Different types of fuel on display at the Norman Wells Historical Centre. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio
The NWT government says it is increasing the retail price of fuel in 10 communities because of what it called “market volatility.”
The GNWT sets prices in 16 communities because the territorial government manages fuel purchase, storage and supply in places that are not served by any private-sector fuel business.
Gas prices are increasing by around 50 cents a litre in both Łútsël K’é and Paulatuk, with smaller increases in seven other communities.
The cost of heating fuel is rising by more than 60 cents a litre in Sachs Harbour, Paulatuk, Tulita and Ulukhaktok, with smaller increases in six other communities. There are also changes to other types of fuel like motive diesel.
Prices are normally changed at least twice a year, the GNWT said, after the summer barge resupply and winter road resupply. They had already been hiked by up to a third in May for some communities, with a further July update that included the latest round of carbon tax increases.
“These price adjustments are entirely the result of market volatility and global increases in the cost of petroleum products, as well as associated increased freight costs,” the territorial government said in a statement.
On Twitter, infrastructure minister Diane Archie wrote: “We know residents are feeling this in their pocketbooks, and the GNWT is committed to finding ways to address increasing costs.”
The territory says the price changes don’t include any costs associated with the failure of a resupply barge to reach Sachs Harbour earlier in the fall. The GNWT is having to resupply the community by air as a result.
“Similar increases in fuel prices are in effect for government and commercial customers in the 10 summer resupply communities,” the GNWT stated, adding that the law requires the territory to “set retail fuel prices at amounts that recover the full laid-in cost of fuel.”