Gas Now at $1.99: Credit the Electrics?

Gas below $2/gallon!

Well look at this, friends: Gas prices are now below $2 per gallon.

Back in 2010, we could have looked ahead to 2015 and wondered how close we’d be to $5 per gallon or more.

Last time we paid this low a price for gasoline, Bill Clinton ran the country, and music came on shiny round discs.

That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but it seems accurate as far as I can remember.

Gas selling at $1.99 per gallon in my area brings back memories of listening to Vanilla Ice, rolling in my 5.0 and putting $10 in my tank to nearly fill it.

Should gas really be this cheap, or should the government step in and increase prices to encourage people to drive more efficient vehicles?

While discussing this with my family yesterday, one of the quotes was:

“I think electric car manufacturing is scaring the oil companies. I think the government should step in, add a dollar tax per gallon, and invest in electric car infrastructure. That will teach them.”

Could that be true? It sounds a bit like a conspiracy theory to me, because electric vehicles make up only a small percentage of the car market. However, they’re increasingly available to consumers, often on cheap leases.

Tesla continues to make inroads bringing EVs to the masses and will even retro fit old Roadsters with more modern technology, including new battery packs that can provide up to 400 miles of range. Moves like that could make future buyers of electric cars more confident in the technology.

The Nissan Leaf can be leased for as little as a few hundred bucks per month, and the Chevy Volt is about to get reintroduced to the market. With so many electric options, it’s possible that oil companies are dropping prices to encourage people to keep their gas-powered vehicles.

More likely it’s possible that U.S. oil production has created a gas surplus, and drivers are benefiting from the sudden influx.

Does that mean we should all buy SUVs and drag race because fuel is so cheap? Of course not. It probably would be best to tax fuel like other countries do and encourage drivers to be more responsible in their gas usage.

Being America, though, we will take advantage of cheap gas and use as much of it as we can before prices creep up again.

What do you think? Should the government tax fuel to encourage the use of electric vehicles?


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