Friday, March 14, 2008 Weekly Update



March 11, 2008: The pain Americans feel at the pump is growing ever worse as gas prices across the country reach new sky-high records. USA Today reports: "According to AAA and the Oil Price Information Service, the average national price of a gallon of gas rose half a cent overnight to $3.2272 Tuesday. That is slightly higher than the previous record of $3.2265 a gallon, set last May." U.S. demand for gas traditionally rises as we get closer to the summer travel months and consistently high demand from overseas is keeping prices high. In January, 71 percent of Americans said that they expect gas prices to reach $4 a gallon this summer and it seems we're right on track to get to that point ... A North Carolina man is touting filling up with CNG (compressed natural gas). "...Ronald Orr thinks we might like to hear about a different kind of gas that costs less than $2. Orr, a retired engineer, has a fleet of six cars and trucks that run on CNG -- compressed natural gas. ... Unlike gasoline, natural gas is abundant in the United States, relatively cheap and squeaky clean. 'It's the only alternative fuel that's demonstrably cheaper than gasoline, unlike ethanol and biodiesel,' said Orr, 68. 'With them, you pay more to be green. And CNG essentially doesn't pollute.'" Here's an interesting side note: ACEEE rates the only new car on the market with a compressed natural gas system -- the CNG-fueled Civic -- as the nation's most environmentally friendly "green" car, even greener than the Toyota Prius ... We continue to see stories about rising gas prices causing a change in consumer behavior in favor of buying small, more fuel efficient vehicles. Is that really such a shock to anyone outside of Detroit? ...

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