BOISE, Idaho — The cost of crude oil remains relatively high, but lower demand, typical in winter, is helping prices at the pump cool down.
AAA Idaho reported a statewide average price of $3.94 per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline on Monday morning. Looking at county-by-county figures from AAA, average prices range from $3.59 in Kootenai County to $4.53 in Blaine County.
The statewide average has dropped by about 17 cents, AAA reports, from $4.11 on Monday, Nov. 28, to $3.94 on Monday, Dec. 5.
GasBuddy's survey of stations in Boise shows an average price of $3.94, in line with the statewide average and nearly 20 cents lower from last week's Boise average.
The prices for gasoline reported on Dec. 5 have dropped significantly from the record highs reported on July 1, when the Idaho average hit $5.25. However, the statewide average of $3.94 is still 28 cents higher than the same date in 2021. It's also 54 cents higher than the current national average price of $3.40.
Prices are more stubborn for diesel, which fuels the vehicles that move freight across the nation. The national average for diesel is $5.06, according to GasBuddy. In Idaho, AAA reports a statewide average price of $5.69, only 20 cents lower than the record high reported on June 26.
AAA reports Idaho ranks 7th for most-expensive fuel in the nation. Drivers in California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Alaska continue to see prices well above $4 per gallon for regular unleaded. Prices in Hawaii remain above $5.
Fuel prices vary from station to station. Check here: Interactive map
While prices in much of the West are among the nation's highest, AAA Idaho spokesman Matthew Conde pointed to Utah for a sign of hope.
“It’s encouraging that Utah, where most of Idaho’s gasoline supply is refined, is seeing an average price of $3.79 per gallon today,” Conde said. “Hopefully, the trend will continue, and Gem State prices will be even better in the run-up to the holidays.”
However, the price of crude oil still hovers around $80 for a barrel of West Texas Intermediate, $10 more than a year ago.
“If the threat of crude oil scarcity rattles the market, drivers could suffer the consequences,” Conde said. “OPEC recently announced that it will follow through on an agreement to cut crude production by two million barrels per day, and Russia has also threatened to withhold oil from any nation that attempts to cap its prices. While supply issues or a surge in holiday fuel demand could send pump prices higher, we’re keeping our fingers crossed that more savings are on the way.”
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