Green taxes `way over the top'

RESIDENTS of Maldon are paying £600 too much in guilt money to offset the cost of UK carbon emissions, which is twice that of people in Ipswich, the Taxpayers' Alliance reports today.

Graham Dines

RESIDENTS of Maldon are paying £600 too much in guilt money to offset the cost of UK carbon emissions, which is twice that of people in Ipswich, the Taxpayers' Alliance reports today.

In research broken down into Britain's local authority areas, the TPA says green taxation - advocated by environmentalists as a fair way of making amends for the pollution we generate - has raked into Government coffers £19.6billion more than needed.

The alliance, which is leading the campaign against the Government's change in vehicle excise duty which will double taxation on older cars, says people are “suffering” under the green tax burden.


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Matthew Sinclair, a policy analyst at the TPA, said: “Green taxes are set far higher than is necessary to pay for our carbon footprint, which loads an unfair burden onto hard pressed British families and businesses.

“With the credit crunch squeezing household budgets, people can ill afford this extra tax grab. It's dishonest and unjust for politicians to wrap revenue raising tax hikes in a green banner.”

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Mr Sinclair said: “The Government is talking about raising taxes even further, but our conclusions show that green taxes should be kept as they are or cut.”

In the financial year 2007-08, the TPA calculates that the total burden of green taxes and charges, after deducting spending on roads, was £24.2bn, up for the previous year's figure of £22.7bn.

Taking figures produced by the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change, the social cost of the UK's total output of greenhouse gasses was £4.6bn in 2007, meaning as a nation Britain pays £19.6bn too much in green taxes.

The calculation is based on fuel duty, vehicle excise duty, landfill tax, the climate change levy, and the amount paid under renewables obligations. When this is broken down to per head of population in every district council authority in the UK, residents of Maldon £607 per person in excess green taxes, while people in Ipswich paid £271 more than needed.

In Cambridge, the excess tax paid was £191.50 and in Norwich £210.10.

Figures for the region were: Babergh £481.60, Braintree £538.10, Brentwood £405.90, Chelmsford £496.50, Colchester £414.70, Forest Heath £366.30, Ipswich £271, Maldon £607, Mid Suffolk £509.70, St Edmundsbury £427.50, Suffolk Coastal £401, Tendring £411.60, and Uttlesford £554.70.

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