Archive for October 9th, 2011


Politicians Promote Fossil Fuels with Half a Trillion Dollars a Year

Human Wrongs Watch

By Baher Kamal*

Apparently, hypocrisy has not limits—politicians everywhere, specially in rich-industrialised countries, look serious when they talk about their alleged, firm intentions to reduce fossil fuels devastating pollution, produce ‘clean’ energy and save humankind from the impact of climate change. Meanwhile, they spent about half a trillion dollars last year supporting the production and consumption of a major polluting source–fossil fuels.

Anacortes Refinery, U.S. - Image: Walter Siegmund (talk) | Wikimedia Commons

The recovery from the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes remains fragile”, said Angel Gurría, secretary-general of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on Oct. 4 in Paris during the launch event of its Inventory of Estimated Budgetary Support and Tax Expenditures for Fossil Fuels.

Meanwhile, the room for policy manoeuvres is increasingly limited, especially in more advanced economies. In the context of fiscal consolidation efforts, effective public spending becomes critical, he said.

Nevertheless, “Governments and taxpayers spent about half a trillion US dollars last year supporting the production and consumption of fossil fuels. Removing inefficient subsidies would raise national revenues and reduce greenhouse-gas emissions,” according to OECD and IEA (International Energy Agency) analyses.

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