Stabilize Energy Prices
- During the past decade, U.S. airlines continued to make important gains in fuel efficiency, carrying 15 percent more traffic using 10 percent less fuel. However, during the same time, airline fuel costs grew twice as fast as revenue, with the cost of commercial jet fuel increasing by 260 percent.
- Jet fuel represents 35 percent of U.S. carriers’ operating expenses – by far the industry’s largest and most volatile cost.
- In 2011, U.S. passenger and cargo airlines spent a record $50 billion on fuel, up $11.7 billion from 2010 or an additional $32 million per day.
- Excessive oil speculation only exacerbates the problem, leading directly to a higher cost of jet fuel, which increases airfares.
- Every 1 cent increase in a gallon of commercial jet fuel costs the industry $180 million, and every $1 increase in the price of a barrel of oil costs the airline industry $430 million.
- Stabilize the cost of jet fuel and curb excessive oil speculation. Doing so would keep airfare affordable, preserve air service, and encourage investment in alternative fuels, advanced aircraft technologies, and more environmentally-friendly jet fuel supplies.
- Support a balanced and comprehensive national energy policy to improve U.S. energy security and result in more predictable and stable energy supply and costs.
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