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Consumer Watchdog: Californians have paid US$5.3 billion extra for gasoline since February

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Californians have paid US$5.3 billion extra for their gasoline due to the higher amount Californians are charged than the rest of the nation since February, according to a new analysis by Consumer Watchdog. As Labour Day weekend approaches, Californians are paying US$0.88 more than the national average.

The analysis, which uses California consumption and both US and California gas prices, deducting California's marginally higher taxes, shows that Californians paid US$900 million more for their gasoline than typical Americans in August alone.

"The historic Golden State gouge continues to grow and drivers continue to pump up record profits for California refiners that are shorting the market through exports and outages," said Jamie Court, President of Consumer Watchdog. "California oil refiners profiteering has cost each California driver US$220 since February."

Persistent low gasoline inventories maintained by the state's largest refiners have led to a record price spike that saw Californian's paying as much as US$1.30 more than the national average this spring. Refiners in the state continue to export refined products from California, despite the continuing shortage. The supply problems worsened since refinery outages began in February. They were exacerbated by record exports in December of 2014, when refiners exported more gasoline from the West Coast to foreign nations than ever in history, according to Consumer Watchdog.

Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling

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