Some good news for those in California today, Shell announced this weekend that its refinery in Martinez is in the process of restarting. The refinery had been undergoing maintenance since mid-July and had been expected to be at full rates a few weeks ago, but Shell extended the restart date by several weeks.

As a result of the extended closure, California gas prices have steadily increased even as much of the U.S. enjoys falling prices. Hardest hit has been the Bay area of California, seeing prices rise on average at least 15-cents per gallon to an average of $3.24 a gallon yesterday.

Another refiner in the Bay Area under maintenance include Tesoro's plant in Martinez. Valero's plant in Benecia has been restarted, but also recently completed work.

Prices in the Bay Area can be expected to slowly retreat as additional supply from the restarted plants reach market. Prices will come back down over the next two weeks.