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For Immediate Release: August 23, 2006
Media Contact: Rob Schlichting - 916-654-4989

Gasoline, diesel production up, retail prices
down despite Alaskan crude oil problems


Sacramento - BP's announcement on August 6, 2006 that it would curtail some shipments of crude oil from the Prudhoe Bay oil field in Alaska has had little affect on California's fuel production. Despite a projected crude oil shortfall of 200,000 barrels a day to the West Coast, production of California blends of gasoline and diesel increased last week and prices declined at the pump.

According to the Weekly Fuels Watch Report issued today by the California Energy Commission, production of California gasoline averaged 966,143 barrels a day for the week ending August 18, 2006. That figure represents a 2.3 percent increase over the previous week and is only 0.2 percent less than production at this time a year ago.

Inventories of California-specific gasoline dropped 3.3 percent for the week and are close to last year's levels, down by only 0.2 percent. California's retail average price for regular dropped nearly 5 cents to $3.16 for the week ending August 21, 2006.

Production of California's Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) increased 7.7 percent when compared to the previous week and is 19.6 percent higher than comparable output one year ago. Inventories of California ULSD are up 11.4 percent from the previous week's totals and are 55.7 percent higher than corresponding supplies last year. Diesel averaged $3.23 a gallon statewide on August 21, a 4-cent drop from the previous Monday.

Alaska North Slope crude oil dropped in price over the week, falling from $73.05 a barrel on August 11 to $69.84 a barrel on August 18, 2006.

Today's entire Weekly Fuels Watch Report can be seen on the Energy Commission's Web site at:

www.energy.ca.gov/database/fore

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Editor's note: The figures released today are preliminary and may change slightly over time. This summer the Energy Commission is also posting a weekly Petroleum Watch report, which provides useful background information on petroleum markets and California refineries. You can find the report on the Energy Commission's Web site at: www.energy.ca.gov/consumerfuels

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