Ontario gas prices headed for major spike in wake of Harvey

Aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in Texas- the most powerful hurricane to hit the US in more than a decade

Fourteen oil refineries, representing around 30 per cent of all oil-refining capacity in the USA, have been closed because of the flood water that has devastated Houston and dozens of other towns along the Gulf of Mexico coastline, said Dan McTeague, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy.com.

Locally, prices across the Greater Toronto Area may hit between $1.329 and $1.339 per litre on September 2.

McTeague said Harvey-induced fears of potential gas shortages in the eastern US are mainly what's driving up prices this weekend in many eastern Canadian cities. Marie days before the long weekend and as of Friday at around 5:30 p.m. prices were as high as 135.9 cents per litre.

Gasbuddy.com reported a two-cent hike in the average Canadian price on Friday to nearly $1.18 per litre.

He said the only thing that could drive up prices in Western Canada would be if the entire eastern United States seaboard is hit with severe gas shortages and begins siphoning away gas from the U.S. Midwest market.

MONTREAL | up to $ 1.35 per litre for regular, the price of gas has suffered another dramatic increase in ridership in Montreal on Friday, with an average of 12 cents of the increase.

Vayu senior energy analyst Keith Donnelly
Vayu senior energy analyst Keith Donnelly

"Inventories are declining, wholesale prices are rising, and that will have an impact in Eastern Canada more than in Western Canada, just because of its proximity to that major market in the States", said Kent Group senior vice-president Michael Ervin.

"I would definitely. buy some gasoline", he said.

Average Canadian gasoline prices are set to soar this weekend after already jumping almost 10 cents per litre since Hurricane Harvey roared ashore in Texas a week ago.

Toronto's projected Saturday price represents a 22-cents-per-litre hike since last week, said McTeague. Now there is no indication the refineries have been damaged by the hurricane or resulting flooding.

"We got a big jump on the prices in Canada", McTeague said Friday.

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