French President Nicholas Sarkozy has announced plans to strong-arm France into adopting a carbon tax in order to “save the human race” from global warming.
According to the AP:
The tax would be initially based on the market price for carbon dioxide emissions permits, which is now euro17 ($24.74) per ton of carbon dioxide, Sarkozy said. At that level, the government expects to raise euro3 billion, which will be entirely returned to households and businesses through a reduction in other taxes or repaid via a so-called “Green Check,” Sarkozy said.
The result would be a shift of the tax burden from other revenue sources to energy derived from fossil fuels in an effort to discourage their use.
Gasoline, diesel fuel, coal and natual gas will be subject to the tax, but not electricity, Sarkozy said. France generates most of its electricity via nuclear power, which doesn’t emit greenhouse gases.
The tax would add 4.5 euro cents to each liter of diesel, 4 cents to each liter of gasoline and 0.4 cents for each KWh of natural gas consumed, Sarkozy said. The tax is intended to rise gradually from this level, Sarkozy said.
France emits about 1.4% of global manmade CO2 emissions.
If France stopped emitting CO2 altogether for the next 90 years, the total amount of atmospheric CO2 avoided would be on the order of 1.8 parts per million.