With over 10 years of experience, the IISD Global Subsidies Initiative (GSI) is widely recognized as world-class leader in the quantification, evaluation and reform of subsidies.
Governments around the world spend at least a trillion dollars a year on subsidies to exploit the world's natural resources. But faced with increasing fiscal constraints, and concerned about making their economies cleaner, more inclusive and stable, governments are under increasing pressure to change course.
GSI works closely with governments to help them move away from subsidies that hinder sustainability. The goal is to encourage individual governments to undertake unilateral reforms on subsidy policy where these would deliver clear economic, environmental and social benefits. GSI also aims to generate a consensus in the World Trade Organization and in other forums on the need to take resolute, ongoing and systematic action to reduce or eliminate subsidies that are trade-distorting and undermine sustainable development.
Case Study: What is the true cost of coal in Central Java?
PLN expects to expand coal power capacity in Central Java, which is in the centre of Indonesia's economic corridor. But are PLN plans realistic and what will this cost—not just the cost to rate-payers, but also in terms of impacts on climate change and air pollution? Are there alternatives to these developments?Read More
A Guidebook to Reviews of Fossil Fuel Subsidies: From self-reports to peer learning
This guidebook provides a step-by-step approach to government reviews of fossil fuel subsidies. The guidebook covers the design of reviews, identification, measurement and evaluation of subsidies, via country case studies and practical tools, as a first step towards transparency and reform.Read More
Kerosene to Solar Swap Policy Brief 3: Sustainable Lighting Solutions for Rural Homes in India
This policy brief analyzes the current policy environment governing kerosene and off-grid solar use. It sets out a suite of detailed policy interventions that can be implemented to achieve a systemic transition from kerosene to solar for lighting in rural India.Read More
Kerosene to Solar Swap Policy Brief 2: Building a Market for Off Grid Solar Lighting
This policy brief looks at the current market situation for off-grid solar technologies in India and the current barriers to an enabling business environment for solar.Read More
Kerosene to Solar Swap Policy Brief 1: Kerosene Subsidies in India: The status quo, challenges and the emerging path to reform
This policy brief examines the current system of kerosene subsidies in India, looking at key issues and the impact subsidies have on the distribution of clean, off-grid solar lighting solutions.Read More
Can Trade Help Deliver the Paris Agreement? Lessons learned from the G20
This year’s G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany, saw long and heated discussion on the urgency of delivering the Paris Agreement.Read More
From C20 to the G20: What we need on carbon pricing and fossil fuel subsidy reform
IISD’s Global Subsidies Initiative presented at a side event on June 18 at the C20 Summit, a gathering that facilitated exchanges among civil society from G20 countries on the upcoming G20 Summit agenda and beyond.Read More
At the Crossroads: Balancing the financial and social costs of coal transition in China
The global decline of the coal industry has led to job losses and mine closures. As Shanxi in China considers how to create new employment in a coal dependent region we review international experience of the tranistion away from coal.Read More
The True Cost of Coal and Renewables in Indonesia
Indonesia is facing an energy crunch as demand for electricity rises across the country. The country is one of the world’s largest coal producers, and is developing plans for an additional 35 gigawatts (GW) of new coal-fired power stations. Proponents of the development claim that coal is the cheapest source of energy available. Is this really true?Read More
Financial Supports for Coal and Renewables in Indonesia
This report shows that the “true cost” of coal, including subsidies and externalities such as GHG emissions and air pollution, is considerably greater than the cost of renewable energy in Indonesia.Read More