Gasoline prices in the state and nation are hitting new record highs this week. On this Earth Day, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says he’s taking seriously the experts who estimate a little effort conserving gasoline could go a long ways toward making an impact.
"If we drove ten-percent less, we would be able to shove it to the oil companies in a sense. Drive down their profits, drive down the price of oil and it would make a big, big difference," Grassley says. Gasoline prices nationwide are averaging $3.51 a gallon, a new high.
Triple-A-Iowa says the statewide average is also at a record high of $3.46 a gallon. When Congress is in session, Grassley lives in Washington D.C., where gas is averaging $3.58 a gallon, 12-cents higher than in Iowa. Grassley says he sat down last night with his wife, Barbara, and they did some calculating.
Grassley says: "We figured, well, we drive 12 miles a day, coming to the office and going back, and that includes her office as well. That would be 60 miles a week. Then on Sunday, 14 miles to church and back is 28. That would be 88 miles. How could we save eight and eight-tenths miles? That’s what we have to do."
Grassley, who’s 74 and jogs daily, says he wouldn’t mind hoofing it a little to conserve fuel."I don’t know whether we can do it because, you know, you’ve gotta’ come to work. It’s two miles to the subway," Grassley explains, "my wife couldn’t walk that two miles but I could walk that two miles. So we’re going to have to see what we can do. I’m going to talk to my staff and see what they could do to cut down on ten-percent of their driving. It may not be possible that we could do that and still be working people."
Triple-A reports that diesel fuel is averaging $4.13 a gallon in Iowa, also a new record high.