Washington gas prices climb amid uncertainty with Russia
Mar 3, 2022, 3:28 PM | Updated: Mar 4, 2022, 7:53 am
A surge in crude oil prices brought on partly by Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine has sent gas prices skyrocketing across the country, and Washington has not been spared from that trend.
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At this time last year, regular unleaded gasoline in Washington averaged $3.12 a gallon, according to data from AAA. Currently, the state is averaging $4.10 a gallon at the pump, trailing only California, Oregon, and Nevada, with even higher rates in large cities like Seattle.
As of early February, gas in the Seattle metropolitan area averaged $4.12 a gallon, before rising to $4.28 in March. Comparatively, San Francisco is now averaging $5 a gallon, breaking the city’s previous all-time high of $4.73 set in October of 2021. In Portland, residents are reporting a handful of gas stations charging upwards of $6 a gallon.
Nationally, gas prices have been rising for the better of the last two-plus months, with the beginning of Russia’s incursion into Ukraine sparking even more dramatic increases.
“The Russian invasion of Ukraine has sparked high-level concern that oil production could eventually be stifled, or even sanctioned, from the world’s second-largest oil producer, leading to less supply as demand grows,” GasBuddy analyst Patrick De Haan said in a recent blog post.
In total, Russia provides roughly 10% of the world’s crude oil supply, with Windermere Chief Economist Matthew Gardner predicting last week that increased prices at the pump were likely to occur in the ensuing days of the conflict in Ukraine.