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posted by martyb on Saturday October 09, @11:13PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Fossil fuel industry gets subsidies of $11m a minute, IMF finds:

Fossil fuelsFossil fuel industry gets subsidies of $11m a minute, IMF finds

The fossil fuel industry benefits from subsidies of $11m every minute, according to analysis by the International Monetary Fund.

The IMF found the production and burning of coal, oil and gas was subsidised by $5.9tn in 2020, with not a single country pricing all its fuels sufficiently to reflect their full supply and environmental costs. Experts said the subsidies were “adding fuel to the fire” of the climate crisis, at a time when rapid reductions in carbon emissions were urgently needed.

Explicit subsidies that cut fuel prices accounted for 8% of the total and tax breaks another 6%. The biggest factors were failing to make polluters pay for the deaths and poor health caused by air pollution (42%) and for the heatwaves and other impacts of global heating (29%).

Setting fossil fuel prices that reflect their true cost would cut global CO2 emissions by over a third, the IMF analysts said. This would be a big step towards meeting the internationally agreed 1.5C target. Keeping this target within reach is a key goal of the UN Cop26 climate summit in November.

Agreeing rules for carbon markets, which enable the proper pricing of pollution, is another Cop26 goal. “Fossil fuel price reform could not be timelier,” the IMF researchers said. The ending of fossil fuel subsidies would also prevent nearly a million deaths a year from dirty air and raise trillions of dollars for governments, they said.

“There would be enormous benefits from reform, so there’s an enormous amount at stake,” said Ian Parry, the lead author of the IMF report. “Some countries are reluctant to raise energy prices because they think it will harm the poor. But holding down fossil fuel prices is a highly inefficient way to help the poor, because most of the benefits accrue to wealthier households. It would be better to target resources towards helping poor and vulnerable people directly.”

[...] The G20 countries emit almost 80% of global greenhouse gases. More than 600 global companies in the We Mean Business coalition, including Unilever, Ikea, Aviva, Siemens and Volvo Cars, recently urged G20 leaders to end fossil fuel subsidies by 2025.


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  • (Score: 0, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 09, @11:32PM (5 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 09, @11:32PM (#1185856)

    No facts, just emotional "I hate big oil"

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 09, @11:59PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 09, @11:59PM (#1185857)

    The IMF is little more than a global loan shark run by billionaires! Their loans come with many strings attached, and more than one country that received these loans then defaulted soon were labeled as 'enemy states' by certain powerful countries. They have more efft-up failures than successes.

    Nobody needs to listen to anything they say.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @12:31AM (31 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @12:31AM (#1185861)

    Same thing with heating, too.

    For people forced to contemplate freezing in the dark, the answer to "subsidies for fossil fuel industry" is "NOT ENOUGH!"

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @01:53AM (19 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @01:53AM (#1185866)

      Big Carbon are laughing their arses off as they rake in the profits with a compliant media headed by News Corp blaming high prices on uptake of renewable energy.

      Freezing in the dark is because coal companies haven't sufficiently invested in new power plants for decades and those from the 1970s are reaching EOL with increased unreliability.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:03AM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:03AM (#1185869)

        For myself, my arse is infinitely more important than anyone else's profits.

        I am not nearly so beset with envy as to be ready to suffer and die in order to leave some faceless megacorp a few hundred dollars poorer.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:13AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:13AM (#1185873)

          that faceless megacorp will still charge you 200% because they can, regardless of whether it's powered by coal, solar panels, nuclear or unicorn farts.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:59AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:59AM (#1185884)

            The not-nearly-mega corps that are selling electricity, natgas, and heat to me, specifically refer us to the exchange prices when explaining why the shit happened. Their freezing their own markup can only help so much when the upstream is going tits-up because crazies.

      • (Score: 4, Funny) by Reziac on Sunday October 10, @02:19AM (11 children)

        by Reziac (2489) on Sunday October 10, @02:19AM (#1185874) Homepage

        Never mind that blue states like California have made building new facilities a slow and difficult process. In CA it typically takes 20 years just to get past all the regulatory crap, so by the time you break ground, your design is already outdated.

        As to TFA, their figure is $15,840,000,000 per day. So where the hell does this 15 trillion dollars per day come from?? Wiki says the total world economy is $93,863,851,000 per year... so these subsidies use up all of the world's annual economy in just six days?? whatever will we do for the rest of the year??

        • (Score: 0, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:33AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:33AM (#1185878)

          check your math, sweetie.

          quote: "$5.9tn in 2020"

          As to its veracity, well it is the guardian.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @06:41PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @06:41PM (#1185952)

          So where the hell does this 15 trillion dollars per day come from??

          "Fucking magnets money, how does it work?"
          . . . . . Insane Republican Posse

          P.S.: Nobody told me there'd be math.

        • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Monday October 11, @03:14PM (8 children)

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Monday October 11, @03:14PM (#1186155) Homepage Journal

          The only blue state like California is California. Every state is unique, but I see you haven't visited many. Illinois is a blue state plans to be all green thet plans to be green by 2035, and we don't have the regulatory nightmares California has. CWLP had a coal fired generator break a week or two ago, and rather than spend a million bucks repairing it they're spending the money on a solar farm.

          --
          Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
          • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Monday October 11, @03:30PM (7 children)

            by Reziac (2489) on Monday October 11, @03:30PM (#1186163) Homepage

            True, nowhere is quite as fucked as California, tho from what I hear New York aspires to exceed 'em.

            My bailiwick is everywhere west of the Mississippi. You lot on the other side are a different planet. :P

            • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday October 13, @01:41PM (6 children)

              by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday October 13, @01:41PM (#1186644) Homepage Journal

              You would be surprised to see how much Illinois is like Missouri, despite the fact that one is deep red and one deep blue. The biggest differences are that here in Illinois, weed is legal, and people in Missouri are so racist that the NAACP gave a travel warning about Missouri. Illinois has the distinction that of all Illinois governors this century who completed their terms, half went to prison for felonies (one a Republican and one a Democrat).

              But when it comes to crazy, California is far, far less insane than Texas or Florida. Only an idiot puts politics before public health.

              --
              Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
              • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Wednesday October 13, @04:24PM (5 children)

                by Reziac (2489) on Wednesday October 13, @04:24PM (#1186690) Homepage

                I consider your views of Missouri to suffer from rectocranial inversion, but hey, we can't all think alike or the world would look like THX. If the NAACP issues such a warning, they should perhaps consider a tour of St.Louis, being how that city is a major influence on Missouri politics, to see exactly which people they're decrying as racist. Hint: it's majority nonwhite.

                • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Thursday October 14, @05:56PM (4 children)

                  by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Thursday October 14, @05:56PM (#1187047) Homepage Journal

                  The CITY of St. Louis is majority non-white, as is East St. Louis, Cahokia, and Maryville across the river. The St. Louis area spans both states and is representative of neither, and large majority white. If you want to see Missouri, try Poplar Bluff (7% nonwhite) or the Ozarks; Branson, maybe.

                  --
                  Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
                  • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Thursday October 14, @06:09PM (3 children)

                    by Reziac (2489) on Thursday October 14, @06:09PM (#1187052) Homepage

                    Point was Missouri politics are driven by the cities. The white-majority areas have little say in how the state is run. (There's one particular issue I've paid attention to there, and the divide is stark.)

                    Me, I live up in the Northern Wastes, and feel no need to visit Missouri any time soon.

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday October 10, @01:22PM (3 children)

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday October 10, @01:22PM (#1185916) Journal

        blaming high prices on uptake of renewable energy.

        Why again does Germany and Denmark have much higher [statista.com] electricity prices than any of their neighbors? High concentrations of hydroelectric power are cheap (such as for Norway), but the same isn't true of the other renewables.

        Maybe it's not time to force your utopia on the rest of us.

        • (Score: 3, Informative) by maxwell demon on Sunday October 10, @02:50PM

          by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday October 10, @02:50PM (#1185928) Journal

          I don't know about Denmark, but in Germany, the politicians managed to make a law due to which, as private person, you pay more for electricity when the price of production of renewable energies goes down.

          No, it's not the renewable energy that's the problem in Germany. It's incompetent politicians.

          --
          The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
        • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @03:06PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @03:06PM (#1185930)

          > Maybe it's not time to force your utopia on the rest of us.

          A few degrees of warming is forcing your "utopia" on other people.

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday October 10, @06:44PM

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday October 10, @06:44PM (#1185954) Journal
            It's also "forcing" prosperity for the entire human race, low fertility, and a few other huge, positive things. Meanwhile, climate change mitigation often doesn't even improve climate change.
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by stretch611 on Sunday October 10, @04:20AM (6 children)

      by stretch611 (6199) Subscriber Badge on Sunday October 10, @04:20AM (#1185890)

      So maybe instead of subsidizing the carbon based electrical/fuel companies how about we use that money to help the poor heat their houses. The remaining money can be used to create more renewable energy generation.

      --
      I think; therefore, I am vaccinated.
      • (Score: 1, Flamebait) by ChrisMaple on Sunday October 10, @04:51AM (5 children)

        by ChrisMaple (6964) on Sunday October 10, @04:51AM (#1185892)

        Would you mind explaining how you'd help the poor heat their houses without the money going through carbon-based energy companies? The requirement is to do it this year with existing infrastructure. Harry Potter technologies are not allowed.

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Michael on Sunday October 10, @12:01PM (4 children)

          by Michael (7157) on Sunday October 10, @12:01PM (#1185907)

          Loft insulation. Cavity wall insulation. Double glazing. Well fitted doors. Door-bottom brushes and draught excluding sealing strips. Porches with outer door. Air source heat pumps. Solar-thermal hot water panels. Ventilation heat-exchangers. Waste water heat exchangers. All commercially available for decades.

          That's retrofitting aimed at conserving some of the (majority) of heating power which just gets pissed away into the atmosphere by old or poorly constructed houses.

          If you're considering new builds too, it's entirely possible to have a warm house (yes, even in cold northern winters) which requires no heating other than occupants' and appliances' waste heat most days.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @03:08PM (2 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @03:08PM (#1185931)

            Yeah but apart from that, what are you going to do? Nothing. You liberals make me puke. Let the magical wand of the free market solve this, expelliarmus bitch.

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @07:17PM (1 child)

              by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @07:17PM (#1185956)

              Climate change can only be meaningfully managed at the government level. Supporting climate friendly policies IS the best thing any individual can do.

              Keep it hateful buddy, that is the Fox News way!

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @04:48AM

                by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @04:48AM (#1186070)

                Your sarcasm detector is not working properly. Maybe it's run out of power?

          • (Score: 2) by r_a_trip on Tuesday October 12, @11:29AM

            by r_a_trip (5276) on Tuesday October 12, @11:29AM (#1186380)

            So $10K per terraced house and multiples of that the bigger the house is. That's a lot of moolah. It also needs to be all installed before temperatures drop below the hypothermia line inside these houses.

    • (Score: 2) by srobert on Sunday October 10, @05:05AM

      by srobert (4803) on Sunday October 10, @05:05AM (#1185894)

      Where's "here"?

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by FatPhil on Sunday October 10, @11:35AM (2 children)

      Yes, because there's absolutely no other way of generating energy. No rays emanate from the sun, no winds or tides flow, certainly no rain ever falls, and all atomic nuclei are stable.
      --
      I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @07:21PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @07:21PM (#1185957)

        Absolutely no matter what exists in theory, when prices are shooting up in practice. Theories do not heat homes and do not light up nights.

        As to atomic nuclei, aren't greenies fighting tooth and nail to shut down the few nuclear plants still in operation?

        • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Tuesday October 12, @05:56AM

          Some greenies. But they're idiot greenies who don't inderstand that nuclear is the single best solution to almost all of the energy problem in the short to medium term (hundred or so years).

          It's election time here, and we've got two parties who are explicitly running with a "green" manifesto: The "Greens", who are anti-nuclear, and pro- any leftist issue that issues-obsessived leftiest unthinkingly get obsessive about, no matter if it's sensible or not; and a technologically progressive party with an explicit long-term perspective, and they're quite nuclear friendly. We have none at the moment, to even hear it debated is progress. Which in a country that isn't currently self-sufficcient is terrible. We should have been looking into this decades back.

          There's nuts everywhere. I'm extremely green, I probably have one of the lowest carbon footprints of anyone I know, and very pro-nuclear. Don't judge everyone to whome a label applies by the attitudes of merely a subset of that group. Some countries' green parties have now started to come out in favour of nuclear, IIRC.
          --
          I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
  • (Score: 0, Offtopic) by fustakrakich on Sunday October 10, @12:55AM (2 children)

    by fustakrakich (6150) on Sunday October 10, @12:55AM (#1185863) Journal

    See the sights, drink the whisky...

    Do some plane spotting... How many Gulfstreams?

    --
    Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:08AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:08AM (#1185870)

      nah, the point of COP26 is for London Brexiters to throw a bone to Glaswegians on an international stage to pretend they give a care about the Scots.

      As soon as Bonnie Prince Charlie becomes King, the Scottish Republic of the European Union is back on the table. Sturgeon knows it, Boris knows it.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @03:43PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @03:43PM (#1186165)

      Describing the unmitigated, hypocritical sham of climate politicians is not offtopic. We should make them practice what they preach, it's not too much to ask

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:21AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @02:21AM (#1185876)

    shut it down forever

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by khallow on Sunday October 10, @04:34AM (2 children)

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday October 10, @04:34AM (#1185891) Journal
    This particular group has played the same dishonest game for years (see here [soylentnews.org] and here [soylentnews.org]). In particular, the first link describes much of the problems with this series of studies - mostly imaginary externalities which are equated with subsidies with the part not being imaginary coming mostly from normal industrial pollution from the developing world. In particular, this claim is complete bullshit:

    Setting fossil fuel prices that reflect their true cost would cut global CO2 emissions by over a third, the IMF analysts said.

    More likely it would get developing world countries to adopt pollution controls on their coal burning plants (and the like) with little change in emissions.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @05:31PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @05:31PM (#1185944)

      Are you now, or have you ever been a member of or in the employ of the Saudi Royal family?

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday October 10, @06:35PM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday October 10, @06:35PM (#1185951) Journal
        Because being in the seedy employ of some Middle East potentate would be the only reason for speaking truth, amirite? I think it would be educational, if you reviewed what the authors think "subsidy" means.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @10:13AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @10:13AM (#1185902)

    I'm not going to bother researching it because I did the research last time there was an article like this and nothing has changed.

    The "subsidies" are things like :
    Not paying imaginary surtaxes they dreamed up
    Ordinary depreciation allowances that any business can take
    Subsidies paid to other people who might use the money to buy fuel

    There are a few actual subsidies that only apply to "wildcat" style small explorers. The total is probably closer to $11 million per year than per minute.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by inertnet on Sunday October 10, @11:37AM

    by inertnet (4071) on Sunday October 10, @11:37AM (#1185905)

    If they were correct, we should receive money for tanking gasoline, instead of having us pay 2 euros per liter.

    Also, here in Europe, natural gas is 7 times as expensive as a year ago. The Netherlands is forcing people to stop using natural gas (without a real, affordable alternative), while Germany is subsidizing people for transferring to natural gas.

    The IMF must be based in an ivory tower.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @11:58AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, @11:58AM (#1185906)

    But holding down fossil fuel prices is a highly inefficient way to help the poor
    However it is the best of all alternatives which smack of socialism

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @01:46AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 11, @01:46AM (#1186038)

    Like it or not, our country depends on fossil fuels. Without fossil fuel for vehicles, our economy would grind to a halt. Trucks, trains, planes, and ships still all need fossil fuels, the alternatives are effectively vaporware. Almost everything in the US military needs fossil fuels as well.

    b-but my commuter car is electric...

    How do you think food gets to your grocery store?

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