Archive for Saturday, May 18, 2013

Gas prices approach record highs

May 18, 2013


Let the grumbling at the pumps commence.

Just in time for Memorial Day weekend, gas prices have jumped by more than 50 cents the past two weeks in Kansas to $3.91 a gallon. Gas in Lawrence was seen at $3.89 a gallon as of Saturday.

Chief Oil Analyst for Tom Kloza said a “perfect storm” of events has caused the large price spike in the Midwest, about a 16 percent price increase in Kansas since May 1.

“This isn’t your normal run-of-the-mill gas spike,” he said. “It’s not crude- or demand-related. It’s purely on refinery operations, but it’s nothing collusive.”

Kloza broke down the anatomy of the spike.

He said that while crude oil production in the U.S. has reached its highest level since 1992, the amount processed this year dropped to its lowest levels since 1990, caused by higher-than-normal maintenance levels and the retooling of many refineries to more effectively process Canadian crude oil.

Then came recent unexpected problems at refineries in Illinois, Wyoming, Indiana and the HollyFrontier oil refinery in El Dorado, further driving down production.

“All of that coming in a three-week span created some panic and fear,” he said. “Nothing will drive up prices like something like that.”

Ask Minnesotans who are now paying $4.28 a gallon. Prices have breached the $4 mark in Iowa, Nebraska and North Dakota.

Gas prices could continue to rise in Kansas in the near future and even approach the record state gas price average of $3.96 set in June 2008.

But Kloza did say the spike would likely begin to subside by mid-June once maintenance and repairs are completed at the various plants.

“I would suspect whatever you pay next week, you are going to pay substantially less when you get to the summer driving season.”

This is good news for area residents with summer plans.

“It really has affected me in all ways,” Justin Ballock, of Eudora. “I’ve cut back on trips to the lake.”

Ballock hopes that once gas prices fall, he can make it out to Clinton Lake and dust off his jet ski.

“They’re fun but expensive,” he said.


thebigspoon 11 months ago

$3.23 in Tampa Bay Florida over the past weekend...


Liberal 11 months ago

The "newest" refinery in the United States began operating in 2008 in Douglas, Wyoming. However, the newest significant (or sophisticated) refinery began operating in 1977 in Garyville, Louisiana.

Capacity has also been added to existing refineries through upgrades or new construction. The most recent examples include:

In 1998, Orion Refinery massively upgraded and reopened a refinery in Norco, Louisiana, which was a small, simple refinery that originally opened in 1967. (It is now owned by Valero.) Valero opened a "new" and very sophisticated refinery in 1983 in Corpus Christi, Texas, on the site of a simple refinery that originally opened in 1975.


Shane Garrett 11 months ago

The facts are facts and it is all George Bush's fault. Obama is supporting electric cars, therefore gas companies are having to make their huge profits now, before they go extinct. Come on people, the Tesla only cost around 65,000.00. Wait a year and buy a used one for 45. I know I have that much cash lying around since there is little else to invest in. Oh, wait... the tax man got it all. Never mind.


Paver 11 months ago

I wonder how much of this could be buffered if there weren't 30+ mandated blends of gasoline being used throughout the country. I still call shenanigans but can't help but think all the different blends set the table for these issues.


jhawkinsf 11 months ago

I ride my bicycle past the gas stations all the time, seeing gas prices soar. I'm seldom outraged though.


Armstrong 11 months ago

There is no more $change we can believe in - it's all going to fill our gas tanks.


melott 11 months ago

Ever notice how the Lawrence gas prices all jump at once on Friday after the dealers have their weekly lunch? No, no price fixing involved....


tomatogrower 11 months ago

Gas companies are a monopoly, but with little or no regulation, like utilities. We have created a world dependent on oil, but we allow the oil people to set the prices. They raise prices, make excuses, then report record high profits, but there's nothing we can do, because we need their oil. And they always make sure they don't raise the prices too high, to cause a rebellion and calls for government take over. And the sad thing is, they actually get government welfare in subsidies. What a scam.


oletimer 11 months ago

i grow tired of big oil mouthpieces trying to convince the public of all their "problems" at the refineries. This is all purely greed on their part. To have a product and be able to price it high and still sell it is any business owner's dream. Unfortunately this dream cost the American public billions of dollars. Between corporate greed and "investors" helping them drive prices higher, we get screwed every time we fill up.


Tammy Copp-Barta 11 months ago

It's ridiculous they can jack the gas prices up for graduation and holiday weekends like that. Thought they want people to travel more and keep boosting the economy!! Can't very well do that if I have to spend so much on gas .. guess I'll just stay home and save my gas to get to work this week ...


Armstrong 11 months ago

What's all the worry. Barry has a green plan, remember he's been selling it to us the last 5 years. Who needs gas.


smileydog 11 months ago

Obama's "Peoples Car," the $45,000 Chevy Revolt makes me laugh when I see the gas prices inflate.


SFFMassSt 11 months ago

Petro wouldn't be so high if the government didn't take such a large cut of the action off the top.

Soft tyranny is evident everywhere in America.


Chris Beilman 11 months ago

Gas spikes right through the farm belt during planting season .... hummmm !!! No wonder our food prices keep going up. Intentional ???


lionheart72661 11 months ago

Kinda strange since crude was on the decline and just now has gone up by a small margin. All it boils down to is corporate greed!


JJE007 11 months ago

I pulled up to the pump. I got rear-ended. My tank was filled up but it all ended...up on the ground...then ALL ground the conflagration...of broken rules.


jazzttt 11 months ago

Paid $3.139 at Wally World in S.Central Ark for a fill-up yesterday, including their store credit card discount. I think it's up about 10¢ only in the past week, nothing like what Lawrence is seeing.


Deadzone 11 months ago

It does not take a psychic to recognize price gouging.


kernal 11 months ago

Just be glad we still aren't paying what Europeans have to pay these days.


riverdrifter 11 months ago

This is big oil manipulation. Nothing to with supply and demand. "It’s purely on refinery operations, but it’s nothing collusive" What turnip truck did this guy fall off of?!


irvan moore 11 months ago

the part I find interesting is that gas goes up 10 or 12 cents a gallon at a time and comes down 2 or 3 cents at a time


Alceste 11 months ago

Oh. The horror. 55mph on K-10. The horror. Let Alceste know kt starts.....


shorttrees 11 months ago

I cry BS on this, and wish that the local reporters would actually dig for the meat of a story rather than taking the word of a single source.

If it's because of problems at refineries in Wyoming, Illinois and Indiana (as well as the Kansas one in El Dorado), why does Wyoming have some of the cheapest prices in the U.S., and why are prices overall cheaper in Indiana and most of Illinois than here?? Why does Lawrence seem to maintain some of the most expensive prices in the state, as an average running 15-20 cents above those in Topeka? Keep in mind we can all check these prices at the website run by the source quoted in this story.


skull 11 months ago

No parties involved, just the annual "maintaining" of record high profits.


Tony Kisner 11 months ago

What with Obama and his oil buddies. Oh sorry Bush and his oil buddies..... forgot the party talking points.


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