Oil Change International

Exposing the true costs of fossil fuels

Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform Gaining Momentum Internationally

23 May 2012

Ahead of upcoming meetings in June of the G20 in Mexico and the United Nations Rio + 20 Summit, the pace of activity around worldwide efforts to phase out subsidy reform is quickening.

Last weekend, the G8 leaders reaffirmed their commitment to phase out fossil fuel subsidies in their statement coming out of the Camp David summit.  This commitment from the richest countries in the world comes on the heels of 111 countries being represented in submissions to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change supporting the phasing out of fossil fuel subsidies.

In response to increasing worldwide attention to fossil fuel subsidies, Oil Change International, in collaboration with 75 other NGOs around the world, has released a joint statement outlining four key steps governments should take in phasing out these wasteful subsidies by 2015.  The NGOs’ key steps are:

  • Define plans to phase out fossil fuel subsidies by 2015;
  • Increase transparency and consistency in reporting of subsidies;
  • Incorporate assistance and safeguards to developing countries, as well as poor and vulnerable groups; and
  • Establish or identify an international body to facilitate and support fossil fuel subsidy reform.

The statement and list of signatories can be found here: http://priceofoil.org/content/uploads/2012/05/FossilFuelSubsidiesNGOstatement.pdf

Looking ahead, the G20 summit hosted by Mexico in mid June followed immediately by the “Rio+20” conference on sustainable development in Brazil present key opportunities for world leaders to take the next steps to concretize action to eliminate these subsidies.

“The first rule of holes is that when you’re in one, stop digging,” said Steve Kretzmann, Executive Director of Oil Change International.  “We are hopeful that G20 leaders and all governments convened at the Rio+20 negotiations next month will heed this call and take these critical and concrete steps to remove these subsidies”.

Oil Change International’s fossil fuel subsidy page also provides links to official statements by world leaders in the G20 and other groupings about eliminating fossil fuel subsidies; reports from the OECD, IEA et al on fossil fuel subsidy removal; links to other NGOs working on this issue; quotes for prominent figures about subsidies, and more.  These resources are all found here: http://priceofoil.org/fossil-fuel-subsidies/international.

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