“Tennessee motorists are seeing dramatic declines in pump prices. The state average is down 45 cents since March 1,” said Megan Cooper, spokewoman for AAA — The Auto Club Group. “More discounts are expected in the coming week as gasoline demand continues to decline.”
An astonishing 94% of filling stations have sub-$2 gas prices. The prices have declined for 33 consecutive days for a total discount of nearly 47 cents per gallon and eight metro areas have seen double-digit decreases at the pump in the last week.
All the metro areas in the state have average prices below $2 per gallon.
At $2.01, the national gas price average is 11 cents cheaper on the week, 43 cents less expensive on the month and 68 cents less than a year ago.
Crude oil continues to price low — in the $20-per-barrel range — as U.S. gasoline demand decreases to numbers typically seen during the winter driving season. In fact, there is an atypical amount of winter-blend gasoline supply still available, which has caused the Environmental Protection Agency to extend the sale of winter blend past the May 1 deadline to May 20.
The agency said they will continue to monitor and, if necessary, extend the waiver again.
“Delaying the switch-over to summer-blend gasoline will contribute to sustained lower prices as summer blend is more expensive to produce,” added Cooper.
The difference between summer- and winter-blend gasolines is how easily the fuel evaporates at a given temperature. The more volatile a gasoline, the easier it evaporates.
Winter-blend fuel must be able to evaporate at low temperatures for the engine to operate properly, especially when the engine is cold. Summer-blend gasoline has a lower volatility to prevent excessive evaporation when outside temperatures rise.
Reducing the volatility of summer gas decreases emissions that can contribute to unhealthy ozone and smog levels.