Stop the Subsidies

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911: In the face of an escalating climate crisis that truly has become an emergency, the discussion surrounding oil subsidies has taken on renewed urgency. These subsidies, intended to bolster economic growth and energy security, often seem at odds with the imperative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and all data seems to indicate that they are really just contributing to obscene fossil fuel company profits. This article delves into the issue by closely examining the dissonance between the considerable subsidies extended to oil companies and their staggering profits, casting a spotlight on the imperative to recalibrate our priorities.

1. Subsidies and the Climate Crisis:

Oil subsidies, ranging from tax breaks to direct incentives, have long been pivotal in supporting an industry deeply intertwined with global economies. However, the looming climate crisis demands a critical evaluation of their role in perpetuating carbon-intensive practices.

2. Oil Giants’ Profits Amidst Climate Challenges:

Major oil companies consistently rank among the world’s most profitable entities, amassing fortunes that are difficult to reconcile with their contributions to global emissions. As the world seeks sustainable alternatives, the question emerges: Should companies profiting from fossil fuels continue to receive significant financial support or any financial support for that matter?

3. A Glaring Disparity: Subsidies vs. Profits:

Scrutinizing the data reveals an alarming gap between the colossal subsidies allocated to oil companies and their soaring profits. This incongruity raises pertinent concerns about the allocation of public resources to an industry that, some argue, should be transitioning away from fossil fuels. Coal, oil, and natural gas received $5.9 trillion in subsidies in 2020 alone — or roughly $11 million every minute — according to a new analysis from the International Monetary Fund. On the flipside, The oil and gas industry has delivered $2.8bn (£2.3bn) a day in pure profit for the last 50 years, a new analysis has revealed.

The vast total captured by petrostates and fossil fuel companies since 1970 is $52tn, providing the power to “buy every politician, every system” and delay action on the climate crisis, says Prof Aviel Verbruggen, the author of the analysis. The huge profits were inflated by cartels of countries artificially restricting supply, to rake in even more profits. Taking a year to compare the subsidies to, that’s $18.98 trillion in 2020. Doesn’t this beg the question as to why and just scream out how ludicrous it is to keep funding this industry?

4. Reimagining Priorities for a Resilient Future:

The implications of persisting with business-as-usual are far-reaching. Let’s be clear that it is far-reaching in terms of the impact on so many of our environmental and social systems, but the threat itself is in the near-term. By redirecting subsidies toward renewable energy initiatives and sustainable technologies, nations can pivot towards a more resilient, low-carbon future. Not only would this help mitigate the climate crisis, but it could also foster economic diversification and bolster energy security.

5. References:

1. International Energy Agency (IEA). (2020). “World Energy Outlook 2020.”

2. Fortune. (2021). “Fortune Global 500 2021: The World’s Biggest Oil Companies.”

3. Statista. (2021). “Top global oil and gas companies by revenue 2020.” and the IMF “Still Not Getting Energy Prices Right: A Global and Country Update of Fossil Fuel Subsidies.”

4. Global Subsidies Initiative. (2018). “G20 fossil fuel subsidies and renewable energy: An update for 2018.”

5. International Monetary Fund (IMF). (2019). “Global Fossil Fuel Subsidies Remain Large: An Update Based on Country-Level Estimates.”

6. World Resources Institute. (2020). “How Removing Fossil Fuel Subsidies Would Benefit Our Health, Environment and Economy.”

7. United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). (2021). “Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform and Pricing Carbon: Effectiveness and Equity.”

#ClimateEmergency #ClimateCrisis #StopTheGreed #FossilFuels #GreenSolutions


As the clock ticks on the climate crisis, the urgency to reevaluate oil subsidies intensifies. We need action NOW. The disjunction between substantial subsidies and profound profits spotlights the need to transition from a fossil-fuel-dependent economy to one rooted in sustainable practices. Redirecting subsidies toward renewable energy sources is a strategic step toward mitigating the climate crisis, while simultaneously fostering economic growth and ensuring energy security for generations to come.

Note: AI from multiple sources was used to support this article

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