Will gas prices keep rising after Russia invasion of Ukraine? Here's what we know

Brett Molina

Gas prices are expected to keep climbing  as Russian armed forces pushed deeper into Ukraine on Friday after invading the smaller neighboring country earlier this week.

The attacks by Russia, a top supplier of oil and natural gas, are raising concerns that the widening conflict could disrupt energy supplies.  

As of Friday, the national average gas price in the U.S. rose to $3.57 a gallon, up 3 cents from the previous day, and up from $2.68 a year earlier, according to AAA. Experts project gas prices could top $4.

After rising above $100 a barrel for a brief time Thursday, oil prices dipped on Friday. Benchmark U.S. crude slipped to $91.43 a barrel, while Brent crude, the international standard, fell to $93.93.

Here's everything we know about the rise in gas prices.

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Why are gas prices going up?

Experts fear the conflict between Russia and Ukraine could disrupt oil supplies in the region, which would lead to a bump in gas prices. Russia is the second-largest oil producer in the world, behind the U.S., said Tom Kloza, chief global analyst for the Oil Price Information Service.

Biden has said he is working to blunt any rise in gas prices caused by the invasion. "My administration is using every tool at our disposal to protect American businesses and consumers from rising prices at the pump," he said.

Experts say the Russian invasion of Ukraine could disrupt oil supplies in the region and lead to a further spike in gas prices.

How much oil does the US import from Russia?

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, as of 2020, Russia contributed about 7% of gross petroleum imports to the U.S. Kloza said the U.S. gets about 3% of its oil from Russia.

Other countries from which the U.S. imports oil include Canada and OPEC, which comprises several countries, including Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.

How high are gas prices expected to go?

Experts project much of the U.S. could see gas prices go up as high as $4 by early spring, and markets like California and Hawaii – where gas is already expensive – could top $5.

Oil could approach $125 a barrel, which would push gas prices up to $4.50 a gallon, according to research from investment bank Goldman Sachs.

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When will gas prices drop?

Kloza projects prices will climb to $4 a gallon during the second quarter of this year before dropping to $3.30 a gallon in the second half of the year.

Contributing: Paul Davidson, Michelle Shen, Michael Collins, Mabinty Quarshie, Josh Meyer and The Associated Press. Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.