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It’s hard to picture how much fuel we use as a nation when given the raw data — the numbers are usually so unimaginably vast they lose all meaning.

Just how vast is spelled out succinctly when we’re shown how much we save by driving electric or hybrid vehicles.

In the case of the Chevrolet Volt, that’s seven million gallons and counting in California alone. Or if you’d like to equate that to a figure of some significance, GM says it’s equal to shutting off gas pumps in the state for a full eight hours.

Actually, eight hours doesn’t seem like a lot, but then that’s another sign of just how much fossil fuel we burn through. And eight hours’ less gasoline in one state is still one heck of a lot of gas saved.

Volt owners in California have now racked up more than 130 million electric miles. And they’re contributing their fair share to the Volt’s total, with more than 40 percent of all Volt owners living in the state.

We discovered last year that 63 percent of all Volt miles are electric. That figure still applies here. In fact, it’s risen by one percent. Out of 500 million miles covered by all Volt owners in the U.S, 320 million of those have been electric.

That gives us more huge numbers — like nearly 17 million gallons of gas saved in the U.S. alone. And many more quiet hours at the pumps.

It’s a sign of how much use Volt owners are getting from electric drive that the average distance between stops for fuel is 900 miles — far greater than the car’s estimated 380 mile range on electricity and gas.

We already know how much Volt owners love their vehicles. Saving that much gas, we’re not that surprised, and lower prices have helped the Volt maintain steady sales all through the year.

How much longer will it be until Volt owners save an entire day’s worth of gas in California?

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This story originally appeared on Green Car Reports. Copyright 2013

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