Gas prices hold steady at $2.97 per gallon

Nationally the average price for a gallon of gas is $3.18.

Florida drivers got no relief at the pumps last week, but things also didn’t get any worse.

The average price for a gallon of gasoline across Florida held steady at $2.97, AAA — The Auto Club Group reported Monday morning. That’s the same as two weeks ago.

Florida drivers are paying an average of 4 cents per gallon less than a month ago, though 81 cents per gallon more than a year ago. The price is 43 cents per gallon more than on Aug. 1, 2019, in pre-pandemic times.

“July was the most expensive month at the pump since October 2014,” AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said in a news release. “Florida gas prices remain elevated due to tightening global supplies, as demand recovers from the pandemic. Florida gas prices averaged $2.99 per gallon, in July 2021. The monthly average was 89 cents more than what drivers paid in July 2020, and 35 cents more than July 2019.”

There remained a wide variance in gas prices in Florida, with some drivers, those in Punta Gorda, seeing pump prices averaging $2.88 a gallon, while others, those in Panama City, are paying an average of $3.12.

Nationally, the average price of a gallon of gasoline was $3.18, according to AAA.

The worldwide market is driving the high prices, AAA reported.

Just three weeks ago, the price for domestic crude reached a new 2021 high of $75.25 per barrel. That was the highest daily average price since October 2018. However, that price quickly dipped slightly, dropping 4%, to finish that week at $71.81 per barrel. The decline was in reaction to news OPEC and its allies plan to gradually return 5.8 million barrels a day of production, a partial restoration of reductions OPEC made last year in response to the coronavirus crisis and its drag on travel.

On Monday, the cheapest gas was in Punta Gorda, averaging $2.88; followed by Orlando and Jacksonville at $2.91; and Tampa Bay and Sarasota at $2.92, AAA reported.

The highest prices in Florida were found in Panama City and West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, averaging $3.12; and Tallahassee at $3.08.

Elsewhere, gasoline in Miami and Fort Myers averaged $2.98; Pensacola, $3.00; and Fort Lauderdale, $3.01.

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected].


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