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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Fossil Fuel Subsidies Run At Least $10 Million Every Minute

When we look at the cost of fossil fuels versus renewables, we have to take massive subsidies into account. The IMF finds governments subsidize fossil fuels to the tune of $10 million per minute. Moreover, that figure exceeds the amount governments pay for health care.

And, to add insult to injury, that's a lowball estimate which doesn't include the effects of Climate Change caused by the burning of fossil fuels into account.

The Guardian newspaper reports:

The IMF, one of the world’s most respected financial institutions, said that ending subsidies for fossil fuels would cut global carbon emissions by 20%. That would be a giant step towards taming global warming, an issue on which the world has made little progress to date.

Ending the subsidies would also slash the number of premature deaths from outdoor air pollution by 50% – about 1.6 million lives a year.

Furthermore, the IMF said the resources freed by ending fossil fuel subsidies could be an economic “game-changer” for many countries, by driving economic growth and poverty reduction through greater investment in infrastructure, health and education and also by cutting taxes that restrict growth.

It's clear that we need to end subsidies for energy in general. Without the flow of public money into fossil fuels, the free market will steer the course toward replacement by renewables. It's the natural way the free market steers us toward a healthy fossil fuelless future.