Consumer Watchdog investigates and reports on industries, corporations and politicians that defy our ethical customs, social mores and rules of law. Our in-depth reports below span decades and take on the most powerful politicians and industries in America.
In the six months since California’s record gasoline price spike began in February, Californians have paid $4.8 billion more than the rest of the country for regular gasoline at the pump, according to a Consumer Watchdog analysis of state and federal data. That amounts to over $200 extra for each California driver.
This analysis, “Refining Profits,” looks at how oil refiners in California fared over the last decade in their refining operaDons and compared the companies’ refining profits during periods of gasoline price spikes.
Californians have perennially experienced steep gasoline price spikes since 1999 when California’s Attorney General formed a Gasoline Pricing Taskforce that identified market consolidation and limited inventories as causes of prices spikes.
Internal documents obtained from the oil industry’s lobbying arm, the Western States Petroleum Association, show that the companies have made stopping California’s landmark climate change laws their top priority and will stop at nothing to achieve their ends.
Proposition 45 will require health insurance companies to open their books and publicly justify their rates under penalty of perjury before they are permitted to change rates for consumers in the individual and small group market.
The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) has been a historically troubled agency, far too often failing to effectively fulfill its mission of protecting the public from toxic harm.
From March to September 2013, an investigation was undertaken to detail the significant privacy issues Google+ users mayencounter when using the service. The evidence that follows willdemonstrate that Google+ allows its users to routinely and blatantly violate its User Content & Conduct Policy
Over the past quarter century, auto insurance expenditures in America have risen by more than 40 percent. Consumers in some states are paying 80 percent, 90 percent, and even 100 percent more for auto insurance than they paid in 1989. These increases have accrued despite substantial gains in automobile safety and the arrival of several new players in the insurance markets.
Health insurance premiums are increasing at a rate faster than medical inflation, especially in the volatile individual and small group markets, and worker incomes have not kept pace. The passage of the federal reform law triggered further outsized increases by insurance companies apparently seeking to establish high base rates in advance of the law’s implementation.
California produces more than four billion pounds of hazardous waste every year. at’s enough to ll 727 Olympic-sized pools. At least one hundred thousand business- es—from aerospace, computer, and chemical companies, to metal shredders, gas sta- tions, plating companies, and dry cleaners—contribute to this toxic stream. It has to go somewhere.