The Biden administration has announced plans to release 50 million barrels of oil in a bid to ease pressure on high gasoline prices across the United States, but western states are still struggling.

In one week, Arizona prices rose 7 cents, the American Automobile Association (AAA) said, according to NBC affiliate KPNX. Compared to last year’s Thanksgiving, Arizona gas is up by $1.18, further highlighting the national trend of high gas prices.

AAA spokesperson Aldo Vasquez said it was still too early to determine the widespread effect of high prices and gas shortages in the state as it is not just a national problem but “a supply issue across the globe.”

The bleak picture has raised fears about the impact of the crisis in the Western U.S. during the holiday season, considering that seven of the top 10 states with the highest gasoline prices, namely California, Hawaii, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, Arizona, Alaska, Idaho, Utah, and Pennsylvania, are located in the region.  

In Los Angeles County, California, regular gas prices rose to a record $4.706 per gallon Wednesday, obliterating the previous record nine years ago, ABC-owned KABC-TV reported. Data from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service revealed that in the past 15 days, Los Angeles County gas prices rose for 14 days.

In Utah, the average price per gallon is still above the national average at $3.69 per gallon, but in some counties either prices are higher or lower than the state average. KSL News Radio reported that the cheapest gas prices in the state are reported in Sevier, Juab, Uintah, Duchesne, and San Pete counties, ranging between $3.49 and $3.64.

The most expensive gas can be found in Garfield, Piute, Beaver, Wayne, and Morgan counties, ranging between $3.80 and $4.09 per gallon, the report said.

Industry experts are expecting high gas prices as the holidays close in. AAA spokesperson Montrae Waiters told ABC affiliate WJBF that “as long as crude oil is elevated it’s going to cause gas prices to rise alongside it.”

AAA data listed the following average regular gas prices in Western states as of Wednesday:

Alaska - $3.715

Arizona - $3.754

California $4.705

Hawaii - $4.360

Idaho - $3.684

Montana - $3.407

Nevada - $3.964

New Mexico - $3.356

Oregon - $3.783

Utah - $3.684

Washington - $3.874

Wyoming - $3.461

Meanwhile, centrist Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., urged President Joe Biden to restore construction work on the Keystone XL pipeline to help increase energy production and to help with the soaring gas prices and shortage crisis in the country.

In a statement, Manchin said the pipeline should help provide “up to 900,000 barrels of oil per day from Canada.” Biden revoked a key permit in constructing the pipeline earlier this year.

Gas prices have risen across the United States as the country gears up for Thanksgiving and other year-end holidays Gas prices have risen across the United States as the country gears up for Thanksgiving and other year-end holidays Photo: AFP / GEORGE FREY