Iraq crisis raises concerns about gas prices

By Terry Kovarik |

Published 06/18 2014 06:22PM

Updated 06/18 2014 06:45PM

GREEN BAY (WFRV) Anyone pulling into local gasoline stations knows a good part of their paycheck goes to keep their fuel tanks full.

"Sixty-bucks. But I have to drive around a lot, especially to classes and to work. And it definitely takes its toll," said Sara Collins of Marquette, MI, who stopped at Astor Park Mini Mart to fuel up.

Now insurgents battling government forces for control of Iraqi, which supplies three-percent of the world oil market. So, that's raising concerns about oil supply disruptions and higher gasoline prices.

"Crude oil's trading for around 106-dollars a barrel today as opposed to 100-dollars just two weeks ago," said Erin Roth, Executive Director of the Wisconsin/Minnesota Petroleum Council.

The prospect of paying more for gasoline has some customers looking at further prioritizing their spending.

"When you have family that drinks milk at the same price as your gas, it's kind of scary that you're choosing what to put milk in your fridge or gas in your car," said Hannele Jarsagary, who topped off her mini van at Astor Park Mini Mart.

But Department of Energy studies show a flat demand for gasoline in the U.S. In addition, oil production in North Dakota is now at one-million barrels a day, which can supplement other nearby crude oil suppliers to the Midwest.

"In terms of supply, we are very fortunate to have North Dakota and Canada as our main suppliers of crude oil," Roth said.

That can keep gasoline supplies and Wisconsin drivers going.

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