Nordic Council of Ministers Releases Report on Flexible Emissions Fees
17 April 2012: The Nordic Council of Ministers has launched a report on using flexible emissions fees as an incentive to drive sustainable production and consumption. The report asks whether flexible emission fees could be used to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, while encouraging economic development, based on Anders Höglund's proposal for a Flexible Emissions Fee Mechanism.
The report, titled "Flexible emission fees: An incentive for driving sustainable production and consumption," outlines a flexible mechanism that would have governments levying a fee for any substance that accumulates and degrades natural systems or is not available for re-use. The fee would be levied, if possible, at point of import, and would change frequently to ensure market behavior is modified. The report describes a two-part project exploring the flexible emission fee mechanism, which consists of a literature review and the outcomes and recommendations of a workshop with stakeholders and Nordic Governments.
The report recommends that: flexible fees could be applied to carbon dioxide and essential minerals; depletion risk areas could include soil, agricultural land and water; and further studies should be conducted to access the potential of flexible fees to address a broad range of pollutants. The report also calls for examining flexible fees as a possible means of complementing existing emissions trading schemes under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and highlights the potential for flexible fees to stimulate development of clean technology. [Publication: Flexible Emission Fees: An Incentive for Driving Sustainable Production and Consumption]