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Drop In Tulsa Gas Prices Due To Switch From Cleaner Burning Fuel

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AAA says Tulsa has the lowest gas price in the nation right now. The going rate right now is $2.99. AAA says Tulsa has the lowest gas price in the nation right now. The going rate right now is $2.99.
"Everybody thought it was the right thing to do, including Quik Trip, and the economics at the time were affordable, but things have changed," said Mike Thornbrugh, of Quik Trip. "Everybody thought it was the right thing to do, including Quik Trip, and the economics at the time were affordable, but things have changed," said Mike Thornbrugh, of Quik Trip.
"We do think the program made a difference," said INCOG's Air Quality Manager, Nancy Graham. "We do think the program made a difference," said INCOG's Air Quality Manager, Nancy Graham.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

AAA says Tulsa has the lowest gas price in the nation right now. The going rate right now is $2.99.

Some of that is because of a big shift in strategy for clean air. Tulsa stations are no longer selling a cleaner burning fuel that also costs a little bit more.

The prices are down at the pump, compared to just a month ago.

"[I] just got back from Wisconsin and noticed a big difference from the time we left to the time we got home," said Kim Jones.

The lower prices come at a time when Tulsans usually pay more for a special blend of gasoline. For the last 12 years, regardless of grade, Tulsa stations were selling a cleaner burning, but more expensive blend of gasoline.

"Everybody thought it was the right thing to do, including Quik Trip, and the economics at the time were affordable, but things have changed," said Mike Thornbrugh, of Quik Trip.

The program that created Tulsa's summer blend of gasoline started in 2001. It changed the formula of gasoline sold from May through September and added six to 10 cents a gallon to the cost.

The change away from using what's called a "boutique" blend will save drivers money.

"To use the boutique fuel, it's much more expensive, and now that we have one standard in Oklahoma, it's made a huge difference, no question about it," Thornbrugh said.

It was the Indian Nations Council of Governments that led the effort on the special blend for Tulsa.

"We do think the program made a difference," said INCOG's Air Quality Manager, Nancy Graham.

Graham said newer cars are so much less polluting, it makes the blend of fuel less important.

"The fleet of vehicles in the Tulsa area has been changing and getting cleaner," she said.

While Tulsa is back to using the regular blend of gasoline, it's still likely Tulsa will get close or go over the government standard for ozone, so the Ozone Alert program will continue.

And when Ozone Alerts are called, they still ask people to drive less and avoid mowing and that sort of thing.

INCOG says, overall, the air quality is improving. We stay near the government limit, only because that standard keeps moving higher.

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