It has been a year for records in America. One of the records we won’t be popping champagne corks over is the price of fuel.
GasBuddy, the national fuel tracking service, says that, “As a nation we’ve never paid more at the pump than we did this year. The yearly national average is running at $3.63/gallon so far for 2012, and it’s all but guaranteed that 2012 will go down as the year with the highest average ever.”
Gas prices have been up and down like a yo-yo, and with exactly one month left in the year, it is mathematically possible for 2012 to end without becoming the most expensive year ever for American consumers at the gas pump; but GasBuddy says “that would necessitate an unthinkable calamity.”
Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy tells us, “We did the math, and the numbers don’t lie. Last year’s average price of gasoline nationwide was $3.51 per gallon. The national average price of gasoline in the U.S. would have to drop to $2.35 per gallon or lower for every day for the remainder of 2012 in order for the 2012 yearly average price to fall below last year’s level.”
We can do what we love to do, blame it on California, where major supply problems this summer not only raised their prices, but also had a big impact on national numbers. Hurricane Sandy, on the East Coast, caused major damage and power outages at refineries in the North East.
Gregg Laskoski, another GasBuddy analyst, points to this nation’s infrastructure as needing attention. He says these recent events “… remind us exactly how vulnerable our nation’s fuel infrastructure is and why the U.S. should be looking to increase refining capacity where it is needed most.”
With the Fiscal Cliff approaching, we will have to wait and see if there is private and public money available to fix the infrastructure.