The least expensive gas price averages in Georgia were in Warner Robins at $2.42 per gallon, Dalton at $2.43 and Augusta-Aiken at $2.43.
Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for the price-comparison website GasBuddy, predicted average gas prices would rise another 25 cents to 50 cents a gallon by Memorial Day, while AAA has warned motorists to brace for hikes as high as 75 cents a gallon. "All of this and more will lead to average gas prices being 25-50 cents per gallon higher by Memorial Day".
Oil prices have weakened ever so slightly in the last week, likely at the hands of the first increase in U.S. oil inventories this year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The $2.65 average in Miami-Dade County was 2 cents more than a week earlier, while Palm Beach County's average $2.71 was also just a penny more than the previous week. Gas prices have increased one cent from last month's average and have increased 37.9 cents from last year's average. More positive news is that domestic oil production is closing in on 10 million barrels per day, which would almost double the amount seen a decade ago, AAA said.
In the quest for the tricounty region's lowest gas prices, anything under $2.50 was basically a bargain on Monday, and those stations were few and far between.
"In fact, the last time the national gas price average was this high, but under $3 a gallon in February was in 2010", said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokeswoman. And the damage could get even worse with refinery maintenance season and the transition to summer gasoline on the horizon.
So why are gasoline prices increasing?
Now the Utica- Rome area averages $2.76 per gallon, up $.28 in one year. This was the first measurable growth in USA crude supplies in the last 11 weeks, thanks to lower refinery runs, higher crude oil production and imports.
Norcross has the lowest prices at around $2.30 according to Gasbuddy.com.
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