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What Fossil Fuel Subsidies, Catherine?

March 11, 2016

By Paul Homewood


Professor Catherine Mitchell


As I mentioned earlier, Catherine Mitchell’s letter to the Telegraph stated that fossil fuels are subsidised. As the article she was referring to was specifically about the UK, we can only assume that her reply also referred to the UK. (If it does not, she is guilty of gross deception).

It is time therefore to remind ourselves just how much taxes are paid from the production/use of fossil fuels.



Below is the summary from the OBR for tax receipts for 2014/15, as estimated last June. The items below specifically relate to the fossil fuel sector:


  £ billion
North Sea Oil – Corp Tax/PRT 2.2
Fuel Duties 27.2
Climate Change Levy 1.5
TOTAL 30.9


Of course, all businesses pay Corporation Tax, but as I pointed out last year, North Sea Oil operators pay considerably more as a proportion of profits, up to 75%, compared with the standard rate of 20%.



  Pre 1993 Post 1993
Profit £100 £100
Profit after PRT £50 £100
Corporation Tax £15 £30
Supplementary Charge £10 £20
Total Tax £75 £50
Net Profit after Tax £25 £50


Even with North Sea revenues depressed because of low oil prices, the Treasury is still raking in £30 billion a year, and would certainly struggle to replace this income if we all switched away from fossil fuels.

  1. AndyG55 permalink
    March 11, 2016 6:31 pm

    Its like down here. We have a thing called the road fuel tax rebate, for companies that buy fuel but down use that fuel on the roads.
    This applies to all primary industries such as mining, farming etc etc

    Greenies like to call this a subsidy.. which it most definitely isn’t

    Mining and farming bring in HUGE amounts of money into Australia.

    Renewable energy schemes suck it back out.

  2. March 11, 2016 7:03 pm

    Paul, maybe you should apply for some of the £1.3 million grant that Prof Mitchell has obtained to research how to achieve the transition to a low carbon energy system:

    Can anyone explain what this social science waffle has got to do with research in engineering or science? Yet another example of the green blob skimming money from inappropriate places.

  3. Graeme No.3 permalink
    March 11, 2016 7:07 pm

    The majority of those inclined to the green position, from activists to believers to those who just vote for them, are on the Government payroll. It may not be direct but nevertheless their income depends on the Government and from that comes a mindset about money.
    They believe that there is a big, inexhaustible bag of money that the Government uses and the amount doled out can be increased by vocal demands. Hence the barrage of claims from charities, ‘support groups’ and Universities just before the Budget is brought down.

    Every penny is needed they say and any not collected is a waste, hence their obsession with subsidies. Subsidies you note are that money not collected from those who earn money, whereas money spent on their preferences, beliefs and obsessions are “investments for the future”. In many cases very poor investments, but who expects reliable financial advice from politicians?

  4. March 11, 2016 10:12 pm

    It’s easy to make ‘the transition to a low carbon energy system’.

    Just delete the word ‘carbon’ i.e. ‘low energy system’.

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