foto Peter Hilz (C)

CO2 tax could generate 2.3 billion each year

The Federal Climate Change Unit has presented a proposal text for a tax on carbon dioxide emissions in the transport and building sector. This type of tax could generate 2.3 billion each year as from 2030, cash that could be used to stimulate businesses and members of the public to reduce their CO2 footprint. 

Belgium aims to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases by 80 to as much as 95 percent by 2050. One way to speed up the process is to introduce a CO2 tax. This tax could cost an average family up to 280 euros per year in 2030, but he aim is to change people's (and companies') behaviour. 

A CO2 tax already exists, under the European ETS frame (Emissions Trading System).  This trading system allows heavy industry and energy companies to negotiate CO2 rates. Those emitting less, are being rewarded financially. However, the ETS system applies to only 37 percent of CO2 emissions in Belgium.

And this where this federal report comes in, as it looked for a way to extend this frame. The 63 percent which is left, is emitted by the agricultural sector, waste-processing industries and most of all, the transport and building sector.  Those who worked out the proposals, underline that it should not become an extra tax, but more a kind of price marker which should influence people's behaviour. The cash generated should be used to stimulate the transition to renewable energy, to lower labour taxes or electricity charges, or to stimulate employment.