Why is gas so expensive? Gas prices up 89 cents gallon over last year

Leada Gore
al.com (TNS)

As anyone who has filled up their tank can tell you, gas prices just keep going up.

And – thanks to global unrest and increasing demand – the sky-high trend will likely continue for a while.

According to tracking site GasBuddy.com, the national average gas price has climbed for the eighth consecutive week, rising 3.2 cents from a week ago to reach $3.52 per gallon.

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The national average is up 20.7 cents from a month ago and 88.9 cents per gallon than a year ago. The national average price of diesel has spiked as well, increasing 5.7 cents in the last week to reach $3.93 per gallon, the highest since May 20, 2014.

Increasing concerns over Russia and Ukraine are pushing prices higher, according to said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.

“With tensions still very high that Russia may invade Ukraine, gasoline prices kept moving higher, tugged by the rising price of oil as the market concentrates on possible outcomes from the situation that could affect global oil production amidst recovering demand,” DeHaan said. “The weeks ahead could be rather ugly with rising prices, especially if Russia pursues a strong-arm invasion of Ukraine.”

Demand for gas continues to rise. Nationally, weekly gas demand rose 3.1% from the prior week.

Prices in Pennsylvania and the rest of the country: Across Pennsylvania, the most common gas prices ranged between $3.60 and $3.80 per gallon this week — a bit more than the prices seen in most neighboring states.

Just across the state line, in Parkton, Md., the average gas price was $3.63. West Virginia, meanwhile, reported gas prices in the $3.25 to $3.35 range.

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Nationwide, the average cost at the priciest 10% of stations stands at $4.39 per gallon, down 1 cent from a week ago, while the lowest 10% average $3.07 per gallon, up 3 cents from a week ago.

The states with the lowest average prices: Oklahoma ($3.17), Arkansas ($3.18), and Mississippi ($3.18). The states with the highest prices: California ($4.72), Hawaii ($4.49), and Oregon ($3.96).

In Alabama, the average current price for a gallon of regular gasoline is $3.291, according to AAA. A week ago that average was $3.267; a year ago it was $2.369.

This article contains additional staff reporting.