With Hurricane Harvey set to strike the energy-rich Texas Gulf Coast, gasoline prices are already climbing in metro Atlanta. Gas Buddy senior petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan said what happens over the weekend could make a bigger impact on Atlanta area pump prices.
“I'm a bit more concerned that Atlanta gets a lot of its gasoline from the Colonial Pipeline, which brings gasoline from Gulf Coast refineries,” DeHaan said.
Gas Buddy reports the wholesale price of gasoline rose 10 cents since yesterday. That will likely translate into higher prices at the pump.
"We will likely start to see some impact, maybe five to 10 cents per gallon by Monday. It could get worse depending on what happens over the weekend,” DeHaan said.
He also emphasized that refineries near Houston and Corpus Christi are at risk in the storm.
“Flooding is probably the worst of the issues that they will have to contend with there, measuring rain not in inches but in feet, and that could wreak havoc on refinery operations,” he said.
Refinery closures in places like Houston and Corpus Christi, if they happen, could cause a disruption in supplies and force prices even higher.