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Sun Sep 27, 2015, 12:53 PM

The 800 Ways Taxpayer Money Supports Fossil Fuel Industries

The 800 Ways Taxpayer Money Supports Fossil Fuel Industries
If the world seeks to lower carbon emissions, why is support for fossil fuels so strong?

September 21, 2015
By Reed Landberg, Bloomberg

As world leaders converge on New York for a United Nations gathering that’s expected to have a strong emphasis on climate change, the OECD is pointing out 800 ways rich industrial nations support fossil fuels with taxpayer money, along with a handful of countries that are catching up quickly.

The measures were worth $167 billion last year for the oil, natural gas and coal industries, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a Paris-based institution that advises 34 industrial nations. While that number has fallen from almost $200 billion in 2012, it easily exceeds the value of subsidies for renewables such as wind and solar.

The findings released Monday are designed to stimulate debate on what constitutes fair support for energy technologies. World leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping are attempting to ratchet up ambitions for a global deal reducing greenhouse gas pollution. The UN-organized negotiations are expected to yield an international agreement in Paris in December. The OECD report suggests policy makers burrow into their own tax and spending measures for a solution.

“We’re totally schizophrenic,” Angel Gurria, the OECD’s secretary-general, said at a press conference in Paris on Monday. “We’re trying to reduce emissions, and we subsidize the consumption of fossil fuels. These policies are not obsolete, they’re dangerous legacies of a bygone era when pollution was viewed as a tolerable side effect of economic growth. They should be erased from the books.”

The report covered OECD member nations plus six developing economies outside the group -- Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Russia and South Africa. It ...

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Reply The 800 Ways Taxpayer Money Supports Fossil Fuel Industries (Original post)
kristopher Sep 2015 OP
pscot Sep 2015 #1
Mr.Squirreleo Sep 2015 #2
Nihil Sep 2015 #3
happyslug Oct 2015 #6
Vogon_Glory Sep 2015 #4
NNadir Oct 2015 #5

Response to kristopher (Original post)

Sun Sep 27, 2015, 07:25 PM

1. $2.3 billions a year for Powder River coal

It's criminally obscene.

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Response to kristopher (Original post)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 01:42 AM

2. I'd Argue that they are currently needed

Look I get it, fossil fuels are terrible for the environment. Most people understand this, but look around, look at the underlying systems that enable civilization to function as it does today.

All of it depends on fossil fuels some where down the line. Almost all of our transportation runs on fossil fuels and almost everything we use is made of some percentage of plastic. Due to this keeping the cost of fossil fuels low is of paramount importance.

Everyone is approaching this in the wrong direction. Once fossil fuels are no longer essential to our modern civilization, subsidies will be reduced as importance falls.

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Response to Mr.Squirreleo (Reply #2)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 07:42 AM

3. Rubbish.


Let whatever "depends" on fossil fuels pay the full financial prices for them.
No more subsidies.

Face it: the fossil fuel users are still getting off lightly by the fact that they
are not paying for the environmental penalty that their choice is costing
the planet.

The subsidies need to go in order to start the move away from the fossil
fuel teat.

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Response to Mr.Squirreleo (Reply #2)

Sun Oct 4, 2015, 09:21 AM

6. No, the first step is to STOP the subsidies, people will then adjust


If there is no price adjustment for the use of fossil fuel, people will NOT adjust. Thus you have to eliminate these subsidize and then otherwise increase the costs of using such fuels. The best example of this is the 2002-2008 price increase in the price of oil. More and more people opted for mass transit in the US, and the use of oil actually dropped for the first time EVER.

I did not say it will not hurt, a lot of people will find out their can no longer afford to pay for their student loans and $200,000 mortgages AND the increase in the price of gasoline. That is the norm when a subsidy is removed and it will occur sooner or later and the sooner the better in most cases.

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Response to kristopher (Original post)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 08:22 AM

4. Not to mention military spending for oil

Not to mention military spending. Had the US spent what it spent on Dubya's no-win war of choice in Iraq on developing an energy structure based on renewables, we would have been much better off.

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Response to kristopher (Original post)

Sat Oct 3, 2015, 09:52 PM

5. One unmentioned way that governments support the gas industry is the huge and useless...

...subsidy, running in the trillions of dollars, for the useless solar and wind industry, both of which would collapse in a New York minute without access to dangerous natural gas.

Of course, if they collapsed, no one would notice, except for possibly lower electricity rates. They produce almost no significant energy, in the solar case not even one of the 560 exajoules of energy humanity consumes each year, and in the case of wind, not even four of the 560 exajoules humanity consumes each year.

These trillion dollar expenditures on wind and solar are therefore very effective at keeping the gas business, and the coal business for that matter, nicely entrenched.

In the year 2000, according to figures available at the EIA website, coal was producing about 102 exajoules of the world's primary energy. In 2013 it was producing 163 exajoules of the world's energy.


I note that the increase in annual coal consumption since 2000 easily outstrips all the energy ever produced in the entire history of the modern wind and solar industry.

Beginning well before the year 2000, we've been hearing from anti-nuke defenders of so called "renewable energy" - which is neither renewable nor sustainable - that solar and wind would save the day. They demanded and got trillions of dollars over that period.

What exactly do we have to show for all this money?

Here's what: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/weekly.html

Anti-nukes shouldn't start pretending they care about climate, or that matter, dangerous fossil fuels.

They don't.

They oppose the world's largest, by far, source of climate change gas free primary energy, while promoting industries that depend, in their entirety of access to dangerous fossil fuels when regularly occurring events like, um, "night time" and "windless days" occur.

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