WASHINGTON –As the five largest publicly traded oil companies boast to Wall Street about their record $264.3 billion haul in 2022, U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) joined 15 of their Senate colleagues in reintroducing the Big Oil Windfall Profits Tax Act to crack down on profiteering by Big Oil and return the industry’s excessive gains to working people.
“The oil and gas industry raked in
record-breaking profits this year because they used Russia’s war on Ukraine as
an excuse to engage in price gouging and crush families trying to fill up their
gas tanks. This legislation is a much-needed course correction that would hold
Big Oil accountable for its inexcusable greed and get money back in the pockets
of Americans who have been squeezed at the pump,” said Murphy.
“Oil giants should be compelled to return some of their record profits to consumers struggling with high prices. While the industry’s greed leads to consumer pain at the pump, our windfall profits penalty puts an end to the price gouging and corporate profiteering – putting hard-earned dollars back in family pockets through common sense rebates,” said Blumenthal.
The five largest publicly traded oil companies – Exxon Mobil, Chevron, BP, Shell, and TotalEnergies – hauled in pre-tax profits totaling $264.3 billion in fiscal year 2022. Exxon alone reported $77.8 billion in profits in 2022, smashing the earnings record of any American or European oil company. Exxon also announced plans to keep oil production flat for the year ahead. Rival oil giant Chevron – flush with $49.7 billion in profits – greenlit $75 billion in stock buybacks in 2023 to benefit its wealthy executives and shareholders on Wall Street.
Last year, gas prices briefly surpassed $5 a gallon, squeezing the budgets of families in Connecticut and across the country. While the price of gas has fallen significantly since then, it remains well above pre-pandemic levels.
The Big Oil Windfall Profits Tax Act would:
The Senate legislation is cosponsored by U.S. Senators Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Jack Reed (D-R.I.).
Text of the bill can be found here.