by Sabrina Schnur, Las Vegas Review Journal, June 4, 2022
Las Vegas gasoline prices set a new record high Saturday.
The cost of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in Las Vegas has reached $5.37 per gallon, according to AAA. The price of gas is up three cents from Friday and 17 cents in the past week.
Nevada had an average cost of $5.44 per gallon, up 18 cents from a week ago, according to AAA. Washoe County currently has the highest county average in the state at $5.92.
The national average price for gas is $4.81.
“As a starving teacher, it’s getting harder and harder, but you just have to cut back on everything else and it’s sad,” kindergarten teacher Lisa Baker said Saturday afternoon at a gas station at Gibson Road and Las Palmas Entrada Avenue in Henderson. “I was thinking of all the things that I need to buy for my classroom, and I can’t do it. I mean, I can’t do what I used to be able to do.”
Baker lives in the Inspirada community where she cares for her mother. She teaches at Roberts Elementary School, which is about 10 miles from home. Some teachers have opted to leave the school and work closer to home because of rising costs, she said. Others have donated supplies to newer teachers to help out.
Baker spent nearly $100 Saturday to fill up her SUV and get a car wash.
“As much as I’d like to take a vacation this year, it’s got to be more of a staycation,” she said. “Everything has gone up because of the gas prices.”
Nevada, which also set a record Saturday, has an average cost of $5.44 per gallon, up 18 cents from a week ago. Washoe County currently has the highest county average in the state, at $5.92.
The national average price for gasoline is $4.81, according to AAA. Nevada trails only California, at $6.29, and Hawaii, at $5.47.
Georgia has the lowest price in the U.S., at $4.25.
A year ago, a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in Las Vegas, and Nevada, cost $3.65.
Daniel Min of Henderson said he is feeling lucky lately because he rarely drives. The California native moved to Las Vegas two years ago to avoid rising costs there.
“It is more expensive now than I remember from before moving here,” Min said of the valley’s gas prices.
People should buckle in for an expensive summer when it comes to their gas tank — mostly caused by a lack of refining capacity, according to Patrick De Haan, head petroleum analyst at GasBuddy.com.
With oil prices around $120 per barrel, Nevada will likely continue to see high prices at the pump because of a lack of direct access to oil and refining capacity, De Haan said.
“Over the last three years we have lost about a million barrels a day in refining capacity,” he said. “We’re still consuming about 8.8 million barrels of gasoline every day.”
Nevada is largely tied to Southern California refineries, and if any issues arise, $6 a gallon is “one of the cards in the deck,” according to De Haan.
Gasoline prices have continued to rise nationally since early March when the United States banned Russian oil imports due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, John Treanor, spokesman for AAA Nevada, said.
“Demand for fuel will remain high because of Russia,” Treanor said. “I wish we knew when the break would come. We just don’t.”