Memorial Day – How do the gasoline refiners celibrate our Veterans?

They raise prices. Yup that is right. If you want to go see the Wall or other war memorials on the DC Mall or even go to Arlington Cemetary…you are going to pay more at the pump. They do it every year and no one makes the connection. Soldiers die in energy wars like Iraq and WWII and then they charge loved ones for the honor of visiting their graves…Of course they do the same thing to Labor in the fall. They are equal opportunity thieves.

Consumers Will Suffer Memorial Day Energy-Price Hangover, Says Consumer Watchdog


Contact: Judy Dugan, +1-213-280-0175 (cell), Jamie Court, +1-310-392-0522 ext. 327, or Carmen Balber, +1-202-629-3043, all of Consumer Watchdog

‘Optimism’ Is Driving Energy Prices and Oil, Gas Prices Rise Steeply for Holiday, Despite Oversupply and Low Demand

WASHINGTON, May 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The price of regular gasoline at the pump has shot up 30 cents a gallon nationally in the last month and crude oil has nearly doubled, to $60 a barrel, since its low point in December, according to data from AAA and the federal Energy Information Administration. Steeply rising prices are tough on everyone except energy traders, said Consumer Watchdog.

“The price spike at the pump amounts to a holiday frat party for energy traders and oil companies, with drivers paying for the kegger,” said Judy Dugan, research director at the nonprofit, nonpartisan Consumer Watchdog. “A one-month pump price increase of 15% can only undercut the rest of an economy struggling to show any sign of long-term recovery.”

Analysts cite optimism that U.S. motorists will drive a little more this Memorial Day weekend, expectations that the economic slump has hit bottom and, harking back to mid-2008, the possibility that Nigerian violence will cut oil output. There is very little hard evidence of increased demand, said Consumer Watchdog.

The record spike in oil and gasoline prices in late 2007 and the first half of 2008 helped send the U.S. and world economies over a cliff, said Consumer Watchdog. Even a smaller spike at this low point of job loss and financial fragility will hurt consumers, curbing more economically productive spending. Food prices are also rising in tandem with oil, though at a slower pace.

Find out more at

SOURCE Consumer Watchdog


There is not much you can do about it but some people are trying to fight back:

Memorial Day Weekend, Summer Travelers Can Cut Gasoline Costs in Tough Economy with Drive $marter Challenge Interactive Website, Money-Saving Tips, Resources

For Further Information                                                             
Jessica Lin (202) 530-4346;
Rozanne Weissman (202) 530-2217;

Washington, D.C., May 2009 – With the Memorial Day holiday weekend and heavier summer driving season approaching, and with gasoline prices nowhere near last summer’s record highs, thoughts turn to weekend and vacation road trips as a great escape from economic reality.

The Alliance to Save Energy’s interactive Drive $marter Challenge fuel efficiency website provides vacationers and everyday drivers with hundreds of dollars of money-saving gas tips, resources, and myth busters that respond to the call of frugal drivers: Why pay more for gasoline than you have to, particularly in this economy?

Whether you are headed to the big city or the great outdoors or staying closer to home, you can start saving money on gas even before you are on the road with a little advance planning, basic maintenance, and your driving and other choices:

Planning your vacation:

  • Get a customized vacation map with low gas prices along the route. Getting lost while driving in unfamiliar areas could lead to an expensive waste of gas. Resources on the Drive $marter Challenge website ( can help your family print a customized vacation map that highlights low-cost gas stations along your route. Choose the right vehicle.  If your family has more than one vehicle, drive the car that gets better gas mileage if possible.
  • Rise and shine!  When possible, drive during off-peak hours to reduce gas costs and stress by avoiding stop-and-go or bumper-to-bumper traffic conditions.
  • Investigate other travel options. Consider trains, buses, or public transportation to your vacation destination when possible.
  • Explore new ways to get around at your destination.  Find information on biking, public transportation routes, car sharing, walking, and renting hybrid or fuel-efficient vehicles on the Drive $marter Challenge websiteresources page at .

Before you leave: maintenance tips

  • Inflate your tires.  Keeping your tires properly inflated improves gas mileage by around 3%.
  • Select the right oil.  Using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil improves gas mileage by 1 to 2%. Motor oil that says “Energy Conserving” on the API performance symbol contains friction-reducing additives. Change your oil as recommended to extend the life of your vehicle.
  • Tune up.  Fixing a car that is noticeably out of tune or has failed an emissions test can improve its gas mileage by an average of 4%.

On the road: driving tips

  • Decrease your speed.  Gas mileage usually decreases rapidly above 60 mph. Each five miles per hour over 60 mph is like paying an additional 20 cents or more per gallon for gas.
  • Drive sensibly.  Speeding, rapid acceleration (jackrabbit starts), and rapid braking can lower gas mileage by 33% at highway speeds.
  • Use cruise control and overdrive gear.  Cruise control cuts fuel consumption by maintaining a steady speed during highway driving.  Overdrive gear, when appropriate, reduces engine speed, saves gas, and reduces engine wear.
  • It’s a “drag.” Avoid carrying items on your vehicle’s roof. A loaded roof rack or carrier increases weight and aerodynamic drag, which can cut mileage by 5%. Place items inside the trunk when possible to improve fuel economy.
  • Turn down the air.  Operating the air conditioner on “Max” can reduce mpg by 5-25% compared to not using it.
  • Avoid idling, which gets 0 mpg. Cars with larger engines typically waste even more gas while idling than cars with smaller engines.
  • Navigate with a GPS system.  GPS systems can help you find your way and, increasingly, GPS programs can search for low-priced gas at nearby stations.
  • Fill up before returning rental. Rental car companies charge higher gas prices if you don’t fill up the tank before returning the vehicle. Keep your gas receipts in case the company requires receipts to remove a gas surcharge. 

The Drive $marter Challenge website,, has been updated with 2009 vehicle models and current campaign partners. The website calculator and all tips will be further updated May 19 with new projected gas prices for the yearThe Alliance to Save Energy is a coalition of prominent business, government, environmental, and consumer leaders who promote the efficient and clean use of energy worldwide to benefit consumers, the environment, the economy, and national security.



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