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Tax Policies for Low-Carbon Technologies

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  • Metcalf, Gilbert E.

Abstract

This paper discusses the difficulties of achieving climate change policy goals with low-carbon subsidies as opposed to using taxes to raise the price of carbon-intensive activities. First, subsidies lower the cost of energy, and thus encourage consumer demand responses that work in opposition to the goal of reducing emissions. Second, it is difficult to achieve technology neutrality with subsidies. Third, many subsidies are inframarginal. Finally, subsidies often suffer from unintended interactions with other policies. The paper concludes with some observations on the use of price-based instruments and discusses how a carbon tax could be designed to achieve environmental goals over a control period.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by National Tax Association in its journal National Tax Journal.

Volume (Year): 62 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 519-33

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Handle: RePEc:ntj:journl:v:62:y:2009:i:3:p:519-33

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  1. Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2006. "Federal Tax Policy Towards Energy," NBER Working Papers 12568, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Holland, Stephen P & Knittel, Christopher R & Hughes, Jonathan E., 2008. "Greenhouse Gas Reductions under Low Carbon Fuel Standards?," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series qt0177r7xp, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
  3. Lucas W. Davis & Matthew E. Kahn, 2008. "International Trade in Used Durable Goods: The Environmental Consequences of NAFTA," NBER Working Papers 14565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Balazs Egert, 2012. "France's Environmental Policies: Internalising Global and Local Externalities," CESifo Working Paper Series 3887, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Aldy, Joseph Edgar, 2011. "A Preliminary Review of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s Clean Energy Package," Scholarly Articles 5688917, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  3. Leahy, Eimear & Tol, Richard S. J., 2011. "Greener Homes: An Ex-Post Estimate of the Cost of Carbon Dioxide Emission Reduction using Administrative Micro-Data from the Republic of Ireland," Papers WP388, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  4. Johnson, Erik Paul, 2014. "The cost of carbon dioxide abatement from state renewable portfolio standards," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 332-350.
  5. Robert Main, 2013. "Subsidizing Non-Polluting Goods vs. Taxing Polluting Goods for Pollution Reduction," Atlantic Economic Journal, International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 41(4), pages 349-362, December.

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