Pumping gas in metro Atlanta.
Photo: Getty Images / Sean Gallup
Photo: Getty Images / Sean Gallup

Atlanta gas prices at Reagan-era level (adjusted for inflation) 

There’s one reason to think about 1984 that has nothing to do with dystopian political literature. 

And everything to do with gas prices.

Here’s how: We’ve got congested roads, even with schools out and I-85 repaired. We’ve got tens of thousands of us heading for beaches and relatives and cross-country sight-seeing.

And so we’ve got hundreds of thousands of cars heading regularly for the pump.

May not be good for air quality, but hey, now that the traditional rise of prices for Memorial Day driving is past, have a look at those prices.

The average price for gasoline in metro Atlanta late Monday was $2.22 a gallon. That is six cents a gallon cheaper than a year ago, according to AAA. And it is also roughly what the price was in the spring of 2009 before prices started a steady climb toward a crest near $4 a gallon.

The current price is about 11 cents lower than the national average.

But you want to feel better than that. So adjust for inflation.

Enter Orwell. Or Ronald Reagan, who was about to win a landslide re-election in 1984.

According to the U.S Energy Information Administration, the current price is roughly a penny below the average regular price for 1984, once inflation is taken into account.

It is also about nine cents a gallon cheaper than the inflation-adjusted price for 1979, the government says.

The visible signs among global markets for oil and gasoline so far bode well for Atlanta drivers, said Mark Jenkins, spokesman for AAA. “As it stands right now, summer gas prices should remain at or below last year's levels.”

Atlanta price, one gallon of regular

Today 2.20

Yesterday 2.21

One Week Ago 2.25

One Month Ago 2.20

One Year Ago 2.29

Source: Gas Buddy

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