Gas prices continued their upward trend headed into Memorial Day weekend, reaching a new high at $4.59 per average gallon on Tuesday, according to AAA’s nationwide tracker. The current average of diesel is listed at $5.54.
In California, residents are paying the highest prices at an average $6.06 per gallon. Analysts at JPMorgan Chase predict the six-dollar price could become the national average by August.
The new heights follow nearly an entire month of daily records as Americans cope with rapidly rising gas prices that are coinciding with record inflation at its fastest pace in four decades.
Monday marked more than two weeks straight of daily peaks in gas prices inching upward, even after the president’s “unprecedented” release from the emergency petroleum reserves. Meanwhile, at a press conference in Japan, President Joe Biden celebrated the added stress on the American consumer as the price of “an incredible transition.”
“[When] it comes to the gas prices, we’re going through an incredible transition that is taking place that, God willing, when it’s over, we’ll be stronger and the world will be stronger and less reliant on fossil fuels,” Biden said.
The enthusiastic forfeiture of domestic energy dominance by way of abandoning reliable sources in fossil fuels continues to bleed American pocketbooks while leaving the nation more vulnerable to interruptions in the power grid. Last week, a new report from the Atlanta-based energy nonprofit North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) forecast a summer of sporadic blackouts amid heat waves poised to overwhelm utilities operating under drought conditions. Low water levels will diminish output from hydroelectric dams and handicap aging conventional power stations’ ability to keep cool as smoke from wildfires cloud out sunlight for solar panels, all while the power grid confronts high demand in peak temperatures. NERC Director of Reliability Assessment and Performance Analysis John Moura said the premature retirement of conventional power plants in favor of wind and solar was in part to blame.
“The pace of our grid transformation is out of sync,” Moura told BNN Bloomberg.
Beyond gas prices, energy costs across the board are up more than 30 percent from last year, according to data from the Department of Labor. President Biden, however, has continued to cancel domestic energy projects across the country from Alaska’s lucrative North Slope to the Gulf Coast.