“A High-Impact Initiative For Rio+20: A Pledge to Phase Out Fossil-Fuel Subsidies” IISD Publications

Aug 19, 2011 | Corporate Member News

Michael Volpe, Kerryn Lang, Peter Wooders, GSI, IISD, 2011. Paper, 10 pages

While negotiating time is running short, the IISD believe that Rio+20—the next UN Conference on Sustainable Development, 4–6 June 2012—can be a success with the help of a few high-impact initiatives.

IISD is proposing a national pledge for UN member countries to phase out fossil-fuel subsidies that undermine sustainable development as one of these high-impact initiatives. If adopted, it will contribute to both themes of the conference: subsidy reform frees up valuable fiscal resources that can be redirected to fund other sustainable development priorities, providing the opportunity to introduce more targeted measures to support low-income households, it reduces greenhouse gas emissions and helps incentivize investments in renewable energy.

IISD proposes that countries adopt a pledge to:

  1. Phase out fossil-fuel subsidies that undermine sustainable development.
  2. Assist other countries phase out fossil-fuel subsidies that undermine sustainable development.

Implementation of the pledges would be considerably strengthened by the adoption of supporting measures. It is recommended that countries commit to providing: transparent, annual reporting and review; technical and financial assistance for developing countries; common research and analysis and Secretariat support.

Access the report here.

The Global Subsidies Initiate is preparing a proposal for submission to the Rio+20 process. We invite other organisations to show their support by co-signing the submission. If you are interested, please contact: Kerryn Lang, [email protected] +41 22 917 8920.

About the International Institute for Sustainable Development 

The world is challenged by a changing climate, biodiversity loss, abject poverty and environmental degradation. What can make a difference? Good ideas. Creativity. Passion. Innovation. The achievement of change. 

IISD is in the business of promoting change towards sustainable development. As a policy research institute dedicated to effective communication of our findings, we engage decision-makers in government, business, NGOs and other sectors in the development and implementation of policies that are simultaneously beneficial to the global economy, the global environment and to social well-being. 

In the pursuit of sustainable development, we promote open and effective international negotiation processes. And we believe fervently in the importance of building our own institutional capacity while helping our partner organizations in the developing world to excel. 

Established in 1990, IISD is a Canadian-based not-for-profit organization with a diverse team of more than 150 people located in more than 30 countries. Through our dynamic portfolio of projects, we partner with more than 200 organizations throughout the world. To learn more about our history, please visit the IISD Timeline. 

Click here to learn more about our project work and programs, which are guided by our strategic institutional directions. And please visit our IISD Linkages site to follow our coverage of international negotiations on environment and development. 

IISD is registered as a charitable organization in Canada and has 501(c)(3) status in the United States. IISD receives core operating support from the Government of Canada, provided through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Environment Canada, and from the Province of Manitoba. The Institute receives project funding from numerous governments inside and outside Canada, United Nations agencies, foundations and the private sector.

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