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Summer road trips partly to blame for escalating gas prices

Click to play video: 'Summer road trips partly to blame for escalating gas prices' Summer road trips partly to blame for escalating gas prices
WATCH: It was a reality check at the gas pumps Friday as many Albertans head into their summer holidays. Gas prices have jumped significantly at most stations – Jul 16, 2021

Gas prices in Edmonton and Calgary hit a record high Friday, as Albertans get ready for their summer road trips.

The average price for fuel was close to to $1.39/litre in Edmonton, while in Calgary it rose to $1.41/litre.

Dan McTeague, president of Canadians for Affordable Energy, said these prices are in record territory for Edmonton and Calgary.

Read more: Alberta budget benefits from oil prices no one had bargained for

Drivers like Kelsey Parsons said it’s a frustrating reality.

“I’m thinking of selling my car — not because of gas specifically, but other things.

Patrick De Haan, petroleum analyst with Gas Buddy, said the price spike is the result of a problem at a refinery in Edmonton.

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“There is a refinery issue at Suncor in Edmonton, which may be boosting prices, but we are seeing stations increase margins through that hike.

Click to play video: 'Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps?' Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps?
Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps? – May 13, 2021

But driver Chris Morton isn’t convinced the refinery issue is the only factor.

“Every time there’s a refinery issue, they jack them up. The gas isn’t that hard to get. We don’t have to outsource. They’re using that to gouge us again,” Morton said.

De Haan said it’s more about demand.

“Last year prices dropped under 70 cents because few people were going anywhere and demand was plummeting.”

“That fuelled declines in the price, but as we recovered, as vaccines have allowed the economy to reopen, Canadians have wasted no time hitting roads, getting out and about. That is spurring gasoline demand,” De Haan said.

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Read more: Albertans need to get used to paying higher prices at gas pumps: expert

Prices aren’t expected to go down anytime soon.

“We are within a week or two of seeing it plateau but they won’t go down significantly; they will stabilize,” De Haan said. “But then, into fall, we will see prices drop 10 to 20 cents a litre.”

Click to play video: 'Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps?' Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps?
Could ongoing pipeline disputes fuel a hike at the pumps? – May 13, 2021

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