MSU professor expects gas prices to remain unpredictable

MSU professor expects gas prices to remain unpredictable
Published: Apr. 27, 2022 at 10:19 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 27, 2022 at 11:53 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Just when we were starting to see some relief at the gas pump, prices have risen again.

The increase comes as the weather gets warmer and more people are opting for road trips as we enter the summer travel season.

It could take up to six months before we can know when gas prices will stabilize. You could say it’s turning into a game of cat and mouse for government leaders and oil companies.

“I’ve already dipped into my income tax refund,” said Frieda Parr. “Once I run out of that, then I’ll be getting even worse.”

Parr commutes to work from Williamston to East Lansing. She said her car is in need of repairs, but because of gas prices, she doesn’t have the money to get it fixed. So the needed repairs keep getting put on the back burner.

“It needs a major tune-up. It’s squeezing air out of my tire because I have old rims,” Parr said. “I’m putting that aside because I need money to get to and from work.”

Michigan State University professor Andrei Simonov argued a big part of the production of oil and gas in the United States has to do with political decision making. Previously, the U.S. encouraged businesses to go green and consumers to purchase electric vehicles to cut down on oil dependency. As a result, many of the oil companies were hesitant to invest in more drills and equipment at the risk of losing money. Now the supply is down and they’re trying to catch up -- and consumers are paying the price.

“In a year is the administration going to go back to the previous stance and try to limit the industry or not?” asked Simonov. “We just don’t know.”

Simonov said the United States needs to decide whether or not to stick to the plan of focusing on clean energy or conforming to the way it’s always been done, which is by using oil and gas. Until a decision is made, we could continue to see this fluctuation of gas prices for a long time.

More: Current gas prices

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