BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Good news for drivers — the national average price of gas is dropping closer to four dollars per gallon.

As of this week, AAA says the average dropped three cents, and is now at $4.08. New York’s is getting lower, too, but it’s still more than the national average at $4.18 per gallon.

Last year at this time, the national average was $2.87, while New York’s was not far off that, at $2.89.

Here are the average prices across upstate New York:

  • Batavia – $4.23 (down 5 cents from last week)
  • Buffalo – $4.23 (down 5 cents from last week)
  • Elmira – $4.13 (down 4 cents from last week)
  • Ithaca – $4.19 (down 2 cents from last week)
  • Rochester – $4.27 (down 3 cents from last week)
  • Rome – $4.22 (down 2 cents from last week)
  • Syracuse – $4.21 (down 4 cents from last week)
  • Watertown – $4.24 (down 4 cents from last week)

Ironically, the price of oil is up six cents since last week; AAA says it’s now $106 per barrel.

“Prices had dropped earlier this month after domestic crude stocks increased by 2.5 million barrels, followed by announcements that 180 million barrels would be released from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve over the next six months and the International Energy Agency would release 120 million barrels from its emergency reserves,” AAA says.

In order to further lower gas prices, President Joe Biden announced last week that the United States would be suspending the federal rule that prevents the sale of higher ethanol blend gas during the summer.

This type of gasoline, called E15, is normally not in use while the weather’s warm since there are concerns of it adding smog to the air. Typically, it’s banned from June 1 to September 15.

To compare, most of the gas used in the U.S. contains 10 percent ethanol, instead of 15. According to AAA, the higher-ethanol fuel “typically sells for 5 to 10 cents less per gallon than regular gas.”

It’s worth noting, though, that 12 percent of vehicles, including motorcycles and pre-2001 vehicles, aren’t designed to run on E15 gas. This list of vehicles also includes school buses, delivery trucks and ATVs.

“The announcement has helped ease some supply concerns, initially pushing crude prices lower,” AAA says. “Sanctions against Russian oil are likely to remain at the top of the EU agenda in the coming months, however, experts believe a complete ban is unlikely.”

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