Kamloops drivers suffering from sticker shock at the pumps

By Greg Fry
November 1, 2017 - 4:17pm

KAMLOOPS — Events in the United States are to blame for a major hike in gas prices in Kamloops, up 18 cents to $1.259 per litre at some stations.

That from Dan McTeague, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy.com who notes the United States Midwest has seen gas prices shoot up almost 60 cents a gallon just in the past couple of weeks.

He says two factors are playing into this. First, a disruption in a major pipeline, the Explorer Pipeline, which happens to be a major supply of gasoline from the U.S. Gulf Coast into the Midwest Chicago market.

McTeague says the second factor at play is that four U.S. refineries have all gone into maintenance at the same time.

"Which of course means that there's been a bit of a pinch in the supply picture for much of the area bound by Ohio in the east all the way into Montana in the west. We follow that market in Kamloops. We get all of our gas from Edmonton and Edmonton always looks at the market prices out of Chicago futures markets for gasoline and it's that 60 cents a gallon working out to 14, 15 cents a litre that's really behind why we've seen a tremendous increase."

And finally, he says a weakening Canadian dollar is also partly to blame.

"As Canadians, we price all of our fuel in U.S. terms. The Canadian dollar hasn't done well in the past couple weeks, it's lost four, five cents in value. That's led to an additional 1.5 cent-a-litre increase for us."

McTeague says prices may increase another two cents a litre before all is said and done.

So, when will the increases end?

"That really is a fundamental question of when the situation in the U.S. Midwest improves. It'll take some refineries to come back online and the Explorer Pipeline to be repaired."


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