3. Norwegian taxpayers covering oil exploration in the Arctic
The Norwegian state takes most of the risks for new oil field exploration in the Barents Sea, locking Norway into decades of oil extraction, with adherent CO2 emissions, in a time when oil needs to remain underground and public resources should encourage green energy development.
The Norwegian government is pushing its oil industry further and further north, though the new oil exploration areas recently opened in the Barents Sea might never be profitable given the current low oil prices and the requirements of the Paris climate agreement to stop global warming and thus to keep fossil fuels in the ground. However, Norway’s "petroleum tax system” ensures that the financial risk of further expanding in the Barents Sea is beared by the public purse, not Big Oil: if an oil company drills a well that's dry (the average cost in 2013 was 600 mill NOK), the state covers 78 per cent of the costs.

It’s a risky business bankrolled by the Norwegian tax-payer – The Norwegian government is pushing the oil industry further and further north, and by taking the risk for the oil companies, they are taking chances they would never do if they had to pay for it. It's absurd that the Norwegian public should pay for the risks taken in the Barents Sea.

Nominated by
Friends of the Earth Norway (Naturvernforbundet)
WWF Norway
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