Crude oil supply fears because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are impacting prices at the pump.
The national average for a gallon of gasoline topped $4 for the first time in 14 years on Sunday, and prices could go even higher, officials said.
According to AAA, the average hit $4.009, making it the highest figure since July 2008, CNBC reported. The rising prices could top the record of $4.11, the news organization reported. Consumers are paying 40 cents more than last week, and 57 cents more than a month ago, according to CNBC.
The average price one year ago was $2.76 a gallon, according to CNN.
Eighteen states, plus Washington D.C., now have prices $4 or higher, CNN reported. States in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic, along with the West Coast, Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Illinois and Hawaii are reporting averages higher than $4 for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel.
Florida, Indiana and Michigan are less than a half-cent from the $4 average, according to CNN.
California tops the nation with an average of $5.288 per gallon, CNBC reported.
“This is not the end of it,” Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis for the Oil Price Information Service, which provides data to AAA from 140,000 stations nationwide, told CNN. “It’s absolutely out of control.”
Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates, predicted the national average will rise to $4.50 a gallon because of worldwide supply disruptions.
“Oil buyers are reducing their purchases of refined products from Russia causing Russian refineries to shut down,” Lipow told CNBC. “Dock workers are refusing to unload vessels carrying oil and gas. Insurance rates are skyrocketing causing vessel owners to cancel ship bookings loading in Russia and this is also impacting on the ability of Kazakhstan to sell their oil.”
Prices have risen because Russia is one of the world’s major oil exporters, CNN reported. Most of its output goes to Europe and Asia; Russian oil made up only 2% of U.S. imports in December, according to data from the U.S. Department of Energy.
But oil is priced on global commodity markets, so the impact on global markets is felt worldwide, the news organization said.
“When you get increases this quick, and this dramatic, you really scald the public,” Kloza told CNN.
©2022 Cox Media Group