts has mobilized the National Guard to help get kids to school because there aren’t enough bus drivers either.
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the number of drivers who dropped out at the start of the pandemic. Between March and April 2020, the trucking industry lost more than 88,000 jobs, and road and passenger transit lost more than 185,000 in that month alone.
One of the reasons Costco has once again limited toilet paper purchases is a lack of drivers.
The auto industry is worse off than we thought. Meanwhile, automakers around the world are still frustrated by the lack of microchips. Add it to a number of other deficiencies.
Millions of cars are short. A shortage of parts will cause automakers to build 7.7 million fewer cars globally than they would otherwise make, according to AlixPartners.
This is a significant increase from the projected vehicle shortage of 3.9 million vehicles in May.
When will there be microchips? Isidore writes: “Microchip supply was widely expected to decline in the second quarter of this year, then begin to improve. But the surge in Covid-19 cases has caused a new round of shortages, with chip factories forced to shut down temporarily in some Countries that have been hit hard, like Malaysia.”
“Yes, the intensity of price hikes slowed over the summer, but variable delta and turbulence risk another bout of consumer price hikes in the US in the fall. And even if it doesn’t, consumers are unlikely to see lower prices this year thanks to a shortage of computer chips, rising wage pressures With businesses reopening and rents rising again.”