Below are the monthly updates from the most current February 2023 fuel price data (GasBuddy.com) and December 2022 electricity and natural gas price data (US Energy Information Administration). To view additional data and analysis related to the California economy visit our website at www.centerforjobs.org/ca.
The added costs under California policies and regulations continue to keep prices at the highest or near the highest among the contiguous states across all energy sources.
|Energy Price (12-month moving average; month for fuels)||Rank Among Contiguous States|
|Current Month||Previous Month|
|Residential Electricity Rate||1st||1st|
|Average Residential Electricity Bill||17th||16th|
|Commercial Electricity Rate||1st||1st|
|Industrial Electricity Rate||3rd||3rd|
|Residential Natural Gas Rate||4th||5th|
|Commercial Natural Gas Rate||3rd||3rd|
|Industrial Natural Gas Rate||2nd||2nd|
The electricity rankings are adjusted to reflect the annual revisions to the data for 2022. The slippage in the residential natural gas rate reflects the price effects coming from the pipeline supply shortages affecting the state at the end of the year. Note that the rankings are relative to the contiguous states and DC and may differ from some of the rankings below that compare California to all 50 states and DC.
Gasoline prices moved somewhat higher in California but remained little changed in the rest of the country as the annual shift to the higher cost summer blends required by state regulations began. In the latest data from CSAA, prices continue to inch higher with the average California price at $4.90 on March 6, but the US average again largely unchanged from February at $3.41.
Diesel—which has a significant effect on the cost of food and other goods—was largely unchanged in California but down 3.6% in the other states. The latest CSAA data shows diesel dipping 5 cents in California, and easing 11 cents in the US as a whole.
Inflation at Highest Since 1991
For the 12 months ending December, the California CPI rose 5.6%, easing from 6.5% in November. In the same period, the US CPI rose 6.5%, down from 7.1%. Looking at the period prior to 2022, California’s rate was the highest since January 1991.
California vs. Rest of US Fuel Price Gap at 43.3% Premium
Above US Average
The February average price per gallon of regular gasoline in California rose 24 cents from January to $4.73. The California premium above the average for the US other than California ($3.30) rose to $1.43, a 43.3% difference.
In February, California had the 2nd highest gasoline price among the states and DC, behind only Hawaii. Californians paid $1.75 a gallon more than consumers in Texas, the state with the lowest price.
California vs. US Diesel Price
Above US Average
The February average price per gallon of diesel in California eased 1 cent from January to $5.66. As prices dropped further in the other states, the California premium above the average for the US other than California ($4.40) rose to $1.26, a 28.6% difference.
In February, California had the 2nd highest diesel price among the states and DC, behind only Hawaii.
Range Between Highest and Lowest Prices by Region
Above US Average
(Central Sierra Region)
The cost premium above the US (other than California) average price for regular gasoline ranged from $1.32 in the Central Valley Region (average February price of $4.62), to $1.55 in Central Sierra Region (average February price of $4.85).
Highest/Lowest Fuel Prices By Legislative District:
|February 2023: Average Price ($ per gallon) of Regular Gasoline||February 2023: Average Price ($ per gallon) of Regular Gasoline|
|Legislator||Highest $ Per Gallon||Legislator||Lowest $ Per Gallon|
|CD02 Huffman (D)||$4.91||CD21 Costa (D)||$4.60|
|CD11 Pelosi (D)||$4.91||CD05 McClintock (R)||$4.58|
|CD30 Schiff (D)||$4.90||CD06 Bera (D)||$4.57|
|CD36 Lieu (D)||$4.87||CD01 LaMalfa (R)||$4.56|
|CD15 Mullin (D)||$4.85||CD09 Harder (D)||$4.55|
|SD24 Allen (D)||$4.93||SD31 Roth (D)||$4.63|
|SD13 Becker (D)||$4.88||SD08 Ashby (D)||$4.61|
|SD02 McGuire (D)||$4.88||SD05 Eggman (D)||$4.60|
|SD11 Wiener (D)||$4.87||SD06 Niello (R)||$4.60|
|SD38 Blakespear (D)||$4.85||SD01 Dahle (R)||$4.58|
|AD51 Zbur (D)||$4.98||AD09 Flora (R)||$4.57|
|AD77 Boerner Horvath (D)||$4.93||AD07 Hoover (R)||$4.55|
|AD44 Friedman (D)||$4.93||AD13 Villapudua (D)||$4.52|
|AD30 Addis (D)||$4.92||AD22 Alanis (R)||$4.50|
|AD02 Wood (D)||$4.92||AD03 Gallagher (R)||$4.46|
California Residential Electricity Price
Rest of US
California average Residential Price for the 12 months ended December 2022 was 26.17 cents/kWh, 81.4% higher than the US average of 14.43 cents/kWh for all states other than California. California’s residential prices again were the highest among the contiguous states.
California Residential Electric Bill
For the 12 months ended December 2022, the average annual Residential electricity bill in California was $1,707, or 71.7% higher ($713) than the comparable bill in 2010 (the year the AB 32 implementation began with the Early Action items). In this same period, the average US (less CA) electricity bill for all the other states grew only 20.1% ($274).
In 2010, California had the 9th lowest residential electricity bill in the nation. In the latest revised data for 2022, it had the 18th highest.
Residential bills, however, vary widely by region, with the estimated annual household usage in 2021 as much as 78% higher in the interior regions compared to the milder climate coastal areas, and substantially higher when comparing across counties.
US Average Price
For the 12 months ended December 2022, California’s higher electricity prices translated into Residential ratepayers paying $10.6 billion more than the average ratepayers elsewhere in the US using the same amount of energy.
California Commercial Electricity Price
Rest Of US
California average Commercial Price for the 12 months ended December 2022 was 21.68 cents/kWh, 85.1% higher than the US average of 11.71 cents/kWh for all states other than California. California’s commercial prices were the highest among the contiguous states.
California Industrial Electricity Price
Rest of US
California average Industrial Price for the 12 months ended December 2022 was 17.37 cents/kWh, 116.3% higher than the US average of 8.03 cents/kWh for all states other than California. California’s industrial prices again were the third highest among the contiguous states.
US Average Price
For the 12 months ended December 2022, California’s higher electricity prices translated into Commercial & Industrial ratepayers paying $15.7 billion more than ratepayers elsewhere in the US using the same amount of energy. Compared to the lowest rate states, Commercial & Industrial ratepayers paid $20.6 billion more.
California Natural Gas Prices
Average prices ($ per thousand cubic feet; 12-month moving average) for the 12 months ended December 2022 and changes from the previous 12-month period for each end user:
|CA, December 2022||$20.27||$16.21||$13.87|
|CA, December 2021||$16.40||$12.10||$9.65|
|Rest of US, December 2022||$14.31||$11.12||$7.52|
|Rest of US, December 2021||$11.77||$8.64||$5.15|