BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Gasoline prices continue to rise as the state rebounds from Hurricane Ida, but the reason for the increase at the pump goes beyond the storm.
The oil and gas industry was already hurting because of the pandemic and now with mother nature wreaking havoc on Louisiana, it’s causing a domino effect.
At the pumps, the prices are not what we’re used to seeing. For months gas prices have been rising and the supply has not been able to meet the demand of the consumer, forcing people to pay more at the pump.
“The Gulf of Mexico makes up a large portion of America’s oil and gas activities and the longer that the Louisiana coast takes to recover from Hurricane Ida the more gas prices will rise and rise and rise,” said Louisiana Oil and Gas Association (LOGA) spokesperson Stephen Lewerenz.
According to LOGA, many of the off-shore platforms were not damaged by Ida, but the industry is still reeling from the pandemic.
“With Port Fourchon and Grand Isle still operating at limited capacity, getting the platforms re-staffed has been a challenge,” said Lewerenz.
Three weeks after Ida’s landfall, a number of refineries in the state are still without power and according to experts, it’s creating issues for oil and gas activity like trying to get gas from the platforms in the drilling areas to the gas stations.
Lewerenz said as of now there’s no time frame on recovery helping drive those gas prices down.
“It’s very hard to say when we’ll see a great decrease in prices for weeks and months to come,” said Lewerenz.
As of now, the average gas price in the capital region is about $2.83.