Greenpeace: CO2-based registration tax and new company car rules
A ship in the Greenpeace fleet. pixabay.com
BERLIN / HANNOVER (dpa-AFX) – The environmental protection organization Greenpeace is demanding a new tax policy from the possible traffic light coalition in order to improve the carbon footprint of car traffic. According to a paper published on Friday, this could include a registration tax based on CO2 emissions and a fundamental revision of the rules for company cars. Such measures are necessary to reduce emissions – in addition to pure purchase subsidies for e-cars – more significantly. In research, demands have recently been made to use the tax system to offset the financial burdens caused by higher energy costs, instead of just granting subsidies.
Greenpeace is proposing, for example, the introduction of a CO2-oriented tax for newly registered cars – as an additional steering instrument or as part of the current vehicle tax. “Locally emission-free vehicles such as electric cars would be exempted from this, economical vehicles would be taxed low and particularly climate-damaging vehicles would be taxed heavily,” so the concept. The increase in prices for heavy and large combustion engines could then accelerate the switch to less climate-damaging cars, together with the purchase premium for e-cars.
From this a “bonus-malus system” could be developed, explain the environmentalists. One consequence would be “that not all taxpayers would have to pay for the payment of the e-car premiums, but primarily the buyers of CO2-intensive combustion cars”. Ultimately, more direct emission reductions can be combined with the development of further sources of finance for climate protection investments.
In addition, an end to the previous financial privileges for company cars that are often used privately is necessary, argues Greenpeace. The actual monetary benefit for the employee is often much greater than expressed by the taxed amount, while the employer saves ancillary wage costs. Due to the high proportion of commercial vehicles in new registrations, the form of company car taxation also has a major impact on the CO2 load.
The suggestion: company cars should be treated in the same way as private cars for tax purposes. The monetary benefit must be related to the actual use of the vehicle and, for example, also extended to fuel costs. At the end of October, the Federal Environment Agency confirmed on the basis of a study that the “company car privilege” contradicts the goal of climate protection by promoting the use of combustion cars. According to Greenpeace, surveys that we commissioned in Denmark and the Netherlands show a high level of acceptance of such tax instruments./jap/DP/ngu
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