The Circular Economy: Practical steps to enhance the EU package

The Circular Economy: Practical steps to enhance the EU package

This briefing highlights the shortcomings of the 2015 Circular Economy package, and looks at how the environmental and socially equitable reform of fiscal systems across the EU can support the transition to a circular economy. On 2 December 2015, the European Commission presented a revised Circular Economy package (COM/2015/614) with the stated aim of supporting the transition to a stronger and more circular economy where resources are used in a […]

Green taxes as a means of financing the EU budget: policy options

Green taxes as a means of financing the EU budget: policy options

This study commissioned by Helga Trüpel, Member of the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament, analyses four promising ecological revenue sources for the EU budget.           Drawing on a brief overview of the current Union budget, its shortcomings and its reform process, we assess the following options: revenues derived from road fuel taxes, carbon taxes, energy taxes, and fines imposed by the Court of Justice of […]

Tackling air pollution from diesel cars through tax: options for the UK

Tackling air pollution from diesel cars through tax: options for the UK

A new report by UCL’s Institute for Sustainable Resources for Green Budget Europe outlines options for fiscal reform. Each year an estimated 40,000-52,500 premature deaths result from outdoor air pollution in the UK. A primary component of air pollution is nitrogen oxides (NOx) from various sources, but particularly from road transport, with diesel cars a significant contributor. Tax instruments hold a number of benefits to complement the existing policy landscape. […]

The effectiveness of the European Semester from a governance perspective

The effectiveness of the European Semester from a governance perspective

The aim of this paper is to explain the European Semester, to analyse its governance abilities and to develop and propose messages on how to advocate for the inclusion of low-carbon objectives related to climate and energy policy, as well as the enforcement of the Circular Economy Package. The Semester, theoretically, offers an opportunity for persistent and diligent monitoring to bring the EU on track towards the achievement of its […]

Greening budgets through EU Energy Union and the European Semester

Greening budgets through EU Energy Union and the European Semester

Since the launch of the European Commission’s proposed Energy Union in February 2015, energy policy has disappeared from the main governance tool to monitor the progress of the EU’s Economic and Monetary Union, known as the European Semester. While it may appear sensible on a superficial level to have a separate framework for energy policy, it has created two strategic challenges: Firstly, Energy Union’s target implementation will not be in […]

What future for diesel cars?

What future for diesel cars?

It is often suggested that diesel cars have a useful role in reducing climate emissions, particularly in the wake of the Volkswagen scandal. This position, strongly promoted by many in the car industry, and accepted by much of the public, underpinned lower taxes and weaker air pollution standards for diesel fuel and diesel cars, contributing to a boom in diesel car sales. Diesel accounted for 53% of new car sales […]

2016 Country-Specific Recommendations in support of the European Semester process

2016 Country-Specific Recommendations in support of the European Semester process

Green Budget Europe, in collaboration with CEE BankWatch, EEB and WWF, publishes a set of Country-Specific Recommendations to be implemented in the 2016 European Semester process. Taking stock of the first year of the “streamlined” EU Semester approach, we conclude that the European Semester should be further reformed to become an effective governance and enforcement mechanism that can ensure coherence between national fiscal policies and overarching sustainable development objectives. The sixth cycle of […]

Environmental Fiscal Reform in Europe: Sustainable prosperity, growth and jobs

Environmental Fiscal Reform in Europe: Sustainable prosperity, growth and jobs

The European Union is at a crossroads, its model of social market economy under threat. The European economy will go through a fundamental transition in the coming years as it responds to the challenges it currently faces. High budget deficits, average 3% of GDP, but 14 countries with much higher rates Rising government debt-to-GDP ratios, average 87% in the EU-28 Slow GDP growth, averaging 1.4 High youth unemployment – 21% in […]

Environmental Fiscal Reform in Spain

Environmental Fiscal Reform in Spain

Green Budget Europe, in collaboration with Climate Strategy & Partners in Madrid, calls for the implementation of Environmental Fiscal Reform in Spain. This paper outlines the potential benefits, in terms of both fiscal consolidation and environmental protection, of a greener Spanish economy that is based on emission reductions and energy efficiency. Download (in Spanish)

How to cut diesel tax competition in the EU by adopting the US/Canada IFTA model

How to cut diesel tax competition in the EU by adopting the US/Canada IFTA model

A fuel tax agreement operates in the US and Canada which is known as the International Fuel Tax Agreement, or IFTA. Under the IFTA, truck operators (hauliers) record distance travelled and fuel consumed within each state/province (jurisdiction). Tax paid where fuel is purchased is later reconciled against actual use. Thanks to this reconciliation process, hauliers obtain a rebate from some jurisdictions and pay additional taxes to others. Significant differences in […]