Big Oil Gouging Canadians During Christmas – Gas Prices shoot up for Holidays – Maybe it’s time to boycott them? December 25, 2010 – Cornwall Ontario – POLL

Cornwall ON – Canadians are fuming as the Oil Companies are gouging the public during the holidays.

Gas prices have crept over the $1.15 mark here in Cornwall Ontario and over $1.20  in Montreal just in time for Christmas when people travel a whole lot!

As the markets concern have many investors shifting to oil driving barrel prices over $90, prices at the pumps are shooting up; literally.

Thursday saw prices jump up nearly 8 cents per litre or over a whopping 30 cents per gallon.

Ironically, just over the border in Akwesasne prices have been stable at $3.18 per gallon .84 cents per litre.    Canadian money is at par at all of the gas bars on the highway 37 strip with many offering free bridge passes with a $30 fill up which would drop the price down to about 71 cents per litre Canadian.

Why is it that the exact same gas from the exact same refinery and via the exact same distributors has such stability less than 1 mile from Canada?

So I suggest to my fellow suffering Cornwallian that it’s time to perhaps send a message to the oil companies right across Canada, but starting here in Cornwall.

There’s no reason for such gouging and as the government makes so much money on taxes we can’t count on them to create a device to protect consumers.

Why not simply boycott gas here in Cornwall?   Or maybe pick one gas company per week?  For example let’s nobody buy a drop of gas from Petro Can in Cornwall until the first week of January?  After that maybe Shell?

There has to be some way to stop companies from abusing the public during holidays or any time?   We’ll be updating this story as it evolves.

You can post your comments below, and please vote in our poll.

Should the Government Create Laws to Protect Consumers from Gasoline Gouging?

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  1. I’m not crossing the bridge just to get gas. I’ve already boycotted getting gas from anywhere except Canadian Tire….for many reasons. Esso is too bloody expensive all the time. Every time we’ve put McEwen crap in our tank…our vehicle stalls out or something. With Canadian Tire, they have awesome Canadian Tire money multipliers in every week’s flyers…that Canadian Tire money adds up big time! If we had a better transit system (like Ottawa)…one that ran 7 days a week and all over Cornwall….I wouldn’t even use a car and would therefore boycott getting gas completely!

  2. What happened to your drive to buy local? Trust me, you are not hurting big oil… just the local owner/manager and their employees.

  3. Author

    Hey I’m asking questions. It’s rarely that the “local” gas stations in our city have any say in the price of gas. This is about finding some possible solution about gouging. If this was food instead of oil would we tolerate it?

  4. I hate how gas prices are through the roof its stupid and for the person that would go to macewen to get gas the reason y if car would stall with macewen gas was cause the trucks they use to deliver regular gas in is the same ones they use for there diesel fuel and they never clean the tanks

  5. Author

    how on earth would you know that? I’ve used McEwen gas and have never had any issue with their gas at all? I actually prefer them when I buy locally.

  6. Take a close look into the Markets regarding the ppb of fuel, thrn see associated hedge funds driving the rates. It is not all and only big oil

  7. Author

    That’s true smee and again, if this was food instead of oil would or should we stand for it? Last year some games were being played with cocoa beans. A few years ago there was a play on rice.

    We can’t allow every segment of our lives and society to be corporated.

  8. Price fixing is considered a serious crime but the laws against it are rarely enforced. Why are the oil companies gouging us? Because they can.

  9. “Supply And Demand” and “What The Market Will Bear”… these are the tenets of a “free” market.

    But the meaning of “free”, is quite different for humans and corporations. For while the freedom of a Canadian or resident is limited by the constitution, to what can be, “demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society”, corporations are not so fettered.

    Corporations profit according to free market tenets, while our citizens go off, bleeding and dying to protect the civilization that keeps them in business, and they will even suck the pockets dry of those left at home… What sacrifices are corporations and business making in a time of war, unemployment and poverty?

    And what hope is there that our government — which funds its every fiscal error with extra taxes earned on each hike — will bite the hand that sustains its wasteful ways and party coffers?

    And over and over, the wasted ink and breath, as politicians and the mainstream press join in our chorus, but all the while grabbing a piece of the action for themselves.

  10. I don’t think it’s the oil companies at all. It’s the local Cornwall retailers that are gouging us. When Shell and Esso went up to $1.14.9 and $1.15.9 respectively followed by McEwen, Seaway and some others, gasoline was still selling for $1.08.9 at McEwen and Esso in Lancaster just a bit down the road. I know that because thats where I gassed-up. I don’t think you can lay blame for this one on “Big Oil” but on your local Cornwall “honest” gas station owners.

  11. Sorry, Cornwall Harry, but you’ve got it wrong. Cornwall retailers are not price gouging. Retailers are at the bottom of the oil ”food chain”. They’re lucky if they make 4 cents of profit per litre… it’s often less than that.

    The situation you mentioned is not uncommon. There could be a slew of reasons for why they had been at a cheaper price… the first one being they hadnt received a fresh load of new (more expensive) fuel. Even if only one of them had, there is no way that gas station could hike its price 7 or 8 cents while the other remained the same (because they would then be accused of price gouging!!) So at that point, they’re selling at a loss.

    Gas stations don’t make money from gas… it’s the other things that keep them afloat.

  12. Author

    I would agree with Jim. I feel bad for the local retailers as they make the least of the cost of gas and take most of the abuse.

  13. Regarding gas prices, with the new HST tax government makes a huge some of revenue from us. Why would we expect provincial, or federal support when they reap the winfall.

    However with tha aging population, the what about me attitude or people refusing to earn a living, they all tax the system. So we need this unfortubate cost put on our essentials.

    We shopped locally many times an it was unfortunate that there was better in places like Kingston and Ottawa. The experinece and knowledge here is sorely lacking when it comes to speciality items.

  14. Author

    Bottom line is that it seems in our area there is some sort of irregular pricing going on. There’s just no reason for gas to pop up six cents per litre within minutes regionally when the exact same gas from the exact same suppliers just a scant mile or so distant doesn’t fluctuate? It’s simply not a random occurrence.

  15. It all comes from the same hole in the ground, pumped by the same corporate fascists, so why the huge discrepancies?? (I don’t use the term fascist lightly… it’s obvious that government and business are in cahoots.)

  16. There is only one certainty with gas prices. This month will cost you more to fill up your car than last month, but not as much as it will next month.

    Rising gas prices are bad enough, but they are not the real killer. After all, the consumer can take reasonable steps to kill gasoline demand and lower prices somewhat – e.g. a more fuel-efficient vehicle, driving less, driving sanely, instead of with a lead foot, car pooling, planning grocery trips ahead of time, not using the Timmy’s Drive-Thru, but actually parking and walking into the store, not leaving their car idling in a fire lane outside a supermarket, but again, actually parking it.

    The real killer, however, and totally outside anyone’s control, is diesel prices. For the price of diesel to be higher than the price of gas is totally outrageous. Diesel prices affect the entire economy, as trucks and trains run on diesel, not gas, and do not have the option of simply driving less, unlike the average motorist.

    Good luck in 2011 – seriously. Once the price of oil goes over $100/bbl, we’ll be in a world of trouble, just like we are from the 2008 depression (which, despite Harper et al. has not gone away). People will again lose their jobs, default on debts and mortgages, and this time, there won’t be any stimulus money as governments are bankrupt from the last time around.

  17. Would the Americans not be up in arms (figure of speech) if the fuel went up 28 cents a gallon (3.8 L in US gal)? Not us though! We are waiting for the true leader to guide us….
    The dealers had to pass on additional tax for the HST and now they will be hitting us, not their fault, because of higher electricity prices to operate the pumps and security lighting.

    Drive around eastern Ontario and counties have different gas prices, Kemptville to Brockville for example are usually lower than Cornwall and Ottawa. Tuesday evenings were cheapest for a while, but because there is “no colusion” the date is changed around.

    I know the story picture is from the US but why do we need more than regular and high, maybe a reduction in operating costs would be felt. We could call them Conservative & Liberal, LOL

  18. jim: If you check the url you will note the huge differences in the price of gasoline. These price differences are made by the gas station owners themselves, NOT Big Oil. I disagree with you when you say that gas station operators are at the bottom of the food chain, they are the top as far as they’re concerned and just go ahead and screw the public!

  19. Why does this happen you ask, well it has a whole lot to do with democracy in Canada also know as Social Democracy.
    How democracy was explained by pre cold war Socialists is keep people fat Keep people ignorant and their hearts will follow.

    As cold as it sounds take a real close look at our society. How many people have the knowledge to make a change, we would be so busy fighting amongst ourselves that industry or the man has no worries about being effected by our rants.

    Tell me it isn’t so or better yet prove my post inaccurate. You do recall the cries for a reduction in energy consumption by CCRI, which was supported by Hydro one. In 2011 Hydro one is increasing rates by 12%. Poor planning by CCRI, picking a team member with an alternative agenda. This is the ignorance we so often display.

    I read in the freeholder we have a local group with John Towndrow of Transition Cornwall +, Brenda Wilson, chair of the Cornwall Carbon Reduction Initiative as well as a couple municipal teams all providing the same service. Would it not be more productive going in with a singular focus and alternative solution as one voice? Right now people are fighting on different fronts dividing efforts and accomplishing little.

    The hearts are in the right place, but the mind is aloof

  20. @Cornwall Harry

    I’m not sure what you’re trying to prove with that website. Of course prices vary depending on your city… that goes for any product but especially gasoline which fluctuates every day. Cornwall seems to be around the middle of the pack. Nothing outrageous there.

    And I don’t know how you can continue to accuse local retailers of screwing the public when you have no proof of them doing so. It just isn’t factual.

  21. @jim, and you have no proof that they are not doing it. You defend them so vehemently you are probably one of them!

  22. Author

    Harry the price retailers charge is controlled by how much they pay. There are few refineries in Eastern Canada and the distribution chain is very tightly controlled. I know of one retailer that went out of business or was forced out of business as his distributor, who also owned a retail chain, many times charged him more for his gas wholesale than their chain was charging retail to consumers.

    It’s a brutal business, retailing gasoline, and that’s why you’re seeing fewer and fewer independents. Couple that with the industry backed governmental controls on tanks and supplies and that’s why we’re essentially being held hostage as consumers.

  23. smee, that website is from Measurement Canada and has to do with making sure you get a full litre or full gallon of gasoline. It has nothing to do with pricing.

  24. 10 or 14 years ago Esso got rid of stations under their banner not selling a million litres a year, and I would imagine many that are left sell on consignment. They would get a call from an office and are told the price to set it at.

    That may be part of the averaging however, why do we need to pay 1.15 today for the same fuel in the same holding tank that was delivered 2 days ago and sold then at 1.09?

  25. @Cornwall Harry

    You’re absolutely correct… that’s what I’ve been trying to tell you. I do know that price gouging does not happen in Cornwall because retail gasoline is a family business.

  26. Right Stan, but if they price fix they would have issues with calibrations on the pumps. Independant owners do not have certified people able to set the rates on the pump.

  27. Diesel is a joke for sure
    I bought my VW when diesel was $0.68/L. Now Irving is about $1.05/L. Fifth Wheel is about $1.11/L.

    Now we can harp on big oil or independent owners but I think it goes much deeper then that. If you figure the average Semi carries between 945 to 1000 L of fuel. Peterbuilt Model 389 uses dual 945 Litre tanks on average.

    Now fill that with fuel at $1.05/L we have $992.35, of which 13% is taxes. $129 per fill up is donated to government. That is one fill up on one truck.

    On your next trip have a family game call it government extortion and count the amount of trucks you see on the road and multiply it by 129. Remember that is for only one visit to the gas station.

    Now we have to ask with regards to Rick Komerowski, is government really broke? This is just on the fuel aspect we didn’t even considering all other taxable items. Of late booze, Wal Mart and many other stores built big tax revenue for government.

    Or is this part of the plan for massive infrastructure change. Or will it be a restocking of federal funds that will provide a winfall for liberals should they defeat the conservatives.

    A scenario if you will, the next Liberal PM accuses previous government of misspending funds while they spend away the winfall earned by their predecessors.
    Does this sound like uhm Joe Clark era, or provincially Iron Mike Harris……

  28. I wonder what refineries “went up in flames” 8 months ago that they can blame this recent collusion on now?

  29. smee & jim: At one time, I ran eight gas stations. Changing prices, many times, on a daily basis was not a problem smee. It certainly didn’t require any outside help from Measurement Canada. We can blame apathy as the reason we do nothing to curb rogue those greedy station owners. If this were the US they would never be allowed to get away with it. They do it here because they can! My opinion!

  30. Buy your gas in Lancaster. There is always a price war between Esso and MacEwan. The price changes often at both. Yesterday December 28, Esso was 106.9 in the afternoon while MacEwan was at 112.9. All the gas is the same.

  31. Why did you chnage prices many times per day Stan?
    What I am saying it is not the owners themselves causing price changes but those running stock market trading, and no not the manufacturers solely.

  32. Its all collusion… plain and simple.. and of course the governments will run useless study after study telling us it’s not but really it is and again, I won’t let the wool get pulled over my eyes..

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