California Was Just Booted as State With Most Expensive Gas

The price per gallon in Washington now averages nearly $4.95
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 22, 2023 1:30 PM CDT
'Fill 'Er Up' Now Costs the Most in an Unlikely State
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/bunyarit)

There's a new "winner" in the contest of who has the highest gas prices in America, displacing California for the dubious honor: Washington state, where the average price per gallon of regular gas as of AAA's Thursday morning report was just a tad under $4.95. That's almost a dime more than what it costs in the Golden State (Thursday's AAA numbers put the average cost of a gallon there at about $4.86), and a full 34 cents more than what it cost in Washington just a month ago.

CNN calls the development an "unusual" one, as California has boasted the most expensive gas in the nation a staggering 95% of the time over the past two years, per an analyst from GasBuddy. The company notes that Washington itself has never claimed the steepest price for gas, going back to 2005. Now, in some places in the Pacific Northwest state, consumers are paying over $5 per gallon, including in Skamania County, where the price averages $5.32.

Experts say the recent spike in Washington is tied to new state legislation to fight climate change, including a program that now charges businesses based on the amount of greenhouse gases they spew, per the Seattle Times. This has resulted in oil companies passing on the compliance fees to consumers, the experts note. Still, it's not all bad news, if you look at things in context: CNN notes that last year at this time in Washington, patrons at the pump were paying an average of $5.54 per gallon. (More gas prices stories.)

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