British Columbians fuelling up in metro-Vancouver are having a rough go of it. By mid-May, it cost slightly over $100CAD to fill up a mid sized sedan. Prices peaked at just over $1.70/L, and stood in stark contrast to the prices advertised just a short drive across the United States border.
The gas crisis that the BC lower mainland is a result of a couple of factors, the chief one being a supply deficit:
The vast majority of the fuel supply in BC originates from Alberta bitumen, meaning most of the fuel that British Columbians use comes through the Trans-Mountain Pipeline (the one the current NDP Premier is dead set against expanding).
Alongside Premier John Horgan’s staunch opposition to that one solution for the gas crisis, he doubled down in his virtue signalling against Albertan energy by filing a lawsuit. It didn’t fly far however, as the court ruled against Horgan seeking regulation power over pipeline inventory in a 5-0 decision.
Provincial gas taxes coupled with the carbon tax and a plethora of other fees and taxes also add more than $0.50/L to the price at the pump.
In reaction to these market and government decisions, British Columbians are fleeing the province’s oppressive fuel market for greener pastures. Across the border a gross 70 Canadian cent disparity exists at the pump, saving some Canadians thousands of dollars throughout the year, sending untold capital across the border, never to return.
I spoke to some of them about why they’re making this trek, and who they believe is responsible.