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China, world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gasses, will tax carbon

February 20, 2013

China’s Ministry of Finance has announced that the country will levy a tax on carbon emissions, reports Xinhua.

Policy experts in the United States and Europe have long argued that a carbon tax is the most effective way to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses, but implementing one in most large industrialized countries has always seemed politically infeasible.

In the same announcement, China’s Ministry of Finance said that direct taxes on resources, including coal and water, will also be forthcoming.

Details on the carbon tax are scant, but previous reports indicated that it would come into force by 2015 and might start at 10 yuan ($1.60) per tonne of carbon, rising to 50 yuan ($8) per tonne by 2020. Notably, the tax would be collected by local tax authorities, and not municipal environmental protection bureaus.

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Global coal consumptionUS Energy Information Administration


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