Are there any recognised environmental taxes payable by businesses?

Tax (2nd Edition)

Spain Small Flag Spain

In Spain there are several environmental taxes. We can classify them in three types: taxes on energy, pollution and resources.

Diverse companies pay environmental taxes, the productive sectors are the ones paying a higher percentage of taxes on pollution and resources. In particular, the sectors of transport and storage, the manufacturing industry and the companies supplying electric energy, gas, water and steam are subject to environmental taxes.

Many of those taxes aim at penalising the noxious effects of certain human activities (such as the production of energy, the emission of polluting gases or transport) but they can also be used to stimulate sustainable behaviours. In this case, we talk about bonuses or discounts regarding the circulation tax for hybrid cars or efficient housing.

Environmental taxation in Spain will be submitted to a deep review and study. The Plan Aire 2017-2019 states so, and it proposes to create a group of work who elaborates a proposal for the modification of environmental taxation and a protocol for the episodes of high pollution. The idea is to unify the different protocols existing now for episodes of high pollution NO2.

Romania Small Flag Romania

Contributions to environmental fund is due by corporate taxpayers generating greenhouse gas emissions from fixed sources (e.g. heating plants) and those putting on the market packaging materials, oils, tires, batteries, electronic devices, etc. The formula for calculating these taxes is complex and takes into consideration several factors, e.g. the amount of materials which are recycled by the taxpayer.

Australia Small Flag Australia

The Australian government abolished a short-lived carbon tax in 2014, instead opting in favour of an Emissions Reduction Fund. Under this scheme, organisations and individuals can receive Carbon Credit Units if they register projects with the Clean Energy Regulator and these credits are then purchased by the government through a competitive reverse auction.

Whilst there is no carbon tax, there is a number of environmental charges levied by both the State and Federal governments including, for example, waste charges and water charges.

France Small Flag France

Ecologic malus is due by any consumer which acquire a non-electric car (higher with the carbon dejections).

Canada Small Flag Canada

The Canadian federal government has recently announced plans to introduce a carbon tax beginning in 2018. The tax will be $10 per metric tonne in 2018 increasing by $10 every year to a total of $50 in 2022 for all provinces without their own carbon tax. The provinces of Alberta and British Columbia have a carbon tax in place at rates of $30 per metric tonne.

The provinces of Ontario and Quebec have introduced cap and trade systems with respect to greenhouse gas emissions.

Federal and provincial fuel taxes apply to the sale of gasoline, diesel, propane, furnace oil and natural gas.

Belgium Small Flag Belgium

Yes. Environmental taxes are levied at both Federal level and regional level. Federal environmental taxes include amongst others excise duties levied on certain energy products (petrol, gas, etc) and electricity. At a regional level, environmental taxes are mostly levied on different kinds of waste.

Bulgaria Small Flag Bulgaria

Yes, there is environmental tax: the producers or importers of products (or the entity performing an intra-community acquisition) whose usage incurs large amounts of waste have to pay a product fee based on the type of waste.

They can avoid paying the product fee if they collect or recycle certain amounts of the waste produced by their products, either on their own or through a licensed collective waste management organization.

United States Small Flag United States

The United States imposes environmental taxes on crude oil and petroleum products (oil spill liability), and on the use or sale of ozone-depleting chemicals (IRS Form 6627). Oil spill liability taxes are imposed on crude oil received at a U.S. refinery and on petroleum products that enter into the United States for consumption, use or warehousing at a rate of $.09 per barrel for products entered into the United States after December 31, 2016. Imported products that use ozone-depleting chemicals (“ODCs”) as materials in the manufacture or production of the product and floor stocks of ODCs are subject to excise tax on the weight of the OCD at various rates based on type of ODC as specified on IRS Form 6627. A “gas guzzler” excise tax is imposed manufacturers of vehicles that have fuel economy standards of less than 22.5 miles per gallon. The tax rate is based on fuel economy rating and specified on IRS Form 6197.

Ukraine Small Flag Ukraine

Yes, companies pay environmental tax at graduated rates established by the Tax Code of Ukraine, if during their activities on the territory of Ukraine and within its continental shelf and exclusive (marine) economic zone, any of the following are carried out: emission of pollutants into the air by stationary sources of pollution, discharges of pollutants directly into water bodies; waste disposal (except for the placement of certain types/classes of waste as secondary raw materials, placed on their own territories (objects) of entities), etc.

Cyprus Small Flag Cyprus

There are no environmental taxes.

Ecuador Small Flag Ecuador

Ecuador tax system contemplate two environmental taxes. One is a tax on vehicle pollution payable by owners of motorized road transport vehicles on an annual basis to disincentive the consumption of fuel.

The other is the tax on nonrefundable plastic bottles to promote recycling and to disincentive the use of this type of bottles. The tax is up to $0.02 per bottle and it is refundable to any one that collects and returns the used bottles.

United Kingdom Small Flag United Kingdom

Yes. The UK imposes a Climate Change Levy (CCL) on industrial, commercial, agricultural businesses and public services on electricity, gas and solid fuels. Businesses can get a reduction on the rate of CCL if the business has entered into a climate change agreement with the Environment Agency. There are two further environmental taxes of note:

a. A tax on top of normal landfill fees if the business gets rid of waste using landfill sites

b. A tax on sand, gravel and rock that has either been dug from the ground or dredged from the sea in UK waters or imported.

Gibraltar Small Flag Gibraltar


Switzerland Small Flag Switzerland

Switzerland does not currently levy any environmental taxes payable by businesses.

Israel Small Flag Israel


Italy Small Flag Italy


Portugal Small Flag Portugal

Yes. However, the expression of such environmental taxes should take into account the following considerations:

  • In the first place, there is no Carbon Tax in Portugal, as in other Member States.
  • In second place, at the level of indirect taxation, there are Special Consumption Taxes that affect petroleum and energy products (in particular, motor fuels).
  • In third place, in every sector of economic activity (in particular in the energetic and waste sectors) there is a significant amount of applicable fees and contributions with environmental nature.

Kenya Small Flag Kenya

Kenya does not impose any environmental taxes on businesses.

Poland Small Flag Poland

The law on taxation for the extraction of certain minerals implemented in 2012 imposes taxes on the extraction of copper and silver. It is planned that, in the future, this tax will also be imposed on the extraction of natural gas and oil.

Except for the above, environmental fees are charged in certain situations for the usage of the environment. However, this fee is not formally treated as a tax, but as a type of administrative burden of a different nature (this fee is due, for example, for the emission of gases and dust into the air, or for trees felling without a permit).

Japan Small Flag Japan

Japan has no specific type of tax called as environmental tax; however, effectively the same taxation has been achieved by increasing the rate of petroleum and coal tax according to the expected CO2 emissions. The petroleum and coal tax is one of the indirect taxes of Japan and applies to petroleum, gases and coal as well as some related products. This has been introduced as an anti-global warming measure.

The Netherlands Small Flag The Netherlands

The Netherlands levies tax on the use of mains water and the use of electricity and natural gas.

Mexico Small Flag Mexico

No environmental taxes are recognised under the applicable Mexican tax laws. However, businesses could be required to pay for specific carbon credits or certificates depending on the number of tons of carbon dioxide produced by them.

What is more, taxpayers that have invested on renewable energy project could be entitled to accelerated deductions related thereto.

Norway Small Flag Norway

Norway has a long experience with environmental taxation to promote more environmentally-friendly behavior. Norway has CO2 tax on petrol, mineral oil and natural gas produced in or imported to Norway. It is also tax on for instance deflation of Nitrogen oxide, lubricant and and sulphur tax on mineral oil.

Germany Small Flag Germany

There are no genuine environmental taxes, but the indirect taxes include several excise duties which are considered environmental taxes with respect to their subject, such as vehicle tax, mineral oil tax, energy and electricity tax. Various exceptions apply from the liability of such indirect taxes.

Austria Small Flag Austria

There are several taxes in Austria, whose tax base is in dependency of the impact on the environment, e.g. various forms of energy taxes (tax on electricity, gas, carbon, mineral oil, etc), car-related taxes for cars with combustion engines (consumption tax, increased insurance tax, tax on motor vehicles).

Updated: May 31, 2018