Stephen Leahy, International Environmental Journalist

Discovering Global Environmental Interconnections

Fossil Fuel Industry Kings of Corporate Welfare

with 3 comments

This graphic from GOOD magazine shows who gets the bulk of the enormous US energy subsidies. Many subsidies are hidden and difficult to estimate and this attempt looks to be low according to the experts I’ve interviewed for various articles (cited below). The graphic also doesn’t include subsidies for nuclear which are equally enormous.  — Stephen

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.

A few of the many articles I’ve written on the subject of energy subsidies:

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

Every Day Governments Give an Estimated $2 billion to Oil, Coal & Gas Industry

Oil Companies and Special Interests Spend Half a Billion Dollars to Defeat US Clean Energy – Study

Nuclear Power Costs Skyrocket, Cost of Renewables Plummet

3 Responses

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  1. Corporate welfare- in this case to oil & coal companies- considering how insidious they are- this is amazing.

    Peter

    30/05/2011 at 6:03 pm

    • More than amazing, it is outrageous that world’s wealthiest private corporations get public handouts when many countries are cutting public services.

      Stephen

      20/01/2012 at 6:05 pm

  2. Stephen

    20/01/2012 at 6:42 pm


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