States With the Highest Gas Prices

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5. Connecticut
> Price per gallon: $3.77
> Barrels produced, 2013: N/A
> Refining capacity (barrels per day): N/A
> Tax per gallon: 49.3 cents (3rd highest)

Connecticut drivers pay 49.3 cents per gallon in state gas taxes, the third highest in the nation. One factor contributing to the state’s high gas prices is the fact that the state imports all of its gasoline from other states, or from abroad. Overall high consumer prices may also play a role. As of 2011, Connecticut was the sixth most expensive state in the nation, as measured by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Of course, residents have the capacity to pay higher gas prices — Connecticut residents had a median household income of $67,276 in 2012, among the highest in the nation.

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4. New York
> Price per gallon: $3.78
> Barrels produced, 2013: 352,000 (26th most)
> Refining capacity (barrels per day): N/A
> Tax per gallon: 49.6 cents (2nd highest)

Like Connecticut, New York gas prices are driven in part by the state’s high taxes. Residents can expect to pay nearly 50 cents per gallon in taxes, more than in any state in the country except for California. Additionally, New York residents face some of the highest consumer prices in the country. In 2011, New York had the second highest price level of any state, behind only Hawaii, according to the BEA. Also helping to keep prices elevated is the sheer scale of the state’s demand for energy. Gasoline for New York is brought in from other states as well as imported from other countries. New York, in turn, distributes petroleum products to other states in the Northeast from New York Harbor.

3. Alaska
> Price per gallon: $3.84
> Barrels produced, 2013: 187.9 million (4th most)
> Refining capacity (barrels per day): 244,707 (14th most)
> Tax per gallon: 12.4 cents (the lowest)

Unlike other states with high gas prices, Alaska does not levy especially high gas taxes. As of the start of the year, residents paid just 12.4 cents per gallon in state taxes, the lowest of any state in America. Additionally, Alaska is a major producer of oil, with nearly 188 million barrels produced in 2013, more than all but three other states. However, Alaska’s high oil prices, and years of declining production, have likely contributed to high prices at the pump. While the state is a major producer of oil, it is only a relatively small refiner. Alaska ranks just 14th for overall refining capacity, and refiners often face high costs of operating in the state. These costs, in turn, may be passed on to consumers.

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2. California
> Price per gallon: $3.97
> Barrels produced, 2013: 199.4 million (3rd most)
> Refining capacity (barrels per day): 1.6 million (3rd most)
> Tax per gallon: 52.5 cents (the highest)

Several factors contribute to California’s volatile gas prices. While California was the third largest U.S. producer and refiner of oil in 2013, refiners still had to meet the state’s huge demand. Refineries in the state, therefore, operate at nearly full capacity at all times, which means that any problems can potentially cause huge supply disruptions and lead to jumps in prices. The state also has more stringent standards than the federal government for reformulating gasoline, which adds another layer of costs to the price of gas. This is independent of the taxes that hit consumers at the pump. California effectively charges more than 52 cents per gallon in state taxes, the most of any state in the nation.

1. Hawaii
> Price per gallon: $4.17
> Barrels produced, 2013: N/A
> Refining capacity (barrels per day): 147,500 (21st most)
> Tax per gallon: 49.1 cents (4th highest)

Hawaii customers pay $4.17 per gallon of gas, more than anywhere else in the country. This is actually down considerably from just last year, when the price of gas was $4.40 per gallon. Like in a number of other high-price states, gas taxes are especially high in Hawaii. On average, residents pay 49.1 cents per gallon, more than in all but three other states. Of course, Hawaii is further away from America’s oil production and refineries than anywhere else in the country. Its location leads to high prices for more than just gasoline. Without any hydrocarbon supplies of its own, Hawaii must import energy. With 70% of the state’s electricity generation powered by petroleum, electricity rates in the state are also extremely high. As of November, residents paid an average of 37.2 cents per kilowatt-hour of electricity, or more than double any other state.