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Rumors of an energy crisis are beginning to become more than mere whispers as gas prices inch closer to a record high. Gas costs have been increasing nationwide for weeks. The effects have reverberated throughout numerous industries, and households are feeling the pinch. The price hike shows no sign of slowing down.



Gas costs jump by 20 cents in no time



The nationwide average cost of a gallon of gasoline has risen by almost 20 cents in the past few weeks. A Lundberg survey put the cost of a gallon of gas at an average of $3.76 as of April 8, according to Reuters, up from $3.57 on March 18. In the last year the increase went up by about a dollar. In July of 2008, gasoline hit a record high at about $4.11. Today, costs are averaging even higher than that. CBS reported that on April 8, California had a nationwide average of $4.14.



The airline industry has been hit hard



The air travel industry is set to withstand a battering as the cost of jet fuel is increasing, according to CNN. The increase in the price of petroleum has caused jet fuel to rise to about $112 a barrel. The bottom line of airline industries was really hurt in 2008 when barrels of fuel topped out at $150 a barrel. Airline shares are dropping just due to this increase in oil. On April 8 stock prices for many airlines had dropped; Jet Blue by five percent, United Continental by seven percent, and Delta by four percent. The conflict in the middle east indicates to experts that gas costs aren't going to lower any time soon. Airline tickets will only continue to go up as the cost of gasoline continues to go up in tandem.



Customers are figuring out how to cope



Customers are not ok with the idea of just taking the increase with no issue. Charge card companies, according to Daily Finance, have noted falling gasoline sales for the past five weeks, and 70 percent of the nation's gasoline station chains have noticed the same. Individuals are beginning to cut back on the amount of gasoline they purchase and trade in less fuel efficient vehicles for economically friendly gasoline sippers. There has been a 37 percent increase in hybrid vehicles this year, reported by the USA Today. Lower demand is resulting from the increase in costs, which might just keep prices high.



Articles cited



Reuters

<p>reuters.com/article/2011/04/11/us-energy-gasoline-retail-idUSTRE73929V20110411</p>



CBS News

cbsnews.com/stories/2011/04/10/eveningnews/main20052599.shtml



CNN

money.cnn.com/2011/04/08/news/economy/American_Airlines_fuel_crisis/index.htm



Daily Finance

dailyfinance.com/story/drivers-hit-the-brakes-as-gas-prices-rise/19908875/



USA Today

usatoday.com/money/autos/2011-04-06-prius-tops-one-million-in-sales.htm
 

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So where's them affordable for the middle class 100mpg cars we've been hearing about for 30 years?
 
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