The French carbon tax

France is finding is hard to pass a stiff carbon tax, though of course they already use lots of (non-carbon) nuclear power:

Details are finally emerging about the country’s planned “carbon tax,” to be put in place next year. And the idea is anything but popular.

The center-right French government wants to levy a tax of 14 euros per ton of carbon dioxide starting in 2010; carbon taxes are popular with many economists and business leaders because they are seen as easier to implement than carbon-trading plans, which France also belongs to.

In reality, France’s carbon tax is basically just a gasoline tax–and a tiny one at that. The electricity sector, overwhelmingly powered by emissions-free nuclear power, isn’t part of the plan [TC: Duh!], Prime Minister Francois Fillon told Le Figaro. The tax will basically fall on liquid fuels–raising pump prices 3 euro cents a liter (that’s roughly 15 U.S. cents a gallon).

In theory it will be revenue-neutral but most French voters are nonetheless opposed to the measure.  Here is further information:

Large CO2 emitters, such as oil refiners and steel makers, will be exempted from paying the new tax. The government will propose special compensations for fishermen, farmers and truckers…


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