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Summer Gas Prices Could Climb Past $3 a Gallon

Posted March 2, 2007

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— Driver Tom Smith has seen gas prices climb from $2.13 a gallon last week to $2.35 Thursday and $2.45 Friday.

Industry experts say he and other area drivers can expect the price to soar even higher this summer.

“Unfortunately for drivers, I’m just going to say it, we’ll probably see $3 a gallon or more during the summer," economist Mike Walden said. "It’s just the way things are.”

Colder weather and increased worldwide demand are depleting supplies and driving up costs, experts say. If world tensions don’t boil over, if the weather stays relatively calm and if demand levels off, prices could stabilize.

But experts warn not to be too optimistic.

Prices are also expected to increase in a few months when gas stations begin selling pollution-reducing fuel to meet EPA regulations.

“And there is a cost associated with that,” said Bill Weatherspoon with the North Carolina  Petroleum Council. “As we get into that warmer driving season and get into the month of May, we’re going to see environmentally cleaner gasoline available, and it costs a bit more.”

Driving less and shopping around are options, but drivers probably won’t see prices fall, experts say.

As for Smith, he knows he’s not alone in his quest for cheaper gas.

“That’s putting a crunch on everybody right now,” he said.

The highest gas price ever seen in the Triangle was $3.18, which came shortly after Hurricane Katrina.

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  • giepa Mar 4, 2007

    If I made the money that exon and shell I would not have to worry about $3 I get my ssn check and I will live some how

  • shep8851 Mar 4, 2007

    "prove your claim"--do the math. Oil is selling well below the $70.00 per barrel witnessed just a couple of months ago; demand is down; with the exception of some isolated areas, we didn't have a winter to speak of--therefore not as much oil was needed for heating fuel. The reformulation of gas to meet EPA standards has not yet come about. By their own admission, the oil companies make most of their money from the trading in oil futures--so again, why is the American public being gouged? What is the explanation of the oil industry for nearly $3.00 per gallon of gasoline.?

  • Ripcord Mar 4, 2007

    shep8851 said... "why would the companies feel the need to increasingly gouge the consuming public on the price per gallon of gasoline?"

    Prove that oil companies are 'gouging' the public. Back up your claim.

  • shep8851 Mar 4, 2007

    If, as has been posited by several commentators, the majority of the obscene profits of the oil companies has come from oil futures trading, why would the companies feel the need to increasingly gouge the consuming public on the price per gallon of gasoline? Greed? Near total absence of government action or concern or effort to regulate the industry? We are reminded that the term "profit" is just that-money left over after all the bills are paid--including research and development, exploration, seasonal fuel content adjustments required by the EPA ( now there is yet another government winner!). Could it be that the oil companies have calculated correctly that the consuming public can't do anything about it, and our government won't. So why should they worry?

  • cjandminnierule Mar 4, 2007

    "INTERCEPT"........... they do!

  • deerslayer Mar 3, 2007

    so what else is new. Just grease yourselves because here it comes...

  • trunkmonkee1971 Mar 3, 2007

    There is nothing wrong with making a buck or million:). Seriously, there is alot of stuff going on in the world right now. The Iraq issue aside, China and other countries are really moving forward with development and I think that is affecting the cost of oil as well. The price of gas will fluctuate and we will need to adjust to it. The credit card companies will not mind at all. I personally do not use mine for gas purchases or much else for that matter because debt is not something I am fond of. Is raising gas prices higher and higher ethical? Heck no! I saw a news piece last year that indicated Americans could tolerate gasoline prices of upto 4 bucks a gallon before becoming jaded about the price of gas. Americans are going to do what they want to do regardless.

  • CONCERNED44 Mar 3, 2007

    Can someone tell me why, in the last two years, that all of sudden, there is a greater demand for fuel, and the price of gas had to double!!!! People that have to drive to work everyday, are going to keep driving to work everyday, so, how is raising the price, going to change the consumption???? It's more like, the(OIL MAN) President, is going to loose his seat, and he wants to cash in on every opportunity!!! It's a funny thing, that, in the 70's, when we were suppose to be having a shortage of gas, the price didn't double! Someone is going to tell me, that, now, the price of gas has to be this high to save it?? I don't think the use of fuel had gone that, far, in just a matter of a year! Does anyone know the real truth?? Please inform me, if you do. I don't want to hear from any, EPA, specialist, either! They have as much to do with, the amount of gas price, for siding with, the Greedy!

  • Ripcord Mar 3, 2007

    "chronic"... When Jimmy Carter was president gas prices went through the roof. Back then we called it a "crisis". Fuel was rationed, where you could only get gas on 'odd' or 'even' days, depending on the numbers on your license plate.

    By your 'logic' I guess Carter was an oil man raping the public for profits... right, 'chronic'?

    Please educate yourself.

  • Ladidada Mar 3, 2007

    People think that its a coincidence that there is an oilman in the oval office and the of over 200% in the price of a barrel of oil, Cheney worked for and owns stock in Haliburton, heck Condiliar Rice even has a tanker named after her.