Effort to keep gas prices from increasing

FRESNO, Calif.

Michael Kelton is the CEO of Inland Star, a Fresno trucking and warehouse company. "I believe that the working poor will be impacted the greatest over this, it's all gonna be passed down, all the costs will be passed on."

Business groups including trucking and farming interests are joining oil companies together to speak out against the Cap and Trade rules aimed at reducing air pollution.

Rachel Eslick is the Government Affairs Manager for the Fresno Chamber of Commerce. "The fees that will be added on next year are unknown and that's what makes this so scary."

Manuel Cunha of the Nisei Farmers League says hard hit industries, like farming can't afford any higher costs. "There's no way the agriculture industry can sustain such a hit."

But, the California State Air Resources Board, or CARB, says the rules have been on the books for years and fuel suppliers have had time to clean up their fuel, or find other ways to offset their pollution, without passing costs to consumers.

CARB Public Affairs Officer Dave Clegern told Action News: "If fuel companies chose to pass costs onto their customers that's their decision. If they want to trigger a price spike on January 1, 2015 that is also their decision."

Clegern of says the real impact on price should be negligible and the regulations will go a long way toward cleaning the air.

"We need to consider making the stat healthier," said Clegern. "Making the environments health and making the people of the state healthier. Giving them the opportunity to be healthy. And that's what this is all about."

The oil companies and business groups project that will cost from 12 to 40 cents a gallon next year.

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