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A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Shortly before Germany started its six-month term in the Presidency of the European Union in July, German Environment Minister Klaus Töpfer announced that adoption of the EU carbon/energy tax would be a priority. With France (which gets most of its power from non-fossil, nuclear generation) succeeding Germany next January, prospects for passing the tax seemed to be improving. (See Intl. Environ. Rptr., pp. 591-592, July 13; and focus report in Global Environ. Change Rep., pp. 1-3, July 22.)

However, in late July, EU finance ministers effectively rejected the carbon/energy tax proposal, choosing instead to investigate using existing taxes on oil products to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. (See ibid., p. 3, Aug. 12; Intl. Environ. Rptr., pp. 658-659, Aug. 10.)

Among the member countries of the European Union, Germany has seen carbon/energy taxes become an issue in the upcoming parliamentary elections (See Energy, Econ. & Clim. Change, p. 11, Aug.) The Swiss government has submitted a proposal for a similar tax to the public consultation process. The tax will be subject to a general vote in 1995.

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