(WETM) – This past week has likely caused despair for many drivers as the average price of gas jumped almost half a dollar in just seven days across New York State.

The spike in prices was seen across the country, threatening to reach record highs as demand increases but supply stays low, according to CNBC. Prices are reaching heights not seen since the Great Recession in 2008, but what or who exactly is the culprit behind the dramatic surge?

Let’s start with the obvious: Russia.

Even months ago, weeks before Russia invaded Ukraine, the tensions and buildup of troops on the border were enough to cause concern over imported Russian oil. Of course, in turn, that drove up prices. After the invasion, much of the Western World has imposed some of the harshest sanctions in modern history on Russia, but oil from Russia remained relatively untouched.

Over the weekend, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said possible sanctions against Russian energy and oil were being discussed, with Europe and the U.S. talking about a way to ban Russian oil, “while still maintaining sufficient fuel supplies for the world,” according to The Hill.

The other big culprit, of course, is the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since late last summer, there have been countless headlines about shortages and supply chain issues across the world. Everything from Christmas toys, Thanksgiving turkeys, flowers, and groceries has caused continued stress for shoppers. And gas isn’t exempt.

Plus, with spring right around the corner and temperatures heating up, more people are likely to hit the roads after a frigid winter, the Associated Press reported. As with many other products, demand could outpace supply, once again driving up prices.

Last fall, when prices started to climb, President Biden announced that the U.S. would release some of its oil reserves to help drivers at the pump. Prices fell, and then the omicron variant hit. People stopped going out. However, the AP reported that there still wasn’t enough oil to go around.

Add on top of that the fact that many nations, including the U.S., have slowed production during the pandemic and haven’t returned to pre-pandemic levels, and it creates an even more stressful formula for prices at the pump.

So when will gas prices go down?

With no real end in sight for the war in Ukraine nor the pandemic or the ever-climbing inflation, it’s hard to tell, but the outlook is grim. And with some European countries burning oil for electricity as natural gas prices also soar, supply is depleting even faster.

Many people will likely turn to walking and riding bikes as the weather improves, but shortages for bicycles and bike parts caused by supply chain issues could throw a wrench in those plans. At this point, it looks as though only time will tell.

The Associated Press and The Hill contributed to this report.