Gas prices in Kansas continue their upward trend with an increase of 8.4 cents in the past week, according to updated figures from GasBuddy. Compared to a month ago, gas prices in Kansas are 32.8 cents per gallon higher and stand 30.9 cents per gallon higher than a year ago.
The latest figures, as of Monday, March 1, indicate the cheapest gas in the state priced at $2.27 for a gallon of regular unleaded, while the most expensive is priced at just over $3 at $3.04. That spells a difference of 77 cents per gallon.
In Barton County and neighboring Pawnee, Stafford, Ellsworth and Russell counties, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded is $2.55. Rice County is averaging 2 cents cheaper at $2.53.
Neighboring areas and their current gas prices:
Wichita - $2.58, up 19.0 cents per gallon from last week’s $2.39
Lincoln - $2.75, up 9.4 cents per gallon from last week’s $2.65
Topeka - $2.55, up 8.9 cents per gallon from last week’s $2.46
The national average price of gasoline has risen 7.5 cents per gallon in the last week, averaging $2.72 as of Monday. The national average is up 30.3 cents per gallon from a month ago and stands 30.6 cents per gallon higher than a year ago.
“Gas prices continued to surge last week following cold weather related shutdowns in Texas, but going forward, the impact from the cold has likely run its course,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy. “However, several other factors will rise in their influence on gas prices again, including the fact that gasoline demand continues (to pick) up steam.”
De Haan said last week’s total gasoline demand soared to the highest level since the pandemic began as COVID-19 cases continue to drop and Americans are filling up more.
“On the supply side, the number of oil rigs active in the U.S. stands nearly 50% lower than a year ago,” said De Haan. “That’s a large factor driving prices up. To put it simply, demand is recovering much faster than oil production levels, which is why oil prices have soared.”
He added that OPEC will be meeting this week “to hopefully increase oil production to temper the rise in prices, but will they increase oil production enough to match the growing appetite of a global economy that’s seen oil demand jump? We’ll have to wait and see.”