Inappropriate subsidies contribute to widespread overfishing and to the distortion of trade in fisheries products. Current negotiations in the World Trade organization aim to address this problem through binding new subsidies rules. Meanwhile, many governments are working to reform their domestic fisheries subsidies programmes. But some fisheries subsidies will undoubtedly continue to be used for years to come. In this context, a knowledge of the policies and practices that can reduce the risks associated with these subsidies is critically important.
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"Absolutely not," says Doug Koplow of the Cambridge, Mass.-based group Earth Track. He pointed to the fact that biofuel plantations often require the destruction of rainforests, causing greater net carbon emissions and destroying animal habitats. “You can say we’re growing crops for biofuels from pre-existing farmland, but then the offsetting food production begins to cut into natural habitat," he added.
UXBRIDGE, Canada, Sep 30 (IPS) – Why do U.S. oil companies — some of the most profitable corporations on the planet — receive 20 to 40 billion dollars a year in subsidies from the U.S. government?
"The billions of dollars that go into a nuclear power plant could be spent better in other ways, including making homes more energy-efficient, said Doug Koplow, president of Earth Track Incorporated, a Cambridge, Mass.-based consulting firm."
According to government data commissioned by the GSI, China provided a total of RMB 780 million (US$ 115 million, roughly US$ 0.40 a litre) in biofuel subsidies in 2006. These comprised support for ethanol in the form of direct output-linked subsidies paid to the five licensed producers, as well as tax exemptions and low-interest loans for capital investment. Further support is provided through mandatory consumption of ethanol-blended fuel in ten provinces (a ten per cent blend with gasoline, E10).
Irrigation accounts for 70 to 90 percent of total water use in developing countries and for more than one third of water use in many Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. The significance of irrigation in increasing agricultural production and in meeting the food-grain requirements of the world has been well recognized.
This study aims to reduce this complex debate to two simple questions: how much money are Canadian federal and provincial governments spending to support liquid biofuels—fuel-grade ethanol and biodiesel—and does it represent good value-for-money to Canadian taxpayers?
It is one of a series of reports undertaken by the Global Subsidies Initiative (GSI) of the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) examining government support for biofuels in selected countries.
Within the past year, estimates of the cost of nuclear power from a new generation of
reactors have ranged from a low of 8.4 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) to a high of 30 cents. This
paper tackles the debate over the cost of building new nuclear reactors.
Advocates of nuclear power are promoting a “nuclear renaissance,” based on claims that a new generation of reactors will produce relatively cheap electricity while solving the threat posed by global climate change. As of October 2008, U.S. utilities and power producers had already proposed building about 30 new nuclear reactors. And some analysts have called for building 300 new plants by mid-century.
A Boon to Bad Biofuels: Federal Tax Credits and Mandates Underwrite Environmental Damage at Taxpayer Expense
Federal Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS) were nearly quintupled in the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act, mandating use of 36 billion gallons of biofuels per year by 2022. Because key federal subsidies scale linearly with production without limit, biofuels will receive more than $400 billion in cumulative subsidies between 2008 and 2022; nearly 40% of this will flow to corn ethanol. Should proposals advanced by the Obama campaign to boost the mandate to 60 billion gallons per year by 2030 be implemented by the Obama administration, cumulative subsidie