The effectiveness of taxing the carbon content of energy consumption

Sen, Suphi, and Herman Vollebergh. “The effectiveness of taxing the carbon content of energy consumption.” Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 92 (2018): 74-99.

We estimate the long-run effect of a broad-based carbon tax on energy consumption by using a new and unique cross-sectional dataset of effective energy tax rates of OECD countries. Our instrumental variables estimations, which exploit the positive correlation between the tax rates of neighboring countries, indicate a much higher effectiveness for carbon taxation than those from ordinary least square estimations. The validity of our identification strategy is consistent with the theories of strategic policy interaction in the presence of immobile tax bases. Our results show that a one euro increase in energy taxes reduces carbon emissions from fossil fuel consumption by 0.73 percent in the long run.

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