Metro Vancouver gas prices could hit $1.54 a litre by the weekend: GasBuddy

Metro Vancouver drivers could see $1.60 a litre by summer

If your tank is looking empty, you’d better fill up now as gas prices are forecast to hit 154 cents a litre by the end of the week.

“I’m leaning 75 per cent that we’ll be $1.54 by Saturday or Sunday,” said GasBuddy senior analyst Dan McTeague.

“I would refer to it as a chronic shortage and it isn’t going to change anytime soon.”

Currently, gas prices are sitting at 148.9 cents a litre in Metro Vancouver, including the region’s gas taxes, and are expected to hit 150.9 cents by Wednesday – 19 cents above this time last year.

“With average consumption… that’s $500 more a year for a conservative driver,” said McTeague.

GasBuddy had predicted peak Vancouver gas prices of $1.52 in their annual gas forecast and McTeague said he didn’t expect to see prices top that so early in the year.

READ: B.C. gas prices to hit highest levels in years

He noted that the region gets its gas from just a few sources: the Parkland refinery in Burnaby and a few refineries down in Washington State.

The Burnaby refinery has been down for long term maintenance for weeks.

“They suggested that the down time would be anywhere from three to six weeks; we’re into their fourth week and it’s likely to stay down for another two to three weeks,” said McTeague.

Compounding the issue is that two of the four Washington State refineries that supply B.C. are scheduled to shut down in 26 days.

The Parkland shutdown is raising prices by five to seven cents, McTeague said.

But even if the Burnaby refinery does reopen soon, any relief that Lower Mainland drivers feel will end soon: April 1 marks the introduction of a new $35 a ton increase to carbon taxes and soon after that, more expensive summer gasoline hits the pumps and summer driving demand traditionally pushes up prices.

“We’re going to see days where we hit near $1.60 a litre, I have no doubt in my mind,” said McTeague.

“That will exceed all time records.”

The highest gas prices McTeague remembers seeing are in the mid-upper 1.50s in 2013.

McTeague said he doesn’t see any quick fixes.

He predicts that Lower Mainland drivers will continue to head south of the border to fill up their tanks, even as places like Whatcom County in Washington State are seeing a 20 cent gas price surge in reaction to more and more Canadians heading down to fill up.

It’s not a recent problem, he notes.

“We’re reaping a very bitter harvest, mostly as a result of not forecasting or taking into consideration the population growth in our region,” said McTeague.

“You can’t displace the importance of diesel or gasoline to an economy like B.C.’s.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Drugs and guns seized by Chilliwack Mounties in complex case

Drug trafficking investigations led to five arrests in three different locations across Chilliwack

Chilliwack RCMP trying to catch robbery suspect

Police hope someone will identify the person who appears in security camera footage

Chilliwack churns out new generation of wildfire fighters

School district partners with B.C. Wildfire Service to prep Grade 12s for careers

Bucket-list flight for Chilliwack grandmother

Hampton House resident treated to a beautiful plane ride in Moments that Matter

UFV introduces first mindfulness graduate program in Canada

Most of the University of the Fraser Valley program is offered online

Protective human chain forms around Victoria mosque for Friday prayer

Islanders stand arm-in-arm to show support in aftermath of New Zealand shootings

LETTER:Chilliwack trustee says dress code quotes out of context

Furgason says he wants to hear from parents, not union head

‘Families torn apart:’ Truck driver in fatal Broncos crash gets 8-year sentence

Judge Inez Cardinal told court in Melfort, Sask., that Sidhu’s remorse and guilty plea were mitigating factors

Boy who went missing from park remains largest probe in Victoria police history

The four-year old Victoria boy went missing without a trace on March 24, 1991

Six ‘distraction thefts’ in two days spark warning to seniors by Vancouver police

Distraction thefts are used to steal jewelry off the necks of unsuspecting women

WestJet sticking with Boeing 737 Max once planes certified to fly

WestJet had expected to add two more of the planes this year to increase its fleet to 13

Motorcyclist dies after three-vehicle crash on old Island Highway

Accident happened at 12:15 p.m. Friday near Country Club Centre in Nanaimo

B.C. driver caught going 207 km/h on motorcycle along Okanagan Highway

A motorcyclist was caught by Kelowna RCMP going 207 km/h on Highway 97C

Protective human chain forms around B.C. mosque for Friday prayer

Vancouver Islanders stand arm-in-arm to show support in aftermath of New Zealand shootings

Most Read