Money & The Economy

California Becomes First State To Ever Record Average Gas Price Of $6 A Gallon

California became the first state Tuesday to ever record an average gasoline price above $6 per gallon amid the ongoing global energy crisis, according to AAA data.

The average price of gasoline in California reached $6.02 a gallon on Tuesday and again increased to $6.05 a gallon Wednesday, AAA data showed. The state’s average pump price is the largest ever recorded and the first to cross the $6 per gallon threshold, according to the Energy Information Administration’s historic gasoline price database.

“This year has sort of really defied all expectations,” Automobile Club of Southern California spokesperson Marie Montgomery said, the Los Angeles Times reported. “It’s very volatile right now, and it’s hard to know what can happen next.”

“The landscape is not looking good,” she added.

California gas prices have spiked more than 46% year-over-year, according to the AAA data released Wednesday. The highest prices in the state were recorded in San Francisco where the average price hit $6.28 a gallon.

Meanwhile, the nationwide average price of gasoline hit its highest level ever on Wednesday, soaring to $4.57 per gallon, the AAA data showed. The average price of gas has surpassed $4 a gallon in every state.

“The high cost of oil, the key ingredient in gasoline, is driving these high pump prices for consumers,” AAA spokesperson Andrew Gross said in a statement Monday. “Even the annual seasonal demand dip for gasoline during the lull between spring break and Memorial Day, which would normally help lower prices, is having no effect this year.”

The price of oil has surged in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine which disrupted energy markets worldwide.

President Joe Biden has attempted to curb oil prices by releasing emergency U.S. stockpiles of oil, allowing more widespread biofuel usage and, most recently, easing some energy sanctions on Venezuela. But his administration has simultaneously taken several steps to tie domestic oil producers’ hands in recent weeks and months.

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