Gasoline prices continue to soar around Lake Tahoe

Gas prices in California hit an all-time high last week at $1.85 per gallon, but have since fallen to $1.83 per gallon statewide, according to the California Energy Commission.

"The shortage of crude oil is causing inflated prices," said Fred Gorell spokesman for Chevron.

Meanwhile gasoline at Lake Tahoe consistently out prices most of California.

Fox Gas on U.S. Highway 50 is charging consumers anywhere from $1.94 per gallon to $2.14 per gallon.

At Chevron off U.S. Highway 50, South Lake Tahoe resident Karen Broemmer said she paid $29.11 to fill her '98 Subaru Outback with 13.86 gallons of 87 Octane fuel. That is $2.10 per gallon.

But prices have been high for so long, such figures no longer shock her.

"You get used to it, and Europeans have been paying these prices for years," Broemmer said.

But she admits that the prices have affected her driving habits, saying that she consolidates her driving trips to save gas.

"I drive only when necessary, but there are just some things you need a car for," she said.

According to the Oil Price Information Index, San Francisco pays the most for gasoline at $2.06 per gallon; Reno is significantly less at $1.57 per gallon and Sacramento pays $1.94 per gallon.

The national average has remained steady at $1.56 per gallon.

California's prices are significantly higher than the rest of the nation because of stricter emissions standards, Gorell said.

But according Gorell, this is just part of a price cycle.

"Gasoline is a commodity and it has been high recently, but people tend to forget that at the last month of '98 and the first few months of '99 crude oil prices were at a historic low, when adjusted for inflation," he added. Prices during that time period ranged from $11 to $12 per barrel, but now it is up to $38 per barrel.


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