Gas prices hit a new all-time high on May 10, 2022, amid rising inflation and President Biden's restrictions on oil and gas production.
According to AAA's average gas price calculator, the national average cost of a regular gallon of gasoline hit $4.374 on Tuesday, the highest ever according to AAA.
The prices come as the European Union edges toward oil sanctions on Russia amid the Kremlin's invasion of Ukraine. It also comes amid record-high inflation, with the consumer price index reaching 8.5% in March.
The White House has blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for the record-high gas prices in the U.S., even coining the surge as the "#PutinPriceHike" and vowing that President Biden will do everything he can to shield Americans from "pain at the pump."
Biden, last month, announced that the Environmental Protection Agency will allow the sale of E15 gasoline – gasoline that uses a 15% ethanol blend – across the country this summer. Biden has also moved to release 1 million barrels of oil per day from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for the next 6 months. The president is also calling on Congress to make companies pay fees on idled oil wells and non-producing acres of federal lands, aiming to incentivize new production.
Critics claim that Biden's energy policies – restricting drilling on federal lands and blocking the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline – have created a "supply problem" in the market. Biden initially announced a moratorium on drilling on federal lands, but a federal judge in Louisiana blocked the moratorium after 13 Republican attorneys general sued.
According to Yardeni Research, increased oil costs suggest the average American household will pay almost $2,000 more for gasoline in 2022, according to a March research note.
"In addition, we estimate that the average household is currently spending at least $1,000 [according to a seasonally adjusted annual rate] more on food as a result of rapidly rising grocery prices," Edward Yardeni, the president of the firm, wrote on LinkedIn. "That’s $3,000 less money that households have to spend on other consumer goods and services, which also are experiencing rapid price increases."