GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KREX) — “It already cost me twice as much to fill up my tank. Now, it’s hard to imagine being able to fill up all the way.” says a Grand Junction citizen.

There are all kinds of reasons high gas prices typically go up in a short period of time. Usually it’s an increase in demand or limited production internationally, but Skyler McKinley tells KREX this time there’s more to it.

“The spikes you really notice really zone in and center on the Russia Ukraine conflict,” said AAA Regional Director of Public Affairs, Skyler McKinley.

McKinley says, “It all relates to the price of a barrel of crude oil.”

Following the Russia Ukraine conflict the price for a barrel of crude oil jumped more than a hundred dollars. The highest U.S. increase since 2008.

“As of Wednesday, it was 110 dollars. It continues to tick upward,” McKinley said.

Gas prices soared 19 cents just in the last two days, 43 cents since Wednesday, and 53 cents since the invasion into Ukraine.

One Grand Junction resident says, “I’m absolutely aware of it, you see it as soon as you get to the pumps.”

Right now, Russia accounts for ten percent of the world’s oil, and three percent of oil the United States imports.

“And that oil is really no longer in the system, so there’s not enough supply and there’s quite a lot of uncertainty. And that uncertainty is what drives the speculation up,” McKinley added.

Until the picture is more clear, gas prices won’t look pretty.

McKinley mentioned,”Trendwise, we’re looking at gas prices ticking up throughout the rest of the year, at minimum.”

Maybe not what you want to hear, but there’s a silver lining.

“One reason we’re seeing prices as high as they are, is because people perceive it as safe to travel again,” said McKinley.

In the meantime, here are a few tips to make your tank last longer. Experts say unnecessary items weigh down your car. Take them out.

McKinley brought up, “If you have a rooftop storage rack, or a ski rack that you’re not using. That can dramatically increase your fuel efficiency; take that off the car.”

Also, cut trips to once a week.

“Either by remote work, by carpooling, or where its available to take mass transit, or by walking,” McKinley mentioned.

We know its hard to do but there’s not much choice as crude oil soars, and gas prices do too.