|Published:||Feb 23, 2011 12:37 AM EST|
|Updated:||Feb 22, 2011 9:37 PM EST|
Gas prices rise as civil unrest sweeps across the Middle East.
On Tuesday a barrel of oil traded at its highest in two years.
A barrel costs more than $94.
It's causing a trickle down effect at our gas pumps.
The average price for a regular gallon of gas in Southwest Florida is around $3.15.
But, the price could get even higher.
"If we see continued upheaval in the Middle East we can expect worse things to come for the consumer," said Patrick Eakins, Vice President of Edison Oil and Company in Fort Myers.
Eakins says 51% of America's oil comes from the Middle East.
As civil unrest continues to grow in the area, so do gas prices.
"Already today we are looking at an eight to ten cent rise per gallon," Eakins said.
People living in Southwest Florida say any type of dramatic increase in gas would hurt them.
Donald Paul lives in Fort Myers.
On Tuesday he could only put $6 in his car.
"That's like the only thing I can afford just to get to A to B," Paul said.
If prices rise, he and other says they'll be forced to cut back, threatening the economic recovery.
"The food budget, whole nine yards would go down. Aint going to be afford to go anywhere. I'll sit at home," said another resident.
Some industry insiders anticipate gas costing $5 a gallon by summer.
OPEC says don't panic.
If there's any type of disruption at oil refineries in Libya, there's enough supply from other countries like Saudia Arabia.
Still, prices will increase it's just uncertain how much.
If you want to find the cheapest gas in your area, look under the "Traffic" tab on winknews.com