Rising gas prices cause lower fuel use in California

Rising gas prices are causing Californians to use less fuel, a state agency said.

State residents used 1.169 billion gallons of gasoline in November, the most recent month for which the state Board of Equalization has statistics, a 2.6% decline from November 2010. It was the ninth month in a row that gasoline consumption declined, the agency said.

Back in November, California’s average gas price was $3.85 a gallon, up 64 cents from the average a year earlier. But that sounds cheap compared with the state’s average of $4.323 a gallon on Wednesday, according to AAA’s daily survey of fuel retailers.

“I’m keenly aware of the negative impact higher gas prices have on hard-working families trying to make ends meet,” said Jerome E. Horton, chairman of the Board of Equalization.


Other reasons for the decline in gasoline consumption, the board said, was the more fuel-efficient vehicles that Californians are driving, the increased use of alternative forms of transportation and the slow pace of the economic recovery.

The Board of Equalization monitors fuel consumption through tax paid by fuel distributors.


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