Wednesday, June 11, 2008

High prices at the pump? I want it to be higher.

Since I live in California and I have to drive everywhere, I use a lot of gas. I will admit I don't have the most fuel efficient car and in fact my car is made to have more horse power and speed than economy. My Acura gets low 19 mpg on the street and 23 on the highway. It now cost me over $60 dollars to fill her up! I don't like spending more but I think I should.

Most people would love gas prices to go down and can't cringe at the thought of paying even more for gas, I on the other hand want to see it go up $8-10 range. Yes I know it sounds crazy but hear me out. If regular unleaded gasoline regularly topped $10, demand in the US would finally decrease. I predict that instead of long-term forecast of increase demand there would actually be a forecast for further decreases.

I really don't like paying more and more money every week to get around and I really do not want people to suffer even more in this current economic down turn. My friends, family, and I would all surely be hurt by such high prices and everyone's life style would have to change but that's just the thing, we need to change and quickly. Without a big push from state or the federal government change wont happen, at least not nearly as fast. We all have been to slow to act on this and I'm sad to say we will probably have to learn this lesson the hard way. I don't really think gas will reach such highs anytime soon unless there were a huge disaster (i.e. embargo, bad hurricane in the gulf, etc.) and I wouldn't want the U.S. to have to change it's ways in such a painful way with a huge shock to the economy.

What do I want to see happen? For starters, I want the federal government to do one of two things, either pass a law mandating that all automobiles (not including RV's or RTV's) in the US have a minimum MPG of 50 by 2015. Much higher than what is currently being talked about in Congress and in a few states. Another option would be for the federal government to make all states adopt such laws, just like when the federal government wanted states to raise the legal drinking age to 21 in the 80's.

The second thing I would like done is a gradual tax increase on gasoline (just like in Europe) to help convince people that they should really consider buying more fuel efficient cars. This law should aim to raise gas prices by .50 cents a year until it reaches a set price, maybe at $15-20. This of course would have to take into consideration the natural raise in the market. I think a lot of American's keep buying gas-hogs because they hope and think gas prices will ease. If people absolutely knew prices were going to increase year after year and eventually be $10+ a gallon this would quickly stop. That way the change could be quick but gradual.

This would be far easier than doing nothing and just letting one big disaster shock the global market and leave us unprepared for such high prices. I for one wouldn't mind paying $10 a gallon if my car got 100+ MPG. Now if only there were politicians brave enough to pass such laws...

1 comment:

SBVOR said...

If you care to, click the link and spread the word.