The Price of Gas Went Down. What Do We Do Now?

On June 20th the average price for a gallon of gas in Los Angeles was about $4.60. By that time many of us had already taken steps to reduce our fuel consumption. We took public transportation, we carpooled, we rode our bikes and we walked.

Have you noticed what has happened since then? After months of steady price increases the cost of gasoline has dropped over the last month. As of yesterday the average price for gas in Los Angeles stood at $4.43 per gallon.

For many of us, $4.00 a gallon was our breaking point, at least it was for me. It was the point I realized that I needed to make some changes in the way I get around. Recently, through carpooling, taking public transportation and frequenting more neighborhood businesses I’ve greatly reduced my fuel usage and I like it a lot. In the month of July I’ve been to the gas station once. Suddenly I feel like I’m a little less a part of the problem and in a very small way I’m a part of the solution.

However, this recent drop in gas prices brings up an interesting question. Hypothetically, let’s imagine that the price of gas continues to drop (it probably won’t now that I’ve jinxed it by saying it, but play along with me). For the sake of argument imagine you woke up next week and could buy gas for $3.00 a gallon or less. Would you stop carpooling, taking public transportation, walking or riding your bike? Or, now that you’ve tried the alternatives, are you hooked on using less fuel?

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6 Replies to “The Price of Gas Went Down. What Do We Do Now?”

  1. For me being that rare freak of an alt-commuter who does it because he actually likes biking 14-15 miles each way between home and work, the price of gas isn’t the issue. I began regularly commuting by bike in September an average of 2-3 times a week and kicked it up to a five-day-a-week thing since March when daylight saving time kicked in and gas was however much less than it is now. If the cost goes into some hypothetical historic decline I’ll still be on my bike… pedaling my wares, so to speak.

  2. I’m another alt-commuter who wasn’t price sensitive. In my case, my mode of transportation of choice is bus. Frankly, even when gas was half the price it is now, I could get to Santa Monica cheaper by bus than I could driving, and that’s just in the price of gas, not depreciation, maintenance, insurance etc. I get plenty of reading done in my commute and I manage to have time to be unstressed on my way home every day. It’s quite nice.

  3. I saw it at $4.43 for a noname brand in Pan City this morning and was tickled. I don’t have a commute but I have errands and stuff to haul so even the 2 bits it dropped since before the 4th helps.

    Still hasn’t gotten me off the kick to get a smaller car for those little errands where I don’t need a big trunk.

  4. I think that no matter what the price of gas is, we should all conserve for the sake of the planet.

    But what is a person to do when they are engaged in a type of business that requires a lot of client contact, and when those contacts are spread all over L.A.?

    I do estate sales, and the dealers who come to my sales have to drive…I posted a piece about this on my site…maybe it will be of some interest.

    Driving – estate sales, and gas, how far will you go?

    Thanks

  5. Not driving at all has kinda been out of the question for me but, I have been more bike bound when I’m not working so it has helped a bit (I didn’t drive once all weekend!) When I do fill up the cost is still affecting me greatly so if by some miracle gas continues to go down, i will go back to actually putting money in my 401k! woo hoo!

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