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Mexico fighting the fuel spirits: Planet money: NPR

People waiting to buy gasoline at a station in Morelia, Mexico on January 7, 2019. ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images hide caption change caption ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images People waiting to buy gasoline at a station in Morelia, Mexico on January 7, 2019. ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images A warning: This section contains sounds from a disturbing scene of a pipeline explosion. Mexico National Oil Companies, Petróleos Mexicanos – Pemex – is one of the largest oil companies in the world, and the gas is very expensive. Working for the minimum wage, it takes a day to earn enough to buy a gallon of gas. And so it is no surprise that people have long stolen some gas in Mexico. It is so common, there is also a name for it: Huachicol. For a long time, the problem was manageable. But then the cartels drew on the action. They began to steal massive amounts of gasoline from the pipes and sell it on the global market. Now the Mexican government is fighting back. The president takes radical – even dangerous – steps to cut them off. Mexico is in full blown fuel crisis. Music: "Ready for War", "Shallow Water" and "Coming Back Around." Find us: ] / Facebook / Instagram Subscribe to our show on Apple Podcasts Pocket Casts NPR One .

People waiting to buy gasoline at a station in Morelia, Mexico on January 7, 2019.

ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images

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change caption

ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images

People waiting to buy gasoline at a station in Morelia, Mexico on January 7, 2019.

ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP / Getty Images

A warning: This section contains sounds from a disturbing scene of a pipeline explosion.

Mexico National Oil Companies, Petróleos Mexicanos Pemex is one of the largest oil companies in the world, and the gas is very expensive. Working for the minimum wage, it takes a day to earn enough to buy a gallon of gas.

And so it is no surprise that people have long stolen some gas in Mexico. It is so common, there is also a name for it: Huachicol. For a long time, the problem was manageable. But then the cartels drew on the action. They began to steal massive amounts of gasoline from the pipes and sell it on the global market.

Now the Mexican government is fighting back. The president takes radical even dangerous steps to cut them off. Mexico is in full blown fuel crisis.

Music: “Ready for War”, “Shallow Water” and “Coming Back Around.”

Find us: ] / Facebook / Instagram

Subscribe to our show on Apple Podcasts Pocket Casts NPR One .

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