With gas prices below $1 per litre for the first time in years, drivers at Saskatoon pumps are celebrating.

While the usual prices may seem high, Saskatoon’s gas prices remained just under the national average for gas prices in 2012.

gas infographic

In November 2012, the average price at the pumps here was 121 cents per litre. The national average was 122.9 cents per litre. In that same month, the highest price was found in Yellowknife, where drivers paid an average of 138.9 cents per litre. The lowest price was in Edmonton, where it only cost 100.9 cents a litre to fill up.

Only four years before that, Saskatoon drivers only paid an average of 91.3 cents per litre. The highest average price in November 2008 was again in Yellowknife, where drivers paid 115.7 cents per litre.

Despite the steady increase in price, Canadians are buying even more fuel. Over the last three years, Statistics Canada has recorded steady increases in the amount of fuel sold across the country.

In 2011, gross sales of gasoline sold in Canada rose 1.5 per cent from 2010 to 42.1 billion litres. Back in 2007, the gross sales of fuel was only 40.1 billion litres.

The numbers in Saskatchewan show a similar trend. In 2007, the gross gasoline sales were 1.6 billion litres. By 2010 the number rose to 1.7 billion, and in 2011 it rose again to 1.7 billion litres.

According to Shell Canada, gas prices are influenced by four main factors: Forty to 55 per cent goes to crude oil costs, 25 per cent to 35 per cent to federal, provincial, and municipal taxes, 10 per cent to 25 per cent is the refiner’s margin, and four per cent to six per cent is the retail margin.