G-20 Agrees to Phase Out Fossil Fuel Subsidies

http://www.motherearthnews.com/renewable-energy/g20-fuel-subsidies.aspx

Later today the G-20 is expected to announce an agreement to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies.

There is no fixed date in the agreement for the phase out of fossil fuel subsidies but it is expected that such a move would greatly lower greenhouse gas emissions and curb global warming.

Reuters estimated that the annual worldwide spending on fossil fuel subsidies is around $300 billion.

Fuel subsidies for coal and oil help keep prices low for consumers, which drives up demand. As the U.S. saw a couple years ago, when gas prices soared fuel use decreased, resulting in less emissions.

The G-20 met in Pittsburgh this week to discuss global economic issues.

The elimination in fossil fuel subsidies is a small step in global climate and energy talks for President Barack Obama. In December the U.N. climate talks in Copenhagen will be much more substantial. The fact that the U.S. Senate might not vote on the energy and climate bill that passed the U.S. House by the December climate talks will likely affect President Obama’s ability to successfully negotiate with other countries on climate issues.