What's to blame for high gas prices?

In the U.S., they are fretting over the possibility of gas prices rising to as much as $ 5 a gallon. In Canada most of us are already there. U.S. lawmakers insist speculators-run-amok are behind rising North American gas prices. Today, we're looking at the cause of gas price hikes.

Part One of The Current


It's Monday April 2nd.

Many Canadians born after 1958 are angry the federal budget excludes them from two years of Old Age Security.

Currently, Canadians born before 1958 are angry about the new flag, immigration, gas prices, two languages on their cereal, the ban on studded snow tires and why Lady Gaga has to dress like that.

This is The Current.

What's to blame for high gas prices?

We started this segment with a clip from a driver lamenting the cost of driving around Vancouver, where a litre of gasoline costs between $1.34 and $1.41 a litre.

Across the country it is increasingly expensive to fill up. Drivers across Canada feel Vancouver's pain. In Toronto this morning one intrepid seller has priced gas at 50 cents a litre but only for a few hours and the average price is over $1.30 a litre today. And in Halifax, gas prices appears to be the highest at over the $1.40 a litre mark.

Well, when life gives you lemons...

In the US, high gas prices have led to demands for political solutions. There's a push for more domestic drilling and for the speedy approval of the Keystone XL pipeline to supply US refineries with Canadian oil.

But some U.S. senators blame oil speculators for the high prices. We heard from U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat and Bernie Sanders who is an Independent. They've introduced legislation aimed at limiting energy speculation.

Whatever the bill's fate, our next guest says anything that limits oil speculation is good news. Dennis Kelleher is president and CEO of Better Markets, a non-profit organization dedicated to Wall Street reform. Just last month, he testified before Congress about this issue. Dennis Kelleher was in our Washington studio this morning. And David Hughes is a geologist, formerly with the Geological Survey of Canada and a Fellow with the Post Carbon Institute who runs his own company called Global Sustainability Research Inc. He was in Cortes Island, British Columbia.

This segment was The Current's Pacinthe Mattar and Ellen Saenger.

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