Crisis in Ukraine may have local effect

By Scott Johnson, General assignment reporter, sjohnson@wjxt.com
Nicholas Jones, Producer, njones@wjxt.com
Published On: Mar 03 2014 08:55:39 PM EST
Updated On: Mar 04 2014 07:15:15 AM EST

Channel 4's Scott Johnson with a look at how the rising tensions half way around the world could affect us here in Jacksonville.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

The cost of common goods, like bread or gasoline, may soon be on the rise, all because of what's going on in Ukraine.

As some watch the images coming out of Ukraine, many don't realize it could have an impact on their life in Jacksonville.

Ally Brune is one of those people.

"It's very disappointing to me because gas is expensive enough as it is," said Brune. "I don't need it to get any more expensive."

Brune said gas already has her family budget stretched thin.

"It's extremely expensive because we have a daughter in Lakeland, and it costs us a lot of money to take her back and forth, and my husband works not very close so it gets very expensive," said Brune.

Channel 4 sat down with University of North Florida instructor and former United Nations ambassador Nancy Soderberg. She said as Russian President Vladimir Putin moves troops into Ukraine by the thousands, it shows this is a conflict that may take awhile to play out, and the effects may last awhile.

"He's intent on rebuilding a czar-type Russia which he runs brutally, and to try and create an empire which he runs through force," said Soderberg. "I don't think it will work, but in the short term, a lot of people are going to suffer, and the United States and the West will stand up to him."

Bread could go up because Ukraine is a huge exporter of corn and wheat. There's also the issue of oil -- Russia is a major supplier of both crude oil and natural gas, and it exports both right through Ukraine to Europe.

While the U.S. is not reliant on Russia for either, prices for both are set by the global market. In other words, once it happens abroad, it eventually happens in America.

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