B.C. Premier John Horgan has joined a chorus of consumer advocates and industry experts calling for a federal investigation into pumped up gas prices in Metro Vancouver.

Speaking to reporters in Vancouver on Thursday, Horgan said he was ready to take the issue all the way to the prime minister.

"British Columbians are driving to the pumps and they're outraged that the costs are going up and they can't explain why," he said. "I would certainly welcome the federal government to get into the game here and protect consumers."

The price of gasoline in the region is sitting at a once-unthinkable 161.9 cents per litre, and everyone from academics to fed up drivers is pleading for the government to look into how retailers set fuel prices.

But Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr told CTV News the feds are not currently planning to do anything to lower the price of gas in B.C.

"Well, the government of Canada doesn't set the price of gas and you know that," he said.

But even though the government doesn't set prices, it could still force gas companies to explain them.

Earlier in our Pumped up Prices investigation, CTV asked gasoline retailers like Chevron, Petro Canada, Super Save Gas and Otter Co-op who is responsible for setting fuel prices. Not a single one agreed to talk.

Greater transparency, Horgan said, is something he would like to see.

"I'll be talking to the prime minister I'm sure about oil related issues in the next number of days and I'll bring that up,” he said.

He mentioned when British Columbians saw a previous spike in gas prices in 2008 and 2009 that the price of a barrel of crude oil was headed to $150 USD. But even though a barrel of crude costs about half that now, about $70 USD, gas prices are still higher than ever.

"So it's not a commodity price question," Horgan said. "Is it gouging? Is it collusion among the providers?"

He also asked if it could be retailers taking advantage of political debates around the Trans Mountain pipeline project, which exports diluted bitumen, to make the argument that it's having an effect on refined product.

Lindsay Meredith, an SFU marketing professor, said he expects the government will have to do a formal investigation into the margins being charged for retail wholesale distribution of gasoline in order to get some transparency.

"I believe the government has a much more active role to take," he said.

Horgan said his provincial government is ready. And he wants the feds to be, too.

"Somewhere along the line someone's making a lot of money. And it's not the government and it's not the travelling public," Horgan said.

With a report from CTV Vancouver's Shannon Paterson