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Gas over $3 per gallon, oil companies post huge profits

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WILMINGTON -- The average American is now paying more than $3 a gallon at the pump. At the same time, big oil companies are posting huge profits this quarter. Shell Oil president John Hofmeister has set out on a 50-city tour across the US to explain why oil companies are doing so well, while consumers are feeling the pinch. Hofmeister said, "Our numbers are big because our volumes are so big. So the point is that to invest in new oilfields, we need our profits to pay for the costs of additional production, whether it's in this country or whether it's somewhere else in the world." Hofmeister also said oil companies need to look for future alternative energy sources. Gas prices are running pretty steady...and it doesn't look like we're going to get a break from the high prices any time soon. In Wilmington the price of unleaded averages $3.11 a gallon. That's three cents higher than the state average. But it could be a lot worse. We're still 30 cents a gallon less than in California -- the price of unleaded there averages $3.41 a gallon.

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dont buy gas!!!!

WHAT THEY NEED IS A NO BUY GAS DAY WHERE EVERYONE DOESNOT BUY ANY GAS FOR A DAY OR SO AN I BET PRICES WOULD GO DOWN THEN

Bush's OIL WAR

I am truley saddened that we went to war and all with Iraq and stole all of thier oil. I feel really really guilty about it every time that we go to the pump. (Until I remember that I have the freedom to go to the pump.)

Alternative energy sources and the wall of reality

The simple fact is that few alternative energy sources show any signs of success in the near and mid-term. The only proven technologies currently available are hybrid vehicles, which combine two existing technologies to increase fuel efficiency, and LPG/propane fueled vehicles. Fuel cells? Great idea, as soon as we construct a pipeline from the Sun to get the hydrogen we need. After all, hydrogen doesn't occur in a natural free state on Earth. Honda's fuel-cell equipped Accord giveaway in Southern California showed how ludicrous this path is. The ONE hydrogen filling station was about the size of a railroad car and had to be powered by solar cells (in the desert, of course) to make it affordable. Honda admitted that in the Northwest or East Coast, it would require a hookup to commercial AC power, and would be cost prohibitive. Ethanol? Great for replacing MTBE, but unless we see a big breakthrough in the laws of physics, it's still energy negative. That is, we waste more BTUs distilling ethanol than it provides in our tank. Meanwhile, bear in mind that there's no infrastructure to distribute it (it gets trucked everywhere, increasing greenhouse emissions) and politicians are still playing games that are more political self-serving than concerned with energy. It's still ILLEGAL to import ethanol, thanks to agrarian state politicians. Meanwhile, meat and any other product that uses corn costs more, because food producers and ethanol producers are both bidding on that same ear of corn. Brazil produces their ethanol from sugar cane and could ship us millions of barrels a month....but no, that's not allowed. An internal combustion engine fueled by petroleum products is STILL the most efficient way to power vehicles, and nothing is coming along anytime soon to alter that. You can gripe all you want to, dream up conspiracies by oil companies, the government, the Bushes, or all of them, but the simple fact is that gasoline is one of the most efficient fuels ever developed, and we're going to have to hope for some new, hitherto unknown discovery to top it.

Umm, hydrogen?

You said, "After all, hydrogen doesn't occur in a natural free state on Earth." Did you happen to stop and think for a second about water? Seawater included. Basically it has two hydrogen atoms for each of the oxygen atoms in each molecule. And ayone that ever took a high school chemistry class before government schools went to poop in the last few years could tell you that hydrogen is pretty easy to isolate. And do so in a form that can be used to power an engine designed for it. Just it happens that the government is giving billions in tax breaks to oil companies instead of grants to research organizations that are willing to look into alternative energy. The government is the biggest profit taker from each gallon of gas that you as a consumer buy. Don't believe me then look at the pump at the gas station when you are filling up. Forty some cents of each dollar you spend is going to the government, and they didn't have to go and get the oil, refine the oil, and then transport it to the gas station where you bought that gallon!

Read what he wrote!

"Hydrogen doesn't occur in a natural FREE STATE..." Is it in a FREE STATE in water, Albert? No, it is not. it's relatively easy to extract it from water, but relatively EXPENSIVE. You have to use lots of energy for electrolysis. So it beomes readily apparent that Commonsense is spot on, and you really don't know very much about relative energy gains and losses.

gas

How much is gas in Iraq? I hear it's pretty cheap.

That's because the US is stealing it!

Yeah, you heard me! We are taking all of the oil from Iraq and that is why were are at war over there! Get a clue!

If we are "stealing" oil

If we are "stealing" oil from Iraq, why is the cost of crude and gas continuing to go up?? If you increase supply and overall cost, then prices would go down. And for the record, we are not "stealing crude from Iraq. We are paying for it. And an piece of information you will find interesting, Iraq's pay less for the EXACT SAME GAS than the US Military pays. They charge us more to get gas from the same pumps they use. Whose stealing from who??

i just don't understand why

i just don't understand why we can't either find alternate forms of fuel that are cheap or start relieving the pain by tapping into our resources... why are they just sitting there....people are getting stupid rich off of this and it's crap... we the people need to stand up and do something about this. start carpooling, ride bikes, less travel, anything to cut into the pockets of the oil company and drive prices back down...

Drive prices down? Deam on!

The future charting for oil points only upward. Global demand is exploding, but production isn't. And the global markets set the price of oil, not the oil companies! It's amusing how people bemoan oil companies making profits when their main business is SELLING OIL. (They make less than 10% of their revenue from refining and marketing.) Do you guys gripe about corn farmers making more money when corn rises in value? Companies like Chevron and Exxon-Mobil own or have drilling rights to billions of barrels of oil. Every day, that oil is worth more. Do the math and you'll see why they make such huge amounts of money. Using Exxon-Mobil as an example, it costs them about $4.00 to produce a barrel of oil when oil goes for $40/bbl. Their gross profit is $36.00 When oil raises to $80 a barrel, it still costs them less than $5 to produce that same barrel, but the gross profit is $75.00/bbl. When a barrel of oil reaches the well head, it's worth what the global market says it is worth. At market close today, that was $95.10 a barrel. That literally means that there is someone standing around willing to pay that much for that barrel of oil....and the next 999 barrels coming out. Are any of you so TRULY naive as to expect the oil companies to say, "No, no....that's too much! We have too much money!" Would any of you refuse to accept $400k for your house because you only paid $250k for it three years ago? Of course not! They, JUST LIKE YOU, sell an item for what the market will bear. It's not a matter of greed, it's a matter of business. Their job is to maximize return for their shareholders. Here's three things you CAN do to help yourself out: * Conserve. Ride that bike. Walk when you can. Combine trips. * Invest in oil companies. The major integrated companies pay good dividends, make great gains, and nothing takes the sting out of another nickel at the pump than knowing you're getting a portion of that money back in the form of a dividend check. * Write to your senators and congressman, telling them that we need to open up ANWR and the East Coast to exploratory drilling. There are still billions of barrels of oil right here in the United States, and the oil companies have proven that they can get it out safely, without destroying the environment.

Gas Lobby

Detroit and Gas lobbyists are the reason alternate fuel is not being used right now. There is an answer, but until Corporate America can not "buy" Washington, it will never happen, and Washington will always be able to be bought. Don't believe anything these idiot politicians tell you. When one truly starts casting votes for the good of the country and not because the vote was bought, we has better keep that person around forever...Change the Constitution to allow that person to remain in office forever.

High oil prices..record profits....

Well, imagine that?!?!?!? Gas at over 3 dollars a gallon. Diesel way higher than that. Travel holidays on the horizon. Record profits for oil companies??? Really???? Kidding right?? This is called, "We're shoving so far up your rear ends, it'll never see light again and you will thank us for it." The greed that is so prevelant in this world today is nothing less than absolutely amazing. some people have so much money, they couldn't spend it if they wanted to and we still have hungry chidren that need health care. We're not too far away from being a "Mexico" ourselves. At least the illegals are migrating to something they're already used to and are prepared.

High gas prices and HUGE oil PROFITS?

"Our numbers are big because our volumes are so big. So the point is that to invest in new oilfields, we need our profits to pay for the costs of additional production, whether it's in this country or whether it's somewhere else in the world." --John Hofmeister (WWAY's news article). First, if volumes are so big, then why are the prices so high? Second, if a company is really planning to invest in anything new, don't they plan that in their annual budget which will in turn reduce the so-called profit? Isn't the "profit" what goes into the pockets of your shareholders? Are they planning on taking that "profit" back out of those pockets? I doubt that, very seriously. That wouldn't be very good business. They would lose shareholders if that were the case. Also, won't those HUGE profits put them up there where they'll qualify for tax breaks/credits? While the people busting their butts trying to survive, paying those high gas prices, won't get any breaks at all, at the pump or in their taxes? Hofmeister also mentioned that oil companies need to look for future alternative energy sources. Ok, what part of the climate issues is this guy missing? "Look for future alternative energy sources"? No! There are already alternative energy sources out there. Don't "look for future", invest in now to save the future! Unless Hofmeister shows a solid plan of investment into alternative energy sources when he makes his 50-city US tour and then within the next year actually follows thru on that plan spending those profits on alternative energy sources, then his explaination for high gas prices and the huge profits will only be the equivalent of a Jim Carrey butt-talk scene. When the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change meet in Indonesia next month to start talks on carbon emission control and such, they need to add this guy to their agenda. Imagine the carbon emissions that would be elimiated if he could be talked out of his "tour".

GET BUSH OUT!!!!!!!and alot

GET BUSH OUT!!!!!!!and alot of our problems will be solved.This one being a very large problem.Bring Bill Clinton back....Democrats are for all people not just the rich.

Get Bush Out

When did you realize that Bush can work miracles by himself. I mean doesn't anything go thru the Democratic congress. Who really makes the decisions here. Bet you'd have a different view if you had a few shares of oil.

Oh please

There is no difference between the two parties. Everyone is out for themselves. Clinton, especially the female one, wouldn"t be able to do anything different. Our White House is controlled by big businesses, no matter who is in office

price of oil

People should be aware that the largest owner of current crude oil contracts and futures crude oil contracts, in the world, is Petrochina, A Chinese government owned business. They are the high bidder's!

gas tax

What I don't understand is why NC has one of the highest gas taxes?

Oil Prices...

Back in the 1970's when we had the "Arab Oil Embargo" and sent our prices rising, why didn't the federal government do anything at that time to develop "alternate" energy sources?, I believe we had the knowledge then, but no one took the opportunity to capitalize on this, and look where we are today because of not being aware back then.