U.S. Energy Subsidies, Especially for Renewables Doubles between 2007 and 2010

Date: August 1, 2011

Source: News Room

A new report indicates that US government subsidies for energy have doubled between 2007 and 2010. According to a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the value of the subsidies and "direct financial interventions" in energy markets rose from $17.9 billion to $37.2 billion in 2010, much of which was attributable to stimulus spending. Support for renewable energy sources, including biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind and "other," rose from $5.1 billion to $14.6 billion. Support for biofuels rose from $3.9 billion to $6.6 billion. Natural gas and petroleum liquids support rose from $2 billion to $2.8 billion. The snapshot study was requested by U.S. Reps. Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Jason Chaffetz (R-UT). Not all subsidies affecting the energy sector were included.

To see the report, please visit: www.eia.gov/analysis/requests/subsidy.


This report responds to a November 2010 request to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) from U.S. Representatives Roscoe G. Bartlett, Marsha Blackburn, and Jason Chaffetz for an update to a 2008 report prepared by EIA that provided a snapshot of direct federal financial interventions and subsidies in energy markets in fiscal year (FY) 2007, focusing on subsidies to electricity production (Appendix A). As requested, this report updates the previous report using FY 2010 data and is limited to subsidies that are provided by the federal government, provide a financial benefit with an identifiable federal budget impact, and are specifically targeted at energy markets. Subsidies to federal electric utilities, in the way of financial support, are also included, as requested. These criteria do exclude some subsidies beneficial to energy sector activities (see "Not All Subsidies Impacting the Energy Sector Are Included in this Report") and this should be kept in mind when comparing this report to other studies that may use narrower or more expansive inclusion criteria.

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