The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

What Do Baseball and Oil Have in Common?

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted May 15, 2009

I like baseball. I particularly like the fact that baseball fans can quote statistics and recall spectacular games that occurred more than a century ago. For example, according to Baseball-Reference.com, did you know that on this day in 1901 the Washington Senators achieved the first shutout in American League history with Watty Lee pitching a 4-0 game to the Boston Americans?

API collects statistics, too, and some of them track gasoline prices at the pump all the way back to 1918.

U.S. Annual Pump Prices

Here are some facts from API's weekly Pump Price Update for May 13, 2009:

  • In March 1918, motorists paid $1.417 per gallon for regular gasoline.In current dollars (March 2009), this is equivalent to spending $3.406 today.
  • The average U.S. retail price for a gallon of regular gasoline today is $2.240, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
  • The price of regular gasoline is nearly 40 percent lower today than one year ago.
  • In April 2009, the taxes collected on a gallon of gasoline were estimated by API at approximately 45 cents--18.4 cents per gallon in federal taxes and 26.6 cents per gallon in state excise taxes on average.

Right now the administration and Congress are considering proposals that could place new taxes on the oil and natural gas industry. Historically, new taxes have tended to put upward pressure on prices. If you don't want higher energy taxes, contact your elected officials by clicking here to learn more and take action.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jane Van Ryan was formerly senior communications manager and new media advisor at the American Petroleum Institute (API), where she wrote blog posts and produced podcasts and videos. Before coming to API, Jane managed communications for a large science and engineering corporation, and for a top-tier research and engineering university. A few years ago, you might have seen her in your living room when she delivered the news on television. Jane officially retired from API in 2011 and now freelances as an independent communications consultant when not gardening at her farm in Virginia.