IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ecj/ac2003/26.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

In Search of a Rationale for Differentiated Environmental Taxes

Author

Listed:
  • Bohringer, Christoph

    (ZEW, Mannheim)

  • Thomas F Rutherford

Abstract

Environmental tax schemes in OECD countries often involve tax rates differentiated across industrial, commercial and household sectors. In this paper, we investigate four potentially important arguments for these deviations from uniform taxation: pre-existing tax distortions, domestic equity concerns, global environmental effectiveness, and strategic trade policy. Our primary objective is to ascertain whether the degree of tax differentiation observed in many countries can be rationalized on economic grounds. In simulations with a computable general equilibrium model, we calculate optimal policies under various settings. Our simulation results lead us to conclude that there is little economic rationale for the common policy practice of discriminating strongly in favor of heavy industries, even when accounting for interacting taxes, distributional concerns, leakage, and international market power.

Suggested Citation

  • Bohringer, Christoph & Thomas F Rutherford, 2003. "In Search of a Rationale for Differentiated Environmental Taxes," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 26, Royal Economic Society.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:ac2003:26
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://repec.org/res2003/Bohringer.pdf
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bovenberg, A. L. & van der Ploeg, F., 1994. "Environmental policy, public finance and the labour market in a second-best world," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 349-390, November.
    2. Bovenberg, A Lans & Goulder, Lawrence H, 1996. "Optimal Environmental Taxation in the Presence of Other Taxes: General-Equilibrium Analyses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 985-1000, September.
    3. Krutilla, Kerry, 1991. "Environmental regulation in an open economy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 127-142, March.
    4. Bovenberg, A.L. & Goulder, L.H., 1996. "Optimal environmental taxation in the presence of other taxes : General equilibrium analyses," Other publications TiSEM 5d4b7517-c5c8-4ef6-ab76-3, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    5. Christoph Bohringer, 2002. "Climate Politics from Kyoto to Bonn: From Little to Nothing?," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2), pages 51-71.
    6. Terkla, David, 1984. "The efficiency value of effluent tax revenues," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 107-123, June.
    7. John Pezzey, 1992. "Analysis of Unilateral CO2 Control in the European Community and OECD," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 159-172.
    8. Lawrence Goulder, 1995. "Environmental taxation and the double dividend: A reader's guide," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 2(2), pages 157-183, August.
    9. Bohringer, Christoph & Rutherford, Thomas F., 1997. "Carbon Taxes with Exemptions in an Open Economy: A General Equilibrium Analysis of the German Tax Initiative," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 189-203, February.
    10. Rauscher, Michael, 1994. "On Ecological Dumping," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(0), pages 822-840, Supplemen.
    11. Patrick J. Kehoe & Timothy J. Kehoe, 1994. "A primer on static applied general equilibrium models," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, vol. 18(Spr), pages 2-16.
    12. Christoph Böhringer & Thomas Rutherford, 2002. "Carbon Abatement and International Spillovers," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 22(3), pages 391-417, July.
    13. Alm, James, 1996. "What Is an "Optimal'"Tax System?," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 49(1), pages 117-33, March.
    14. Lawrence H. Goulder & Ian W. H. Parry & Dallas Burtraw, 1996. "Revenue-Raising vs. Other Approaches to Environmental Protection: The Critical Significance of Pre-Existing Tax Distortions," NBER Working Papers 5641, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Bohringer, Christoph, 2000. "Cooling down hot air: a global CGE analysis of post-Kyoto carbon abatement strategies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(11), pages 779-789, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Otto, Vincent M. & Löschel, Andreas & Reilly, John, 2008. "Directed technical change and differentiation of climate policy," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 2855-2878, November.
    2. Anger, Niels & Böhringer, Christoph & Lange, Andreas, 2006. "Differentiation of Green Taxes: A Political-Economy Analysis for Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 06-003, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Ian W. H. Parry, 2003. "Fiscal Interactions and the Case for Carbon Taxes Over Grandfathered Carbon Permits," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 385-399.
    2. Lawrence H. Goulder, 1998. "Environmental Policy Making in a Second-Best Setting," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 1, pages 279-328, November.
    3. Goulder, Lawrence H. & Parry, Ian W. H. & Williams III, Roberton C. & Burtraw, Dallas, 1999. "The cost-effectiveness of alternative instruments for environmental protection in a second-best setting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(3), pages 329-360, June.
    4. Fischer, Carolyn & Fox, Alan, 2004. "Output-Based Allocations of Emissions Permits: Efficiency and Distributional Effects in a General Equilibrium Setting with Taxes and Trade," Discussion Papers dp-04-37, Resources For the Future.
    5. Fullerton, Don & Metcalf, Gilbert E., 2001. "Environmental controls, scarcity rents, and pre-existing distortions," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 249-267, May.
    6. John Pezzey & Andrew Park, 1998. "Reflections on the Double Dividend Debate," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 11(3), pages 539-555, April.
    7. Bovenberg, A. Lans & Goulder, Lawrence H., 2002. "Environmental taxation and regulation," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 23, pages 1471-1545, Elsevier.
    8. Parry, Ian W. H. & Williams, Roberton III & Goulder, Lawrence H., 1999. "When Can Carbon Abatement Policies Increase Welfare? The Fundamental Role of Distorted Factor Markets," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 52-84, January.
    9. Haradhan Kumar Mohajan, 2011. "Optimal Environmental Taxes Due to Health Effect," KASBIT Business Journals (KBJ), Khadim Ali Shah Bukhari Institute of Technology (KASBIT), vol. 4, pages 1-19, December.
    10. Zhang, ZhongXiang & Baranzini, Andrea, 2004. "What do we know about carbon taxes? An inquiry into their impacts on competitiveness and distribution of income," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 507-518, March.
    11. Chung-Fu Lai, 2016. "Examining the Double Dividend Effect of Energy Tax with the Overlapping Generations Model," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 6(1), pages 53-57.
    12. Orlov, Anton & Grethe, Harald, 2012. "Carbon taxation and market structure: A CGE analysis for Russia," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 696-707.
    13. Don Fullerton & Inkee Hong & Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2001. "A Tax on Output of the Polluting Industry Is Not a Tax on Pollution: The Importance of Hitting the Target," NBER Chapters, in: Behavioral and Distributional Effects of Environmental Policy, pages 13-44, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Cremer, Helmuth & Gahvari, Firouz & Ladoux, Norbert, 2003. "Environmental taxes with heterogeneous consumers: an application to energy consumption in France," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2791-2815, December.
    15. Böhringer, Christoph & Lange, Andreas & Rutherford, Thomas F., 2014. "Optimal emission pricing in the presence of international spillovers: Decomposing leakage and terms-of-trade motives," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 101-111.
    16. Parry, Ian W. H. & Bento, Antonio M., 2000. "Tax Deductions, Environmental Policy, and the "Double Dividend" Hypothesis," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 67-96, January.
    17. Fullerton, Don & Ta, Chi L., 2019. "Environmental policy on the back of an envelope: A Cobb-Douglas model is not just a teaching tool," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(S1).
    18. A. Lans Bovenberg & Lawrence H. Goulder, 2001. "Neutralizing the Adverse Industry Impacts of CO2 Abatement Policies: What Does It Cost?," NBER Chapters, in: Behavioral and Distributional Effects of Environmental Policy, pages 45-90, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Fischer, Carolyn, 2001. "Rebating Environmental Policy Revenues: Output-Based Allocations and Tradable Performance Standards," Discussion Papers dp-01-22, Resources For the Future.
    20. Fernández, Esther & Pérez, Rafaela & Ruiz, Jesús, 2010. "Double dividend, dynamic Laffer effects and public abatement," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 656-665, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    optimal environmental taxation; computable geneal equilibrium;

    JEL classification:

    • C68 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computable General Equilibrium Models
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • Q4 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy
    • R13 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - General Equilibrium and Welfare Economic Analysis of Regional Economies

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ecj:ac2003:26. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/resssea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Christopher F. Baum (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/resssea.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.