Minnesota Enjoying Lower Gas Prices than National Average
UNDATED -- With yet another winter storm on the way this weekend, it's hard to think of summer travel. However, we promise it will be here soon, and the gasoline bill shouldn't be too bad.
Our state is 20 cents below the national average for gas according to Triple-A. The organization also doesn't expect anything above a slight increase.
Most of the credit goes to a lower demand and much lower gas tax here than in other states. Gail Weinholzer is the Director of Public Affairs for Triple-A Minnesota. She says another aspect that plays a role is how many fuel grades the state has.
"We also have fewer grades of fuel. A state like California can have up to two-dozen types of fuel, where Minnesota obviously has far fewer than that."
The slight increase Triple-A expects will come from both the increased demand and the switchover from winter to summer fuel.
"We do see an increase in the cost of the summer grade over the winter grade. It costs more to refine, it burns cleaner so it's more environmentally friendly."
Weinholzer says that process is well underway despite winters refusal to give up. Overall we're 17 cents higher than we were last year at this time in the state. Weinholzer says a strong stock market and economy have played the largest role in the current price.
When it comes to gas prices in the state, Stearns County is right in the middle with an average of $2.51, Benton is at $2.52 and Sherburne at $2.45. Kanabec County is the cheapest average in the state at $2.38.