Gas prices higher than state average in Northwest Colorado | CraigDailyPress.com

Gas prices higher than state average in Northwest Colorado

Janelle O'Dea

Craig residents who travel often may notice higher gas prices at Craig pumps than gas stations in other parts of the state.

According to data gathered from http://www.gasbuddy.com on Nov. 17, there was a 12 percent difference between the lowest unleaded fuel price in Grand Junction and the lowest unleaded fuel price in Craig.

GasBuddy’s weekly gas price update Nov. 17 quoted the average unleaded price in Colorado as $2.97 per gallon, and the lowest unleaded price in Craig on the same date was $3.19 per gallon.

GasBuddy.com functions was a "gas guide," where citizens self-report gas prices to the website to help others find the cheapest places to fill up. The website also has its own gas price tracking system.

There was only a 3 percent difference between the highest Steamboat Springs unleaded price and the highest Craig unleaded price.

Although she couldn't comment on specific market prices, Megan Elfers, vice president of marketing and communications for Kum & Go said gas prices are determined by a variety of factors, including location.

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"The price is driven by product cost, transportation costs and market dynamics," Elfers said.

Dennis Nuss, spokesman for Phillips 66, explained the gas price model in a similar way.

"Gasoline and crude oil are traded as global commodities, like wheat, orange juice and other goods," Nuss said. "Their prices are set on the open market, not by any single company or organization, and they are based on a number of factors both at home and abroad, including supply and demand and political unrest."

The American Fuel and Petrochemicals Manufacturers said the price of crude oil is 70 percent of what determines the price consumers see at the pump. The other 30 percent includes: federal and state taxes, 14 percent; marketing and distribution, 10 percent and 5 percent for the costs of refining.

Manager of Craig's west Victory Way Kum & Go, Lance Poole, said the company’s individual stations do not have any control over gas prices.

"They just get sent down to us," Poole said.

Although it may seem at times like gas prices are elevated in Craig compared to the rest of Colorado, Craig Loaf ‘N Jug manager Cindy Jones said prices aren't necessarily high compared to other states, or that's what customers have told her over the past few days.

"I've had people filling up before going home to Utah because it's cheaper here," Jones said.

The Loaf 'N Jug price Friday, Nov. 21 was reported to be $3.15 for a gallon of unleaded, while the lowest reported unleaded price on the same date in Vernal, Utah, was $3.27.

Contact Janelle O’Dea at 970-875-1795 or jodea@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @jayohday