A wealth tax that might help Gavin Newsom achieve his own climate goals is being fought.

Environmentalists in California know how to pay for Gov. Gavin Newsom's ambitious proposal to get gas-powered cars off the road: tax the wealthy.

What is blocking their path? Newsom.

The ambitious and progressive governor of the state is adamantly opposed to a proposed wealth tax measure that would fund the market for electric vehicles. He dubbed the proposal a "cynical ploy" by Lyft, one of its main backers, to satisfy a state mandate for EVs using taxpayer money.

Environmentalist allies of Lyft see something else: a governor impeding the transition to clean vehicles that he has promoted but failed to fully fund.

Mary Creasman, CEO of California Environmental Voters, another supporter of the proposal and the kind of environmentalist who has largely applauded Newsom's forceful climate agenda, said, "I'm pretty disgusted." It is shocking to say the least coming from a governor who claims to be progressive and a leader in the fight against climate change.

The question is not whether to make the switch from gas to electric vehicles, which is something Newsom has mandated, but rather how to pay for it. Even in the very Democratic state of California, passing any new tax is difficult politically, and the governor sees this one as favouring a single, wealthy corporation.

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