Fossil fuel subsidies provided by both rich and poor countries to keep their citizens happy are holding back the world economy, accelerating climate change and damaging the health of current and future generations, says the International Monetary Fund, reports Paul Brown at Climate Central.The worst offender is the US, which allows annual subsidies of $502 billion on fossil fuels. China with $279 billion and Russia at $116 billion are the two next largest offenders. The IMF researched 176 countries to investigate fuel subsidies. These are both direct subsidies, where consumers are sold fossil fuels at below the price of production, and indirect subsidies, where low taxes do not cover resulting environmental, health, or infrastructure damage. In developing countries a large part of the subsidy is frequently direct. Worse, says the IMF, some developing countries spend more on subsidies for fossil fuels than they do on their citizens’ health and education. The analysis says that all countries would be better off if they cut fuel subsidies, making fossil fuels more competitive, while freeing resources to be spent on more essential development like citizens’ education and welfare.
Join the swelling numbers of voters TELLING Congress they’ll vote for Clean Energy candidates here: http://signon.org/sign/we-are-the-clean-99?source=c.em.cp&r_by=487176 . This is an ongoing campaign (the next Congressional election is in 2 years!) so please, spread the word. It’s our way of telling Congress that a strong clean energy voting bloc is out there. This is how YOU can make a difference.
For more on Climate Change, check out my weekly column at the HuffingtonPost, Climate Change This Week : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/author/index.php?author=mary-ellen-harte
Health & education suffer as money that should support them is diverted to subsidising fossil fuels, which encourages consumption and discourages clean energy adoption , says IMF.