Fossil fuel subsidies persist in EU, UK worst offender

9 January, Brussels - Fossil fuel subsidies in the European Union have not decreased since 2008, with €55bn handed out in in 2016, according to a new report from the European Commission.

The report is based on 2016 Eurostat data and shows that renewables received 45% of all energy subsidies and fossil fuels 33% across the whole EU.

The United Kingdom Government leads the way, providing €12bn a year in public funding for fossil fuels: 50% higher than the amount given to renewable energies. Belgium, France, Ireland, Sweden and the Netherlands were the other member states found to be giving more to fossil fuels than renewables.

Germany, by far the largest provider of energy subsidies, is the leading supporter of renewables. There, 75% of subsidies are for renewable energy (€27bn, compared to €9.5bn for fossil fuels). Spain and Italy also gave more to renewable energy than fossil fuels.

Back in 2009, G20 countries and the EU pledged to phase out subsidies for coal, oil and gas, while the Paris Agreement commits its signatories to hold global warming to well below two degrees Celsius through significant greenhouse emission cuts.

Click to read the full report.