Long-term green tax plan needed to change behaviour

The Government needs to give people confidence that environmental tax incentives will be in place for a long time, the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) has said.

Speaking to edie, the CIOT’s green tax specialist Mark Delaney said: “This is key to changing people’s behaviour”.

Commenting on the Treasury’s latest definition of environmental taxes out this week, Delaney said that CIOT welcomed the clarification, but felt it needed to go further.

What was really needed, he said, was an environmental tax framework running for the next five years on a similar form to that already adopted for business tax.

The new definition, which covers climate change levy, aggregates levy, landfill tax, EU emissions trading system, carbon reduction commitment, energy efficiency scheme and the carbon price support, shows environmental tax revenues doubling to £6.6bn by 2015-16.

Delaney questioned, however, why air passenger duty (APD) and fuel duty were missing from the Treasury’s list.

“At first glance, there would appear to be a case for including APD and arguably fuel duty too. Clearly these taxes have an environmental aspect to them, and are often discussed in these terms.”

Any analysis of green taxation in the UK, he added, would need to consider APD and fuel duty to be regarded as “comprehensive”.

Commentators in the waste industry have expressed concerns that the Treasury’s projections for landfill tax over the coming years are overly optimistic and that should a shortfall occur, the Government may look at other options to claw back the revenue.

edie staff

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