Gas prices in Massachusetts rose again last week, are up sharply over the past three months, and are expected to rise even further.

Drivers paid an average of $2.64 a gallon to fuel up over the past week, AAA Northeast reported Monday.

That’s up 8 cents a gallon in just a week and 44 cents a gallon higher than the $2.10 average of early December.

The increases come as lawmakers begin to revisit plans to raise the state gas tax to boost transportation spending and as Massachusetts wades into a still-developing regional transportation emissions reduction compact that is expected to lead to higher gas prices.

AAA Northeast attributed the latest jump in gas prices to winter storms that took 26 U.S. refineries offline.

“Barring hurricane season, March may bring the most expensive pump prices of 2021,” said AAA’s Mary Maguire. “While the month is roaring in like a lion, by the end of it we could see some relief at the pump as refineries resume normal operations, especially if crude oil prices show signs of stability.”

The national gas price average sits at $2.72 a gallon and is expected to hit at least $2.80 in March, AAA said, predicting local increases of at least 5 to 10 cents a gallon until refinery operations are stable

(Copyright (c) 2022 State House News Service.

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