Gas prices to spike ahead of the long weekend
Published Friday, May 17, 2019 11:44AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, May 17, 2019 1:54PM EDT
Cottage-goers in the GTA are in for another expensive long weekend as gas prices are set to increase for a second straight day.
Gas price analyst Dan McTeague, with GasBuddy.com, is predicting another two-cent jump overnight to 130.9 cents-per-litre — that’s on top of a two-cent increase on Friday.
McTeague believes the incremental increases are having a broader financial effect on drivers
“This is really having a cascading effect,” McTeague told CTV News Toronto “And while we can’t blame any one particular group the reality is Canadians are feeling really hard pressed [and] affordability is a huge issue.”
A new survey by the Angus Reid Institute, released Friday, found that more than a quarter of Ontario drivers are “struggling to afford gas” and are changing their habits to save money.
The polling firm’s online survey heard from 1,921 Canadians between May 7 and 10 on the rising costs of gas prices and affordability, including 479 people in Ontario.
A majority of Ontarians who responded, 69 per cent, say the recent spikes in gas prices have been “major” with 31 per cent saying just filling up the tank has been a struggle.
Thirty-one per cent of respondents say say they’ve cut down on their daily driving in an effort to save money, while 20 per cent say they’ve bought less gas over the past three months.
Most Ontario drivers, 71 per cent, also believe the recent jumps are a sign of a permanent increase in the average price of gas — higher than the national average.
Ford gov’t winning carbon tax communications war
Ontario gas prices increased by 4.3 cents-a-litre last April as the federal government slapped a carbon tax on provincial emitters.
In 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned provinces that did not crack down on carbon emissions that a federal carbon backstop would be applied — increasing the consumer cost of gasoline and home heating.
Premier Doug Ford has repeatedly labelled the levy as the “job killing carbon tax” while his government has taken Ottawa to court over the constitutionality of the carbon tax.
Ontario has also embarked on a multi-pronged public relations campaign against the tax with radio, television and social media ads while forcing gas station owners to place anti-carbon tax stickers on fuel pumps.
The Angus Reid survey found Ford’s strategy may be paying off, with 51 per cent of respondents in Ontario saying government taxes - such as the carbon tax - is to blame for higher fuel prices.