Rising Gas Prices Affect Student Drivers


Erin Nicholson, Writer

Russia invaded Ukraine beginning on Feb. 24 2022. Though countries heavily oppose the war on Ukraine, a sovereign country, NATO countries (including the United States) have their hands tied. Since countries are unable or unwilling to physically combat Russia, they have relied on sanctions to overpower Russia.

Sanctions are economic punishments placed on countries or certain groups in support of political, social, or economic influences. In this case, the United States has put sanctions on Russian gas and oil, which means it is banned from being imported into our country. 

Thus, gas and oil prices have skyrocketed since the war began in late February. In Sonoma specifically, gas has jumped to over $5.70 per gallon. For student drivers, this rise in prices has caused stress and frustration. 

Many drivers at the high school are part-time workers, like Audrey Powers, senior. She 

Sean Tomany, senior, noted that as a student who lives across town from the high school, he finds it difficult to save gas because of his daily commute. Tomany stated, “I’m lucky that tennis practices at school, so I don’t have to worry about going back and forth as much.” 

On the other hand, there are students who don’t have a job and therefore find it difficult to budget for more gas. Yulianna Lopez, senior, shared that paying for gas has always been difficult for her. She adds that the rise in prices has made her more hesitant to drive for fun, and she’s become “hyper aware of the routes” she takes when going to school or running errands.

It’s unclear how long these prices will last, but it surely won’t be easy for many families and their commute to work and school. Some ways students can save gas are to ask friends and family if there are ways to carpool or trade-off driving days in order to conserve gas. 

Though the situation in Sonoma is not favorable, it makes the understanding of the impact of globalization all the more relevant.