The prodigious amount of crude being developed in U.S. shale formations means more domestic product can be used at home, but criticism of Jones Act restrictions on shipping is resurfacing as that domestic oil is delivered to meet demand. The law—passed as part of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920—stipulates that only vessels crafted and crewed by U.S. workers may move commodities from one domestic port to another. Periodically, questions arise about its necessity in the modern world, especially when economics come into play. James Roussel tells Midstream Business there's no question the near century-old act raises prices.
"It's mostly protectionist legislation for American shipowners, shipyards and American seamen. It's a God-and- motherhood type act," he says, adding that it's unlikely to change.
"I really don't think there's much possibility the Jones Act will be repealed, at least not in my lifetime."
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