Stephen Leahy, International Environmental Journalist

Discovering Global Environmental Interconnections

Fossil Fuel Subsidies Are 12X (more like 20X) Support for Renewables, Study Shows

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Coal Power Plant

Image by davipt via Flickr

The enormous fossil fuel subsidies are rarely acknowledged when complaints are raised about costs of renewable energy. This report shown below says subsidies for fossil fuel are 12X that for green energy but this is a gross underestimate based on the experts I’ve interviewed in June for this article Free Ride for Oil and Coal Industry May Be Over.

Subsidies experts in Switzerland told me that “two-billion-dollars-a-day public subsidy for carbon-based fuels is a very conservative estimate..”

In reality big oil and coal get more like 20X the money green energy. So let’s do some real pricing: electricity from coal 5 cents kWh X 20 for subsidies (not to mention free use of the atmosphere /environment for its CO2, mercury etc waste products.) Corporate welfare at its best.

Wind 5-6 cents kWh; Solar 10-15 cents kWh…

Fossil energy continues to get NEW subsidies see New $Billion Cash Hand Out To Fossil Fuel Companies Under ‘Green’ Economic Stimulus Plans.

Stephen

Global subsidies for fossil fuels dwarf support given to renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power and biofuels, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said.

Governments last year gave $43 billion to $46 billion of support to renewable energy through tax credits, guaranteed electricity prices known as feed-in tariffs and alternative energy credits, the London-based research group said today in a statement. That compares with the $557 billion that the International Energy Agency last month said was spent to subsidize fossil fuels in 2008.

“One of the reasons the clean energy sector is starved of funding is because mainstream investors worry that renewable energy only works with direct government support,” said Michael Liebreich, chief executive of New Energy Finance. “This analysis shows that the global direct subsidy for fossil fuels is around ten times the subsidy for renewables.”

via Fossil Fuel Subsidies Are 12 Times Support for Renewables, Study Shows – Bloomberg.

Written by Stephen

24/08/2010 at 4:33 pm

One Response

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  1. [...] efficiency, they make it impossible for alternative energy sources to compete, he said. [See also Fossil Fuel Subsidies Are 12X (more like 20X) Support for Renewables, Study Shows -- Stephen] “We can’t make the transition to low-carbon economies nor can the energy playing field [...]


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