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‘THIS IS CRAZY’: Gas hikes, shortages as further record prices loom

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The war in Ukraine and carbon tax expected to continue to drive up pump prices

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GTA gas prices are once again expected to reach record highs at 1.75 a litre, but gas analysts see potential for prices nearing $1.90 a litre in the not-too-distant future.

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“This is crazy. This is nuts. What the heck is going on,” said Bill Petrie, who pulled into Pioneer Gas at Gerrard St. and Main St. only to find they were out of gas.

“I guess the war in Ukraine is the reason behind the gas price spike,” he said.

Some stations ran out of gas as people stocked up before Thursday morning’s sticker shock.

“It’s difficult to get gas today,” said Natalie Hollinshead, who said it usually costs about $80 to fill her tank.

Now it costs her $100 to fill up.

“It’s not surprising given everything that is going on in the world,” said the mother of three, who said she needs her van to make it through the day.

The cost at the pump is expect to continue to rise by as much as eight cents into Friday.

Natalie Hollinshead was astonished to find out there was no gas available at the Pioneer gas station on Gerrard St. E. and Main St. on Thursday, March 3, 2022. JACK BOLAND/TORONTO SUN
Natalie Hollinshead was astonished to find out there was no gas available at the Pioneer gas station on Gerrard St. E. and Main St. on Thursday, March 3, 2022. JACK BOLAND/TORONTO SUN

More upward pressure will remain.

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“I wouldn’t be surprised to see $1.90,” said Dan McTeague, from Canadians for Affordable Energy, which runs the website ‘Gaswizard.ca.’

“This is a true oil shock that the world is about to suffer and most of it is self-inflicted,” he said.

McTeague said he expects much higher diesel costs to ripple through to all prices.

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Add in the shift to a more expensive blend of summer gasoline and an April 1 hike of the federal carbon tax, and “I think we have the making of the perfect consumer storm and it’s not going to end very well,” he said.

The short- and long-term forcecast looks far from encouraging.

“It’s pretty high. I don’t like it. But under the circumstances with the war there’s not much I can do.” said David Crichton, who arrived to pump gas at an empty station.

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Kathy Glazer-Chow pumps premium gas into her Toyota and at an Esso station at Danforth and Victoria Park. Ave. on Thursday, March 3, 2022. JACK BOLAND/TORONTO SUN
Kathy Glazer-Chow pumps premium gas into her Toyota and at an Esso station at Danforth and Victoria Park. Ave. on Thursday, March 3, 2022. JACK BOLAND/TORONTO SUN

At another location, Kathy Glazer-Chow said she was concerned about inflationary effects.

“It’s a necessity. It’s like milk, it’s like bread, it’s like butter. I need my car,” she said as she filled her tank.

“I feel bad for people who have minimum-wage jobs who need their car. I don’t understand what they’re going to do,” she added.

Petrie said he does not understand why Canada does not rely on its own energy reserves.

“We have all these gas reserves out west. Why can’t they build a bloody pipeline to bring it here so we don’t have to rely on Russia or Saudi Arabia,” he asked.

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