More and more countries and regions are implementing CO2 prices as an effective instrument


National action in taxing CO2 emissions and carbon pricing pose a threat to the economy. Every sort of new taxation is an additional tax burden.


Many examples prove that CO2 pricing can be implemented at national level – without damaging a country’s own industry or increasing its overall taxation. More than 100 countries have announced carbon pricing instruments in their national contributions to the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

Rising number of carbon pricing initiatives

Source: World Bank 2016

Carbon pricing is among the most important instruments for reaching the climate goals and reducing CO2 emissions. More and more countries and regions are implementing this market economy approach based on true cost considerations. More than 20 countries have introduced a carbon tax, including in recent years France, Mexico and Canada. In 2017 China rolled out a formerly regional emission trading system at national level. Following its implementation 20 to 25% of global carbon emissions will be covered by carbon pricing systems. Sweden started carbon pricing in the 1990s with a progressive taxation up to 125 €/t (ETS sectors are not covered by this). In the interest of social justice the taxes on labour were reduced. More and more business sectors, NGOs, local, regional and national governments, and financial and economic institutions (OECD, International Monetary Fund World Bank) are in favour of carbon pricing which will stimulate innovation too. The European research project WWWforEurope – a large EU economic strategy initiative with 34 international research institutions coordinated by WIFO – recommends reducing taxation on labour and increasing taxation on emissions and environmentally counterproductive resource consumption instead.