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Why Is Gas In Europe So Much More Expensive?  
User currently offlineNYCFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1388 posts, RR: 9
Posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 4006 times:

People have touched on this question in a few other threads in the past, but I've never understood why gas is so much cheaper in the U.S. compared to Europe. Anyone have exact figures? Is it more than twice as expensive in Europe? Why is this? It's the same oil companies, same gas.

37 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7643 posts, RR: 35
Reply 1, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 4003 times:

Taxes I would assume. In Germany they pay 73% taxes/litre where as in Canada we only pay 43%. I'm sure there are other factors as well, depending you're region.


A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineSabena332 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 4000 times:

Yes, this ridiculous high taxes are the reason. As ACDC8 already wrote in reply #1, in Germany we have to pay over 70 Cent taxes per liter.

And when you think that gas is cheap in the USA, you should go to Dubai. I never saw such incredible low gas prices in my life, so a taxi ride there cost you almost nothing.

Patrick


User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8735 posts, RR: 42
Reply 3, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 3988 times:

Personally, I can't say I'm too sad about the high gas prices. I use public transport all the time, so of course the problem of paying for gas doesn't arise. The high prices do however reduce the joyriding and post box runs people do in their cars, which is a good thing. Sure you're all entitled to go wherever you want in your cars, gas-guzzler or not, but I think it's just plain stupid to cruise through town with your stereo all pumped up for nothing but looks.


Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineFDXMECH From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3251 posts, RR: 34
Reply 4, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3966 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 3):
I can't say I'm too sad about the high gas prices. I use public transport all the time,

Thing is though, high fuel prices affects all modes of transport, public and private. As well as heating/cooling your home. Not to mention industry is also hurt.



You're only as good as your last departure.
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7643 posts, RR: 35
Reply 5, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3961 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 3):
Personally, I can't say I'm too sad about the high gas prices. I use public transport all the time, so of course the problem of paying for gas doesn't arise.

That may be true, but how many times has Deutsche Bahn jacked up their fares in the last couple of years? Especially the short commutes.



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 6, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3951 times:

FDXMECH: Thing is though, high fuel prices affects all modes of transport, public and private.

The less the more effective they are. And public transportation is usually a lot more effective than a single person driving a big car.


FDXMECH: As well as heating/cooling your home.

Taxation is different for that. Which is why heating oil is tainted with a red colour - relatively easy to check if somebody is driving his diesel car with it...


FDXMECH: Not to mention industry is also hurt.

Ditto, plus there are partial subsidies for compensation.


Overall the high prices have been one of the driving factors for the substantial progress in efficient technologies coming from europe, as well as renewable energy technology.

It´s not always pleasant, but necessary.


User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17784 posts, RR: 46
Reply 7, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3928 times:

"Overall the high prices have been one of the driving factors for the substantial progress in efficient technologies coming from europe, as well as renewable energy technology.
"

And sluggish growth/high unemployment in Europe as well...



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8735 posts, RR: 42
Reply 8, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3926 times:

Quoting FDXMECH (Reply 4):
Thing is though, high fuel prices affects all modes of transport, public and private.

Well, you're of course correct. However, the price of that semester ticket will rise €10 each semester for the next five semesters, which isn't pretty but still dozens of times cheaper than owning and driving a car.

Quoting FDXMECH (Reply 4):
As well as heating/cooling your home.

LOL... didn't even think of that! My rent includes heating and water (and cable TV, for that matter) and the part about increases of the heating bill is nowhere near worrying. Big grin



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8735 posts, RR: 42
Reply 9, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3921 times:

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 7):
And sluggish growth/high unemployment in Europe as well...

Sorry, but that's incorrect. The British are paying high prices for gas, too, and enjoying a steadily growing economy.

The high additional cost of labour is a more important problem in Germany, as is the overwhelming bureaucracy keeping many people from running succesful small businesses.



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 10, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3920 times:

MaverickM11: And sluggish growth/high unemployment in Europe as well...

Subsidizing oil consumption is obviously not a viable long-term strategy either, especially when you consider the ecological and military implications with their resulting costs and damages.

You can pay now and invest in replacement strategies or you can pay a lot more later when you have to import new technologies from abroad...


User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14129 posts, RR: 62
Reply 11, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3901 times:

Quoting FDXMECH (Reply 4):
As well as heating/cooling your home.

Houses here tend to be quite well insulated (double glazed windows, rock wool / fibre glass insulation on the walls), also the boilers are usually quite efficient modern designs. Then alternative energy sources, like using the heat of sun light or geothermal energy are becoming more popular for keeping the houses warm. A friend had a 200 mtre hole drilled in his garden. He pumps water down, which comes up much warmer. The heat gets concentrated with a heat pump (works a bit like a refrigerator) and is used to keep his house warm in winter and to heat water for bathing. He didn´t have to buy oil since 6 years and the small amount of electricity the system uses for pumping is neglegible.

Cooling houses by air conditioning systems is not very much used around here, even though it can get quite warm in summer (up to 40°C or well into the 100°F). We rather live with the heat and enjoy it.

Jan


User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17784 posts, RR: 46
Reply 12, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3886 times:

"The British are paying high prices for gas, too, and enjoying a steadily growing economy."

It would be steadily growing MORE if its life blood was not as highly taxed.



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8735 posts, RR: 42
Reply 13, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3884 times:

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 12):
It would be steadily growing MORE if its life blood was not as highly taxed.

That's an automatism you'll have to prove in case you want me to believe it.



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineFDXMECH From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3251 posts, RR: 34
Reply 14, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 3860 times:

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 11):
Houses here tend to be quite well insulated (double glazed windows, rock wool / fibre glass insulation on the walls), also the boilers are usually quite efficient modern designs.

Same over here.

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 11):
Cooling houses by air conditioning systems is not very much used around here, even though it can get quite warm in summer (up to 40°C or well into the 100°F). We rather live with the heat and enjoy it.

I think it gets quite a bit hotter with very high humidity here as compared to Germany.



You're only as good as your last departure.
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13170 posts, RR: 15
Reply 15, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 3845 times:

The reason for gasoline being so much more expensive in Europe vs. the USA is Taxation. Current exchange rates, fewer competitive companies, less pressure on price competition all add to the difference too. In the USA, at $0.50 - 0.70 a liter ($2.00 - 2.80/US Gal., prices vary by state due to transportation, state taxes, regionalized less polluting fuel blends) vs. $1.20-1.50/liter ($4.40-5.90/US Gal. in Western Europe. With current unfavorable exchange, your talking about taxation about 3 times higher.
The history of much higher taxation on gasoline (or petrol for you Brits) in Western Europe goes back to just after WWII. Times were tough in Europe. They were in massive need to rebuild after the war. Almost all of Western Europe's oil came from the Middle East and even from the USA then. You needed to hold back demand for oil and hense exporting of money. For those whom know your Post-WWII Euro economic history, you probably recall of the UK's 'export or die' policies, to hold back goods from their citizens (like cars and gas for them), ration and activily conserve oil demand so they could export more to other countries, including the USA, and get income or goods needed from the USA and other countries to recover from the war.
Over the years, the Suez crises of the mid-1950's, led to rationing of fuel in Europe then. The 1973-74 oil crises led to the doubling and tripiling of barrel prices from USD $2.50/BBL to about $5.50 - 6.00/BBL, adding to the need to reduce imports of oil and export of money. Over the years, increasing social services needs like medical care, pensions and welfare also added to the demands for more tax income for governments and raising taxes on gasoline like a 'sin tax' to conserve the export of money and hense encourage more conservation.
In the USA, unlike Europe, we depised rationing by government, had fast increases in oil demand and the ability to serve it, large domestic supplies until the 1960's, cheap imports, poor mileage, large engine cars, long distances that meant low oil/fuel prices were needed.


User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 3834 times:

Quoting FDXMECH (Reply 14):
I think it gets quite a bit hotter with very high humidity here as compared to Germany.

Dont make me laugh, go to Phoenix, San Diego, Chicago in July, Atlanta, Miami etc. and you will see what it feels like. Step outside in Vegas in July and you will not stand 5 minutes before you run to your AC unit.


User currently offlineLAS757300 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 261 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3816 times:

The Europeans will be able to adjust better than Americans if oil ever hits $100 per barrel. A significant porition of the European population could live without an automobile. The only American's I know who could do without their cars live in NYC and Chicago.


KMSP
User currently offlineSCCutler From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 5581 posts, RR: 28
Reply 18, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3812 times:

Quoting LAS757300 (Reply 17):
The Europeans will be able to adjust better than Americans if oil ever hits $100 per barrel. A significant porition of the European population could live without an automobile. The only American's I know who could do without their cars live in NYC and Chicago.

Specious nonsense.

If oil hits $100/bbl, people will adapt, consumption will be reduced, the market will (as it always does) adapt.

It won't be fun. But that's OK, a little adversity will be educational.

I live in Dallas, and if I needed to, I could do quite nicely without a car most of the time. Bus to work, no problem.



...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14129 posts, RR: 62
Reply 19, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3807 times:

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 16):
Dont make me laugh, go to Phoenix, San Diego, Chicago in July, Atlanta, Miami etc. and you will see what it feels like. Step outside in Vegas in July and you will not stand 5 minutes before you run to your AC unit.

Actually, I´ve been both in Morrocco in the Sahara desert (dry heat) and in the Philippines in rural areas (humid heat) and could do very fine without air conditioning, as could the majority of the respective local population.

Jan


User currently offlineLAS757300 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 261 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3807 times:

SCC-

Nonsense.

Sky high gas prices would kill the suburbs. When I'm from (suburban Minneapolis) most people commute by car to their job. Building a decent public transportation system would cut it. The population simply isn't dense enough and the streets are extremely pedestrian unfriendly.



KMSP
User currently offlineSCCutler From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 5581 posts, RR: 28
Reply 21, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3804 times:

LAS, I think we are agreeing here.

The dramatic increase in cost would force adaptation, and better long-term planning.

Like I said, no fun, but it'd work out. It always does.



...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
User currently offlineLAS757300 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 261 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 3803 times:

Europeans, for the most part, would have a much easier time adjusting. The cost of transportation would rise but it would be a picnic compared to what would happen here. I mean, how would you like to be the owner of a home 50 miles from downtown Dallas if gas prices double? I'm sure he'd be hurt a lot more than some guy living on the outskirts of Munich or Paris.


KMSP
User currently offlineScotron11 From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2004, 1178 posts, RR: 3
Reply 23, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 3780 times:

Don't forget we have very high road taxes here as well. I have a 1.6liter car which carries a £165/yr ($300) road tax and in addition I'm hit with gas costing £0.85/litre ($6) a gallon (Imperial).

Tax percentage is over 75% and they want to raise it! I guess it pays for our politicians, as we never see government getting any smaller!


User currently offlineFDXMECH From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3251 posts, RR: 34
Reply 24, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 3736 times:

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 19):
Actually, I´ve been both in Morrocco in the Sahara desert (dry heat) and in the Philippines in rural areas (humid heat) and could do very fine without air conditioning, as could the majority of the respective local population.

People from the dawn of time have lived without air conditioning. But what's the point? If you don't want it, don't get one. If you can do fine without it, that's great.



You're only as good as your last departure.
25 FDXMECH : I'm not so sure. I'm from the suburbs and most people who work in NYC take the bus or train. There's always a solution.
26 NumberTwelve : Hmmm, DC8, it seems as if this was a rhetorical question. So let me answer to your precise question: About 2 to 7 times, depends what „couple of ye
27 Post contains images Checkraiser : You can look at at that way but please bear in mind if we Americans had these nice big fancy Euro-style transportation systems somebody has to pay fo
28 Pope : "The power to tax is the power to destroy."
29 Mirrodie : the boilers are usually quite efficient modern designs Yeah, no kidding/. We just saw a house in our neighborhood being sold. It has radiant floors a
30 MaverickM11 : "That's an automatism you'll have to prove in case you want me to believe it" I believe that the growth in US GDP is forecasted to be .8 points lower
31 Daedaeg : Europeans have high gas taxes which go to social services like higher education, healthcare, etc. Americans for example, on average pay more out-of-po
32 Post contains images Kaddyuk : It seems that the UK economy is stronger than the US at the moment... Sure its not growing fast, but better to be growing at a small rate than no rat
33 Jwenting : nonsense. It's been a major factor in hampering European economies. The only ones who make any money are the governments as usual. Far less growth th
34 Aviationfreak : I think in the Netherlands we are screwed the most. Apart from the fuel price which is already heavily taxed, we have to pay so called road tax. The f
35 Mikeyboy : they gotta subsidise the illegal immigrants somehow!!!!!!.... n fuel we cant do without!!! sickening!
36 Mikeyboy : or it could be that we need to pay really really high wages to those numb nuts in brussels that say bananas have to be straight!!!!!!!!......
37 Jwenting : and of course to subsidise farmers (mostly french farmers, they get something like 70% of all EU money through stupid political work by the rest of t
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