By Alexis Figueroa|Staff Writer|
It seems there is no end in sight to the rise in gas prices.
The price of gas jumped again with the biggest increase since February 2008 for the Inland Empire, according to a report by CBS News. The average price per gallon for regular unleaded gasoline is now $4.35 and that is expected to shoot up further before the beginning of summer.
Prices in 2008 were $4.11 when the national average price of oil was up. Today, gas stations have far surpassed that number.
According to fivecentnickel.com, experts report gas prices will reach a national average of $4.50 a gallon, with the average in California peaking around $5. For Riverside and San Bernardino counties the average price per gallon of gas has risen 50.8 cents over the course of 2012 and it continues to rise according to CBS News.
Analysts have attributed this increase to rising oil prices, which come from fears of a possible shortage because of the tensions in the Middle East over Iran, according to CBS News. An increase in China’s oil dependency has also had an impact on the price of oil.
The U.S. is no longer the primary consumer of oil. There has been a shift towards China as well as developing countries. The U.S Energy Information Administration predicts that China’s oil consumption will continue to grow during 2012, projecting a 40 percent of the world’s oil demand according to the Energy Bulletin website.
Students are worried about the impact the continuing surge of gas prices will have on their consumption habits. “My driving habits will definitely be changing. I will only go out if it is at all necessary,” said student Lizbeth Lopez. “What I could be paying for groceries I will now be paying for gas,” she continued. Lopez also notes that the $20 that once filled up the tank in her Toyota Corolla only fills it halfway now.
Students who have already been affected by the price of gas have discovered alternative forms of transportation. “I try to carpool with friends … or take the train rather than drive,” said student Renee Etcheberria.
For students like Etcheberria, CSUSB offers many solutions to this issue. Because commuters are a large population at CSUSB, the Commuter Services program on campus works to reduce traffic congestion and increase mobility throughout campus.
The program also offers free exclusive CSUSB carpool matching, vanpool coordination and additional transportation information. The CSUSB Commuter Services aids students in finding the best and most economical form of transportation per the individual’s need.
In addition to the CSUSB Commuter Services program, Omnitrans offers free rides throughout the year to CSUSB students carrying valid identification.
For more information on ways to get to campus, the Office of Commuter Services at CSUSB is located in UH-130.