Canada would be 2nd in the G20 for fossil fuel subsidies
The Liberal Party of Canada has pledged to end government subsidies to fossil fuels by 2023 (archive).
Canada continues to heavily subsidize fossil fuels despite its international commitments, according to a report by Oil Change International. The nonprofit estimates that Canada has, on average, given up to US$8.5 billion annually to projects related to this type of energy between 2019 and 2021.
Among G20 countries, Canada is the second most publicly funded fossil fuel project. Only Japan spends more, with an annual average of US$10.6 billion.
South Korea and China complete the front runners with US$7.3 billion and US$6.7 billion respectively in subsidies to the fossil fuel sector. According to the authors of the report, these four countries remained at the head of the largest contributors in 2013 and 2021.
Oil Change International specifies, in its report, that certain countries, whose China, offer little transparency about government spending, making it difficult to access accurate data.
For Bronwen Tucker, one of the authors of the report, the Canadian figures are not surprising in themselves, since the country is consistently among the leaders in fossil fuel subsidies.
In his opinion, the most astonishing thing is rather the apparent contradiction between the country's position on this type of energy and the investment it devotes to it. This is especially disappointing with Canada's promises to phase out fossil fuel subsidies by the end of 2022.
There's still some time for Canada to deliver on its promises and put policies in place, but it's certainly not the kind of numbers we would have liked to see as those deadlines approached, says- t-she.
Canada is also in third position among the countries receiving investments in fossil fuels within the G20. With just over 3 billion US dollars, the country is behind Mozambique and Russia, which benefit from around 7 billion and just under 9 billion, respectively.
The report, which looks at the years 2019, 2020, and 2021, includes loans, loan guarantees, grants, equity, and insurance coverage provided to fossil fuel producers by development banks institutions, public financial institutions and export credit agencies.
In the last election, the Liberal Party of Canada's election platform promised an end to fossil fuel subsidies in here 2023.
A re-elected Liberal government pledges to […] advance its G20 commitment to eliminate subsidies to the fossil fuel industry by 2025-2023, reads.
The platform also states that the party will develop a plan to phase out public funding of the fossil fuel sector, including state-owned companies, in line with its commitment to the goal of carbon neutrality by 2050.
According to Bronwen, the country still has the capacity to significantly reduce its fossil fuel contributions by the end of 2022. I think it's realistic, other countries have done it. The UK had a similar policy to Canada, and they were able to turn around overnight.
The bar is high, but it is possible, he adds -her.
Between 2019 and 2021, G20 countries and multilateral development banks spent as much as US$55 billion in public financial support for fossil fuels.
According to the report's authors , this is a decrease from the annual average of US$86 billion from 2016 to 2018.
G20 countries' fossil fuel funding, however, is almost twice the annual support for renewables, which stands at US$29 billion, they recall.
Investment in green energy also remained relatively stable, analysts said.
They point out that funding for this type of energy has only increased slightly […] instead of growing exponentially as is necessary to support an energy transition broadly fair.
They went from an annual average of US$27 billion, from 2016 to 2018, to US$29 billion, from 2019 to 2021.
France, Brazil and Germany lead the G20 in green energy subsidies, with US$2.8 billion, US$2.5 billion and US$2.2 billion, respectively .
Canada, meanwhile, spends about US$800 million on this guy.