Corn is likely one reason why gas prices have inched up lately, but there is another reason.
A petroleum analyst for the website gas buddy dot com says gas refiners are still in the process of shifting over to summer blend gasoline so states can meet federal air quality rules.
Greg Laskoski says using a baseball analogy, the refiners are in the "eighth inning". He says once completed, prices should level off. But a more likely cause in the recent spike was a more home-grown reason...a spike in ethanol prices. The popular lower grades of gas have ethanol...corn alcohol...mixed in. Laskoski didn't know the exact cause, but speculated it had something to do with transportation...
"....middle of the country, that is typically where we find the lowest priced ethanol, but the farther that has to travel, the greater the cost becomes...."
He says the some Midwest states have some of the nation's highest prices...
"....they are seeing more aggressive price increases than what we are seeing in the rest of the country. Right now the highest state average prices are in Hawaii, California, Illinois, Alaska and Michigan...."
Michigan's average price is $3.78 per gallon. In Wisconsin the average price is at $3.63 per gallon. In Rhinelander, most stations were at $3.73, Minocqua and Eagle River $3.74 and $3.56 in Antigo.