Fossil fuel exploration subsidies: Italy

Research reports and studies
November 2014
Shakuntala Makhijani
Governments across the G20 are estimated to be spending $88 billion every year subsidising exploration for fossil fuels. The full report The fossil fuel bailout: G20 subsidies for oil, gas and coal exploration documents, for the first time, the scale and structure of fossil fuel exploration subsidies in the G20 countries. The evidence points to a publicly financed bailout for carbon-intensive companies, and support for uneconomic investments that could drive the planet far beyond the internationally agreed target of limiting global temperature increases to no more than 2ºC. 

The report discovers that the G20 governments' exploration subsidies marry bad economics with potentially disastrous consequences for climate change. In effect, governments are propping up the development of oil, gas and coal reserves that cannot be exploited if the world is to avoid dangerous climate change.

Furthermore findings show that by providing subsidies for fossil-fuel exploration, the G20 countries are creating a ‘triple-lose’ scenario. They are directing large volumes of finance into high-carbon assets that cannot be exploited without catastrophic climate effects. They are diverting investment from economic low-carbon alternatives such as solar, wind and hydro-power. And they are undermining the prospects for an ambitious climate deal in 2015.