Big Energy, part 2

In the spirit of the national debate and elections, this is the second of three posts covering national funding, subsidies, loans for energy, and energy lobbying.  See part 1, covering historical subsidies and the loan programs, here.

A month ago in "The Energy Subsidy Tally", the Wall Street Journal analyzed a comprehensive EIA report released last year which includes detailed analysis of every type of direct federal financial interventions and subsidies in energy.  Yes, this even includes a breakdown on research dollars. Another great analysis of the breakdown can be found here (and especially in the comments section).  CNN Money estimated a couple weeks ago that $50 Billion of the stimulus funds went to non-nuclear "green" energy; but how much of federal spending and subsidies went to each energy type?

Here is the breakdown:

We see once again that nuclear energy receives the least support of the main energy providers.  Next post, we will examine lobbying dollars-- the most taxing (ha) analysis we have performed yet.


  1. Note, the EIA report lumps very large expenditures on fusion together with fission under the "nuclear" moniker.

    Subsidy dollars per joule is another measure of energy subsidy to consider. The WSJ article does show this, but you need to subscribe or come from Google to see it. However, one should compare past spending with current production, not spending and production from the same period as the WSJ piece does.

    State-level subsidies, feed-in tariffs, and quotas are also significant compared to federal direct spending and should be considered.

  2. An study commissioned by NEI compared cumulative federal subsidies 1950-2006 with production in 2006. Results, in billions of USD/PWh:

    Oil 29
    Gas 15
    Coal 14
    Hydro 95
    Nuclear 27
    Renewable 55

    That's from my notes. It looks like there's an updated version of the study, here:

  3. It's nice to see some subsidies but I don't think they are enough, currently!


Only comments that intelligently add to the discussion will be allowed.