Today’s announcement ending most federal fossil fuel subsidies is an important and long-overdue step toward aligning public investments with Canada’s climate commitments, according to the David Suzuki Foundation.

The assessment framework and guidelines announced today are designed to not delay the transition to renewables, provide a measure of transparency and a strong basis for further action to end other public financial support for oil and gas. The Foundation is concerned about loopholes.

Today the government also announced Canada will develop a plan by 2024 for phasing out public financing of the fossil fuel sector, beyond the subsidies the new framework targets. This was a commitment the government made in its 2021 electoral platform. The Foundation calls for an accelerated timeline.

Lisa Gue, National Policy Manager, David Suzuki Foundation, said:

“For too long, taxpayer handouts to the fossil fuel industry have helped fuel the climate crisis and delayed the transition to renewable energy. Finally, Canada is delivering on its 2009 promise to end most of these subsidies. Turning off the federal funding tap for these polluting companies is the right thing to do and it’s good to see public financing is next to be tackled.

“It is disappointing to see loopholes, including green-lighting subsidies for the fossil fuel industry to pay for carbon capture and other emissions reduction technology. Taxpayers should not foot the bill for oil and gas companies to clean up their act, especially when these companies are making record profits and driving inflation.

“We can’t wait another 18 months for a plan to phase out public financing for fossil fuel companies, beyond the scope of today’s announcement. We call on the minister of environment and climate change to move forward with this plan by the end of the year and implement it in the next federal budget. Whether through subsidies or public financing, the public purse should not be used to line the pockets of fossil fuel companies.

“We know we need to phase out fossil fuels to limit global warming. All subsidies and public financing that enable fossil fuel expansion are clearly incompatible with the goals of the Paris Agreement.”

John Young, B.C. Energy Transition Strategist, David Suzuki Foundation said:

“The new framework is supposed to ensure any government support for the sector will not delay the transition to renewables and are in compliance with the goals of the Paris Agreement to limit warming to 1.5 C. Implementing this commitment with integrity means there can be no further subsidies for new fossil fuel projects like the controversial LNG plants proposed in British Columbia. As our recent LNG report clearly indicated, LNG locks in emissions, locks up investment and locks out renewables.”

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  • The fossil fuel industry makes more than $3 billion per day in profit. As many Canadians struggle with the affordability crisis, it is inappropriate to allow any public funds — either active subsidies or other forms of public financing — to be directed to the fossil fuel industry.
  • A landmark 2021 study by the International Energy Agency concluded that there is no need for investment in new fossil fuel supply in a pathway to net-zero by 2050. IEA executive director Fatih Birol said at the time, “If governments are serious about the climate crisis, there can be no new investments in oil, gas and coal, from now — from this year.”
  • In its 2021 electoral platform, the government pledged to “develop a plan to phase out public financing of the fossil fuel sector, including from Crown corporations.”
  • Canada is also required to phase out subsidies that harm biodiversity, under the new Global Biodiversity Framework agreed to in Montreal last year.

For more information, please contact:

Melanie Karalis,, 548-588-1279