A Step in the Right Direction
European Greens Call for Ecological Tax Reform
This resolution was adopted by the European Federation of Green Parties at their recent congress.
We admire the resolution, which goes well beyond what other parties are seeking, but we know they could have come up with better specific ideas than merely "more tax on fuel." How about an explicit statement that higher fuel tax revenue should be used to rebate taxes that hit the poorest individuals? In this way, the green tax shift can be "progressive" rather than "regressive."
Ecological financial reform, starting with energy taxThe European Greens advocate extensive ecological financial reform for the long term as a common task of the EU. The different tax codes within the EU should be reformed according to environmental criteria: environmentally friendly activities should be rewarded, environmentally destructive activities should be made more costly. Secondly, it is to promote working in a labour-intensive as opposed to an energy-intensive way. In principle, ecological financial reform is to be revenue-neutral, i.e. the overall financial burden of citizens must not increase, without, however, ruling out the provision of funds for ecological restructuring within Europe as well as transfers to developing 'One World' countries.
Green ecological financial reform also involves introducing taxes [on environmentally destructive activities] and systematically removing subsidies which result in harmful effects on the environment.
As a first step, we are committed to the compulsory introduction of a harmonised EU-tax on fossil-fuel-based and nuclear energy production and the abolition of the tax exemption for aviation fuel.
The European Federation of Green Parties web site is at http://www.europeangreens.org/index.html
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