Leaked G20 Document Reveals More Handouts To Big Oil

June 24, 2010 § Leave a comment

David Cameron and other heads of state are preparing to abandon a commitment to phase out oil and gas subsidies, a leaked document has revealed.

The G20 communiqué indicates that eliminating the estimated $250 billion to $500 billion countries pay to make fossil fuels cheaper will now be made “voluntary” and “member specific.”

This comes in marked opposition to promises made at last year’s G20 meeting in Pittsburgh, PA, where leaders committed to phase out and rationalise over the medium term inefficient fossil fuel subsidies while providing targeted support for the poorest.”

The G20 nations estimating a greenhouse gas emissions reduction of 10 percent by midcentury and pledged to have energy and finance ministers develop “implementation strategies and timetables” to fit their particular countries’ needs and to report back this year.

Civil society organisations are pointing to the continued watering down of international commitments incentivising clean energy. “Last year, there was ambiguity around timetables; it was unclear who was going to do what by when – but they did all say they’re going to phase it out. Now they’re going to say – they’ll do it when they feel like it, and everyone can interpret it differently,” said Steve Kretzmann, Director of Oil Change International.

The developed world currently gives around $100bn a year to the fossil fuel industry in subsidies – one of the reasons ExxonMobil didn’t have to pay any US tax in 2009.

The Toronto G20 meeting takes place as the BP oil disaster continues to pollute the Gulf, and activists prepare for the largest day of action against off-shore drilling in US history.

Greenpeace have put out a statement saying;

“Subsidising the likes of BP, oil disasters and climate change is nothing short of insanity… Governments passing one hundred billion dollars a year of taxpayers’ money to big oil and coal is immoral when compared to their refusal to provide the same amount of money for the poorest countries for climate change adaptation and mitigation.”

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