Nevada gas prices should stabilize after increases from Hurricane Harvey | NevadaAppeal.com

Nevada gas prices should stabilize after increases from Hurricane Harvey

Rachel Spacek
rspacek@recordcourier.com

Nevada residents are seeing an increase in gasoline prices at the pump this month in the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

Though Northern Nevada relies mostly on Northern California refineries for gasoline instead of the Gulf Coast, the state still experienced an increase in gas prices when oil refineries in Texas shut down production during Harvey.

The hurricane shut down around 25 percent of the U.S. refining capacity when it flooded Houston, driving the national average price of gasoline up almost 35 cents.

In Nevada, prices jumped almost 18 cents this month.

AAA Nevada spokesman Michael Blasky said Nevada was protected from the largest spikes in prices from Harvey because the region gets its gasoline from California but wasn't immune to the increase seen in the global market.

"An incident as severe as Harvey will have a big impact on the global supply chain, even if that region doesn't supply Nevada's gas," Blasky said. "Combined with strong summer travel demand on the West Coast, it means motorists in Nevada are seeing the highest gas prices in two years."

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Nevada residents are concerned with the increased prices and remain worried the price of gas in the area will stay high. However, Blasky said prices in the region are already falling and should stabilize in the next couple of weeks.

The national average gasoline prices increased 30.4 cents per gallon last month and prices are 48.1 cents per gallon higher than they were this time last year.

"Harvey may be long gone, but his wrath continued to drive gasoline prices up in much of the country in the last week," said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy. "However, the effects are finally starting to weaken as refineries return to production and fuel begins to flow once again from many Houston refineries."

As of Wednesday morning the lowest gas price in Carson City was $2.62 per gallon

"With summer driving season now over, motorists stand to benefit from falling demand, which will help refineries bring gasoline inventories back to normal and thus gas prices, but as many Americans are now acutely aware, the impact on gas prices can outlive a storm, especially one like Harvey," DeHann said.

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