A diesel fuel storage tank in Whatì. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio
The Northwest Territories on Monday announced significant increases in fuel prices for some communities where the GNWT controls supply.
Prices of gasoline and heating fuel are increasing in 10 communities, while there are also increases in the cost of motive diesel. The cost of aviation fuel increased only in Délı̨nę.
The territory said the increases were “a direct result of increased global fuel prices.”
While the GNWT said it was “required to set retail fuel prices at amounts that recover the full laid-in cost of fuel,” including purchase cost and transportation, the increases come as many residents struggle to cope with the effect of inflation on many everyday costs.
In Gametì, the GNWT announced particularly severe price hikes. The price per litre of heating fuel in the Tłı̨chǫ community leapt by 54 cents, from $1.57 to $2.11 – an overnight increase of 34 percent. (The new prices took effect on Monday.)
In Wekweètì, a 30-percent increase took heating fuel prices per litre from $1.71 to $2.22.
Gas prices increased by 21 percent in Gametì, 19 percent in Colville Lake and 18 percent in Nahanni Butte.
Those increases are compared to April prices. Prices had already increased more than once in some NWT communities since the start of 2021.
The GNWT sets prices in 16 communities because the territorial government manages fuel purchase, storage and supply in communities that are not served by any private-sector fuel business.
Ten of those 16 communities receive fuel through the GNWT’s winter resupply program, and those are the communities where increases were announced on Monday: Whatı̀, Gamètı̀, Wekweètı̀, Jean Marie River, Nahanni Butte, Wrigley, Sambaa K’e, Délı̨nę, Colville Lake and Tsiigehtchic.
Fuel prices are next expected to be reviewed at the end of the summer barge resupply season. There will also be a carbon tax adjustment in July.