Say No to Plastic Straws

Drake Smith, News Editor

There has been a recent push for the United States government to change regular gas to 95 octane, or what is currently premium gas in the U.S.. 87 Octane is the current regular gas with 89 and 91 being the inbetween options. 95 octane gas costs close to 50 cents more a gallon, but experts argue that it’s added benefits would ultimately cost consumers less. 95 octane improves gas mileage and lowers emissions, which would benefit consumers more in the long run. As Dan Nicholson, General Motors’ vice president of global propulsion systems put it: “If it is done in the right framework, it could have a lot of value for customers at a low rate if we pick the right octane level. If you go too high, it’ll get expensive. But if you pick the right one, it will actually work for customers.” He also suggested that there is an estimated 3% increase in fuel economy, which is more noticeable than you might think. Critics argue that increasing the fuel octane only makes sense if the cost is lower. David Filipe, vice president of Ford’s powertrain engineering explained that the idea only makes sense if the increase in fuel cost is less than 5 cents a gallon. 95 octane also serves as regular fuel in many European countries. So what do you think, is it worth an increase in gas prices to run a cleaner, more efficient variant of gasoline? Or is 50 cents a gallon too much to justify changing it?