On March 7, Saudi Arabia unsheathed a new oil market weapon: lower oil prices. With steep cuts in Saudi Aramco’s official selling prices (OSPs) for crude oil sales and with Vienna Alliance production restraint now eliminated after the collapse of Saudi and Russian talks on March 6, Saudi Arabia has made its intentions clear to sell as much oil as its customers want to buy, up to its capacity of 12 million barrels per day (MMb/d).
In response to the outbreak of COVID-19 and the need for expedient transportation of supplies and services, the federal government has published several guidance documents and enforcement discretion notices. The guidance and discretion documents are summarized below with hyperlinks to the official publications.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in conjunction with other federal agencies, published guidance on “essential workers” for state and local authorities that have or are considering ‘shelter-in-place’ ordinances or similar restrictions on movement.
The Missouri Secretary of State issued a waiver of hours of service regulations as well as other actions following the Governor’s declaration of a state of emergency. The declaration is in response to relief efforts for public health concerns posed by COVID-19.
Governor Jay Inslee of the state of Washington issued an amended emergency declaration that includes a waiver of hours of service requirements. The declaration waives hours of service for motor carriers “collecting or delivering essential food and emergency supplies in Washington State.”
The Ohio Public Utilities Commission extended the previously published, limited hours of service waiver. Prior, the waiver was limited to intrastate motor carriers transporting relief supplies. The Ohio Commission extended the waiver to specifically include the transportation of fuels, including propane, by intrastate motor carriers.