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The Use of Economic Instruments in Nordic Environmental Policy 2006–2009

image of The Use of Economic Instruments in Nordic Environmental Policy 2006–2009

The Nordic Council of Ministers publishes regular overview reports on the use of economic instruments in Nordic environmental policy. In this report, Part I presents an overview of the use of economic instruments with the main focus on changes during the years 2006 - 2009. Part II gives a brief overview of mixes of policy instruments (also other than economic instruments) and presents two case studies. There are generally few changes in the use of economic instruments since 2006, except for the introduction of the emissions trading system, EU ETS, and changes in vehicle registration tax systems to become more based on specific fuel use or CO2 emissions. In general, the tax systems could be made more effective and efficient by treating different sectors and fuels more equally.

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Norway

Since the 1990s, economic instruments have been a central part of the "green taxation" system. The rates increased somewhat towards 2000, and some few new taxes were introduced. Since that time most tax rates have only been adjusted from one year to another based on the expected increase in the general price level. In 2005 a national emission trading system was established. From 2008 the system was expanded and integrated in the EU ETS, and the CO2 tax system has been somewhat adjusted to avoid use of "double taxation. However, CO2 emissions from the offshore installation both pay (reduced) CO2 taxes and have to buy all allowances they need to cover their emissions. Furthermore, a NOx charge has been introduced together with a NOx abatement fund that companies alternatively can pay into if they commit themselves to undertake emission reductions instead of paying the tax. Finally, from 2007 the registration tax for passenger cars has been adjusted to favour low- CO2 emission cars. In 2008 and 2009 the registration tax system has been further changed in favour of these cars.

English

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