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Red Deer Reality Rant #12 - Gas Buddies

Hello there, it’s good to be back here for yet another Red Deer Reality Rant, a matchless blog only on Brutal Reality Digest. I suppose it’s a bit of bragging to say matchless considering that there are some ways to get your info about Red Deer issues. But who can trust social media these days anyway? There are likely more reputable news sources, but this blog is not about current news and events. It’s a rant written from my perspective and lightly researched.

It’s not news to anyone that gas prices have hit a new extreme. Most gas stations in Red Deer are charging 191.9 cents per litre. Although this is a ridiculous price, we’re a bit more fortunate in Alberta than other provinces whose prices average $2.12 a litre while prices have skyrocketed in past weeks to 234.7 cents per litre in Victoria, B.C. I attempted to do the math for the cost of oil that is then refined to gasoline and sold wholesale but quickly discovered that there are too many other factors that go into the price of gas at the pump. Below is a chart with a breakdown of how gas prices work.

As you can see, how much oil is worth versus how much the tax is in terms of percentage, they are the largest contributing factors in the price of gasoline. (Source: I looked into the price of oil per barrel for the last 25 years and found that prices have fluctuated a lot with the highest price being in May of 2008 at $139.66 per barrel. Prices at the pump were not as high in 2008 as they are now, but they were similar in terms of inflation and refining costs.

It seems to me that the real cost problem here is not the price of oil itself, or the fault of the gas stations or the refineries. If we want gas prices to go down, it will be up to the government to lower the tax because the taxes make up to 35% of the price of gasoline, if lowered there would be ample change to prices at the pump. I highly doubt the government is willing to do that however, as gas price revenues must be huge!

Again, I believe that there is a lot of profit being made here from the failings and vices of Canadians. Alcohol, gambling, legal drugs, they all have enormous taxes. Apparently, with high gas prices, driving a gas guzzling truck has become a vice as well as a detriment to the environment and a minor annoyance to me personally. I realize that all of these economics and politics are extremely complicated, but really, paying through the nose for gas doesn’t seem like it’s beneficial to anyone except the oil companies themselves and the government.

Our Premier had promised to lower gas prices last month, and he did, but now it’s higher than it’s ever been in Alberta and worse in the rest of Canada. For a handy tool to check gas prices all over Canada I discovered this website: That’s my parting gift in this blog, and the hope that someone with influence might read this blog, and make things better for Canadians, Albertans, and in turn, Red Deerians.


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