Driver wants explanation on rising diesel costs

Posted: Friday, October 06, 2006

The difference in gasoline prices between Anchorage and the peninsula have long been a disgusting controversy, but this really chaps me. After the light ends are refined from crude, i.e., propane, butane, etc., diesel fuel, then heating oil, jet fuel and gasoline are refined, pretty much in that order.

In other words, diesel is far easier and cheaper to produce because it needs less refining. Yet, pump price for diesel is usually higher than regular and sometimes as high as premium gas.

On top of that, here comes winter, and producers are going to feed us that line about having to blend diesel with No. 1 stove oil to keep it from jelling.

Another price increase.

OK, but why doesn’t the price go back down in the spring when blended fuel is no longer needed? Why is diesel more expensive when it’s the cheapest auto fuel to make, even when blended?

National average prices for gasoline have dropped 40 cents per gallon. Crude prices have dropped. Wholesale prices have dropped. So why haven’t retail pump prices dropped in Alaska? And not just 3 or 4 cents, I’m talking 30 or 40 cents per gallon.

Do you like that puny little 10 cent rebate you get if you buy their groceries? Are any mom-and-pop stations left these days?

Another thing, diesel combustion temperature is lower than gasoline, thus, way less harmful pollutants are released into the air from diesel, compared to gasoline. Heck, the EPA should be paying me to drive my diesel!

William Jackson


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