SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Have you seen the price for kerosene lately?

Viewer Carl Byrns has and that fueled him to send a question to the Your Stories Team:

Why is kerosene so expensive? The price per gallon at gas stations is 80-100% more than last year.

Kerosene is defined by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), “as a light petroleum distillate that is used in space heaters, cook stoves, and water heaters…”

Some gas stations in Central New York sell kerosene at the pump. We found a station near the Syracuse Airport selling kerosene close to $7 a gallon.

According to The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, the average price for Kerosene in the state is $7.07. This time last year it was $4.00.

Patrick Penfield, professor of supply chain practice at Syracuse University, said there are a few factors driving up the cost of kerosene.

First, he pointed to the growing demand for a kerosene-type jet fuel. The airline industry is gobbling up the supply.

Next, Penfield mentioned Russia’s war in Ukraine. He said Russia is known as the world’s gas station. Sanctions against that country have tightened global supply of distillate products.

Penfield said another factor for high prices was because wholesalers did not stock up over the Summer on Kerosene.

“They lose money if they stock this kerosene and so they try and time it so it’s right at the home heating oil season. Now they have competition with Jet fuel skyrocketing,” Penfield said.

Lastly, Penfield said the demand for kerosene has declined over the years, specifically when it comes to home heating.

He said as a result, wholesalers and refineries are not producing as much of the product as they did in the past. Less production has contributed to tighter supply of kerosene.

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