About 160 million people in our country feel the pain of smaller paychecks and rising costs, so they notice when gas prices tick up a few cents at the pump. Well, those prices have now gone up for 33 days straight. According to CNN, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline has shot up 13% in about a month, which brings the national average to $3.73 per gallon.
The Energy Information Administration says the price of crude oil has gone up 10% in the last two months, and represents about two-thirds of the price per gallon. Speculation in the market, like anticipation of higher demand or fears about the looming sequester, also drives gas prices up. And more demand, and higher crude prices, just help Big Oil rake in more than ever – like the combined $120 billion dollars in profits the oil companies made in 2012 alone.
So, why are we still subsidizing big oil? It's time to make Big Oil pay for making billions off our commons. Not only should they pay for extracting our oil, on our land, but we should charge them for the external costs of fossil fuels – like pollution and illness. Costs that they've passed down to consumers for years. Even better, let's invest in green energy and say “no” to Big Oil once and for all.