“Defending freedom is going to cost,” said Mr. Biden following his decision to impose a ban on Russian oil imports in response to the ongoing war in Ukraine.
And rest assured it has already started to cost.
Gas prices have reached a record high of $4.33 per gallon, a spike surpassing the previous high seen in July 2008. Californians are paying as many as $7 to keep their four-wheeled best friends running.
Experts predict that gas prices will remain surging in the future and a dip below $4 is unlikely in the near future.
GasBuddy’s forecast of gas price topping $4.25 in May was already reached on Wednesday and is expected to stay elevated until November. The app suffered a crash at the beginning of the week amidst increased demands that caused the system overload.
With Californians leading the way, the highest gas prices were reported in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Hawaii, and Illinois. Oklahoma and Kansas were said to be at the bottom. The market remains volatile as the fighting in Ukraine continues, despite the fourth package of sanctions imposed on Russia.
The US decision to cut off Russian crude oil has already resulted in Americans paying the price of the move, even though the US imports a relatively small percentage of oil from Russia. President Biden’s decision was not warmly welcomed by the Republicans, who took the opportunity to launch criticism against the ban. The polls have shown that Americans support Biden’s decision regardless of the price hikes.
Need more money for gas? There are many different ways you can make some extra cash. You can start manifesting money into your life by not thinking about the obstacles but instead focusing on where you want to be.
US-Russian relations are not the only thing to blame for the spike. Inflation also needs to be factored in, affecting the prices of a wide range of goods across the country. Finally, as the US government eases Covid-19 sanctions, many Americans are taking the opportunity to make up for the last time and hit the road. Or, at least, they were doing so before the ban.
Europe may feel reluctant to follow suit due to being heavily dependent on Russian oil. It has been estimated that the European bloc gets around 40% of its gas from Russia. The decision to impose a ban on Russian imports would have a devastating effect on the Western economies, already weakened by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The White House announced it would be closely working with its European allies in creating a strategy to reduce Europe’s dependence on Russian oil. The UK has not presented its plan yet but has vowed to phase out the import of Russian oil and oil products by the end of this year. In a statement released on Twitter, Kwasi Kwarteng, the UK Business and Energy Secretary, said that “businesses should use this year to ensure a smooth transition so that consumers will not be affected.“
Given the circumstances, it remains to be seen how the governments worldwide are planning to ease the transition. Meanwhile, even though US crude oil settled at $15 per barrel on Wednesday, AAA representatives do not seem too optimistic about gas prices going down anytime soon.
CNN has been told that the national average gas price may surpass $5 per gallon if tensions in Ukraine continue to escalate. Still, even so, it is predicted that the average gas price will remain above $4 until the end of November 2022.