California motorists filling up after January 1, 2015 are likely to experience sticker shock as a result of a state agency-mandated gas "fee". Remember recent talk about cap-and-trade? Yep, that's the culprit!
NACS reports that Jay McKeeman, vice president of government relations and communications for the California Independent Oil Marketers Association (CIOMA), penned an article for the Sacramento Bee last week congratulating the state Legislature for passing a budget on time. He also pointed out a troubling aspect of the state’s cap-and-trade system that most residents are unaware of.
Beginning January 1, 2015, revenues from cap and trade “are expected to jump from the millions to between $3 billion and $5 billion” because gasoline and diesel will be included in the cap-and-trade program. “This means those ‘polluters’ who will be footing the financial windfall for the state aren’t smokestack industries, but California drivers,” McKeeman wrote.
He continued that a recent poll suggests 70% of Californians are unaware of this “fuels under the cap” program and the direct impact it will have on their wallets — “despite the fact that its start date is a little more than six months away.”
According to a 2010 economic analysis commissioned by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), gas prices are expected to increase between 4% and 19% as a result of cap and trade, noted McKeeman. “With gas hovering around $4 a gallon in most regions of the state, this translates to 16 to 76 cents more per gallon. Under this scenario, it’s not hard to imagine a day very soon when it will cost $100 for a tank of gas.”