Federal funding for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is up by more than half – in real dollars — since 2008, according to calculations based on Treasury Department data.

In 2008, EPA funding was $7,938,000,000, according to the Final Monthly Treasury Statement for fiscal year 2008. That would be $8,464,894,460 in real 2012 dollars, according to the BLS calculator.

The same Treasury report said EPA funding climbed to $12,796,000,000 in fiscal year 2012. That’s a 51.1 percent funding increase from four years earlier.

The Obama administration has argued that severe consequences would occur if the sequester (automatic spending cuts) kicks in on Friday. If Congress and President Barack Obama cannot reach an agreement, there will be an automatic 1.2 percent reduction in the growth rate of government spending in this fiscal year, 2013, which amounts to $44 billion for this year. The entire federal budget is $3.6 trillion.

The last four years saw a steeper rate of increase for the EPA than over the last decade.