Petrol has gone over €2 a litre in many forecourts less than 24 hours after the EU announced its partial Russian oil embargo.
Forecourts in Dublin are now charging up to €2.07per litre – with similar prices at forecourts in Cork, Kildare and Waterford.
Meanwhile, the price of diesel is hovering close the €2 mark in many areas.
'Rocky road ahead'
On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, ESRI Energy Economist Muireann Lynch said there’s a “rocky road ahead” for energy prices.
“The amount of oil that Ireland gets from Russia is relatively small but when Europe as whole essentially cuts itself off from its major oil supplier that’s going to have a price impact right across the continent,” she said.
“That will feed through to Irish consumers on the forecourt and also in the likes of home heating bills and to a lesser extent to perhaps a further increase in electricity prices.”
Ms Lynch said that, in the short term, government must do everything it can to ensure the least well-off in society are insulated from the price hikes.
“That means probably using the taxations and social welfare code rather than having more broad-based measures,” she said.
"New energy era"
In the longer term, she said we must realise we are in a “new era” when it comes to energy supplies.
“At a European level and also a national level we are looking at higher fossil fuel prices for the foreseeable future,” she said.
“We really seem to be in a new era now and what that means is trying to reduce our demand and diversify our supply for energy.
“We want to double down on energy efficiency and try to reduce our demand, our energy usage wherever we can.
“Then for those types of energy we can’t stop using, we want to get them form as diverse a range of supplies as possible.
“Both a diverse geographic range of fossil fuel supplies and also diversifying away from fossil fuels and towards renewables.”
The increases come as inflation approaches a 40-year high and the housing crisis continues.
Meanwhile, unions are stepping up their push for pay rises to meet soaring costs.
Speaking in Brussels yesterday the Taoiseach said the coming months and years will be “challenging” – but insisted any further measures to help people with energy costs will wait until the budget in October.
Eurostat figures released last month showed Irish electricity prices were fourth highest in the EU.