Gas prices have dropped 20 and 30 cents a gallon in some places in the latest survey by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. DNR energy data analyst Brian Crowe says the drops are a delayed effect of warmer temperatures. Crowe says the gas prices usually go up quickly, and then go back down slower as suppliers have to sell off the more expensive gas they’ve purchased. Crowe says warmer temperatures in November and December led to larger supplies and now we’re seeing it impact gas prices.
Crowe says the largest gas price drops were in Council Bluffs, Waterloo, Dubuque and Des Moines — all seeing prices drop by over 10-percent. He says no metro area in the state experienced an increase in gasoline prices, which on average saw a price reduction of 22 cents per gallon.
Crowe doesn’t know if prices have bottomed out yet. Crowe says it’s hard to say how low prices will go, or how long they’ll stay low. Crowe says it’s again a matter of supply. Crowe says another warm stretch would help keep prices down.
Crowe says gas distributors will have to use of their stockpiles of the cheaper gas, and if temperatures stay warm, the price could drop again. Crowe says prices will hold steady as long as there aren’t any other disruptions in supply. The average price of a gallon of unleaded gas in Iowa was two dolars. That’s 23 cents below the national average.