Lisa Margonelli on High Gas Prices

05/25/07 Mitch E. Perry
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Accoring to an AP-Ipsos poll just released, nearly y half of those surveyed said near-record gasoline prices are causing ``serious hardship,'' prompting a surging number of people to say they're considering buying a more fuel-efficient car.
Yet there are signs that more people also are clinging to their driving and vacation habits while grudgingly accepting the higher price tag. The government said this week that prices for a gallon of regular gasoline had hit a nationwide average of $3.22, nearly 50 percent higher than in January and pennies shy of the all-time mark.
 The new poll shows 46% of those surveyed said spiking gas prices are causing them severe financial problems, That measure of public pocketbook pain is up slightly from last year and appreciably above the 30 percent figure of June 2004, when AP-Ipsos first asked the question.

The Democratic-led House approved a bill this week outlawing price gouging. The White House threatened a veto, saying it amounted to price controls and would lead to long lines at gas pumps.

The national average has now been above $3 a gallon since May 4th. One reason that all analysts say is a problem in terms of supply and demand is a lack of oil refineries in the U.S.  Earlier this week, WMNF spoke with Lisa Margonelli, the author of the new book, “Oil  on the Brain”, about what the deal is with the lack of refineries.  Margonelli also says that Americans, instead of conserving because of high gas prices, are actually driving more than ever (roll tape#1 o.q.”  fuel that we’re using”) That’s Lisa Margonelli, author of the new book, “Oil On the Brain: Adventures from the Pump to the Pipeline”. She spoke to us from her home in Oakland, California.

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