Why gas prices could still be on the rise

Published: Jan. 29, 2023 at 5:37 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Since the start of 2023, the city of Lexington has seen a slight increase in gas prices. AAA Bluegrass Public Affairs Manager, Lori Weaver Hawkins, said that a big part of this is due to China’s economy reopening after being on COVID-19 lockdown.

“China is a big user of petroleum products, so a lot of petroleum use,” said Hawkins. “That’s affecting oil prices because of the laws of supply and demand.”

Oil makes up a large portion of gasoline in the United States. So when crude oil prices go up, the local gas prices tend to follow.

Another big factor of this increase in gas prices is the overall demand for gasoline, especially when Lexington’s winter weather has been permitting.

“When that happens people tend to get out and about more,” said Hawkins. “They tend to even work in maybe a long weekend trip somewhere, because they are less concerned about bad winter weather.”

While Lexington did see a decrease in gas prices over the summer and throughout the fall, this current spike in January has many Lexingtonians worried that this trend might continue upward.

“It shouldn’t be this high,” said driver Ruben Jacobs. “I mean we’re struggling as it is. Families are struggling, you know, a lot of people struggling out here.”

Many others are concerned with the gas prices simply because of the need to frequently drive their vehicle.

“I’m a brand new mom,” said driver Christi Truman. “Now I have to worry about getting my child to school, home from school, to the grocery store, and to all these places.”

Because of the many factors that play into gas prices, they can be hard to predict. But, keeping your car in good function might help you minimize trips to the gas station.

“A well-maintained vehicle will help you get the most gas milage that your vehicle can,” said Hawkins.

According to AAA, the current average gas price in Lexington is $3.15 per gallon for regular; almost 45 cents more expensive than last month.