STOP FUNDING FOSSILS
Our Stop Funding Fossils program uses critical analysis and strategic organizing to end the vast quantities of government support flowing to the fossil fuel industry and accelerate the clean energy transition.
Public finance and subsidies for fossil fuels play a key role in driving oil, gas, and coal production. Climate leadership means not wasting another cent of public money on the industries that are causing the problem.
OVERVIEW OF WORK
Our research shows that G20 governments spend $444 billion per year propping up oil, gas, and coal production, while the G20’s taxpayer-backed public finance institutions provide nearly 4 times more public finance to fossil fuels than to clean, renewable energy.
These massive subsidies play a key role in expanding oil and gas production and locking in existing fossil fuels: recent analysis finds that half of the new oil fields being drilled in the US would have remained undrilled if not for substantial subsidies; at the same time, public finance for fossil fuels de-risks capital-intensive megaprojects, like massive coal plants in Southeast Asia, few of which would proceed without government backing. And as oil, gas, and coal producers face increasing competition from renewable energy, instead of simply reducing fossil fuel production, they exert their political influence to get more handouts to keep extracting.
Instead of spending scarce public resources on the fossil fuel industry, our work challenges public institutions to scale up their support for distributed renewable energy solutions that can deliver energy access quickly and at least cost in many developing countries: today, support for these solutions makes up only a tiny fraction of all public finance for energy.
We know from the work of our Energy Transitions and Futures program that already-producing oilfields, gasfields, and coal mines hold enough carbon to take the world well beyond 1.5°C of warming and up to 2°C. This means that governments who’ve signed up to the Paris Agreement (that’s nearly everybody) shouldn’t spend another cent of public money on fossil fuels if they take their commitment seriously. We call on them to stop funding fossils.
LATEST PROGRAM POSTS
As Export Development Canada (EDC) undergoes a climate change policy review, 53 civil society organizations sent a letter with a call to action to the federal crown corporation and Minister of Trade Mary Ng.
Welcome to 2021, which we hope will be a year of transformative change and unstoppable momentum on climate change, culminating in COP26, the crucial climate conference in Scotland at the end of the year.
Today, organizations representing millions of environmental, racial, and economic justice advocates across the country are launching a new Build Back Fossil Free campaign to hold President-elect Joe Biden accountable to his promises for bold climate action.
“Of course, when the clock strikes midnight to turn to January 1, 2021, the world won’t instantly be cured of either COVID or our fossil fuel addiction. But, nevertheless, as we look towards 2021, there is hope on the horizon."
LATEST PROGRAM RESEARCH
Despite repeated pledges to end inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, G20 governments’ support to fossil fuels has dropped by only 9% since 2014–2016, hitting USD 584 billion annually over the last three years, according to a report released today by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), and Oil Change International (OCI).
In this new report we consider recovery commitments and pre-pandemic policies to rank G20 countries' progress in phasing out support to fossil fuels. We find at least USD 584 billion per year between 2017 and 2019 in public support for fossil fuels from G20 governments.
European Development Finance Institutions fall short on climate ambition by allowing continued financing for fossil gasToday, one week ahead of the Finance in Common Summit, the Association of European Development Finance Institutions (EDFI) announced joint ambitions for climate action. The institutions commit to full Paris alignment by 2022 and to end coal and fuel oil financing. For gas finance, they commit to “generally exclude [such finance] by 2030 at the latest”, but leave the room open to gas financing beyond 2030 in certain cases.