Couple cancels wedding due to gas prices

June 10, 2008 9:46:50 AM PDT
Everyone said it would happen and it finally did. The national average price for gasoline is now more than $4 a gallon. Drivers around the country and here in Houston are feeling the pinch. And it's going to get worse.

Analysts say prices could hit $4.40 a gallon in the upcoming weeks. Some people in Houston are already making drastic decisions, including a couple putting off their special day.

For Ashley Rodriguez and her fiancé Tony Chavez, the ever-increasing price of gas has had a simple and life-altering effect.

"It's keeping me from having my dream wedding," she said. "I want to save money for my wedding, but with gas prices, it's like I'll never have my wedding. It's pretty horrible."

Her situation is devastating for the young couple, but not surprising to Matthew Simmons. As founder of the world's largest energy investment banking company, he's been writing and talking about a worldwide oil shortage for years and says we could be on the cusp of a major crises.

"We are right on the bubble of having the lowest amount of usable gas and diesel in the United States," he said. "All we need is the threat of shortages and everyone will top of their tanks, and we'll drain the gasoline supply."

Even with that dire prediction, Simmons says gas in America is still a bargain. To prove that point, he plans to reimburse his employees a dollar a gallon for the gas they use to commute to work.

"That basically works out to be $80 a year," he said.

And this oil expert says any proposed solutions from politicians and oil companies are unrealistic.

"I'm just a realist," Simmons said.

He says the only options to make up for the rising prices are to travel less or grow food at home.

For a young couple living in an apartment, Rodriguez and Chavez can't drive less nor grow their own food, so one thing suffers.

"She wants to get married by next year, and in truth we don't know if we can do that if the gas prices keep on going up," Tony Chavez said.

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