Gas prices edged up at the pump Tuesday as crude oil costs surged on the New York Mercantile Exchange, passing $90 a barrel.
Benchmark oil for February delivery rose $1.80, or more than 3 percent, to $91.05 a barrel in midday training on fears about the closed Trans Alaskan Pipeline.
The 800-mile line, which supplies oil to the lower 48 states and contributes 9 to 11 percent of the country’s daily oil resources, was shut down to repair a leak.
Meanwhile, a presidential panel investigating the Deepwater Horizon oil spill recommended that the oil industry and government take on additional precautions to prevent another environmental catastrophe. The group advised increasing the liability limit for damages associated with offshore drilling, increasing budgets and training for offshore drilling, and putting more focus on the opinions of federal scientists regarding drilling.
The report caused traders to speculate that the government will impose new restrictions on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.
Heating oil prices rose 3.29 cents overnight to $2.589 per gallon. Reformulated blendstock gasoline gained 0.5 cents to $2.4593 per gallon. Henry Hub natural gas prices shed 4.7 cents to $4.352 per million British thermal units.
At the pump, the national average for a gallon of unleaded gasoline edged up from Monday’s $3.088 per gallon to $3.089.