By Samuel Ssenono
The Commonwealth Secretariat unveiled a groundbreaking model law today, offering Commonwealth nations a blueprint for implementing a carbon tax. This critical step aims to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and uphold commitments made under the Paris Agreement.
Presented at COP28 in Dubai, the “Commonwealth Carbon Tax Model Law” serves as a roadmap for governments and legislators to draft new legislation or adapt existing statutes to their specific needs and national climate plans.
Simple Administration: The model law proposes a carbon tax levied directly on fossil fuel companies and major industrial emitters, ensuring the majority of emissions are taxed effectively.
Dual Benefits: Implementing the carbon tax will not only reduce emissions but also attract clean energy investments and boost government revenue, accelerating the transition to a sustainable future.
Just Transition: Recognizing the potential impact on vulnerable groups, the model law emphasizes regular monitoring and stakeholder engagement. Additionally, revenue generated from the carbon tax will be directed towards supporting clean energy initiatives for low-income households, ensuring a just and equitable transition.
Launching the model law, the Commonwealth Secretary-General, the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland KC, said:
“Delivering the Paris Agreement remains humanity’s greatest hope. But globally, current climate action is too weak and too slow, while the window for action continues to narrow. She added that
“Considering the growing interest in this area and the need for a coordinated approach, this model law is a valuable resource for all 56 Commonwealth countries, as they seek to avoid the worst effects of climate change and introduce policies for a more sustainable and prosperous common future.”
The new model law is the latest in a series of Commonwealth model laws produced by the Commonwealth Secretariat.