Green Taxation in East Asia

Green Taxation in East Asia

Edited by Richard Cullen, Jefferson VanderWolk and Yan Xu

The core concern of this book is the potential use of taxation and related measures to foster climate-helpful, large-scale change within East Asia. The contributing authors examine key issues such as how Greater China, for instance, confronts severe environmental problems which are a direct product of several decades of remarkable economic growth. The detailed analysis in this book identifies a range of green taxation guidelines for East Asia as it seeks to drive down striking levels of environmental degradation – and tackle the climate change challenge.

Chapter 7: Not Enough Room for Optimal Choices? The European Legal Framework for Green Taxes

Mattias Derlén and Johan Lindholm

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, economics and finance, environmental economics, public finance, environment, asian environment, environmental economics, environmental law, law - academic, asian law, energy law, environmental law


Mattias Derlén and Johan Lindholm INTRODUCTION 1. There are several regulatory solutions capable of protecting and enhancing the environment, one of these being (green) taxation. In selecting which regulatory option to use it is rational to seek for an “optimal policy”, meaning the regulatory solution that most effectively achieves the intended aim with the least amount of undesired side-effects. For example, several contributions in this volume discuss whether taxation or emission trading (a cap-and-trade system) is the better regulatory solution for the purpose of reducing CO2 emissions.1 The task of formulating an optimal environmental policy is a difficult one.2 Within the European Union, this is aggravated by a complex constitutional framework that largely places tax measures outside the scope of EU law. This chapter focuses on this constitutional framework and its effects on the use of green taxes and other environmental measures in the EU. To achieve this aim, we will make two important distinctions. First, 1 See contributions by Cockfield, A.; Milne, J.; Gumley, W., and Stoianoff, N.; Griffiths, S. 2 Much scholarly work in this area apply law and economics theory to approach this task. See, e.g., Albrecht, J., “The Use of Consumption Taxes to ReLaunch Green Tax Reforms,” International Review of Law and Economics, Volume 26, 2006, page 88; Andersen, M.S., “Environmental and Economic Implications of Taxing and Trading Carbon: Some European Experiences,” Vermont Journal of Environmental Law, Volume 10, 2008, page 61; Faure, M. and Johnston, J., “The Law and Economics of Environmental Federalism: Europe...

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