I never thought I'd be cheering for gas under $3.60 a gallon, but I did driving through Lawrence today. Quite a few stations there are posting gas prices of $3.59 a gallon. And we can thank Beijing for that. While it may have been American consumption and worldwide speculation that spiraled our gasoline prices above the unbelievable $4 mark.. it is China's new pollution policy that's driving those prices down. (And wouldn't you know it, people are probably staying home nights to watch the games, and aren't driving as much.)
If you saw the Friday evening newscast on the Olympics network, you could barely see the opening ceremonies stadium they call the "Bird's Nest." Shrouded in foggy pollution, you get an idea of their dismal air quality. That's why China banned half of its country's automobiles from the highways in the weeks leading up to that opening ceremony, and shut down 40 factories that are some of China's biggest polluters. They're taking these drastic steps so visitors can actually see Beijing on the outside (and maybe give some of those track and field athletes a chance to breathe cleaner air when they run!)
With the drastic reduction in Chinese oil consumption, crude is down to $1.15 a barrel, trading briefly at $1.13. Labor Day may actually bring us an even bigger drop in gas prices for holiday travel. The experts say the impact of the Olympics combined with the world's supply and demand corrections this month, could send us back to the "old days" of $2.99 a gallon in September. Let me know what you think of that good news, and gosh, could America get by banning cars from the highways, and shutting down our biggest polluting factories?