Did you know that Canada gives $3.3 billion in subsidies to oil and gas companies every year—and taxpayers are footing the bill? That’s enough to pay for:
- 44,000 hospital beds;
- Education for 260,000 high school students;
- Solar panels for 13,200 schools across Canada;
- Job training for over 330,000 workers.
The 2017 federal budget will be released in March. Please sign and share the petition calling on the government to stop giving billions of dollars to the coal, oil and natural gas industries. These subsidies, in the form of tax credits (much larger than those given to other sectors), amount to paying polluters $19 for each tonne of carbon dioxide they emit to help them pollute! This money could be better spent fighting climate change, transitioning to a low-carbon economy, improving health care and other forward-looking projects.
AN highlighted non-sense
At the last UN Climate Change Conference (COP22) in November 2016 in Morocco, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on participating countries to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies.
“The private sector must also do much more, and I call for the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies to accelerate the transition to clean energy.”
Ban Ki-moon, November 15, 2016
The study, The Elephant in the Room: Canada’s Fossil Fuel Subsidies Undermine Carbon Pricing Efforts, highlights the absurdity of these subsidies, which seriously undermine Canada’s chances of achieving its GHG reduction goal and send contradictory messages to fossil fuel producers and users : “This system is like taxing consumers when they buy cigarettes and giving massive tax breaks to tobacco companies that encourage them to produce more cigarettes. It simply doesn’t make sense.”
LET’S ACCELERATE CHANGE!
The federal government has pledged to end these subsidies by 2025. But this deadline is too far away. Four years—by 2020—is more than enough for the government to act. In 2009, like its G20 counterparts, the government committed to phasing out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies by 2020. Seven years later and Canadians are still paying billions to oil and gas producers!
It’s time to collectively call on the Government of Canada to commit to eliminating fossil fuel subsidies by 2020. And this commitment should be reflected in the 2017 federal budget.