Eraring coal fired power plant

A new report says fossil fuel subsidies will be 31% higher in this year. The increase is driven by fuel tax credits and concessions, and subsidies for coal mining and gas pipelines. What’s the scam?

The scam is that the $3.4B in additional subsidies counter Australia’s net zero commitments and ignore the OECD’s recommendation to reduce or eliminate fossil fuel subsidies.

The report, published by the Australian Institute (TAI), highlights a number of areas where both Federal and State Governments continue to budget for more fossil fuel production in Australia and not less.

The biggest increase is in Fuel Tax Credits (“the diesel fuel rebate”), which this year will amount to $9.6B – up from $7.5B the previous year, or 28%. The coal industry alone benefits by more than $1B per year from this subsidy. Aviation fuel concessions are up 36% to $1.6B.

State and territory governments contribute in various ways too. Queensland plans to spend close to $100M a year to support the highest-emitting coal mines. The Northern Territory continues to spend big on gas pipelines and, of course, fracking in the Beetaloo, while NSW has recently announced another $45M to extend the Eraring coal-fired power plant.

According to the TAI’s Rod Campbell,

The magnitude of these fossil fuel subsidies overshadows government claims about climate action. Our state and federal governments are failing to implement even the most basic climate policy – cutting fossil fuel subsidies.

The Other Budget: Labor staring down the barrel of a climate deficit

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