Christian Science Monitor
April 7, 2012
Twenty-five cents a gallon — that’s about how much some international energy experts say the tough U.S. sanctions on Iran’s oil industry are costing Americans at the pump.
As U.S. consumers cope with gas prices that are approaching an average of $4 a gallon, some international trade experts say the cost of the sanctions the U.S. imposes — as in the case of the Iran measures — is something political leaders should discuss more openly. Instead, they say, most politicians act as if sanctions affect only the country targeted — something these experts say isn’t true.
“The approach is always that the costs are for them and the benefits are for us,” says Bill Reinsch, president of the National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC), a Washington lobbying organization that generally opposes economic sanctions. “The Iran case is interesting,” he adds, “because of the impact of sanctions on our energy sector.”
Energy experts say it’s difficult to pinpoint precisely how much sanctions on Iran are costing consumers as they filter down to the gas pump. But Lucian Pugliaresi, president of the Energy Policy Research Foundation, a Washington nonprofit organization that studies energy economics, says it’s possible to make an estimate.