ATLANTA — You've probably noticed having to shell out more coins at the pump recently. All over Georgia, gas prices are surging as expensive oil pushes costs to new heights.
According to AAA, gas costs in the Peach state are pushing $4 per gallon statewide.
"Pump prices' sharp rise is primarily due to the Ukraine-Russia conflict, which is causing crude oil prices to climb above $100 per barrel," AAA-The Auto Club Group spokeswoman Montrae Waiters said.
Before the invasion, Russian oil and gas made up more than a third of government revenues, according to the Associated Press. With the United States and other European countries implementing sanctions on Russia following its invasion, the country has been restricted in its ability to sell crude oil.
On Tuesday, President Biden decided to ban Russian oil imports, which had been omitted from the sanctions initially put in place, according to another report from the Associated Press.
Only a fraction of our oil comes from Russia, but the U.S. doesn’t necessarily have to import Russian oil for it to impact our prices here. Since the price of oil is set at a global level, and any supply disruption or potential disruption will affect gas prices all over the world. That's why coupled with COVID pandemic strains, Russia's attack on Ukraine is causing costs to spike.
Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, claims Biden's move won't move the needle much more in terms of adding to the pain of prices.
"I don't expect the pace of increases to be as severe as what we've seen in the last week," he said.
AAA said the most expensive Georgia metro markets are in Brunswick at $3.94, Macon at $3.91, and Valdosta at $3.90. The least expensive include Rome at $3.77, Gainesville at $3.79, and $3.81 in Dalton.
In Atlanta, the average is around $3.87. Experts at GasBuddy report the cheapest station in Atlanta was priced at $3.03 on Sunday, while the most expensive sat at a whopping $4.89.
"There are few words to describe the unprecedented rise in gasoline prices over the last week, with massive spikes coast to coast in both gasoline and diesel prices, as oil prices jump to their highest since 2008," De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy.
However, this issue isn't exclusive to Georgia. The entire nation is feeling the pressure in their pockets due to rising gas costs. GasBuddy said the national average price of gasoline has risen 46.5 cents per gallon in just the last week.
"Forget the $4 per gallon mark, the nation will soon set new all-time record highs and we could push closer to a national average of $4.50/gal. California could be heading for $5.50 per gallon with more stations charging $6 and beyond," De Haan added.
AAA is encouraging those who are looking to save money at the pump to try and shop around for better gas prices in their area if they can. People can also consider paying cash instead of a credit card since some retailers charge extra per gallon for card services.
Other ways to save money include combining errands to limit driving time, vehicle maintenance to ensure optimal fuel economy, and just flat out slowing down. AAA said fuel economy diminishes "significantly" at highway speeds above 50 mph.