U.S. Gas Prices Rise in Some States, Even After Biden’s 1 Million Barrel Release

By: Julia Mehalko | Published: May 28, 2024

Some gas prices in the United States have risen during a busy Memorial Day weekend travel, even though President Joe Biden recently announced he would be releasing one million barrels of gasoline in an attempt to lower gas prices around the country.

As many Americans travel around the country this summer, analysts have warned that gas prices could continue to rise — though the Biden administration has tried to stop this.

Michigan Sees Gas Prices Rise

Michigan is one of the main states that has experienced a rise at gas stations in this past weekend alone.

A view of a gas station seen in the daytime.

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According to new data from AAA Michigan, gas prices rose about 11 cents when compared to what they were a week ago. Now, a gallon in the state goes for $3.66.


An Increase From Last Year

This most recent increase in gas prices in Michigan was also compared to what was seen last year around this same time.

A close-up of a black gas pump in a white car in the daytime.

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This price increase in 2024 is still higher than 2023 by four cents. Though both timeframes dealt with a busy Memorial Day weekend travel, it appears this year still has seen higher gas prices.

An Expected Rise

Many analysts have previously come out to warn people in Michigan, as well as many other states, that they could see gas prices rise during the busy travel weekend.

A close-up of someone putting gas into their car at a gas station.

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A lot of travel can often result in gas prices climbing momentarily. So far, this has all panned out exactly as was anticipated.

Will Prices Fall?

Adrienne Woodland, a spokeswoman for AAA, explained why costs at gas pumps rose — and how they could fall again.

A close-up of a gas station checkout machine.

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“Memorial Day travelers in Michigan saw higher gas prices over the holiday weekend,” she stated. “If demand drops alongside falling crude oil prices, pump prices will likely follow suit.”

Other States Seeing Gas Price Rises

Michigan isn’t alone in seeing higher gas prices this past weekend. Memorial Day weekend travel also resulted in gas prices rising in many states, such as Minnesota, Florida, and Pennsylvania.

A close-up of cars stalled on a road in the evening during a traffic rush hour.

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As summer travel gets underway, these prices could stay high. However, during periods of low travel, there is a chance that prices will once again fall. It all has to do with demand.


Biden’s Release of 1 Million Barrels

Gas prices rising nationally in just the past weekend comes as the Biden administration announced its plans to release one million barrels of gasoline from its Northeast reserve.

President Joe Biden speaking into microphones in front of a podium.

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According to the Biden administration, this move was decided to try to help keep gas prices low during a particularly busy travel season this summer.


Increments of Sale

However, it should be noted that the release of these one million barrels isn’t happening at the same time.

A close-up of a person putting gas in their car using a gas pump.

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Instead, the sale of these barrels is going to be conducted in increments of 100,000 barrels. The sale will also occur from sites in New Jersey and Maine.


Criticisms of Biden’s Move

Some criticisms have occurred over Biden’s decision to release one million barrels from the Northeast reserve. Many analysts have claimed that this move likely won’t even drive down gas prices for most Americans.

A close-up of a person putting gas into their car using a pump.

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However, it could help lower prices in the Northeast. Other areas of the United States possibly won’t see these lower prices.


Gas Prices Could Rise High This Summer

Many analysts have anticipated that gas prices could climb steadily this summer if demand becomes very high. As summer begins — and the Memorial Day weekend does begin the summer season for some travelers — then higher prices at gas pumps could become normal.

A view of many cars and motorcycles on a road during the daytime.

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This mainly has to do with demand. As more people have anticipated traveling this summer for a vacation, and as road trips become more frequent, more gas will be used. As a result, prices will jump.


A Busy Summer Season?

Already, analysts have also claimed that the country could see quite a busy summer travel season. This could be seen in both air and car travel.

Many cars seen driving on the Golden Gate Bridge in the daytime.

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Each year since the COVID-19 pandemic wound down, more and more Americans have returned to traveling during the summer. The next few upcoming months have analysts predicting to see high activity in travel.


Gas Prices and Inflation

However, many consumers have become wary of what they spend their money on. High inflation has caused the prices of many items and goods to rise in price.

A close-up of the cost of gasoline at a gas pump.

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Analysts have claimed that Americans will continue to pay for gas, even if it gets incredibly high in price. This is because they have no choice, as people need gas to get where they’re going.