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Petrol stations in the UK have noticed the volume of fuel that they sell fall significantly over the past five years as high prices have forced people to buy more fuel efficient cars, and drive less, in order to reduce their fuel bill. Petrol sales have fallen by more than 20% as oil prices have climbed to record highs.
A recent study by the Automobile Association (AA) shows that the total sales of petrol and diesel fuel around the country has fallen from 37.6 billion litres in 2007, to 34.2 billion litres last year. There has also been a shift in the mix of fuel that was sold, with more people preferring diesel cars now. In 2007 22.9 billion litres of petrol were sold compared to just 17.4 billion litres last year, whereas sale of diesel rose from 14.8 billion litres in 2007 to 16.7 billion litres in 2012.
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Edmund King, the president of the AA, explained that a “greater take-up of diesel cars and smaller petrol vehicles has contributed to this overall decline in UK fuel sales over the long term. However, soaring pump prices have taken a huge toll on petrol sales more recently – during the 10p-a-litre price surges last March and October, pump sales of petrol fell by up to five per cent.”
This trend to buy more fuel efficient cars in an effort to spend less at the pump is likely to continue as the price of oil looks unlikely to fall anytime soon whilst the world economy is still trying to recover from the 2008 crash.
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com