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Nova Scotia business minister says he’ll talk to industry about fuel shortage, but it could happen again

HALIFAX - Nova Scotia’s business minister said Monday his government will be working with the gasoline industry to make sure another fuel shortage like the one in the province the last few days won’t happen, but he couldn’t guarantee it.

Motorists line up at the Esso at the corner of Robie and Young Streets on Monday.

“This is an anomaly in the industry,” said Mark Furey. “This is the first time Nova Scotia has experienced this type of fuel shortage.”

Furey said he recognizes the frustrations of Nova Scotians since the gas shortage began.

He wouldn’t put a value on the economic impact of the shortage, but said he adjusted his travel plans over the weekend, and many people he’s spoken to have done the same.

He said his government will be talking to industry about why this happened, but Furey couldn’t say for sure that something like this wouldn’t happen again.

“I suppose anything is possible,” he said.

“I think industry certainly will learn from these circumstances.”

Furey said if it becomes clear through his discussions with the industry that they haven’t learned from this shortage, regulation would be an option.

“We’ll look at whatever opportunity we have to ensure Nova Scotians have a fuel supply,” he said.

Technically, the province’s only responsibility when it comes to fuel is pricing, but Furey said his government is working on a Petroleum Price Volume Tracking System that would track volumes and sales. 

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