Are We Paying Too LITTLE for Gas?

As gas prices ratchet up to over $4 per gallon for regular grade, some transportation specialists argue that we may not be paying enough.


Could it be? Are Americans enjoying the second-lowest gasoline prices in the world just after oil-exporting Mexico?  We are, says Randy Salzman, a transportation management researcher and author of the upcoming book, "Yes We Can: Getting Americans to Back Away From the Steering Wheel."

In Sunday's New York Times, Salzman contends that while oil costs the same around the world, other nations put higher fees on gas consumption.

However, a cruise around Half Moon Bay for the sole purpose of observing gas prices may lead drivers to think otherwise.

The lowest gas prices we found on a Monday morning were at InterState Gas on the corner of Kelly and Highway 1. But at $4.09 per gallon for regular, $4.19 for mid-grade, and $4.29 for premium, it's tough to feel "lucky" about our pump prices. Pity the poor folks buying diesel, the cheapest in town at the Alliance station on San Mateo Road and Highway 1, selling at $4.55 per gallon.

Salzman says that if we'd use our cars smarter, we'd avoid a host of gas-guzzling related problems, not the least of which is keeping our children's children from fighting wars in the Middle East.

And many of us make a conserted effort to do just that---we drive hybrids, we carpool, we bike/walk, we take public transportation, and some of us work from home. But despite our best conservation efforts, we are still a car culture and will pay whatever is asked at the pump.

Take our poll below and tell us what steps you're taking to use less gas.

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