Up, Up and Away Goes Gas, Electric Can Stem The Tide

May 16, 2019

Quietly unbeknownst to many of us the price of gasoline has crept ever higher. I was aghast to be paying $3 or more in Michigan a few weeks ago. I can only imagine how high it will go if Gov. Whitmer gets her 45 cent increase shoved through the legislature.

Mike Wilcox
Mike’s Musings Columnist

In Alabama where I commute 35 miles one way each day it is 60 cents less but still much higher than it was a year ago. Fortunately I enjoy that commute in an electric car, and have for two years, where I pay no gas or car maintenance, because it has no engine, only a battery. I pity, however those that make a similar commute in car powered by gas.

I’ve been a keen observer of the price of a barrel of oil for a long time.

Because of that I’ve kept my eye closely on OPEC and the energy situation in the Middle East. I hailed the United States pronouncement a year ago that we were no longer energy dependent. That, in fact, we export more oil and gas than we import is a monumental achievement.

So what is the reason for the $3 a gallon gas prices, if we have enough oil off our own shores to service America? Many experts claim it is because we get paid more by exporting oil to others versus using it here in our own country. Thus we are still buying several million barrels of oil a year from the Middle East.

And that could soon be a problem. I was surprised to read ( surprised because I have only seen it in Newsweek) that Iran allegedly ambushed two Saudi Arabian oil tankers last week, damaging them to the point they couldn’t get to Saudi Arabia to pick up their loads of oil- some bound for the U.S.

This act of aggression by Iran might foretell what is to become a possible conflict between Iran and the Saudis and the U.S. in the Persian Gulf, through which much of the world’s oil passes. Our heightened restrictions on Iran, have made the rogue country cranky and possibly itching for a fight. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an escalation of oil tanker sabotage and hi-jackings in the Gulf as the summer season gets underway.

If that is true, the price of gasoline is likely to escalate to numbers unknown to us. It will probably increase greatly the sale of electric cars as well. Selfishly I’m not sure I like that. You see now, as one of only a few electrics on the road, I can pull in to a charging station and get charged immediately. Yes you have to wait 30 to 45 minutes for your vehicle to charge, but I’ve never known there to be a line-up of cars waiting to charge.

For those that might not understand what I’m writing about, electric vehicles are our future. Every major car manufacturer is gearing up to make them, and as an owner, I’m here to tell you, there are very few disadvantages.

Let me click off some of the advantages. No oil changes. No tune-ups, No engine service whatsoever. My vehicle that probably travels 1000 miles a month costs me less than $25 a month to charge at home. The acceleration on electrics is incredible. My wife calls it a rocket ship. And the advantages to the environment (no emissions) are not to be forgotten.

It will be nice to “thumb our nose” at the Middle Eastern fiefdoms that have ransomed their oil for so many years. It is wonderful news that we now produce more oil than we import. But it is even greater news to expect more and more electric vehicles on the road in years to come.

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