ACTION ALERT: End Federal Carbon Subsidies to Big Oil

September 25th, 2023 - by The Climate Reality Project & Daily Kos & Democracy Now!

Tell the G20 Leaders to End the
$1 Trillion Handout to Fossil Fuels

The Climate Reality Project

(September 2023) — There’s no secret to stopping global warming: Stop burning fossil fuels.

But instead of speeding the just clean energy transition we need, governments gave away an estimated $1.3 trillion in handouts to the fossil fuel industry destroying our climate in 2022 alone.

That’s $1.3 trillion of our money. To some of the richest companies on Earth. To
pollute our atmosphere and steal our future. We can do better.

That’s why we’re calling on leaders of the G20 group of major economies to end the giveaways to fossil fuel companies making billions in profit driving climate devastation. Not in months or years. Now.

Because we can burn fossil fuels. Or we can protect our planet. But we can’t do both.

End the fossil fuel handouts now.

Rendering of a proposed LNG export terminal in Alaska.
It sure looks pretty, doesn’t it?

20 Firms Plan 90% of New Oil & Gas Projects through 2050

Meteor Blades / Daily Kos

(September 22, 2023) — According to Planet Wreckers, a new report by Oil Change International, just five companies are responsible for 51% of planned oil and gas expansion between now and 2050, what many scientists say is the deadline for zeroing out greenhouse gas emissions to address the climate crisis. The U.S, the report says, is the “Planet Wrecker in Chief” — its plans accounting for a third of the total global emissions associated with new extraction. Canada and Russia are No. 2 & 3. Projects in just 20 nations would produce 90% of emissions from new projects.

The researchers note:

  • If these 20 Planet Wreckers adopted U.N. Secretary General António Guterres’s call to quit licensing new oil and gas fields,, it would stop the equivalent of the lifetime carbon pollution of 1,100 new coal plants, with 173 billion metric tons of carbon pollution being kept in the ground
  • The planned oil and gas expansion by these 20 countries would make it impossible to hold global average temperature rise to 1.5°C (2.7°F).
  • Extracting fossil fuels just from existing sites globally would result in 140% more carbon pollution than the allowed budget for keeping at or below 1.5°C of temperature rise. With the planned new extraction, carbon pollution from fossil fuel production would soar 190% over the 1.5°C budget, risking locking in more than 2°C (3.6°F) of warming. Many climatologists think that would make large swaths of the planet unlivable by human beings and other lifeforms.

Romain Ioualalen, Global Policy lead and report co-author at Oil Change International, said in a press release

“It’s simple: when you are in a hole, the first step is to stop digging. The climate crisis is global in nature—but is atrociously unjust. A handful of the world’s richest nations’  are risking our future by willingly ignoring the calls to rapidly phase out fossil fuels.
“Despite very clear science telling us what is in store beyond 1.5°C, these so-called climate leaders are planning for climate chaos. Continuing to increase fossil fuel production anywhere is not compatible with a liveable future and has been rightly called “moral and economic madness” by U.N. Secretary General Guterres.
“All countries must  show up to the U.N. Climate Ambition Summit [this week] with plans to stop oil and gas expansion immediately, but these five countries have the additional responsibility to move first and fastest to phase out their production, and pay their fair share to fund a just global energy transition. The world is watching, and those intent on leading us into disaster will be held accountable.”

Last month, in a study published in Nature Climate Change, researchers found that many companies that were quick to tout their “net-zero” targets and support for the Paris Agreement in 2015 have yet to make significant reductions. Indeed, many have retreated. According to the study, more than 60% of the world’s top 142 oil, gas and coal companies are not on track to meet the necessary goal.

They noted:
“Not only did we find the majority of these companies are not currently aligned, but the outlook is also troubling. If recent trends (2010-2018) continue, the companies would produce up to 68% (coal), 42% (oil) and 53% (gas) more than their cumulative production budgets by 2050.”

In February, another study found that emissions-cutting pledges neither match what corporations are actually doing nor the dire reality of the climate crisis. Carbon Market Watch and the NewClimate Institute looked into the pledges of 24 of the world’s biggest companies across eight industrial sectors, all of which advertised themselves as climate leaders. They included Apple, Microsoft, PepsiCo, Nestle, JBS Foods, Amazon, Mercedes Benz, and Walmart.

They wrote:
“Most companies’ climate strategies are mired by ambiguous commitments, offsetting plans that lack credibility and emission scope exclusions, but replicable good practice can be identified from a minority. […]

Companies’ 2030 Targets
Cannot Be Taken at Face Value

Nearly all the 24 companies that we assessed have pledged 2030 targets, but we find that these targets can rarely be taken at face value. For many companies, 2030 targets address only a limited scope of emission sources, such as only direct emissions (scope 1) or emissions from procured energy (scope 2) and only selected other indirect emission categories (scope 3). Scope 3 emissions account for over 90% of the GHG emission footprints for most of the companies we have assessed. For others, 2030 targets are misleading due to reliance on offsetting.

As in U.N. climate conferences dating back 30 years, fossil fuel lobbyists will again be plentiful at COP28 in Dubai, which starts November 30. At COP27 in Egypt, 600 of them were on hand. Expect to see more tall tales from them in two-and-a-half months about their emissions pledges and how very, very green all the companies they represent are.

This year, at least, they’ll have to identify themselves, creating a little transparency. But who needs lobbyists when the presiding officer of COP28 is Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, head of the Abu Dhabi state oil company, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, and UAE Special Envoy for Climate Change?

Tick, tick, tick.

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