California gasoline consumption rose 0.8% in February, the first gain in four months, according to figures released by the Board of Equalization. Diesel consumption in California was up 7.6%, the largest increase since February 2008.
Californians used 1.13 billion gallons of gasoline in February 2010 compared to 1.12 billion gallons used in February 2009. The average price at the pump for gasoline in California during February 2010 was $2.99 per gallon compared to February 2009 when price was $2.27, a 31.7% increase.
Diesel consumption in February 2010 shows that Californians used 195.6 million total gallons, which is 13.8 million more in February this year over last. However, 11.3 million gallons of the February 2010 total were related to audit assessments for prior time periods. The figures reported monthly are net consumption that includes BOE audit assessments, refunds, amended and late tax returns, and State Controller’s Office refunds. The February assessments were unusually high. If the February figure is reduced by 11.3 million gallons to adjust for the audits, diesel consumption still increased by 1.4%.
Diesel prices in California in February 2010 were $2.94 per gallon, which is an increase of 30.1% compared to February 2009 when the average diesel price was $2.26 per gallon.
The BOE is able to monitor gallons through tax receipts paid by fuel distributors. Figures for March 2010 are scheduled to be available at the end of June 2010.All monthly, quarterly, and annual figures can be viewed at: www.boe.ca.gov/sptaxprog/spftrpts.htm.