GASOLINE LIMBO

Gas prices across the United States are rising at shocking rates

Austin Graft

More stories from Austin Graft

SUMMERTIME HORROR
May 26, 2022
Spanning+almost+thirty+years%2C+this+chart+shows+the+rise+and+fall+of+the+price+of+gasoline.+One+year+ago%2C+the+average+price+of+a+gallon+of+gas+was+%242.85%2C+now+Powell%2C+Wyoming%2C+is+paying+over+120%25+of+that+cost.%0A

U.S. Energy Information Administration

Spanning almost thirty years, this chart shows the rise and fall of the price of gasoline. One year ago, the average price of a gallon of gas was $2.85, now Powell, Wyoming, is paying over 120% of that cost.

The year is 2008, and you’re driving a brand new Honda Accord. With a gas tank capacity of 18.5 gallons, you can drive for quite awhile before having to refill again. But before you know it, your needle is pointing at EMPTY, and you need to make a pit stop at the next gas station.

As you pull up to the pump, you quickly check the price per gallon. The shock of what you’re seeing hits you like an out of control 18-wheeler. Seventy-seven dollars later, you’re back on full and cruising on the highway with a slightly lighter wallet.

Seventy-seven dollars seems typical to pay for a full tank, right? But most tanks these days hold 20 or 25 gallons, not only 18.5. Then why was it so expensive to fill such a small tank?

According to treehugger.com, gas prices in the United States reached an all time high at a $4.11 per gallon median on July 7, 2008. Gas prices went back down around 2011 and 2013, but now they’re on the rise again, emptying wallets and draining bank accounts.

According to wyomingnews.com, the average price is $3.28 for a gallon of gas. And according to gasbuddy.com, the price for gas in Powell, WY is $3.47 per gallon at Maverick, nineteen cents higher than the state average.

“I think [the price of gas] is a very annoying problem,” junior Weston Thomas said. “If I put four dollars in my tank I get a gallon, when back in the day I could get almost two. I have a car that’s good on gas but I still have to spend fifty dollars a week if I want to keep it running.”

According to usatoday.com, gas prices are projected to fall below three dollars per gallon. But that is a national statistic, and might not have an effect on Wyoming.

“I don’t think [gas prices] will drop,” Thomas said. “It’s over twice as expensive to transport gas by rail compared to pipelines.”

According to forbes.com, crude oil shipped by pipeline is about $5 per barrel as opposed to $10 or $15 per barrel by rail. Living in Wyoming doesn’t appear to help lessen the cost either.

“I think [the reason why gas is so expensive] is mostly because of where we live,” sophomore Aiden Greenwald said. “It gets frustrating for us broke teenagers sometimes.”

A note from the author:

Greenwald does not believe the gas prices will drop anytime soon, a bleak outlook that seems to be held by many teens and young adults. But these recent generations have a voice, a voice that can free us from this desolate plight. We don’t have to just change trivial matters like the price of gas, we can fix the world that we, and the future generations we usher in, must endure.

Older generations might not listen. Older generations might not want to change. But they will. For our sake, they will. And if they don’t? Then let the curse of time bring them home, they will become one with the Earth they sought to prevent us from correcting, and they will decay in the dismal embrace of centuries past, until they themselves get filtered and pumped into the gas tank of some futuristic abomination once called a car.