Go to the Globe and Mail homepage

Jump to main navigationJump to main content


Rob's Garage

Why do Canadians pay so much for fuel? Add to ...


I am fortunate enough to own a sports car that requires premium gas to perform at its best. This means either 93 or 94 octane. I am used to the 5- to 10-cent difference that you pay per litre to move from regular to premium, 89 to 91. It's even steeper to move to super at 93 or 94 octane.

I recently returned from the United States where I noticed, again, that the difference between octane steps is almost non-existent. In fact, the difference between regular 89 and super 93 octane was about 4 cents - per gallon. That means when I am buying 94 octane and paying $1.15 per litre versus about $1 for 89 octane, I would be paying a difference of ($0.15 times 3.785 litres/gallon) $0.56 per gallon in Canada.

More Related to this Story

Not only do we pay quite a bit more per gallon for regular gas, we are getting positively (I won't use the many appropriate adjectives that fit here) abused when buying anything more than regular gas. The oil oligopoly in this country is once again abusing the people of a net exporting oil country. How can they possibly justify as vast a difference as this?

Ken Noakes

Searching for a new vehicle? Our Globe Drive car search makes it easy to track down the best vehicle for you

Ken, your question is a call to action that has been with us (Canada) since the Trudeau era. A cursory look at a few blogs and forums quickly brings you to realize that the Canadian gasoline pricing issue is still alive and stronger now than it's been in years.

This is not a question but a subject of rhetorical dimension. This subject is vast and each time those of us that take part, another angle is added to the dimension. I have listed a few of my own favourites:

  • Political side-stepping
  • Canadian tax structure
  • Rationalization of the population discrepancy between Canada and the U.S.
  • Oil company/government accountability

How does the common person even try to cope with this? You see? You see what this subject does? I'm asking a question - and I'm supposed to be answering questions.

As a Canadian, I think what makes us strong also makes us weak - that is, maybe we need to stop being good Canadians. Maybe it's time we reached for torches and pitchforks. Maybe it's time we cornered the Beast.

But, being good Canadians, we would still apologize for being too aggressive and hope we didn't ruin its day.

Let the rhetoric and pontification begin.


In the know

Most popular videos »


More from The Globe and Mail

Most popular