The European Union is expected to propose a climate tax on greenhouse gases from 2013-2020. The tax could help raise $200 billion and help poor countries prepare for global warming, Reuters reports.
The idea is the most specific one yet on how to persuade developing nations to agree to binding, concrete steps that would curb GHG emissions. The plan, which is expected to be published next week, is part of an EU paper that outlines the bloc’s position ahead of climate talks in Copenhagen in December.
Under the plan, rich countries are expected to commit to binding limits on their GHG emissions through 2020. They could then pay a set price for every tone of emissions, or pay at rates per ton on a global carbon market.
It has been difficult to reach a global climate treaty because countries like China and India have refused to cut emissions unless the U.S. agrees to deeper emission cuts.
Last October, Yu Qingtai, China’s special representative for climate change talks, told Reuters that he is not optimistic about negotiations to seek a global treaty on climate change. Yu says the climate pact could fail because rich countries are failing to deliver on promises of technological and financial assistance to poorer countries.
If the plan is widely agreed, it could encourage China – the world’s top carbon emitter – to agree to internationally binding climate regulations.