Table of Contents

Handbook of Research on Environmental Taxation

Handbook of Research on Environmental Taxation

Elgar original reference

Edited by Janet E. Milne and Mikael S. Andersen

The Handbook of Research on Environmental Taxation captures the state of the art of research on environmental taxation. Written by 36 specialists in environmental taxation from 16 countries, it takes an interdisciplinary and international approach, focusing on issues that are universal to using taxation to achieve environmental goals.

Chapter 5: Design options and their rationales

Pedro M. Herrera Molina

Subjects: economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, environmental economics, environmental law, law - academic, environmental law


This chapter addresses the legal design of environmental taxes. At the start, it clarifies conceptual issues, and then focuses on the constitutional allocation of taxing and environmental powers, which will be exercised to implement such taxes. Next it covers several elements that build the structure: the taxable event, tax base, tax rates, tax reductions and procedural aspects. We shall try to focus on genuine legal problems without neglecting issues of environmental policy. Furthermore, the chapter addresses the legal design of environmental expenditures embodied in ‘ordinary’ taxes. The chapter concludes with some reflections on the codification of environmental taxes and green fiscal expenditures. A preliminary remark is that while the chapter will try to clearly distinguish policy recommendations from legal requirements, which vary from country to country, some bias may persist as the author is an observer of the European legal system. We offer to the reader some relevant references in the English, Spanish, German, Portuguese and Italian languages, but researchers should take into account the peculiarities of their own legal systems when reading this chapter.

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