Energy is essential to the way we live. Whether it is in the form of oil, gasoline or electricity, the worlds' prosperity and welfare depends on having access to reliable and secure supplies of energy at affordable prices. Improving how we acquire, produce, and consume energy is central to becoming economically and environmentally responsible and sustainable.
Saturday, February 9, 2013
Fossil Fuel Subsidies Are Public Enemy Number One, Says IEA
International Energy Agency (IEA) Chief Economist Fatih Birol made no bones about his opinion on fossil fuel subsidies at the European Wind Energy Association conference this year.
Birol said that “[f]ossil fuel subsidies are public enemy number one for green energy.”
Birol delivered a direct message to governments that continuing tax breaks for fossil fuels companies doesn’t make sense because renewable energies can’t compete with artificially cheap oil and gas, making it impossible to meet climate change targets.
Birol called for “governments around the world” to end the $500 billion in annual subsidies that are given to oil and gas production (not to mention the additional subsidies given in the form of permitted externalities), according to Business Green.
Unfortunately, Birol realizes the unlikelihood of governments totally abandoning fossil fuel subsidies in the near future, especially in light of the spike in oil prices after the Arab Spring. More