Tuesday, 25 October 2016

FORGET PARIS: FRANCE DROPS CARBON TAX PLAN (FOR NOW)

Reuters, 21 October 2016
 The French government is set to drop plans to introduce a carbon tax, French financial daily Les Echos said on Thursday.
 
The newspaper, quoting several sources, said the socialist government will not include the carbon tax in a draft 2016 budget update currently being discussed.

Environment Minister Segolene Royal had said in May that France would unilaterally introduce a carbon price floor of about 30 euros ($33) a tonne with a view to kickstart broader European action to cut emissions and drive forward the December 2015 United Nations-led international climate accord.

The plan had pushed power prices higher in the spring.

Les Echos quoted a source as saying that the measure is too complicated to put in place and might be unconstitutional.

The paper said that state-owned electric utility EDF, which produces mostly carbon-free nuclear power, was in favor of the measure, but that gas utility Engie SA had lobbied against the tax because it would make its gas-fired power plants less competitive than similar plants in neighboring countries.

A source close to the French government told Reuters that nothing had been decided yet on the carbon tax but confirmed there were doubts about it.

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