Liam Dillon
April 7, 2016

Californians are spending $2 billion more at the gas pump because of the state’s carbon rules, according to the state’s independent Legislative Analyst’s Office.

The cap-and-trade program boosts prices by 11 cents a gallon for regular gasoline and 13 cents a gallon for diesel, Legislative Analyst Mac Taylor wrote in a March 4 letter to Assemblyman Tom Lackey (R-Palmdale).

Besides raising gas prices, the cap-and-trade system does provide the state with revenue to decrease greenhouse gases, including a $3.1-billion allocation in Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget for items such as subsidizing the purchase of electric cars, Taylor wrote.

“Including transportation fuels in the cap-and-trade program imposes additional costs on motorists, but it also generates a significant amount of state revenue that can be used for programs that provide direct benefits to consumers and businesses,” Taylor wrote.

Lackey said in a release that Taylor’s letter shows there needs to be greater transparency surrounding the cap-and-trade system.

“Most drivers have no idea that this is costing them $2 billion per year because it has been largely hidden from them,” he said.