Gas prices seen in Kelowna on Feb. 18, 2020. (Phil McLachlan – Kelowna Capital News)

Gas prices seen in Kelowna on Feb. 18, 2020. (Phil McLachlan – Kelowna Capital News)

Gas prices in parts of B.C. could reach $1.70 per litre by summer, analyst predicts

This week’s wholesale increase was caused by the deep cold in Texas and central U.S.

Drivers can expect a jump in gasoline prices this week, thanks to a five cent increase from wholesalers, analyst Dan McTeague said.

He expects most cities in B.C. to see a two-cent rise, but central B.C. could get more of a hit. Retailers there have been skimping their own margins to compete, but “some have now thrown in the towel and decided to increase by 10 cents,” he said.

This week’s wholesale increase was caused by the deep cold in Texas and central U.S., but McTeague sees market forces pushing prices higher mid-year.

By summer, McTeague estimates gas could be as high as $1.70-per-litre in the Lower Mainland, and $1.38-per-litre elsewhere in the province.

There are three factors leading to his prediction: summer driving demand, decreased global production and increased carbon prices.

Last year as the COVID-19 interrupted the world, producers got left with barrels selling at minus numbers and nowhere to store them to wait out the market drop. That’s made producers shy, and financiers hesitant to fund oil plays, McTeague said.

The NDP also has a scheduled carbon tax increase, which was postponed in 2020 due to COVID-19. Once things start getting back to normal, McTeague expects the government to double up the planned increase with two years-worth in one, for a total of 2.5 cents-per-litre.

B.C. is affected by two key oil markets. The Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island is fueled by the Pacific Northwest market, while the rest B.C. is supplied from the Trans Mountain Pipeline which is priced in the Chicago Spot Market.

RELATED: Canada Energy Regulator projects there may be no need for Trans Mountain expansion

zoe.ducklow@blackpress.ca


Gas prices

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Ladysmith’s famous Festival of Lights decorations are still up as of March 1, 2021. (Cole Schisler photo)
PHOTOS: It’s still looking a lot like Christmas in Ladysmith

Festival of Lights volunteers cannot remove the holiday roof top displays due to COVID-19

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Firefighters from three departments battled a house fire south of Nanaimo for more than nine hours Sunday. (Photo courtesy Martin Leduc)
Home in Cedar destroyed by fire

Firefighters from three fire departments battle blaze fanned by strong winds Sunday

Police have identified the vehicle involved in the Feb. 14 hit-and-run in Chemainus and are continuing to investigate. (Black Press Media files)
Police seize and identify suspect vehicle in fatal Chemainus hit-and-run

Investigation expected to be lengthy and involved

A boat caught fire in Ladysmith Harbour early on Saturday, Feb. 27. (Photo submitted)
Search underway for missing woman after boat catches fire in Ladysmith harbour

A large boat caught fire on the morning of Saturday, Feb. 27

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Det. Sgt. Jim Callender. (Hamilton Police Service screenshot)
B.C. man dead, woman seriously injured after shooting in Hamilton, Ont.

The man was in the process of moving to the greater Toronto area, police say

Wildlife advocate Gary Schroyen captured this picture of a one-year-old cougar in the Sooke Hills using a homemade trip camera. Vancouver Island is home to approximately 800 cougars, which makes up about a quarter of the total population in B.C. (Gary Schroyen photo)
Wildlife advocate Gary Schroyen captured this picture of a one-year-old cougar in the Sooke Hill using a homemade trip camera. Schroyen presents Animal Signs: The Essence of Animal Communication on Nov. 30. (Gary Schroyen photo)
Declining Vancouver Island cougar populations linked to wolves

Large carnivore specialist says human development still plays biggest role on cougar numbers

(Black Press file photo)
Child in critical condition, homicide investigators probe incident near Agassiz

The child was transported to hospital but is not expected to survive

Most Read