CLEVELAND (WJW) — The price to heat homes and fill up gas tanks could be on the rise.
In a move that could send gasoline prices soaring, The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) announced it will cut oil production by two million barrels per day, the largest cutback since the start of the pandemic.
“It’s hard to predict what the impact will be on gas prices,” said Lynda Lambert, a spokesperson for AAA.
According to AAA, the national average for gasoline is $3.86 on Thursday. The Ohio average is $3.93.
“The fire at the Toledo Refinery last month, that refinery is responsible for refining 160,000 barrels of crude oil a day, so it is having an impact on regional prices,” said Lambert.
The fire created a price difference of 23 cents, Lambert said.
OPEC’s announcement and the possibility of a hike in oil costs could result in consumers paying more to use heating oil to heat their homes this winter.
Although many consumers use natural gas to heat homes, experts say prices could also fluctuate this winter.
“Natural gas prices are similar to gasoline prices in that it’s a commodity and it’s traded so there are going to be fluctuations based on supply and demand,” said Dominion Energy spokesperson Stephanie Moore.
President Biden said he was “disappointed” by the “short-sighted” OPEC decision. The White House cited gas prices are down $1.20 since the start of summer.
“If oil is released from the strategic oil reserves at some point in the next month, that could also slow down any price increase,” said Lambert.
The Department of Energy, at the president’s direction, will deliver another 10 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to the market next month.
To learn how to save on energy costs, go here.