Washington, D.C. – The national average of gasoline prices broke records everyday last week. Today, five days after the deadly explosion at America’s third-largest oil refinery, the national average for regular unleaded fuel rose 4/5 of a penny to a new record level of $2.133 a gallon. The Texas refinery explosion brings a loss in refining capacity at a time when gasoline prices are 22 percent higher than this time last year and will continue to climb in the foreseeable future. Chairman Domenici’s statement: Unexpected events, tight supplies and soaring gas prices demand that we produce more of our own energy and conserve more of the energy we produce. The need for greater self-reliance has never been more compelling to the consumers suffering from record high gas prices at the pump. I am ready to craft a bipartisan energy bill that includes provisions for conservation, stream-lined production and funding for hydrogen research. We must also rely more on American resources. The need for Congress to pass final budget language for environmentally-friendly energy development in Alaska has never been more clear.