With gasoline prices rising and prompting President Obama to address the issue in a speech in Florida on February 23, Americans expect prices to continue to hike up, according to a recent survey.

The Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) Survey found that 62 percent of Americans expect a gallon of gasoline to be $5 or more within the next five years. Eight in ten Americans said that the country’s dependence on foreign oil was either a “crisis” or “major problem” and that the cost had become a “burden.”

Findings from the survey include:

  • 62% of Americans think a gallon of gas will cost $5 or more in the next 5 years. What’s more, 31% believe it will be $6 or more and more than 1 in 10 (12.4%) believe it will be $7 or more.
  • 82% see our dependence on foreign oil as a “crisis” or “major problem” and where you fall in the political spectrum is largely irrelevant €“ this view applies to 85% of Republicans, 80% of Democrats and 78% of Independents.
  • 78% called the amount of money they spend on gasoline a “burden” – with nearly half saying a “serious burden” and nearly two-thirds reporting they are taking steps to save on gas costs.
  • 67 percent of Americans say they have taken steps in the last 3 years to save gasoline (such as buying a car with better gas mileage or changing their driving behavior). Even more than 60% of those making over $100,000 annually reported taking action to reduce their gasoline use.
  • 55 percent of Americans believe that efforts to make greater use of energy saving technologies that help our country do more with less have been “positive” because they save money over the long run and make our economy more productive and competitive.  25 percent believe these efforts have been “negative” and 20 percent don’t know/not sure.

The AEE online survey of 1,004 adults was conducted from Dec. 6 through Dec. 7, 2011, by JZ Analytics. It has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percentage points. The survey was designed by AEE staff with fieldwork done by JZ Analytics. Full survey results are available upon request.