Gas prices are the highest they have been in years across the U.S., according to data collected over the busy Labor Day holiday weekend. According to AAA, 2021 has marked the ‘highest’ gas prices of every holiday since 2014 when the economy was still recovering from the Great Recession.
Jeanette McGee, a rep with AAA says it has been a big year for gas sales, as people hit the road — and supply chains struggle to keep up. Demand increased exponentially during the early-summer months, and since then, there has been a lot of mixed messaging on what that means for the long-term.
Add in some wild tropical weather in the Gulf of Mexico, which prompted shutdown of several U.S. refineries as Hurricane Ida battered the Gulf Coast — and it’s been a recipe for disaster.
Will prices continue to go up? Will they hold steady? Will they decline heading into the colder months?
“The loss of that gasoline, some millions of gallons of gasoline on a daily basis, makes an impact nationwide. In fact, we’re talking about over 10% of all gasoline produced being shut down because of this,” McGee explained.
How much have gas prices surged over the last several months? Well, in just the last 30 days — gas prices have risen approximately 35 cents per gallon. Some states were even closing in on $4 per gallon, while the national average hovered between $3.10 and $3.25 per gallon.
Now there’s concern that the price of gas could actually slow economic recovery across the globe. While many say that’s a short-term problem — others say it’s the latest reality check that our outsized reliance on fossil fuels needs to be curbed.
Here’s some upside: Gas prices should level off, and even begin to decline in parts of the U.S. over the next 2-3 months. It may not be to pre-pandemic levels, but it will likely be enough to make a difference when people fill up their vehicles this fall and winter.