Birdsville isn't the first place that comes to mind when one talks about the cheapest fuel in Queensland, but that's what the bowsers at the roadhouse on the edge of the Simpson Desert were showing in July.
It's one of the odder outcomes of the staggering spike in global fuel prices that local industry representatives are still gauging the severity of.
The fuel in the tanks at the Birdsville Roadhouse was delivered in early January and owner Jenna Brook said she saw no reason to push the price up, just because it was surging elsewhere.
"We anticipate another delivery this week sometime and I suspect the price will be closer to $2.50, maybe more, after that," she said.
And then, unlike many of her fellow operatives in urban centres, she will need to find the money to pay for that upfront when her turnover is still at a low level.
"Our ability to vary the price of the fuel we sell is very little," she added.
As far as whether the price at the bowser would impact on people's desire to travel in the outback, Ms Brook said grey nomads were already on tight budgets.
"It might change what their travel looks like - they might camp more, not eat out as much - time will tell," she said.
Diamantina Shire Mayor Rob Dare estimated current fuel prices would add another $400 to a trip from the east coast to Queensland's far west.
"If you haven't got that, you shouldn't come out," he said.
The owner of Bedourie's Simpson Desert Oasis, a motel, licenced restaurant, grocery store, fuel outlet and laundromat, Cr Dare acknowledged that he would have to increase the price of goods.
"We can't absorb the extra costs of fuel - margins are as low as they can be now, they've got to be, to get business," he said.
The trucking industry will be passing on the cost of increased fuel prices, according to Queensland Trucking Association CEO Gary Mahon.
"There's been a 90 cent rise in a quarter - we can't absorb those increases, not even close," he said.
A fuel levy charge on top of usual freight rates would be the best way to achieve that, he believed, saying that the very survival of the trucking industry was dependent on passing on the cost of fuel price rises to their business.
Mr Mahon said it was also likely more trucking fleets would move to seven-day reviews, rather than the quarterly or monthly ones in place at present, to cope with the volatile market conditions.
"We can't forecast costs at all now," he said. "These are costs being passed on, not profit being made."
According to the RACQ, which monitors petrol prices in 30 regional centres across Queensland, Mount Isa and Brisbane, at opposite ends of the state, had the most expensive fuel in Queensland on Monday.
Average prices for unleaded petrol in the northern mining centre were 221.7 cents per litre, matched by prices of 221c on average in Brisbane.
Coming next on the leaderboard were Cunnamulla (219.9c), Longreach (218.7c) and the Lockyer Valley (210.7c).
If you got fuel at Biloela on Monday, RACQ said you purchased some of the cheapest fuel in the state, on average 199.4c.
Close to those prices were Roma (202c), Blackwater (203.2c), Yeppoon (203.9c) and Proserpine/Whitsundays, where they paid 203.9c for unleaded on Monday.
Individual prices outside those statistics are likely to be higher, for example a social media post was highlighting prices of 226c for unleaded and 244c for diesel at Middlemount on Monday.
AgForce CEO Mike Guerin said while instability overseas was bringing higher fuel prices and an increase in the cost of living, no-one was parking their tractor in the shed at this stage.
"No-one's panicking about not having enough fuel to plant, or saying the cost of fertiliser will be too high," he said.
AgForce, largely through the NFF, was 'doubling down' on collaborative efforts with the federal government to reduce both the cost of inputs and boost confidence in supply.
Acknowledging that producers were more exposed to supply chain risks and price pain, Mr Guerin said it all pointed to a need for a change in government policies.
The lack of on-shore refining was one concern that often came through, he said, and could be addressed by policy settings that were supportive of private investment in manufacture and supply.
"Some parts of this global phenomenon are out of our control but not all of them," he said.
Gary Mahon said his industry would like to see the volatility taken out of the market, and warned against calling for a cut in the fuel excise.
"That pays for the construction of roads, and road safety - people should think hard about constraining that when there's barely enough money for that now," he said.
The excise accounts for $26 of the $130 paid for a 60 litre tank of fuel for a motorist, so a 25pc reduction would account for a saving of $7.
"With the volatility we're seeing, there's every chance that could get swallowed up in a fortnight," Mr Mahon said.
He said most livestock operators hauling two or three trailers were paying $4000 to fill their tanks, and added Adblue on top of that, which had increased in price in the last quarter.
"By any assessment, conditions are extremely tough for our industry," he said.
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