How high diesel prices impact you – ABC10.com KXTV

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — High diesel prices don’t just affect drivers at the pump, but also shoppers when they buy products transported by semi-trucks.
According to AAA’s gas price data from this time last year, the price of diesel has risen by nearly $2 in Sacramento, Modesto and Stockton.
Chris Shimoda is the Senior Vice President of Government Affairs for the California Trucking Association and he says fuel is one of the top two expenses of operating a trucking company. Any increase in diesel prices immediately impacts the price of doing business.
“If you got it – a truck brought it, so everything people buy in the state of California is impacted by fuel prices,” said Shimoda.
GasBuddy spokesperson Patrick De Haan says different factors go into the prices of diesel than gasoline, noting diesel is more of a commercial fuel while gasoline is more regularly used by consumers.
“The peak of gasoline season is in the summer months, the peak for diesel tends to be winter,” said De Haan.
He says demand for diesel and other oils grew in the wake of high natural gas prices so people could heat their homes, generate electricity, or power their generators.
De Haan says refinery outages across California over the last few weeks are a reason for the higher diesel prices. He hopes this will improve in the coming weeks.
In terms of production issues, many refineries have pivoted to creating renewable diesel, which De Haan says produces less product.
“Generally, renewable diesel yields about a third of what a traditional unit would produce,” said De Haan.
Less production and more demand equals high prices. The costs to refine don’t really change, but what comes out of refineries has a higher price tag, meaning we could see higher prices for groceries, hardware, and gifts in the upcoming months.
Shimoda says this adds pressure on consumers who may already be struggling with supply chain issues and price increases.
“Obviously, our trucks can’t move without that fuel so it goes into that rate that we have to charge our customers which then gets passed down to the consumer,” says Shimoda.
He also says California is unique in that we have California-specific fuel blends, so our state is often uniquely impacted by fuel trends.
De Haan’s advice? Shop around before you buy fuel, whether its gas or diesel. He says you can often save between 25-50 cents a gallon because of local price variations, sometimes even more on diesel. He also says diesel prices could escalate depending on EU sanctions on Russian oil.
Californians could see a year-long decrease in taxes on diesel fuel which goes into effect on Oct. 1.
WATCH MORE ON ABC10: California gas prices rise as national prices continue decline
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