Gas prices shot up across Canada on Saturday, with costs expected to keep soaring over the summer.
Rising oil prices, the value of the Canadian dollar and the 2010 introduction of the HST have been blamed for the skyrocketing prices.
“Even for someone who uses 60 litres a week like I do, you’re looking at an additional $500 to $700 a year more in costs just to get from point A to point B,” Dan McTeague, an analyst for GasBuddy.com, said to CTV Toronto. “And most people aren’t driving around for kicks and giggles. In fact, they need to get to where they have to go.”
West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil hit a three-and-a-half year high this week, climbing above US$71 per barrel.
This, combined with the blocking of pipelines causing the Canadian dollar to fall and taxes are all contributing to the price inflation, claims McTeague.
“If you go back to 2010, the provincial government added 14, 15 cent a litre when it decided to create a HST above the 6%,” McTeague added. “As prices go up, they go even higher here in Canada.”
And things could be set to get even worse this summer. McTeague predicted last month that Canada is likely heading for its most expensive summer in ten years in terms of gas costs, telling CTV Ottawa that “prices for fuel have nowhere to go but up.”
McTeague explained that the switch from summer to winter fuels will contribute to this, as it costs refiners more to add certain additives into the fuel mix to make sure it doesn’t evaporate under warmer conditions.
He added that drivers are making adjustments to combat the ever-climbing costs.
“I think people are driving much more efficient vehicles than before (and) I think people are using their fuel much more wisely, but this is really a sign of things to come,” he said. “The days of a dollar a litre are well behind us.”