UTAH (ABC4) – As gas prices continue soaring throughout the country, a new record high for diesel has been reached on Tuesday.
According to GasBuddy, diesel prices have now reached an average of $5.16 per gallon, marking a new all-time high.
The lofty number surpassed the previous diesel record high of $5.15 per gallon, originally set on March 10.
Experts say a second record has been set as well — diesel prices are now $1 per gallon higher than gasoline prices. The previous gap record hit a 98-cent difference, which was set back in November 2008.
“While gasoline prices get much of the attention, diesel, which broadly is the fuel that moves the economy, has quietly surpassed its recent record high as distillate inventories, which include diesel and jet fuel, have plummeted to their lowest level in years,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “Should distillate inventories fall another five million barrels, which is less than five percent, they will be at their lowest level in nearly 20 years, compounding the problem. There’s no quick solution as the economy has seen a robust turnaround, made worse by Russia’s war on Ukraine as the West fences off Russia’s oil.”
Gas and diesel prices skyrocketed across the country in mid-March due to sanctions imposed by lawmakers in response to Russia’s war on Ukraine. According to AAA, as of April 29, the average price of gas in Utah currently sitting at $4.48 per gallon, 33 cents over the national average price of gas in the U.S. which is currently $4.15.
Experts say the continued stiff pricing of gasoline and oil will continue holding firm due to ongoing war escalations along with “plunging inventories of oil and refined products.”
Increased demand for oil and diesel compounds the issue further as demand for shipped goods remains popular as ever. Transportation of these goods typically relies on diesel-powered vehicles such as semi-trucks, trains and ships.
“Diesel prices in the Northeast are likely to rise above any other region due to the loss of refining capacity from both Covid-induced shutdowns and a 2019 fire at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery in 2019,” says GasBuddy.
Experts say these issues have resulted in the loss of nearly half a million barrels in refining capacity.
“Diesel prices are likely to remain at a substantial premium to gasoline as imbalances persist, however, refiners are likely adjusting yields to produce as much diesel and jet fuel,” says GasBuddy. “Economics favor production of these refined products and refiners chase the higher market value of these fuels.”