Just saying… Government collects about $60 billion a year on sales of gasoline at the pump

In 2010, the United States consumed about 3.28 billion barrels of gasoline. With 42 gallons per barrel, that’s 137.8 billion gallons. There are state and federal taxes collected at the pump. How much did government collect?

Certainly, tax revenue from the sale of gasoline is used to fund many needs, but I just wanted to put these numbers out there to provide some perspective. On average, the state and federal government collect 45 cents per gallon at the pump, compared to the 2 to 5 cents per gallon made by the companies who drill for oil, refine, market, distribute and eventually sell the gasoline.

In 2010 the federal and state governments collected – in total – about $60 billion compared to oil and gas companies who made about $7 billion during the same period. (That number is conservative, and exclusive to gasoline sales.)


Related: How much gasoline does the United States consume?

18 replies
  1. Dimsdale
    Dimsdale says:

    So who is getting the oft cited “windfall profits”; government, or the “dreaded” oil companies?
    Think about that next time you drop $70 for 17 or so gallons of fuel.

  2. Tim-in-Alabama
    Tim-in-Alabama says:

    Greedy oil companies are hoarding the $7 billion that could go to necessary programs and services.

      • Tim-in-Alabama
        Tim-in-Alabama says:

        We bought their overpriced gasoline so it’s our money. Think of how many birth control pills and devices, and gender rearrangement surgery could be paid for with another $7 billion. Oil companies have more than enough money so they don’t need any at all.

  3. SeeingRed
    SeeingRed says:

    Great reminder.? Should be part of the ’12 campaign – at least to ‘remind’ the general public that the Gubmint in general is the biggest profiteer of all with oil products.?

  4. Truthseeker
    Truthseeker says:

    The Federal and State Motor Fuel taxes collected at the pump are basically a use tax.? These funds are earmarked for improments to highways and bridges under the control of Federal, State and Local Government entities.? They are not to be used for any other other purpose.? The amount that goes to the feds is portioned back to the states, less FHA administration costs, and a reserve they hold to help fund “significant projects of national inetrest.”? Now the biggest problem with this funding method is its also used to fund administrative costs of each federal, state, and local government bureacracy they pass through, including the salaries, and lucrative benefits of?hundreds of thousands employees.?

    Basically, if you drive on public roads, you pay for them at the pump.? But I believe we are over paying for this privilege.

  5. andy@american
    [email protected] says:

    So the 4 Billion in subsidies Obama was attacking tho oil co’s for recieving actually generates a net of 56 Billion in gov revenue.? And Solyndra??after its loan generated what in gov revenue? Do I have that about right?

    • JBS
      JBS says:

      An example of what you wrote is the Mianus River Bridge which collapsed in 1983 — it is part of Interstate 95 in Greenwich, CT. At the time, CT had tolls on many of the roads and didn’t always use the money collected for highway maintenance.

  6. Gerry-M
    Gerry-M says:

    How do all-electric cars contribute to these highway funds if they buy no gasoline, pay no gasoline tax, but get to use the roads? They get a free ride? Is there no mechanism for them to help pay for their use and maintenance of the roads? If not, then there should be. Maybe we can get our beloved senators to sponsor this bill.

  7. Eric
    Eric says:

    Your idea is based on a common sense approach to issues and is therefore not eligible for political consideration. ?Good idea though!

  8. sammy22
    sammy22 says:

    When there will be enough electric cars on the road to make a difference, a way will be found to get a “use” tax out them.

  9. Lynn
    Lynn says:

    Also,? I wonder, if we plug electric cars in to charge them. Aren’t we using energy to charge them, presumably from the grid. I thought the grid was overloaded, at least in CT. Wasn’t that why the power company wanted to put underwater cables to bring electricity from NY to CT? I’m confused as to why electric cars are truly saving us anything. Hey but I guess that’s why they pay DOE the big bucks.

  10. JBS
    JBS says:

    Yes, our power grid in CT should have been rebuilt and refurbished LONG ago. Probably when we suffered that incredible ice storm of 1998 would have been a good time to replace our electrical transmission and distribution infrastructure. The NIMBYs along the Gold Coast and up along the Housatonic River were dead set against those unsightly transmission lines blighting their pastoral views.
    Unfortunately, our otherwise wonderful CL&P (Connecticut Loot & Plunder) has seen fit to handle the needed upgrades by paying their executives very fat salaries, bonuses, annuities, gratuities, lavish pensions, $$$$, etc. (And, then we had the October Surprise Storm that, once again, crippled the state electrically.)
    I’ll leave the DOE for others to comment upon.

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