Governments are still spending billions subsidizing oil, gas and coal. We need to #StopFundingFossils and start investing in the future.
OVERVIEW OF WORK
Since the Paris Agreement, G20 governments have continued to finance more than USD 77 billion dollars annually in fossil fuels through multilateral development banks (MDBs), bilateral development finance institutions (DFIs), and export credit agencies (ECAs). This is three times the support they provide to clean energy. Beyond providing this direct monetary backing, these institutions reduce perceived risk and provide a government stamp of approval on fossil fuel projects that often serves to crowd in private finance. While recently the level of fossil fuel support has started to drop, institutional policies to exclude fossil fuel finance are needed to ensure this progress continues.
While a number of public finance institutions committed to ending coal finance in the early 2010s, it wasn’t until 2017, following years of campaign pressure by Oil Change and others, that the World Bank made a meaningful commitment to stop financing for upstream oil and gas. Following an intense campaign effort, in 2019 the European Investment Bank committed to ending nearly all oil, gas and coal finance. Recently, the UK announced it would end overseas oil and gas finance, and the EU and US, among others, have signalled that they intend to follow suit. Building off these successes, OCI is now working to secure further commitments from governments and public finance institutions on ending public finance for fossil fuels.
LATEST PROGRAM POSTS
“It’s time for Big Oil to take responsibility for the devastation they have wrought, that’s why New York City is making the unprecedented move to both sue and divest from fossil fuel companies."
The World Bank just shook the world of energy finance to its foundations. On December 12, at the One Planet Summit in Paris, the world’s most high-profile public bank said they would no longer finance oil and gas extraction after 2019. This move made headlines around the world, and it was the direct result of sustained pressure from activists and communities fighting to end public finance for fossil fuels.
The announcement is a big deal for three main reasons:
No other public finance institution has this kind of commitment on their books, and many will follow the World Bank's lead. Other financial
Acknowledging the obvious fact that our future cannot be fossil fueled begins the game that will only be truly won when our public policies, our laws, our governments, and our social norms fully incorporate this truth.
In his first outing as Secretary of State, former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson may have been quiet, but the world’s climate leaders were not. Ahead of the G20 meeting of foreign ministers, hosted by Germany in Bonn, German government officials didn’t mince words: “You can’t fight climate change by putting up barbed wire,” said Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, a not-so-thinly veiled swipe at Rex Tillerson and Donald Trump’s climate denial, and the Trump Administration’s racist immigration policies.
LATEST PROGRAM RESEARCH
This briefing illustrates how G7 public finance flows remain severely misaligned with climate goals. G7 public finance for fossil fuels between 2018 and 2020 totalled over USD 100 billion, four times its support for renewable energy.
Russia’s war in Ukraine and fuel price spikes mean international public finance institutions must roll out rapid decarbonization and aid packages, not back track by locking in new fossil infrastructure
This briefing explains why financial flows to fossil fuels matter and how to use the data provided by the Public Finance for Energy Database to help secure a just energy transition.