With 282 flights scheduled for today & 1,600 + more passengers flying out before 8 a.m. than we typically see, it’s a busy day at AUS.
While operations have returned to normal, we continue to ask passengers to arrive a minimum of 2 hours in advance now through early April. pic.twitter.com/5olg6JTaR0
— Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) (@AUStinAirport) March 28, 2022
The website Zero Hedge reported that the airport is asking airlines to bring in extra fuel or send in tankers to prevent even more critical shortages.
“We’re aware of fuel quantity issues at Austin–Bergstrom International Airport and we are working to mitigate potential operational issues by tankering fuel on some inbound flights,” said Dan Landson, a spokesman for Southwest Airlines Inc., the airport’s largest carrier by passenger load, according to Bloomberg.com.
If the iconic photos from the 1970s were cars parked bumper to bumper waiting for gas during the oil embargo, the scene for the 2020s may be jets stacked up on runways waiting for jet fuel, as President Joe Biden imposes his own oil embargo on the United States.
So far, there have been no flight delays because of the jet fuel shortage in Austin. But that may not be the case as the summer driving season heats up and demand for oil products rises along with the temperature.
CNN reported last summer that there was a shortage of jet fuel, just due to supply and demand constrictions. In addition, it said, there was a shortage of qualified tanker drivers to keep the airport supplied with jet fuel.
Given the fracas that ensued about mask mandates for truckers, Biden shutting down the domestic oil and gas drilling industry, and the war between Russia and Ukraine that’s having an effect on global oil and gas supplies, Americans could see this trifecta come into play to make this summer even more difficult than last summer for the airlines jet fuel shortage.
Last year, CNN said, some of the difficulty was caused by lack of capacity for pipelines to carry jet fuel to airports, since lower travel demand during the pandemic meant less room in the pipeline for jet fuel. When demand started to resurge, though, the pipelines couldn’t keep up.
“The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the pipelines, and the airlines need to work together to allow space on the pipelines to ship the needed jet fuel to the airports,” said a statement from Delta Air Lines, according to CNN.