STUDY: U.S. subsidises fossil fuels 2.5 times more than renewables

Posted on Wednesday September 23, 02009

Oil Refinery Pump

There's no question that the U.S. needs to tackle the Health Care Reform, but let also keep in mind the massive amount of work we need to do to reform the way in which we fuel our economy.

According to a new study that reviewed fossil fuel and energy subsidies for Fiscal Years 2002-2008 was just released by the Environmental Law Institute and discovered that the U.S. spends about two-and-a-half times as much on fossil fuels (mostly aiding foreign oil production) than it does on renewable energy. Fossil fuels were given about $72 billion during the seven years, while renewable fuels got just $29 billion.

Download the study here: a PDF of the report , titled "Estimating U.S. Government Subsidies to Energy Sources: 2002-2008."But here are just a few shocking bullet points."

• The vast majority of federal subsidies for fossil fuels and renewable energy supported
energy sources that emit high levels of greenhouse gases when used as fuel.

• The federal government provided substantially larger subsidies to fossil fuels than to
renewables. Subsidies to fossil fuels—a mature, developed industry that has enjoyed
government support for many years—totaled approximately $72 billion over the study
period, representing a direct cost to taxpayers.

• Almost half of the subsidies for renewables are attributable to corn-based ethanol, the
use of which, while decreasing American reliance on foreign oil, raises considerable
questions about effects on climate.

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