We know we are spending more than we are earning, that we have a problem that is not going away. New areas for cuts are being investigated but not our fossil fuel subsidies. There is little discussion about this…why??
A report called ‘The fossil fuel bailout: G20 subsidies for oil, gas and coal exploration’ was prepared for the G20 meeting in Brisbane by the London-based Overseas Development Institute and the Oil Change Institute. It slams this type of investment as a ‘double folly’ as, it maintains, new fossil fuel exploration is both uneconomic and unsustainable.
“Despite the widespread perception that renewables are costly, our research reveals that finding new fossil fuel reserves at home and abroad is costing Australian tax-payers $A4 billion a year,” says Oil Change International’s Director Stephen Kretzmann.
The report also says:
“Five years ago, Australia and other G20 governments pledged to both phase out fossil fuel subsidies and take action to limit climate change. Immediately ending exploration subsidies is the clearest next step on both fronts…
Without government support for exploration and wider fossil fuel subsidies, large swathes of today’s fossil fuel development would be unprofitable..
Directing public finance and consumer spending towards a sector that is uneconomic, as well as unsustainable, represents a double folly.”
“The Minerals Council of Australia says the Productivity Commission has found the industry receives negligible subsidies, and the department of finance says tax breaks for exploration aren’t subsidies, but legitimate tax deductions for business.” Chris Uhlmann on AM