20-Year Texas Oil Subsidy Quietly Dies as Legislative Session Ends

20-Year Texas Oil Subsidy Quietly Dies as Legislative Session Ends

A 20-year-old tax break for oil and gas companies in Texas quietly met its end last Thursday. In the previous two decades, a provision of the Texas code known as “Chapter 313” has provided $10 billion in property tax relief to corporations in Texas, primarily petrochemical firms.

Why This Matters: Texas has long been a “safe space” for the oil industry. Experts say that the fact that the program quietly died is a sign of changing attitudes around fossil fuels and climate change.

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G7’s Green Recovery: Promises Kept?

G7’s Green Recovery: Promises Kept?

The G7 countries have spent more on fossil fuels than clean energy since last March, a new study led by the non-profit Tearfund shows. 

Why This Matters: The economic upheaval of the pandemic and its accompanying stimulus could have been a chance to pump money into the country’s net-zero goals. Instead, it appears that the members propped up the very industries that are increasing carbon in the atmosphere.

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Biden’s Budget Pledges $36B for Climate, Nearly Doubling Federal Spending On It

Biden’s Budget Pledges $36B for Climate, Nearly Doubling Federal Spending On It

The Biden administration released its detailed budget proposal on Friday and it contained $36 billion in total for climate, a huge increase in climate-related spending. 

Why This Matters:  Biden is making good on campaign promises, and he proposes to pay for it by keeping another promise and ending subsidies to fossil fuels that would have cost billions.

 

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Fossil Fuel Companies Pocketed $8.2 Billion in COVID Relief, Fired 60,000 Workers

Fossil Fuel Companies Pocketed $8.2 Billion in COVID Relief, Fired 60,000 Workers

A recent analysis (funded by Rockefeller Philanthropy) exposed that fossil fuel companies cut almost 60,000 jobs despite receiving billions of dollars in federal COVID-19 relief.

Why This Matters: These findings reveal two important points. First, that lucrative tax loopholes for the fossil fuel sector continue to be heavily exploited. Second, the narrative that oil companies are a “necessary engine of employment and succeed on an equal playing field in the free market” is hypocritical at best. As fossil fuel operations close, many states and former coal and oil communities are setting their sights on clean energy projects to provide new jobs and stability.

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First Woman and African To Lead World Trade Organizations Starts With Fisheries Subsidies

First Woman and African To Lead World Trade Organizations Starts With Fisheries Subsidies

The new Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, an economist from Nigeria, made ending fishing subsidies by governments her first priority on Monday, according to E&E News.  This has long been a priority for the WTO, but her decision also reflects the importance of women in promoting and ensuring sustainable fishing globally.

Why This Matters:  As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we wanted to shine a light on women’s contributions to the natural resource economy.

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Warren Proposes Big Changes in Ag Sector to Help Farmers and Fight Climate Change

Warren Proposes Big Changes in Ag Sector to Help Farmers and Fight Climate Change

On Wednesday, Senator Elizabeth Warren, rolled out yet another policy plan with big implications for combatting climate change — this time aiming at overhauling the way the government subsidizes the agricultural sector in order to incentivize conservation and stabilize farm incomes for family farmers. 

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