DENVER (KDVR) — Buying a gallon of gas in Denver has risen 3.7 cents per gallon in the past week. As of Monday, the average gallon of gas will cost $3.49.
Many Coloradans who drive want to know – why the increase?
If there is anybody who is affected by increasing gas prices, it is Emily Abrahamsen. She lives in Boulder and commutes every day to the 16th Street Mall in Denver to get to work.
”I just filled up the other day for $80 when it used to be 50.”
Right now the price of a gallon of gasoline is north of $3.50. Abrahamsen drives 250 to 300 miles every week just to get to work.
Gas prices are at their highest level since 2014 and higher in Colorado than the nation at large.
AAA today released data that the average price for a gallon of gasoline in Colorado was $3.53 – the highest it’s been since 2014 and over $1 more expensive than the price it was a year ago.
Colorado’s average price per gallon is 40 cents higher than the national average.
Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration shows national gas prices have been in a sustained price spike since Nov. 2020. Prices have not swung upward so sharply and for this length of time since 2010.
Economists and elected officials have typically offered a smorgasbord of reasons why gas prices would have risen this summer, including pent-up COVID drivers returning to work and play, typical seasonal gasoline demand increases and pandemic-related supply chain problems.
Skyler McKinley with AAA says the reason why gas prices are high are as simple as freshman year economics.
“It’s supply and demand,” he said. “This time last year demand fell off a cliff. That’s why we are paying a dollar less a gallon in July 2020 than in July 2021 because no one was driving.“
But that explanation is little comfort for Abrahamsen, who spends more than $300 a month now just to get to work.
“Instead of taking a trip to Utah to see Moab I’m probably going to skip it this year and wait until gas prices go down,” she said.
Curbing your car, and for many Coloradans, curbing your enthusiasm.