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  • Writer's pictureAlison Arellano

Pacific Islanders; "We bear the brunt of the climate crisis."

The time to end fossil fuel dependence

Reducing our dependence on fossil fuels can be helped by individual change, but alone this is not enough, and governments need to make use of carbon pricing, end fossil fuel subsidies and invest in a transition to cleaner energy.



Despite the urgency of climate change and the rapid fall in the price of renewable energy sources, the world still relies on nearly 80% of its energy source from fossil fuels. Accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels will have large environmental and economic benefits, yet progress is much slower than we need. The problem of fossil fuel dependence has also been heightened by the 2022 Ukraine crisis and the desire of Europe to reduce its dependence on Russian oil and gas.


Reducing our dependence on fossil fuels can be helped by individual change, but alone this is not enough, and governments need to make use of carbon pricing, end fossil fuel subsidies and invest in a transition to cleaner energy.


Put a price on Carbon!


Burning fossil fuels has high external costs in terms of air pollution, health problems and greenhouse gas emissions. The price should not be left to market forces because the market price will be less than the socially efficient level. The government should place a tax on fossil fuels so that consumers and producers pay the full social cost. This will make renewables relatively more competitive and increase the incentive for energy companies to switch. The higher price of fossil fuel energy will also reduce consumer demand. Higher prices of gas will encourage households to reduce the temperature of their central heating and avoid unnecessary use.



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