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楊薺荎逄  
遠悵阭楊ENVIRONMENTAL TAXATION LAW
堤揭ㄩ楊薺嘈恀厙﹞扡俋www.flguwen.com     奀潔ㄩ2010-12-30 13:39:00

ENVIRONMENTAL TAXATION LAW
To Angela, Caroline and Amelia
Environmental Taxation Law
Policy, Contexts and Practice
JOHN SNAPE
School of Law, University of Warwick, UK
and
JEREMY DE SOUZA
Consultant to White and Bowker, UK
© John Snape and Jeremy de Souza 2006
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical,
photocopying, recording or otherwise without the prior permission of the publisher.
The authors hereby assert their moral rights to be identified as the authors of the
work, in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988.
Published by
Ashgate Publishing Limited Ashgate Publishing Company
Gower House Suite 420
Croft Road 101 Cherry Street
Aldershot Burlington, VT 05401-4405
Hants GU11 3HR USA
England
British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data
Snape, John
Environmental taxation law : policy, contexts and practice
1.Environmental impact changes - Law and legislation -
Great Britain
I.Title II.De Souza, Jeremy
344.4'1046
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Snape, John.
Environmental taxation law : policy, contexts and practice / John Snape and
Jeremy de Souza.
p. cm.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN 0-7546-2304-1
1. Environmental impact charges--Law and legislation--Great Britain. 2.
Environmental impact charges--Law and legislation. I. De Souza, Jeremy. II.
Title.
KD3382.E58S63 2005
344.4104'6--dc22
2005048265
ISBN 0 7546 2304 1
Printed and bound in Great Britain by MPG Books Ltd, Bodmin, Cornwall.
Ashgate website: http://www.ashgate.com
Contents
About the Authors xi
Authors* Preface xiii
Table of Cases xvii
Table of Statutes xxv
Table of Statutory Instruments li
Table of Provisions of the European Treaty lxv
Table of European Community Legislation lxix
Table of Provisions of GATT 1994 lxxxi
Table of Other Treaty Provisions lxxxiii
Table of Abbreviations lxxxvii
PART I: PROLOGUE
1 Preliminaries 3
1.1 Introduction 3
1.2 Terminology, approach and sources 5
1.3 International, European, national and regional contexts 19
1.4 Regulatory and taxation contexts 21
1.5 Institutional framework 34
1.6 Scheme of the book 34
2 Regulated Sectors 37
2.1 Introduction 37
2.2 Trade associations, policy-makers and pressure groups 38
2.3 Waste management industry 40
2.4 Energy industries and consumers 42
2.5 Mineral extraction industry 50
2.6 Air passenger and road freight transport sectors 51
2.7 Concluding remarks 53
PART II: POLICY AND CONTEXTS
3 Introduction to Part II 57
4 Institutional Framework 63
4.1 Introduction 63
4.2 Institutions of central, regional and local government 63
4.3 European Union institutions 92
4.4 International institutions 101
4.5 Concluding comments 106
vi Environmental Taxation Law
5 Technical Justifications 109
5.1 Introduction 109
5.2 Sustainable development 110
5.3 Taxation and sustainable development 112
5.4 Economic instruments and market failures 115
5.5 The efficient level of fiscal intervention 120
5.6 Concluding remarks 122
6 Regulatory Context 125
6.1 Introduction 125
6.2 Integrated Pollution Control, Integrated Pollution Prevention and
Control and Environmental Assessment 127
6.3 Waste management regulation 134
6.4 Control of air and atmospheric pollution 144
6.5 Air passenger and road freight transport regulation 159
6.6 Regulation of mineral extraction 161
6.7 Regulation of contaminated land 161
6.8 Concluding comments 162
7 Taxation Context 163
7.1 Introduction 163
7.2 Taxes and tax subsidies 164
7.3 Status of the main levies and subsidies under consideration 176
7.4 Concluding comments 182
8 International Aspects 183
8.1 Introduction 183
8.2 Public international law 184
8.3 International environmental law 191
8.4 International trade law 200
8.5 International air transport law 221
8.6 International energy law 222
8.7 Concluding remarks 223
9 Conclusions on Part II 225
PART III: PRACTICE
10 Introduction to Part III 231
Part III, Section A: Environmental Levies and Other Economic Instruments
Division 1: General
11 Design and Implementation 237
11.1 Introduction 237
11.2 Regulatory impact assessment 238
Contents vii
11.3 Design and implementation of the two post-1997 taxes 240
11.4 Review of landfill tax 248
11.5 Concluding comments 250
12 Community Law Aspects 251
12.1 Introduction 251
12.2 Regulatory aspects 253
12.3 Taxation aspects 293
12.4 Rules on free movement of goods 303
12.5 Concluding comments 305
Division 2: National Taxes
13 Aggregates Levy 309
13.1 Introduction 309
13.2 Operation of the tax 310
13.3 Problems caused by the legal structure 312
13.4 Meaning of &aggregate* 315
13.5 The concept of &exempt processes* 316
13.6 Administration of the levy 316
14 Climate Change Levy 317
14.1 Introduction 317
14.2 Tax base and rates 318
14.3 Reduced rates 319
14.4 Exemptions 319
14.5 Combined heat and power and renewable source electricity 321
14.6 Climate change agreements and the UK Emissions Trading
Scheme 324
14.7 Administration of the levy 327
15 Landfill Tax 329
15.1 Introduction 329
15.2 Tax base and rates 329
15.3 Securing the tax base 331
15.4 Exemptions 333
15.5 Temporary disposals 335
15.6 Fly-tipping 335
15.7 Administration of the tax 337
16 Customs* Administrative Model 339
16.1 Introduction 339
16.2 Registration 339
16.3 Deregistration 341
16.4 The form of registration 342
16.5 The problem of trusts 343
16.6 Groups, divisions and going concerns 344
viii Environmental Taxation Law
16.7 Non-UK residents 346
16.8 Site registration 347
16.9 The credit concept 348
16.10 Bad debt relief 350
16.11 Transitional provisions 351
16.12 Record keeping and inspection 352
16.13 Disputes 352
16.14 Irregularities 353
16.15 Enforcement 353
16.16 Problems for landowners 354
Division 3: Local Levies
17 Workplace Parking Levies 361
17.1 Introduction 361
17.2 Changes in planning practice 362
17.3 Double payment 362
17.4 Metropolitan schemes 363
17.5 Other schemes 363
17.6 Those subject to schemes 364
18 Road User Charging Schemes 365
18.1 Introduction 365
18.2 Central London 365
18.3 Other cities 368
18.4 Metropolitan schemes 369
18.5 Other schemes 369
Division 4: Other Economic Instruments
19 The Packaging Regime Route 373
19.1 Introduction 373
19.2 Packaging 374
19.3 Choice 375
19.4 Registration 375
19.5 Obligations once registered 375
19.6 Waste disposal obligations 377
19.7 The future of packaging waste recovery notes 378
20 Emissions and Waste Trading Schemes 381
20.1 Introduction 381
20.2 Design and implementation of the UK Emissions Trading Scheme 381
20.3 Subsequent development of the UK Emissions Trading Scheme 383
20.4 Operation of the UK Emissions Trading Scheme 389
20.5 The regime applicable to direct participants 390
20.6 Green Certificate trading 391
20.7 Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (&the LATS*) 392
Contents ix
Division 5: The Instruments in Operation
21 Policies in Practice (1) 397
21.1 Introduction 397
21.2 The employment &double dividend* 397
21.3 Hypothecation, &recycling* of revenue and tax subsidies 399
21.4 Political and industrial aspects 406
21.5 The Renewables Obligation 423
21.6 The 2003 Energy White Paper 425
21.7 Problems with electricity supply industry structures 433
21.8 The case of aggregates levy 436
21.9 Water and the farmers 441
21.10 The effect of Community law and policy 449
Part III, Section B: Greening the UK Tax System
Division 1: Removing Subsidies and Creating Incentives
22 Excise Duties 457
22.1 Introduction 457
22.2 Motor cars and their fuel 457
22.3 Heavy goods vehicles and their fuel 462
22.4 The emissions problem 463
23 Employee Taxes 465
23.1 Introduction 465
23.2 Income tax treatment of company cars 465
23.3 Environmentally-friendly transport 467
24 Business Taxes 469
24.1 Introduction 469
24.2 Nature and role of capital allowances 469
24.3 Motor cars 470
24.4 Environmentally-friendly equipment 470
24.5 Urban regeneration 471
24.6 Private residential landlords 472
24.7 Emissions trading scheme corporation tax and VAT treatment 473
24.8 Direct tax treatment of environmental trust contributions 475
Division 2: The Provisions in Operation
25 Policies in Practice (2) 479
PART IV: PROSPECTS AND NEW DIRECTIONS
26 Environmental Taxes and the Tax Base 483
26.1 Introduction 483
x Environmental Taxation Law
26.2 The consolidation of the tax base 485
26.3 The future of non-property-based taxes in the internet world 487
26.4 International trade treaty problem for federations and economic
areas 492
26.5 Employer*s national insurance contributions 494
26.6 The advantage of environmental taxes 495
26.7 European Union limitations 496
27 Government Proposals 499
27.1 Introduction 499
27.2 Economic instruments and housing development 500
27.3 Road pricing for heavy lorries 501
27.4 Nationwide satellite-based congestion charging 503
27.5 Pricing air passenger transport 504
27.6 Litter taxes 508
27.7 Taxing incineration 509
27.8 Conclusions 510
28 The EU Emissions Trading Directive 513
28.1 Introduction 513
28.2 Background to the EU Emissions Trading Directive 514
28.3 Provisions of the EU ETS Directive 525
28.4 Transposition of the EU ETS Directive into UK law 529
28.5 Developments since transposition of the EU ETS Directive 532
28.6 Concluding observations 534
PART V: PROVISIONAL ASSESSMENT
29 The Current State of Play 537
29.1 The problem of measuring success 537
29.2 How do the UK taxes measure up to this standard? 537
29.3 Success stories 542
29.4 Comparing 1997 with 2004 542
Postscript 545
Select Bibliography 551
Index 557
About the Authors
Jeremy de Souza was educated at Charterhouse and New College, Oxford. Articled
to Mr John Emrys Lloyd of Farrer & Co, he subsequently became an assistant
solicitor and associate at that firm. Between 1976 and 1996, after which he became
a consultant (enabling him to devote more time to writing), he was the firm*s tax
partner. During his 32 years with the firm, he contributed to the newsletters for the
Agricultural Estates Group, the Employment and Pensions Group, the Charities
Group and the Briefing Service for in-house lawyers.
In 1999, he became a part-time consultant to White and Bowker in Winchester, and
has contributed to that firm*s newsletters: The Law of the Land, W&B Charity Law,
Private Client Newsletter and Ins and Outs.
He was a member of The Law Society Revenue Committee*s Corporation Tax Sub-
Committee between 1989 and 1992. Since 1995, he has been the Chairman of the
Holborn and, from 2001, City of Westminster and Holborn, Law Society*s Revenue
Committee, writing a monthly article in the monthly journals, Holborn Report and
The Report.
In 1969, he was a co-author of Reform of Taxation and Investment Incentives. He
was a contributor to Volume 35 of The Encyclopedia of Forms and Precedents (Sale
of Land) in 1989. He was co-author of The Property Investor and VAT in 1990 and
of The Conveyancer*s Tax Primer in 1999. Since 1991, he has been the General
Editor of the Sweet and Maxwell looseleaf, Land Taxation. Since 2001, he has been
a contributor to The Lawyer*s Factbook.
He has contributed articles to The Law Society*s Gazette, STEP Journal, Private
Client Business, The British Tax Review, Taxation, The Tax Journal, The Estates
Gazette, Property Law Journal, Rural Practice, The Environmental Law Review, Trust
Law & Practice, Trusts & Estates Tax Journal, Hampshire Chronicle, Negotiator,
Butler & Co Farming News, Christie*s Bulletin and The Investor*s Chronicle. He has
also lectured on tax topics.
In addition to being a solicitor, he belongs to the Society of Trust and Estate
Practitioners, the Stamp Taxes Practitioners Group and the Royal Institute of
International Affairs.
John Snape was educated at St Mary*s College, Blackburn, and St Edmund Hall,
Oxford. He qualified as a solicitor in 1989 and subsequently worked in corporate
and commercial legal practice. In 1993, he joined Nottingham Law School, the
Nottingham Trent University, moving to the University of Leeds in 2002. In 2005,
he took up a lectureship at the School of Law, the University of Warwick. He has
written on a range of legal topics, including property law and tax law.
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Authorsʼ Preface
During the last seven years or so, the government of the United Kingdom has
embarked on a range of far-reaching social and economic reforms. Among these,
none is more striking, especially to those who have followed its development, than
the enterprise of environmental taxation.
The use of a tax, for long regarded as a means of raising government revenue,
redistributing wealth or of managing the economy, in order to discourage certain
forms of undesirable industrial behaviour, had no systematic antecedent in UK law
prior to 1997. Of course, there had for centuries been duties on cigarettes, petrol
and alcohol, but no tax, not even landfill tax, introduced in the dying days of Prime
Minister John Major*s government, had been researched and designed specifically
to steer the behaviour of those liable to pay it. True, landfill tax had attempted to
put a price on the environmental costs of landfilling waste but, except to a slight
extent, it had not been intended, when originally designed and implemented, to steer
behaviour. By contrast, the two main taxes introduced after 1997, climate change
levy, which is a tax on the industrial, commercial and agricultural consumption of
non-environmentally-friendly forms of energy, and aggregates levy, a tax on the
extraction of minerals, have been specially designed, via their structures and rates, to
encourage the use of alternative resources. This is not the only way in which, if the
reader will forgive the pun, these environmental taxes have been groundbreaking.
The other way in which they have marked a departure, which the authors regard as
highly characteristic, is their use in combination with other economic instruments,
such as trading schemes, green certificates, road and cordon pricing and special
reliefs within non-environmental tax codes.
All of the factors just rehearsed explain the book*s title. We cannot, against the
policy background outlined above, treat of environmental taxes in isolation from
the other instruments which are designed to complement them. So the range of
instruments involved is not the least of the contexts envisaged by the title. However,
we have tried to look for other contexts, primarily legal ones, which will help us to
explain the various aspects of environmental taxation more usefully. As an energy
tax, climate change levy is imposed on gas and electricity supplies. Both the gas
supply industry and the electricity supply industry are sectors of extreme technical
complexity, as a result of their privatisation, in another characteristic adventure, this
time of a decade or more ago and a different government. Grafting climate change
levy onto these post-nationalisation structures, without a consistent energy policy,
has contributed to producing a tax of such extraordinary complexity that it would be
impossible to appreciate its subtleties without a knowledge of &what lies beneath*.
So discussions of the post-nationalisation energy sector structures and regulation
have been included as well as environmental regulation and tax law. Again, since
the regulation of air transport and road freight transport affects plans to introduce
new airline taxes, emissions trading schemes and road pricing schemes, we have
xiv Environmental Taxation Law
also included a brief discussion of how these sectors are structured and regulated. In
every case, we seek to provide, not just a UK context for the material but an EU-wide
and international one also. We hope, as a result, that this book will be no less useful
to the overseas reader than to the UK one.
This brings us to another set of contexts: the European Union and international
governance structures within which the UK*s economic instruments for environmental
protection have been designed and implemented.
The more obvious governance structure is the EU one, since the EU*s institutions
每 notably the European Commission 每 provide both the impetus for action at national
level, via the Sixth Environmental Action Programme, and the terms on which that
action can be taken, via the European Treaty and the legislation made thereunder.
Finding the right level of governance is an important question with economic
instruments. In its enthusiasm to introduce emissions trading, partly as a sweetener to
sectors already hit both by Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control and climate
change levy, the government managed, with the UK Emissions Trading Scheme, to
turn, in Sorrell*s words, an &early start into a false start*. This is because the period
of the last 18 months to two years has also seen the creation of the EU Emissions
Trading Scheme, under which carbon dioxide emissions will be capped, parcelled
out and traded among all the Member States of the enlarged Union. The government
claims that the UK scheme, set up in 2002, will be good practice for the EU scheme,
due to commence in January 2005. Its detractors claim that the UK scheme was an
irrelevance, nonsensically unilateral and designed simply to buy off opposition to the
government*s environmental policy from sectors most badly hit by climate change
levy and IPPC. At the very least, there is a measure of over-regulation.
Although less obvious, governance is also felt at the international level, via the
United Nations-sponsored 1992 Framework Convention on Climate Change, and
its 1997 Kyoto Protocol, as well as the rules of the WTO/GATT 1994-based system
of multilateral agreements on international trade. Both the EU itself and its Member
States are parties to both sets of agreements. Although there are signs that the position
may be changing, the values of the latter, which have governed international trade
at least since the mid-twentieth century, may be difficult or impossible to reconcile
with those of the former, whose values are, of course, much newer. The influence
of Kyoto is to be felt, not only in the creation of the two emissions trading schemes
referred to above, each of which take Kyoto as their inspiration, but also in the design
of environmental taxes. Climate change levy, an energy tax, neatly sidesteps design
problems created by GATT 1994*s concept of the border tax adjustment and, in doing
so, may sacrifice something of its environmental effectiveness.
The trade-off just referred to is, of course, a matter of political judgement. No less
characteristic of the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic instruments than
their regulatory context and their place within European and international governance
structures are the political choices they represent. These are shown both in present
political compromises and in the political possibilities for the future. Lord Butler
memorably described politics as &the art of the possible*. Whether the structuring of
climate change levy as a downstream energy tax owed more to fear of the political
consequences of taxing domestic energy consumption and alienating what remained
of the coal industry, than it did to economic and environmental principles, is a matter
for historians to debate. The authors have some well-founded suspicions on these
Authors* Preface xv
points. Nevertheless, it remains the case that, with these taxes in place, it would
remain open to a future government, in a time of falling revenues, to supplement
the Exchequer by increasing the rates of aggregates levy and climate change levy
instead of turning to the much more politically sensitive expedient of increasing
rates of income tax. The mechanisms are all now in place, thanks to the enterprise of
environmental taxation.
The controversies on these points will surely continue. For our part, we have tried
to offer a critical account of an area of UK policy, law and practice which has not,
so far as we know, been systematically explored to date in this jurisdiction by any
other lawyer authors. In an age when the expounding of a legal subject 每 however
complex 每 does not perhaps enjoy the high reputation that once it did, we seek (as
lawyers) to explain how the different instruments interact at a regulatory level. We
do occasionally pass judgment but we do so, not on matters outside our expertise
(neither of us being economists and, as yet, unwilling to succumb to the siren song of
law and economics), but on the basis of the various accountability mechanisms in the
UK*s unwritten constitutional arrangements. In the last 12 to 18 months, the panoply
of Select Committees at Westminster has begun to take a keen interest in the flutter of
creative activity in environmental regulation in Whitehall. In fact, these accountability
mechanisms and the network of departments, committees, advisory bodies and
executive bodies that have been involved in the design and implementation of the
measures under discussion, feature prominently in what follows. We have included
the explanations of who they are and what they do because of the difficulties facing
the non-specialist or non-UK lawyer in finding his or her way through the myriad of
institutional actors.
What we offer, then, is a pragmatic, critical, account. We do not purport to offer
any empirical conclusion but we think that we can at least provoke others to test our
conclusions.
Each of the authors brings something different to the book. John Snape is an
academic lawyer with an interest in international economic law and in the crossovers
between environmental regulation, energy law and tax law. Jeremy de Souza is a
senior practitioner who retired from full-time practice as a partner in Farrer & Co. in
1996. He has written extensively on tax law matters and is referred to in reference
books as a leading specialist in the environmental taxation area. Thus do we seek
to bring together our different but hopefully complementary skills. Although each
author has read and commented in detail on the work of the other, we have each taken
responsibility for writing different Chapters. Setting aside the very short Chapters 3,
9 and 10, which are very much joint efforts, John Snape was responsible for Chapters
1每12 and 28, while Jeremy de Souza was responsible for Chapters 13每27 and 29. In
addition, Jeremy carried out the herculean task of compiling the tables and indices.
Warm thanks are due in several quarters and we would like to record them as
follows: to Caroline de Souza and to Angela Kershaw, our respective wives, who,
despite many commitments of their own, have taken time to bear with detailed verbal
critiques of government policy; to former colleagues of John Snape at the University
of Leeds, especially to Ann Blair, Michael Cardwell, Oliver Gerstenberg, Roger
Halson and Anna Lawson, each for their wisdom and support; to colleagues of Jeremy
de Souza at the City of Westminster and Holborn Law Society Revenue Committee
and at White and Bowker, especially John Steel, Oliver Sowton and (in putting up
xvi Environmental Taxation Law
with interruptions to her printing facilities), Abi Martin. John Snape began work on
the book in 2000/2001 in a period of sabbatical leave from Nottingham Law School,
the Nottingham Trent University. His thanks are due to Professors Michael Gunn
and Peter Kunzlik, as well as to colleagues at Nottingham Trent who shouldered his
teaching and administrative responsibilities in the period of his absence.
Over the period of writing the book, the subject matter has expanded almost daily.
We must also record our thanks to John Irwin and Alison Kirk at Ashgate, for their
patience and enthusiasm in awaiting a manuscript which therefore became rather
later and rather larger than either of us authors could originally have envisaged.
In the footnotes, we have tended to confine case references to Simon*s Tax Cases,
the series now used by most UK tax academics and practitioners. References to other
reports are to be found in the Tables.
We have attempted to reflect developments and to state the law, unless otherwise
indicated, as at 2 December 2004 (the date of the Pre-Budget Report).
John Snape,
Jeremy de Souza,
20 December 2004.
Table of Cases
Adey v. Trinity House, (1852) 22 LJQB 3 7.2.3
AGF Belgium v. EEC, C每191/94, [1996] ECR I每1859 7.2.2.3
Air Caledonie v. The Commonwealth, (1988) 165 CLR 462 7.2.2.2
Airservices Australia v. Canadian Airlines International Ltd, (1999)
HCA 62 7.2.2.2
Alliance Against the Birmingham Northern Relief Road v. Secretary of
State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions and Midlands
Expressway Ltd, [1999] JPL 426 7.2.3
Amministrazione delle Finanze dello Stato v. Essevi and Salengo, C每142,
143/80, [1981] ECR 833 12.3.3.1
Andrews v. Hereford RDC, (1964) 10 RRC 1, [1963] RA 75, (1963)
185 EC 761, [1963] RVR 168 16.16
Apple & Pear Development Council v. Lewis, C每222/82, [1984] 3
CMLR 733 7.2.2.3
Aprle Srl, in Liquidation v. Amministrazione delle Finanze dello Stato,
C每125/94, [1995] ECR I每2919 8.4.2
ARCO Chemie Nederland Ltd and others v. Minister van Volkshuisvesting;
Ruimtelijke Ordening en Milieubeheer, Vereninging Dorpsbelang Hees
and others v. Directeur van der Dienst Milieu en Water van de Provincie
Gelderland, C每418, 419/97, [2002] QB 646 12.2.5.2
Asscher v. Staatssecretaris van Financien, C每107/94, [1996] STC
1025 12.3.1, 12.3.2
Aston Cantlow v. Wallbank, [2001] 3 WLR 1323, overruled by HL
at [2003] 3 WLR 283 7.2.2.1
Attorney-General v. Wilts United Dairies Ltd, (1921) 124 LT 319,
overruled at [1922] WN 217, 218 7.2.2.1
Attorney-General of British Columbia v. Attorney-General of Canada,
[1937] AC 377 26.4
Attorney-General of Canada v. Attorney-General of Ontario, [1937]
AC 326 26.4
Attorney-General of Canada v. Attorney-General of Ontario, [1937]
AC 355 26.4
Attorney-General of New South Wales v. Homebush Flour Mills Ltd,
(1937) 56 CLR 390 7.2.1
Australian Tape Manufacturers* Association v. Commonwealth, (1993)
176 CLR 480 7.2.2.2
Ayrshire Employers Mutual Association v. IRC, (1946) 27 TC 331, [1946]
1 All ER, [1946] 1 All ER 637 26.3.3.1
Baker v. Greenhill, (1842) 114 ER 463 7.2.2.1
xviii Environmental Taxation Law
Barclays Mercantile Business Finance Ltd v. Mawson, [2002] EWHC
1527 (Ch), [2002] STC 1068, reversed CA [2002] EWCA Civ 1853,
[2003] STC 66, affirmed [2004] UKHL 51 26.3.3.1
Beco Products Ltd; BAG Building Contractors v. C & E Commrs, (2004)
No. 18, 638, MAN/01/4 21.3.1
Bendall v. C & E Commrs, (2003) LON/00/1305 15.3
Benjamin v. Austin Properties Ltd, [1998] 19 EG 163, [1998] 2 EGLR 147,
[1998] RA 53 17.3
Bergandi v. Directeur G谷n谷ral des Impôts, C每252/86, [1988] ECR 1343 12.3.3.1
Berkeley v. Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the
Regions (No.1), [2001] 2 AC 603 6.2.4
Blackland Park Exploration Ltd v. Environment Agency, [2003] EWCA
Civ 1795, [2003] All ER (D) 249 (Dec) 6.3.2.4
Brambletye School Trust Ltd v. C & E Commrs, LON/00/458 16.16
Bresciani v. Amministrazione della Finanze dello Stato, C每87/75, (1976)
ECR 129 7.2.2.3
Brewster v. Kidgill, (1697) 88 ER 1239 7.2.2.1
Re Briant Colour Printing Co Ltd, [1977] 1 WLR 942, [1977] 3 All ER
968, 75 EGR 768, (1977) 244 EG 463, 121 SJ 592 16.16
British Insulated and Helsby Cables Ltd v. Atherton, [1926] AC 205,
[1925] All ER Rep 623, 95 LJKB 336, 134 LT 289, 42 TLR 187,
(1925) 10 TC 177 1.4.3.1, 24.7
Bulmer v. Bollinger, [1974] Ch 401 4.3.7
W Cadsky SpA v. Instituto Nationale per il Comercio Esterio,
C每63/74, [1975] ECR 251 7.2.1, 12.3.3.2
Cape Brandy Syndicate v. IRC, [1921] 1 KB 64, (1920) 12 TC 358 26.3.3.1
Chemial Farmaceutici v. DAF SpA, C每140/79, [1981] ECR 1, [1981]
3 CMLR 350 12.3.3.1
Chemische Afvalstoffen Dusselforp BV and others v. Minister Van
Volkshuisvesting, Ruimtelijke Ordening en Milieubeheer, C每203/96,
[1998] 3 CMLR 873 12.2.5.1
Claimants under the Loss Relief Group Litigation Order v. I.R.C.,
[2004] EWHC 3588 (Ch), [2004] STC 594, reversed [2004] EWCA
Civ 650, [2004] STC 1054 26.4
Clark v. Oceanic Contractors Inc, [1983] AC 130, [1983] STC 35 1.4.2.5
Cleanaway Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (2003) L.17 15.2
Cogis v. Amministrazione delle Finanze dello Stato, C每216/81, [1982]
ECR 2701 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. Belgium, C每2/90, [1992]
ECR I每4431 12.4
Commission of the European Communities v. Denmark, C每106/84, [1986]
ECR 833 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. Denmark, C每302/86,
[1989] 1 CMLR 619 12.2.5.1, 12.4
Commission of the European Communities v. France, C每90/87,
[1981] ECR 283 7.2.2.3
Table of Cases xix
Commission of the European Communities v. France, C每196/85, [1987]
ECR 1597 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. France, C每50/87, [1989]
1 CMLR 505 16.5
Commission of the European Communities v. Germany, C每18/87, [1988]
ECR 5427 7.2.2.3
Commission of the European Communities v. Germany, C每442/92, [1995]
ECR I每1097 12.2.5.2
Commission of the European Communities v. Germany, C每463/01,
as yet unreported 12.4
Commission of the European Communities v. Italy, C每24/68, [1969]
ECR 193, [1989] 1 CMLR 505 7.2.1, 7.2.2.3
Commission of the European Communities v. Italy, C每184/85, [1987]
ECR 2013 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. Italy, C200/85, [1986]
ECR 3953 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. Italy, C每466/99, [2002]
ECR I每851 12.2.5.1
Commission of the European Communities v. United Kingdom,
C每170/78, [1980] ECR 417 12.3.3.1
Commission of the European Communities v. United Kingdom,
C每353/85, [1988] STC 251, [1988] 2 All ER 557, [1988] ECR 817 26.7
Commission of the European Communities v. United Kingdom,
C每416/85, [1988] STC 456, [1990] 2 QB 130, [1989] 1 All ER 364,
[1988] ECR 3127, 1988] 3 CMLR 169 26.7
Commission of the European Communities v. United Kingdom, C每35/00,
[2002] ECR I每953 12.2.5.1
Commissioner of Inland Revenue v. Challenge Corp Ltd, [1987] AC 155,
[1986] STC 548 26.3.3.1
Compagnie Commerciale de l*Ouest and others v. Receveur Principal
des Douanes de las Pallice Port, C每78 to 83/90, [1994]
2 CMLR 425 12.3.3.1, 12.3.3.2
Congreve v. Home Office, [1976] QB 629 7.2.2.1
Cottle v. Coldicott, (1995) SpC 40 24.7
Craven v. White, [1989] AC 398, [1988] 3 All ER 495, [1988] STC 476 26.3.3.1
C & E Commrs v. Darfish Ltd, [2001] Env LR 3 15.3
C & E Commrs v. Dave, [2002] EWHC 969 (Ch), [2002] STC 900 16.13
C & E Commrs v. Glassborow, [1974] STC 142, [1975] QB 465, [1974]
1 All ER 1041 16.4
C & E Commrs v. Sinclair Collis Ltd, [2001] UKHL 30, [2001] STC 989 4.3.7
Dansk Denkavit ApS v. Skatteministeriet, C每200/90, [1992] ECR I每2217 1.2.1.4
Davies v. Hillier Nurseries Ltd, (2001) Env LR 726 19.2
Daymond v. South West Water Authority,
[1976] AC 609 7.2.2.1
De Coster v. College des Bourgmestre et Echevins de Watermael-Boitsfort,
C每17/00, [2002] 1 CMLR 12 12.3.1
xx Environmental Taxation Law
Deutschmann v. Germany, C每10/65, [1968] CMLR 259 7.2.2.3
Diamantis v. Greece, C每373/97, [2000] ECR I每1705, [2001] 3 CMLR 41 26.3.2
Diammantarbeiders v. Indiamex, C每37每38/73, [1973] ECR 1600 8.4.1
Dispit Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (2004) L.19 15.4
Donckerwolcke, C每41/76, [1976] ECR 1921 8.4.1
East Midlands Aggregates Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (2003) A1, affirmed
[2004] EWHC 856 (Ch), [2004] STC 1582 13.2
Ebbcliff Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (2003) L.16, reversed [2003] EWHC
3181 (Ch), [2004] STC 391affirmed [2004] EWCA (Civ) 1071,
[2004] STC 1496 15.4, 26.3.3.1
Edwards v. Bairstow and Harrison, [1956] AC 14, [1955] 3 All ER
48, 36 TC 207 4.2.1.5
Emsland-Stärke v. Hauptzollamt Hamburg-Jonas, C每110/99 26.3.2
Ensign Tankers (Leasing) Ltd v. Stokes, [1992] 1 AC 655, [1992] 2
All ER 275, 64 TC 617, [1992] STC 226 26.3.3.1
Re Eurig Estate, (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1 1.2.1.1, 1.2.1.2, 1.2.1.4, 7.2.1, 7.2.2.2
Euro Tombesi, C每304/94, C每330/94, C每342/94, C224/95, [1998]
Env LR 59 6.3.2.1, 12.2.5.2
Lord Falmouth v. George (1828) 130 ER 1071 7.2.3
Fazenda P迆blica v. Câmera Muncipal do Porto (Minist谷rio P迆blico,
third party), C446/98, [2001] STC 560 26.7
Fazenda P迆blica v. Fricarnes SA, C每28/96, [1997] STC 1348 26.7
Fazenda P迆blica v. Solisnor-Estaleiros Navais SA, C每130/96, [1998]
STC 191 26.7
Fazenda P迆blica v. União das Cooperativas Abestacedores, C每347/95,
[1997] STC 1337 26.7
Federal Commissioner of Taxation v. Farley, (1940) 63 CLR 278 26.4
Finanzamt Kohn-Altstadt v. Schumacker, C每279/93, [1995] STC 306,
[1996] QB 28, [1995] All ER (EC) 319, [1995] ECR I每225, [1996]
2 CMLR 450 22.1
Ford España v. Spain, C每170.88, [1989] ECR 2305 7.2.1
Furniss v. Dawson [1984] AC 474, [1984] 1 All ER 530, 55 TC 324,
[1984] STC 153 26.3.3.1
F A Gamble & Sons Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (1998) L.4 15.3
NV Giant v. Commune of Overijse, C每109/90, [1993] STC 651 26.7
GIL Insurance Ltd v. C & E Commrs, C每308/01, [2004] STC 961 21.10
Government of India v. Taylor, [1955] AC 491 1.4.2.5
Gregory v. Helvering, 293 US 465 (1935) 26.3.3.1
Harley v. C & E Commrs, (2001) L.13 15.4
Hoechst AG v. IRC and A-G, C每410/98, [2001] STC 452 26.4
Hoverspeed Ltd and others v. C & E Commrs, [2002] EWCA 1630 (Admin),
reversed in part [2002] EWCA Civ 1804, [2003] STC 1273 22.1
Table of Cases xxi
Andreas Hoves Internationaler Transport-Service SARL v. Finanzamt
Borker, C每115/00 27.3
Iannelli & Volpi v. Meroni, C每74/76, [1977] 2 CMLR 688 7.2.2.3
ICI Chemicals & Polymers Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (1998) V&DR 15.3
Imperial Chemical Industries plc v. Colmer, C每264/96, [1999] 1 WLR
108, [1998] All ER (EC) 585, [1998] STC 874, [1998] 3 CMLR 293,
[1998] CEC 861 21.1
Government of India v. Taylor, [1955] AC 491 1.4.2.5
IRC v. Alexander von Glehn & Co Ltd, (1919) 12 TC 232 24.7
IRC v. Burmah Oil Co Ltd, [1982] STC 30, 54 TC 200 26.3.3.1
IRC v. Church Commissioners for England, [1977] AC 329, [1976] 2
All ER 1037, (1976) 50 TC 516, [1976] STC 339 1.4.3.1
IRC v. Fitzwilliam, [1993] 1 WLR 1189, [1993] 3 All ER 184, 67 TC
614, [1993] STC 502 26.3.3.1
IRC v. McGuckian, [1997] 1 WLR 991, [1997] 3 All ER 817, 69 TC1,
[1997] STC 908 26.3.3.1
IRC v. Oc谷 van der Grinten, [2000] STC 951, [2001] 2 CMLR 9, C每58/01 7.2.2.1
IRC v. Scottish Provident Institution, [2004] UKHL 52 26.3.3.1
IRC v. Duke of Westminster, [1936] AC 1, [1935] All ER 259, 19 TC 490 26.3.3.1
Inter-Environnement Wallonie v. Regione Wallone, C每129/96, [1998]
Env LR 625, [1998] 1 CMLR 1057 12.2.5.2
International Fruit Company NV v. Produktschap voor Groeten en
Fruit, C每21每24/72, [1975] 2 CMLR 1 8.4.1
Laidlaw Transportation Inc v. Commissioner, 75 TCM (CCH) 2598
(1998) 26.3.3.1
Lancashire Waste Services Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (1999) L.8 15.3
John Laing & Son Ltd v. Kingswood Area Assessment Committee,
[1949] 1 KB 344, [1949] 1 All ER 224, 47 LRG 64, 42 R & IT 15 16.16
Lawson v. Interior Tree, Fruit and Vegetable Committee of Direction,
[1931] 2 DLR 193 7.2.1
Lindman, C每42/02 26.4
Lirutti and Bizzaro, C每175, 177/98, [2001] ECR I每6881 12.2.5.2
London County Council v. Williams, [1957] AC 362 16.16
Lower Mainland Dairy Products Sales Adjustment Committee v. Crystal
Dairy Ltd, [1933] AC 168 7.2.1
Luton v. Lassels, [2002] HCA 13 7.2.2.2
MacCormick v. Federal Commissioner of Taxation, (1984) 158 CLR 672 7.2.2.2
McIntosh Plant Hire v. C & E Commrs, (2001) L.10 15.3
McKnight v. Sheppard, [1999] 3 All ER 491 1.4.3.1
J & S Mackie v. C & E Commrs, (2000) L.9 15.3
Macniven v. Westmoreland Investments Ltd, [2001] UKHL 6, [2001] 1
All ER 865, 73 TC 1, [2001] STC 237 26.3.3.1
Mayer Parry Recycling Ltd v. Environment Agency (No.1), [1999] Env
LR 489 6.3.2.1
xxii Environmental Taxation Law
Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd v. ST Harle (Owners), [1962]
SLT 114 1.4.3.1, 7.2.1
Minister of Justice for Dominion of Canada v. Levis City, [1919]
AC 505 7.2.1
Pat Munro-(Alness) Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (2004) 13.2, 26.3.3.1
NSR Ltd v. C & E Commrs, (1999) L.7 15.3
Naturally Yours Cosmetics Ltd v. Customs and Excise Commissioners,
C每230/87, [1988] STC 879, [1988] ECR 6365, [1988] 1 CMLR 797 4.3.7
Northern Suburbs Cemetery Reserve Trust v. Commonwealth, (1993)
176 CLR 555 7.2.2.2
Northwest Corp v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, 108 TC 265 (1997) 21.3.3
Re OECD Local Costs Standard, Opinion 1/75, [1975] ECR 1355 8.4.1
Outokumpu Oy, C每213.96, [1998] ECR I每1777 12.3.3.1
Oval (717) Ltd v. C & E Commrs, LON/01/1070 14.4
Parkwood Landfill Ltd v. C & E Commrs, [2002] EWCA Civ 1717,
[2002] STC 1536, reversing [2002] STC 417 6.3.2.1, 12.1, 15.3, 26.3.3.1
Pepper v. Hart, [1993] AC 593, [1993] 1 All ER 42, [1992]
STC 898, 65 TC 421 26.3.3.1
Ponsonby v. C & E Commrs, [1988] STC 28 16.6
PreussenElektra AG v. Schleswag AG (Windpark Reussenköge III GmbH
and another intervening), C每379/98, [2002] 2 CMLR 36 12.2.7.3
Procurer du Roi v. Dassonville, C每8/74, [1974] ECR 837 12.4
W T Ramsay Ltd v. IRC; Eilbeck v.Rawling, [1982] AC 300, [1981] 1
All ER 865, (1981) 54 TC 101, [1981] STC 174 26.3.3.1
Ratford v. Northavon District Council, [1987] 1 QB 357 16.16
R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and others)
v. C & E Commrs, [2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51,
[2002] EuLR 394 1.4.2.3, 2.5, 8.4.5.1, 11.3.2, 12.1,
12.3.3.1, 21.8
R (on the application of Federation of Technological Industries
and others) v. C & E Commrs and Attorney-General, [2004] EWHC
254 (Admin), [2004] STC 1008; [2004] EWCA (Civ) 1020,
sub nom C & E Commrs and Attorney-General v. Federation of
Technology Industries 26.3.2
R (on the application of The Mayor, Citizens of Westminster and
others) v. The Mayor of London, [2002] EWHC 2440 (Admin) 6.2.4, 18.2
R v. Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions,
ex p. Spath Holme Ltd, [2001] 1 All ER 195, [2001] 2 WLR 15 26.3.3.1
R v. North Yorkshire County Council, ex parte Brown, [2000] 1 AC 397 6.2.4
Request for an Examination of the Situation in Accordance with
Paragraph 63 of the Court*s Judgment in the 1974 Nuclear Tests case,
[1995] ICJ Rep 288 8.2.3
Table of Cases xxiii
Rewe v. Hauptzollamt Landau/Pfalz, C每43/75, [1976] ECR 181 12.3.3.1
Rewe-Zentrale AG v. Bundesmonopolverwaltung f邦r Branntwein,
C每120/78, [1979] ECR 649 12.4
Ricketts v. Colquhoun, (1924) 10 TC 118 23.1
Roome v. Edwards, [1981] STC 96 16.5
Saunders and Sorrell v. C & E Commrs, (1980) VATTR 53 16.4
Schöttle & Söhne OHG v. Finanzamt Freudenstadt, C每20/76, [1977] 2
CMLR 98 12.3.3.1
Import Prohibition of Certain Shrimp and Shrimp Products
(&the Shrimp-Turtle case*), (1999) 38 ILM 118 8.4.2
Soci谷t谷 Centrale d*Hypothesques v. Cit谷 de Quebec, [1961] QLR 661 7.2.1
Sociaal Fonds voor de Diamantarbeiders v. SA Ch Brachfeld & Sons
and Chougal Diamond Co, C每2每3/69, [1969] ECR 211 8.4.3
Re Tax on Foreign Legations and High Commissioner*s Residence, (1943)
SCR 208 (Can) 7.2.1
Thanet District Council v. Kent County Council, [1993] Env LR 391 6.2.3.1
Trail Smelter arbitration, (1939) 33 AJIL 182, (1941) 35 AJIL 684 8.3.1.2
Restrictions on the Imports of Tuna (&the Tuna-Dolphin I Case*), (1991)
30 ILM 1598 8.4.2
Restrictions on the Imports of Tuna (&the Tuna-Dolphin II Case*), (1994)
33 ILM 839 8.4.2
Re the Uruguay Round Treaties, Opinion 1/94, [1995] 1 CMLR 205 8.4.1
Standards for Reformulated and Conventional Gasoline (&the US Gasoline
Standards decision*), (1996) 35 ILM 274 8.4.2
Verrall v. Hackney LBC, [1983] 1 QB 445, [1983] 1 All ER
277, 81 LGR 218 16.16
Vessoso and Zanetti, C每206, 207/88, [1990] ECR I每1461 12.2.5.2
Vinal SpA v. Orbab SpA, C每46/80, [1981] ECR 77 12.3.3.1
Criminal Proceedings against de Walle and others, C每1/03 12.2.5.2
Weyl Beef Products BV v. Commission of the European Communities,
C每T197/97, [2001] 2 CMLR 22 7.2.2.3
Westminster City Council v. National Asylum Support Service, [2002]
UKHL 38 26.3.3.1
Williams v. Singer (No.2), (1920) 7 TC 387 16.5
Zanetti, C每359/88, [1990] ECR I每1509 12.2.5.2
Zurstrassen v. Administrations des Contributions Directes, C每87/99,
[2001] STC 1102 22.1
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Table of Statutes
Bill of Rights 1689
Art. 4 7.2.2.1, 11.2
Inland Revenue Board Act 1849 4.2.1.2
Constitution Act 1867 [Canada]
s.92 1.2
Inland Revenue Regulation Act 1890
s.2 4.2.1.2
s.39 4.2.1.2
Finance (1909每1910) Act 1910
ss.1每42 29.2
ss.20每24 29.2
Parliament Act 1911 11.3.2
Settled Land Act 1925 16.5
Petroleum (Production) Act 1934 2.4.3
Town and Country Planning Act 1947 29.2
Parliament Act 1949 11.3.2
Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949
s.2(1) 7.2.2.1
Continental Shelf Act 1964
s.1(7) 1.4.3.2, 6.4.3.3
Gas Act 1965 6.4.3.2
Nuclear Installations Act 1965 6.4.3.2
Land Commission Act 1967 29.2
Parliamentary Commissioner Act 1967
Sched. 2 4.2.1.2
Sched. 3 4.2.1.2
xxvi Environmental Taxation Law
Provisional Collection of Taxes Act 1968 11.3.2
Administration of Justice Act 1969
ss.12每15 4.2.1.5
Taxes Management Act 1970
s.2 4.2.1.5
s.3 4.2.1.5
s.4 4.2.1.5
s.31 4.2.1.5
s.56(6) 4.2.1.5
s.56A(1) 4.2.1.5
s.74(1) 11.3.3
s.100A(1) 11.3.3
Prevention of Oil Pollution Act 1971
s.2 6.4.3.3
European Communities Act 1972 4.2.2, 21.9.3.1
s.2(2) 6.2.4, 6.4.3.1, 28.4
Local Government Act 1972
s.1(1) 4.2.3
s.1(2) 4.2.3
s.1(3) 4.2.3
s.1(4) 4.2.3
s.2 4.2.3
s.79 4.2.3
s.270(1) 4.2.3
Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 [USA] 8.4.2
National Environmental Protection Act of 1972 [USA] 12.2.4
Fair Trading Act 1973
Part III 6.4.3.1
Finance Act 1973 1.4.2.5
Water Act 1973
s.30 7.2.2.1
Control of Pollution Act 1974
ss.60每67 6.6
Finance Act 1974 29.2
Table of Statutes xxvii
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
s.15 6.4.3.3
s.43 6.4.3.3
s.82 6.4.3.3
Sched. 3 6.4.3.3
Ministers of the Crown Act 1975 4.2.1.2
Development Land Tax Act 1976 29.2
Energy Act 1976 20.3
Interpretation Act 1978
Sched. 1 1.4.3.2
Customs and Excise Management Act 1979
s.6(1) 4.2.1.2
s.6(2) 4.2.1.2
s.138 16.15
s.139 16.15
s.141(1) 16.15
s.152(b) 16.15
Sched. 3 16.15
Hydrocarbon Oil Duties Act 1979 22.2
s.20AB 22.3
Sched. 1
para. 2 21.9.2
Isle of Man Act 1979
s.6 1.4.3.2
Tobacco Products Duties Act 1979
s.8H(8) 26.2.3
Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act
of 1980 [USA] 8.2.3
Hazardous Substance Response Revenue Act of 1980 [USA] 27.2
Highways Act 1980 6.5.2
s.253 6.5.2
Gas Levy Act 1981 6.4.3.2
Civil Aviation Act 1982 6.5.3
s.77 6.5.2
xxviii Environmental Taxation Law
National Audit Act 1983
s.3(1) 4.2.1.3
s.3(5) 4.2.1.3
s.4(3) 4.2.1.3
Building Act 1984 21.6.3
Inheritance Tax Act 1984
s.3A(6) 24.8
s.6(1) 1.4.3
s.10(1) 21.3.2, 23.8
s.268 1.4.3
Local Government Act 1985 4.2.3
Airports Act 1986 6.5.3
s.37 6.5.3
s.38(1) 6.5.3
Finance Act 1986
Sched. 20
para. 6(1)(a) 11.3.4
Gas Act 1986 4.2.1.3, 6.4.3.2
s.4AA 6.4.3.2
s.4AB 6.1
s.5 6.4.3.2
s.5(1)(a) 6.4.3.2
s.5(1)(b) 6.4.3.2
s.5(1)(c) 6.4.3.2
s.6A 6.4.3.2
s.7A(1) 2.4.2
s.8B 6.4.3.2
s.33BC 6.1
s.36A 6.4.3.2
s.41E 6.4.3.2
Sched. 2B 6.4.3.2
Single European Act 1986 [EU] 12.2.1
Petroleum Act 1987
Part I 6.4.3.2
Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988
s.19 23.1
s.31A 24.6
s.31B 24.6
Table of Statutes xxix
s.34(1) 16.16
s.74 24.1
s.74(1) 1.4.3.2
s.74(1)(a) 21.3.2, 24.8
s.74(1)(f) 21.3.3, 24.2.1, 24.7
s.131 23.1
s.145 23.1
s.154 23.1
s.155A 18.2
s.158(2) 23.2
s.197A 17.2
s.197AA 23.3
s.197AB 23.3
s.197AC 23.3
s.197AE 23.3
s.198 23.1
s.257(1) 7.2.4
ss.289每312 7.2.4
s.333 7.2.4
s.333A 7.2.4
s.349(2) 1.4.4.2
s.359 7.2.4
s.519(1) 24.1
s.552A(5)(g) 16.7
s.577 24.1
s.577A 24.1
s.830 1.4.3.2
s.839 16.10
Sched. 6 23.2
Local Government Finance Act 1988
Part III 4.2.3
Electricity Act 1989 1.4.2.2, 4.2.1.3, 6.4.3.1, 6.4.3.2, 12.2.6.3
s.3A(1)(b) 21.7.2
s.3A(2)(a) 21.7.2
s.3A(2)(b)(i) 21.7.2
s.3A(2)(b)(ii) 21.7.2
s.3B 6.1
s.4(1) 6.4.3.1
s.4(4) 6.4.3.1
s.5 6.4.3.1
s.6(1)(d) 2.4.1
s.6(9) 6.4.3.1
s.32 6.4.3.1
s.32(1) 6.4.3.1
s.32(1)(b) 6.4.3.1
xxx Environmental Taxation Law
s.32(3) 6.4.3.1
s.32(3)(a) 6.4.3.1
s.32(3)(b) 6.4.3.1
s.32(8) 21.4.4
s.32A 21.4.4
s.32B 6.4.3.1
s.32B(1) 6.4.3.1
s.32B(3) 6.4.3.1
s.32BA 21.5
s.32C 6.4.3.1
s.33 6.4.3.1, 21.4.4
s.33(1)(a) 6.4.3.1
s.36 6.4.3.1
s.37 6.4.3.1
s.41A 6.1
s.41E 6.4.3.2
s.43(1) 6.4.3.2
s.43(2) 6.4.3.2
s.43(3) 6.4.3.2
s.43(4) 6.4.3.2
s.43(5) 6.4.3.2
s.43(6) 6.4.3.2
s.43(6A) 6.4.3.2
s.44A 6.3.1
s.44B 6.3.1
s.56C 6.4.3.2
s.113(3) 6.4.3.1
Sched. 8 6.4.3.1
para. 2(2) 6.4.3.1
para. 3(2) 6.4.3.1
Sched. 9 6.4.3.1
Sched. 12
para. 1(1) 21.4.4
Clean Air Act of 1990 [USA] 8.4.2
Environmental Protection Act 1990 1.4.4.2, 6.3.2, 14.2
Part I 4.2.3, 6.2.1, 14.6
s.1(5) 6.2.2
s.2(1) 6.2.2
s.2(4) 6.3.2
s.2(5) 6.2.2
s.5 6.2.2
s.6 6.2.2
s.6(1) 6.2.2
s.6(3) 6.2.2
s.7 6.2.2
Table of Statutes xxxi
s.7(2) 6.2.2
ss.10每12 6.2.2
s.13 6.2.2
s.14 6.2.2
s.23 6.2.2
s.23(1)(a) 6.2.2
s.27 6.2.2
s.28(1) 6.3.2
Part II 1.4.2.1, 6.3.2, 6.7, 8.4.5.1, 15.2
s.33(1) 6.3.2
s.33(3) 6.3.2
s.33(4) 6.3.2
s.33(8) 6.3.2
s.33(9) 6.3.2
s.34 6.3.2
s.34(1) 6.3.2
s.34(2) 6.3.2
s.34(6) 6.3.2
ss.35每44 6.3.2
s.35(1) 6.3.2
s.35 15.3, 16.2
s.35(2) 6.3.2
s.35(2)(a) 16.5, 16.8, 16.16
s.35(3) 6.3.2
s.36(2) 6.3.2
s.36(3) 6.3.2
s.45 6.3.2, 21.4.1
s.45(3) 6.3.2
s.45(4) 6.3.2
s.45A 21.4.1
s.45B 21.4.1
s.47A 21.4.1
s.48(1A) 6.3.2
s.51 6.3.2, 21.4.1
s.52 21.4.1
s.52A 6.3.2
s.59 15.6
s.62 6.3.2.1
s.75 6.3.2.1
s.75(2) 6.3.2.1
s.75(4) 6.3.2.1
s.75(5) 6.3.2.1
s.75(6) 6.3.2.1
s.75(7) 6.3.2.1
s.75(7)(c) 15.6
s.75(9) 6.3.2.1
Part IIA 6.7, 8.2.3
xxxii Environmental Taxation Law
s.78A(2) 6.7
s.78E 6.7
s.78F(2) 6.7
s.78M 6.7
s.79(1)(g) 6.6
s.79(1)(ga) 6.6
Part III 6.4.2
Sched. 1 6.2.2
Sched. 2B 6.3.2
Planning (Hazardous Substances) Act 1990 4.2.3
Town and Country Planning Act 1990
s.106 27.2
New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 7.2.3, 13.4
Planning and Compensation Act 1991
s.22 6.2.4
Local Government Finance Act 1992 4.2.3
Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992
s.1(6) 1.4.3.2
s.10 23.2
s.172 1.4.3.2
Taxation of Chargeable Gains Act 1992
s.38(1)(b) 21.3.3
s.42 24.7
s.44 24.7
Sched. A1
para. 5(1A) 24.7
Clean Air Act 1993 4.2.3, 6.4.2
s.30(1) 6.4.3.3
s.30(3) 6.4.3.3
s.32(1) 6.4.3.3
s.63(1) 6.4.3.3
Ecotax Law 1993 [Belgium]
s.369 1.2.1.5
Coal Industry Act 1994
Part I 6.4.3.4
s.7(1) 6.4.3.4
s.7(3) 6.4.3.4
Table of Statutes xxxiii
s.23(2) 6.4.3.4
Part II 6.4.3.4
Part III 6.4.3.4
Part IV 6.4.3.4
Finance Act 1994
s.16(4) 16.15
ss.28每44 1.2.1.5
s.30(4) 1.2.1.5
s.35(1)(a) 16.7
s.57(11) 16.7
Sched. 6 1.2.1.5
Value Added Tax Act 1994 22.2
s.5(2)(b) 24.7
s.7 1.4.3.2
s.7(10) 24.7
s.9A 16.7
s.13 1.4.3.2
s.15(1) 1.4.3.2
s.33 24.1
s.43A 16.6
s.43AA 16.6
s.43B 16.6
s.43C 16.6
s.45 16.4
s.46 16.6
s.46(2) 16.4
s.46(3) 16.4
s.47 16.5, 16.10
s.48 16.7
s.51A 16.5
ss.59每67 7.2.3
s.77A 4.2.1.1, 11.3.3, 16.2, 26.3.2
s.83 4.2.1.5
s.84 4.2.1.5
s.94(2) 16.4
s.96(11) 1.4.3.2
Sched. 1
para. 1 16.2
para. 1A 16.2
Sched. 4
para. 3 8.4.5.1
Sched. 5
para. 1 24.7
Sched. 7A
Group 1 21.4.2
xxxiv Environmental Taxation Law
Group 1, Notes 3每6 14.4
Group 2 21.3.1
Group 2,, Note 1(h) 21.3.1
Group 3 21.3.1
Group 3, Note 4A 26.6
Group 3, Note 4B 26.6
Sched. 8
Group 1 21.9.2
Group 8, item 4(a) 1.2.1.5, 14.4, 16.16, 23.3
Group 8, item 4(c) 1.2.1.5, 16.16
Sched. 9A 16.2, 16.6
Sched. 10
paras 2每3 16.5
para. 3A(7)(a) 16.16
Sched. 11
para. 1(1) 4.2.1.2
para. 4(2) 4.2.2.1, 16.2, 26.3.2
para. 5(2) 16.9
para. 5(3) 16.9
Sched. 11A 26.3.3.1
Sched. 12 4.2.1.5
para. 5(1) 4.2.1.5
para. 7(4) 4.2.1.5
Vehicle Excise and Registration Act 1994 22.2
s.1(1C) 22.2.1
s.2(2)每(7) 22.2.1
Sched. 1
para. 9(1) 22.3
Sched. 2
para. 20A 21.9.2
Environment Act 1995 4.2.3, 6.3.2, 9.1
s.1(1) 4.2.1.3
s.4(1) 4.2.1.3
s.4(2) 4.2.1.3
s.4(3) 4.2.1.3
s.4(5) 4.2.1.3
s.5(1) 4.2.1.3
s.6(1) 4.2.1.3
s.39(1) 4.2.1.3
s.41 6.3.2
s.56(1) 4.2.1.3
s.93 1.4.2.2, 19.1
s.94 1.4.2.2, 19.1
s.95 1.4.2.2, 19.1
s.108(1) 4.2.1.3
Table of Statutes xxxv
s.108(4) 4.2.1.3
Part IV 6.4.2
Finance Act 1995
s.154 21.4.4
Gas Act 1995 6.4.3.2
s.18(4) 6.4.3.2
Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995 6.5.3
s.2(1) 6.5.3
s.34 6.5.2
Finance Act 1996 1.4.2.1, 8.3.2
ss.39每69 1.4.2.1, 21.2, 26.1
s.39(2) 4.2.1.2
s.40 1.4.2.1
s.40(1) 15.3
s.40(2)(a) 15.3
s.40(2)(b) 15.3
s.40(2)(c) 15.3
s.40(3) 15.3
s.41 2.3, 15.3
s.41(1) 1.4.2.1
s.42(1) 1.4.2.1
s.42(2) 15.2
s.42(3) 15.2
s.42(4) 15.2
s.43(1)每(3) 15.4
s.43(4) 15.4
s.43A(1) 15.4
s.43A(2) 15.4
s.43A(4) 15.4
s.43A(5) 15.4
s.43A(6) 15.4
s.43B 15.4
s.43C 15.4
s.43C(2) 15.4
s.44 15.4
s.44A 15.4
s.45 15.4
s.47(2) 16.2
s.47(3) 16.2
s.47(4) 16.3
s.50(5) 15.6
s.51 16.9, 21.3
s.52 16.9, 16.10
xxxvi Environmental Taxation Law
s.53 4.2.1.2, 16.9, 21.3
s.53(1) 4.2.1.2
s.53(2)(b) 4.2.1.2
s.54 16.13
s.54(3) 4.2.1.5
s.55 4.2.1.5, 16.13
s.58(1) 16.4
s.58(2) 16.4
s.58(3) 16.6
s.59 16.6
s.62(7)(a) 15.5
s.62(7)(b) 15.5
s.63 15.2
s.63(2) 15.2
s.64(1) 15.3
s.64(2) 15.3
s.64(3) 15.3
s.64(4) 15.3
s.65(1)(a) 15.3
s.65(1)(b) 15.3
s.65(2) 15.3
s.65(3)(a) 15.3
s.65(3)(b) 15.3
s.65(4) 15.3
s.65(7) 15.3
s.65(8) 15.3
s.66 1.4.2.5, 8.4.5.1
s.66(a) 15.3
s.67(a) 15.3
s.68 15.2
s.69(2)(a) 15.6
s.70 1.4.2.1
s.71 1.4.2.1
Sched. 5 1.4.2.1, 21.2, 26.1
paras 2每3 16.12
paras 4每5 16.12
para. 6 16.15
paras 7每10 16.12
paras 15每17 16.14
paras 18每23 16.14
para. 26 16.14
para. 27 16.14
para. 29 16.13
para. 31 16.15
para. 45 16.11
para. 46 16.11
para. 47 16.11
Table of Statutes xxxvii
paras 48每60 15.3, 16.2, 16.16
para. 48(1) 16.16
para. 59 16.13
para. 57(1) 16.2
para. 60(3)(a) 16.2
Noise Act 1996 6.6
Finance Act 1997
s.37 26.1
ss.50每53 1.4.2.1
s.51 16.15
s.52 16.15
s.113 1.4.2.1
Sched. 5 1.4.2.1
paras 1每4 16.13
Finance (No.2) Act 1997
ss.1每5 8.6
Scheds 1每2 8.6
Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 [Commonwealth of Australia]
subdiv. 400每A 21.3.3
subdiv. 400每B 21.3.3
Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 [USA] 21.3.3
Finance Act 1998
s.42(1) 24.1, 24.7
s.153(2) 6.4.3.2
Fossil Fuel Levy Act 1998 6.4.3.1
Government of Wales Act 1998 4.2.2
s.1(2) 4.2.2
s.31 4.2.2
s.33 4.2.2
s.54 4.2.2
s.56 4.2.2
s.57 4.2.2
s.106 4.2.2
s.107 4.2.2
s.108 4.2.2
s.121 4.2.2
Sched. 2 4.2.2
xxxviii Environmental Taxation Law
Human Rights Act 1998
s.3 11.3.4
Northern Ireland Act 1998 4.2.2
s.23 4.2.2
s.29 4.2.2
Petroleum Act 1998 6.4.3.2, 6.4.3.3
Part I 6.4.3.3
s.1 6.4.3.3
s.2 6.4.3.3
s.2(3) 6.4.3.3
s.4 6.4.3.3
s.4(1) 6.4.3.3
s.4(1)(e) 6.4.3.3
s.4(9) 6.4.3.3
s.15(2) 6.4.3.3
s.26 6.4.3.3
Part III 6.4.3.3
Part IV 6.4.3.3
Scotland Act 1998 1.3, 4.2.2
s.3 4.2.2
s.28 4.2.2
s.29 4.2.2
s.44 4.2.2
s.46 4.2.2
s.53(2) 4.2.2
s.73(1) 1.3
s.75 1.3
s.78 4.2.2
s.126(1) 1.3
s.126(2) 1.3
Sched. 5 4.2.2
Part IV 1.3
Finance Act 1999 5.1
s.49 17.2
s.124 1.4.2.1
Greater London Authority Act 1999 4.2.3
s.1 4.2.3
s.2 4.2.3
s.122(1) 4.2.3
s.173 4.2.3
s.295 1.4.2.4, 18.1
s.295(1) 18.4
Table of Statutes xxxix
s.296 1.4.2.4, 17.1, 17.4
s.424(1) 4.2.3
Sched. 1 4.2.3
Sched. 10
para. 2 4.2.3
para. 3 4.2.3
Sched. 23 1.4.2.4, 18.1
para. 2 18.4
para. 4 18.4
para. 5 18.4
para. 7 18.4
para. 8 18.4
para. 9 18.4
para. 10 18.4
para. 11 18.4
para. 12 18.4
para. 16 18.4
para. 17 18.4
para. 18 18.4
para. 19 18.4
para. 20 18.4
para. 21 18.4
para. 22 18.4
Sched. 24 1.4.2.4, 17.1
para. 2 17.4
para. 3(1) 17.6
para. 3(2) 17.6
para. 3(4) 17.6
para. 7 17.4
para. 8 17.4
para. 11 17.4
para. 12 17.4
para. 13 17.4
para. 15 17.4
para. 17 17.4
para. 24 17.4
para. 25 17.4
para. 26 17.4
para. 27 17.4
para. 28 17.4
Mines and Quarries (Tips) Act 1999 6.3.2
Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999 4.2.1.3, 6.2.1, 6.3.2, 14.6
s.2 6.2.3
Sched. 1, Pt I
para. 1(1) 6.2.3
xl Environmental Taxation Law
para. 1(2) 6.2.3
para. 1(3) 6.2.3
para. 1(4) 6.2.3
para. 4 6.2.3
para. 24 6.2.3
Law Initiating Ecological Tax Reform 1999 [Germany] 21.2
Competition Act 2000 4.2.1.3
Finance Act 2000 1.4.2.2
s.3(2)(a) 2.4.3
s.30 1.4.2.2
ss.140每142 1.4.2.1
s.148 2.4.1
Sched. 6 1.4.2.1
para. 1(2) 4.2.1.2
para. 2 1.4.2.2
para. 3 8.4.5.1, 14.2
para. 3(1) 1.4.2.2
para. 3(1)(d) 2.4.4
para. 3(1)(e) 2.4.4
para. 5 14.2
para. 5(1) 2.4.1
para. 6 14.2
para. 6(1) 2.4.2
para. 7 14.2
para. 7(2) 2.4.4
para. 8 1.4.2.2, 14.4
para. 9 14.4
para. 10 1.4.2.2, 5.6.1
para. 11 1.4.2.2, 8.4.5.1, 14.4
para. 11A 1.4.2.2, 14.3
para. 12 14.4
para. 13 14.4
para. 13A 14.4
para. 14 2.4.4, 14.4
para. 15 5.6.1, 14.4, 14.5
para. 16(2) 14.5
para. 17 14.2
para. 17(2) 14.5
para. 17(3) 14.5
para. 17(4) 14.5
para. 18 14.4
para. 18A 14.4
para. 19 5.6.1
para. 19(1)(a) 16.16
Table of Statutes xli
para. 19(1)(b) 14.5
para. 19(1)(c) 14.5
para. 19(1)(d) 14.5
para. 19(2) 14.5
para. 19(3) 14.5
para. 19(4) 14.5
para. 19(4A) 5.6.1, 14.5
para. 19(5) 14.5
para. 19(6) 14.5
para. 19(7) 14.5
para. 19(8) 14.5
para. 20 14.5, 15.2
para. 20A 5.6.1
para. 20A(1)(a) 16.16
para. 20A(1)(b) 14.5
para. 20A(1)(c) 14.5
para. 20A(1)(d) 14.5
para. 20A(3) 14.5
para. 20A(4) 14.5
para. 20A(5) 14.5
para. 20A(6) 14.5
para. 20A(7) 14.5
para. 20A(8) 14.5
para. 20B 14.5
para. 21 14.9
para. 23(1) 14.2
para. 23(2) 14.2
para. 23(3) 14.2, 16.16
para. 24 14.4
para. 26(2) 16.9
para. 26(4) 16.9
para. 27 16.9
para. 27(5) 16.9
para. 28 16.9
para. 28(4) 16.9
para. 29 15.2, 16.9
para. 30(1) 16.9
para. 30(2) 16.9
para. 31 16.9
para. 32 16.9
para. 33(2) 16.9
para. 33(4) 16.9
para. 40(1) 1.4.2.2, 2.4.1, 2.4.2, 16.2, 16.16
para. 40(2) 1.4.2.2, 8.4.5.1, 16.2, 16.6, 16.9
para. 43 1.4.2.2, 14.3
para. 44 1.4.2.2, 5.6.1, 14.3, 14.6
para. 45 14.3, 14.6
xlii Environmental Taxation Law
para. 46 5.6.1, 14.3
para. 47 14.3, 14.6
para. 48 14.3, 14.6, 16.16
para. 49 14.3, 14.6
para. 49(1) 14.6
para. 49(2) 14.6, 16.16
para. 50 14.3, 14.6, 16.16
para. 51 14.3, 14.6, 16.5, 21.9, 20.1
para. 55(1) 16.2
para. 62(1) 16.9
para. 62(1)(f) 16.10
para. 66 16.13
paras 70每71 16.14
paras 81每89 16.14
paras 92每95 16.14
para. 90 16.15
para. 97 16.15
para. 102 16.9
para. 114 16.7
para. 114(1) 16.7
para. 115 16.7
para. 116 16.6
para. 117 16.4
para. 118 16.6
para. 119 16.6
para. 120 16.6
para. 121 4.2.1.5, 16.13
para. 122 4.2.1.5, 16.13
paras 125每127 16.12
paras 128每134 16.12
para. 139 16.15
para. 142(1) 16.11
para. 142(2) 16.11
para. 142(3) 16.11
para. 142(4) 16.11
para. 142(5) 16.11
para. 143(1) 16.9
para. 143(2) 16.9
para. 147 1.4.2.5, 5.6.1
para. 148 5.6.1, 14.4
para. 149A 14.5
para. 150 16.7
para. 150(2) 14.2
para. 150(2)(a) 2.4.1
para. 150(3)(a) 2.4.2
para. 151 16.2, 16.5
para. 152 14.2, 14.5
Table of Statutes xliii
para. 156 8.4.5.1, 16.5, 16.7, 16.9
Sched. 7 1.4.2.2
Sched. 37 1.4.2.1, 16.2
Transport Act 2000 4.2.3, 6.5.2
Part I 6.5
Part II 6.5
ss.163每177 1.4.2.3, 18.1
s.163(1) 18.5
s.163(2) 18.5
s.163(3) 18.5
s.164(1) 18.5
s.165(1) 18.5
s.166(1) 18.5
s.167 18.5
s.168 18.5
s.169 18.5
s.170 18.5
s.171 7.3.1, 18.5
s.172 7.3.3, 18.5
s.172(2) 7.3.3
ss.178每190 1.4.2.3, 17.1
s.178(1) 17.5
s.178(2)(a) 17.5
s.178(4) 17.5
s.178(5) 17.5
s.179(1) 17.5
s.180(1) 17.5
s.181(1) 17.5
s.182(1) 17.6
s.182(2) 17.6
s.182(3) 17.6
s.182(4) 17.6
s.183 17.5
s.184 17.5
s.186 7.3.1, 7.3.3, 17.5
s.187 17.5
s.188 17.5
s.198(1) 17.5, 18.5
Part III 6.5.2
Part IV 6.5
Sched. 12 7.3.1
para. 2 7.3.1
para. 3 17.5, 18.5
para. 7 7.3.1
Sched. 13
paras 1每18 1.4.2.3, 18.1
xliv Environmental Taxation Law
paras 19每34 1.4.2.3, 17.1
Utilities Act 2000 1.4.2.2, 4.2.1.3, 6.4.3.1, 21.4.3, 21.4.4
s.1 6.4.3.2
s.1(1) 4.2.1.3
s.1(2) 4.2.1.3
s.5A 21.7.2
s.50 14.5
s.62 7.3.1, 21.4.4
s.63 21.4.4
s.66 6.4.3.1, 21.4.4
s.67 6.4.3.1
Sched. 8 6.4.3.1
Warm Homes and Energy Conservation Act 2000 21.4.2
Capital Allowances Act 2001 7.2.4, 11.3.4
s.45A 5.6.1, 21.3.1, 24.4
s.45B 5.6.1, 24.4
s.45C 5.6.1, 24.4
s.45H 21.3.1, 24.4
s.45I 21.3.1, 24.4
s.45J 21.3.1, 24.4
s.74(2)(b) 24.3
s.74(2)(c) 24.3
s.75(1) 24.3
ss.393A每393V 24.5.2
s.393E 24.5.2
Regulatory Reform Act 2001 4.2.1.2
Finance Act 2001 1.4.2.3
s.3 21.3
ss.16每49 1.4.2.3
s.16(1) 1.4.2.3, 13.1
s.16(2) 1.4.2.3, 8.4.5.1
s.16(3) 1.4.2.3, 2.5
s.16(4) 1.4.2.3
s.16(5) 4.2.1.2
s.16(6) 5.6.2
s.17(1) 1.4.2.3, 13.4
s.17(2) 1.4.2.3
s.17(2)(a) 13.2
s.17(2)(b) 1.4.2.3, 13.2
s.17(2)(c) 13.2
s.17(3) 13.2
s.17(3)(b) 13.2, 16.2
Table of Statutes xlv
s.17(3)(b)(i) 13.2
s.17(3)(b)(ii) 13.2
s.17(3)(c) 13.2, 16.2
s.17(3)(d) 13.2, 16.2
s.17(3)(e) 13.2
s.17(3)(f) 13.2
s.17(4) 13.2
s.17(4)(a) 13.2, 13.4
s.17(4)(c) 13.2, 13.4
s.17(4)(d) 13.2, 13.4
s.17(4)(e) 13.2, 13.4
s.17(4)(f) 13.2, 13.4
s.17(5) 13.2
s.18 13.3
s.18(1)(a) 13.4
s.18(1)(b) 13.4
s.18(2)(a) 13.5
s.18(2)(b) 13.5
s.18(2)(c) 13.5, 21.8
s.18(3) 13.5
s.18(4) 13.4, 13.5
s.19 8.4.5.1
s.19(1) 8.4.5.1, 13.3
s.19(1)(a) 2.5
s.19(1)(b) 2.5, 8.4.5.1
s.19(1)(c) 2.5, 8.4.5.1
s.19(1)(d) 2.5
s.19(2)(a) 2.5, 13.3
s.19(2)(b) 13.2
s.19(2)(c) 13.2, 13.3
s.19(3)(a) 13.2
s.19(3)(b) 13.3, 16.4
s.19(3)(c) 13.2
s.19(3A) 13.2
s.20(1)(a) 13.2, 13.3
s.20(1)(b) 13.2, 13.3
s.20(1)(d) 13.2, 13.3
s.20(2) 13.2, 13.3
s.21 13.2, 13.2
s.21(1)(a) 13.3
s.21(1)(b) 13.3
s.21(2)(a) 13.3
s.21(2)(c) 13.3
s.21(2)(d) 13.3
s.22(1) 13.2, 16.2
s.22(1)(a) 13.3, 16.8, 16.16
s.22(1)(b) 13.3, 16.8
xlvi Environmental Taxation Law
s.22(1)(d) 13.3, 16.8
s.22(1)(e) 13.3, 16.8, 16.16
s.22(1)(f) 13.3, 16.8, 16.16
s.22(2) 13.2, 13.3, 16.2, 16.5
s.22(3) 13.2, 16.2, 16.16
s.22(4) 13.3
s.24(2) 13.3, 16.2
s.24(2)(a) 13.2
s.24(3) 13.2
s.24(4)(a) 16.2
s.24(4)(b) 16.2
s.24(6) 13.2
s.24(6)(ca) 13.2
s.24(7) 13.2, 13.3, 16.2, 16.8
s.24(8) 13.2
s.26 16.15
s.30(1) 16.9
s.30(1)(a) 8.4.5.1
s.30(1)(f) 16.10
s.30A 14.3, 21.8
s.32(2)每(4) 16.13
s.33 16.7
s.34 16.7
s.34(1) 16.7
s.35 16.4
s.37 16.4
s.38 16.4
s.39 16.4
s.40 1.4.7, 16.13
s.40(1)(c) 16.4, 16.8
s.41 1.4.7, 16.13
s.41(1)(a) 16.8
s.43(1) 16.11
s.43(2) 16.11
s.44 5.6.2
s.46 16.14
s.65 5.6.1
s.92 23.5.3
s.92A 23.5.3
s.92B 23.5.3
s.109 1.4.2.3
s.110 1.4.2.3
s.111 1.4.2.3
Sched. 4 1.4.2.3
para. 1(1) 17.2
para. 1(1)(a) 13.2, 13.3
para. 2(2) 16.4
Table of Statutes xlvii
para. 2(3) 16.6
para. 2(4) 16.4
Sched. 5 1.4.2.3
paras 14每16 16.15
Sched. 6 1.4.2.3
paras 1每4 16.14
para. 2(2) 8.4.5.1
para. 6 16.15
paras 7每9 16.14
Sched. 7 1.4.2.3
paras 2每4 16.12
paras 5每10 16.12
Sched. 8 1.4.2.3
para. 2 16.13
paras 6每7 16.14
Sched. 9 1.4.2.3, 16.4
Sched. 10 1.4.2.3
Sched. 17
para. 2 5.6.1
Sched. 22 5.5, 21.3.3
para. 1(4)(a) 24.5.1
para. 1(4)(b) 24.5.1
para. 1(5) 24.5.1
para. 2(6) 24.5.1
para. 8 24.5.1
para. 12 24.5.1
para. 31(3) 24.5.1
para. 31(4) 24.5.1
Finance Act 2002
s.123(1) 5.6.1
s.126 5.6.1
s.137 1.4.2.4, 7.2.3, 27.6
Sched. 2
para. 2 22.3
Sched. 5
para. 2 22.2.1
para. 3 22.2.1
Sched. 29 24.7
para. 2(1) 24.7
para. 3(1) 24.7
para. 9 24.7
para. 10 24.7
para. 11 24.7
para. 19(1)(b) 24.7
para. 19(2) 24.7
xlviii Environmental Taxation Law
Sched. 38
para. 2 14.2
Anti每Social Behaviour Act 2003 15.6
Electricity (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2003
s.1 21.4.4
s.4 21.4.4
Finance Act 2003 14.4, 14.5, 21.1
s.18 4.2.1.1, 16.2
s.19 4.2.1.1, 16.2
s.82(2) 11.3.2, 11.3.3
s.106(3)(b) 11.3.2, 11.3.3
s.136 26.3.2
Sched. 5 11.3.2
Sched. 6 23.5.3
Sched. 14
para. 4(b) 11.3.2, 11.3.3
Sched. 22 11.3.2
Household Waste Recycling Act 2003 2.3, 21.4.1
Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003 1.4.3.1, 11.3.2
s.10(2) 23.1
s.62(2) 23.1
s.97 23.1
ss.133每144 23.2
s.201 23.1
s.150 23.2
s.233 23.3
s.237 17.2
s.242 23.3
s.243 23.3
s.244 23.3
s.318 18.2
s.328 23.1
Regional Assemblies (Preparations) Act 2003 4.2.3
Sustainable Energy Act 2003 21.7.1
s.1 21.7.1
s.1(1A) 21.7.1
s.1(1B) 21.7.1
s.1(1C) 21.7.1
s.2 21.7.1
s.2(1) 21.7.1
Table of Statutes xlix
s.3 21.7.1
s.4 21.7.1
s.5 21.7.1
s.6 21.7.1
s.7 21.7.1
Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003 1.4.2.1, 12.2.5.1, 27.7
Part 1 6.3.2
s.1 6.3.2, 20.7
s.2 20.7
s.3 20.7
s.4 20.7
s.4(1) 1.4.2.1
s.5 20.7
s.6 20.7
s.7 20.7
s.8 20.7
s.17 6.3.2
s.18 6.3.2
s.19 6.3.2
s.20 6.3.2
s.21(1) 20.7
s.21(2) 20.7
s.21(3) 20.7
s.22 1.4.2.1
s.22(1) 20.7
s.22(2) 20.7
s.23 20.7
s.24 1.4.2.1
s.24(1)(a) 1.4.2.5
s.24(1)(b) 1.4.2.5
s.24(1)(c) 1.4.2.5
s.24(1)(d) 1.4.2.5
s.25(1) 20.7
s.31 6.3.2, 26.3
s.31(2) 6.3.2
s.31(4) 6.3.2
s.32 6.3.2, 26.3
s.33 6.3.2, 26.3
s.37 20.7
s.38 20.3
s.39 20.3
Energy Act 2004
Part 1 6.4.3.1
Part 2 6.4.3.1
Part 3 6.4.3.1, 12.2.6.3
l Environmental Taxation Law
s.81(2) 21.7.2
s.82(2) 21.7.2
s.115 21.5
s.115(2) 6.4.3.1
s.115(3) 6.4.3.1
s.116 6.4.3.1, 21.5
s.117 21.5
s.118 21.5
s.120 21.5
s.124 6.4.3.3
Chapter 3 6.4.3.3
s.172 21.7.2
Finance Act 2004
s.291 14.4
ss.306每319 26.3.3.1
Sched. 2 26.3.3.1
Sched. 15
para. 11(5)(d) 11.3.4
para. 20(1)(a) 11.3.4
Sched. 41 26.2.1
Housing Act 2004 21.6.1, 21.6.2
Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 7.4.3.1
Sustainable and Secure Buildings Act 2004 21.6.3
Table of Statutory Instruments
Road Vehicle (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, S.I. 1986 No. 1078
reg. 3(2) 6.5.2
reg. 97 6.5.2
Civil Aviation Authority (Economic Regulation of Airports) Regulations
1986, S.I. 1986 No. 1544 6.5.3
Environmental Assessment (Afforestation) Regulations 1988, S.I. 1988
No. 1207 6.2.4
Land Drainage Improvement Works (Assessment of Environmental
Effects) Regulations 1988, S.I. 1988 No. 1217 6.2.4
Sludge (Use in Agriculture) Regulations 1988, S.I. 1989 No. 1263 6.3.2
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1990,
S.I. 1990 No. 263 6.4.3.1
Fossil Fuel Levy Regulations 1990, S.I. 1990 No. 266 reg. 28 6.4.3.1
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) (Amendment)
Order 1990, S.I. 1990 No. 494 6.4.3.1
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) (No.2) Order
1990, S.I. 1990 No. 1869 6.4.3.1
Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances)
Regulations 1991, S.I. 1991, No. 472 6.2.2
reg. 4 6.2.2
Sched. 1 6.2.2
ch. 1 6.2.2, 6.4.3.1, 6.4.3.2, 6.4.3.3
ch. 2 6.2.2
ch. 3 6.2.2, 6.4.3.4
ch. 4 6.2.2
ch. 5 6.2.2
ch. 6 6.2.2
Sched. 4 6.2.2
Sched. 5 6.2.2
Sched. 6 6.2.2
lii Environmental Taxation Law
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1991,
S.I. 1991 No. 2490 6.4.3.1
Environmental Protection (Duty of Care) Regulations 1991, S.I. 1991
No. 2839 6.2.3
Electricity (Northern Ireland) Order 1992, S.I. 1992 No. 231
(N.I.1) 6.4.3.1
Art. 35 6.4.3.1
Art. 36 6.4.3.1
Licensing of Air Carriers Regulations 1992, S.I. 1992, No. 2992 reg. 2 6.5.3
Batteries and Accumulators (Containing Dangerous Substances)
Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 232 6.3.2
Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 1056 6.2.3
reg. 16 6.2.3
reg. 16(1)(a) 6.2.3, 6.3.2
reg. 17 6.2.3
Sched. 3 6.2.3
para. 41(1) 6.2.3
Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 1137 6.3.2
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1994,
S.I. 1994 No. 3259 6.4.3.1
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order 1990, S.I. 1994
No. 3275 (S.190) 6.4.3.1
Value Added Tax Regulations 1995, S.I. 1995 No. 2518
reg. 8 16.4
reg. 101(2)(d) 24.7
reg. 102 24.7
Gas (Northern Ireland) Order 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 275 (N.I.2) 6.4.3.2
Environmental Licences (Suspension and Revocation) Regulations
1996, S.I. 1996 No. 508 6.2.3
Special Waste Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 972 6.3.2, 12.2.5.1
Landfill Tax Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 1527 4.2.1.2
reg. 2(1) 16.12
reg. 4(2) 16.8
reg. 4(3) 16.5
Table of Statutory Instruments liii
reg. 5 16.3
reg. 6 16.3
reg. 7 16.4
reg. 8 16.4
reg. 9 16.6
reg. 17 16.9, 21.3.2
reg. 18 16.9, 21.3.2
reg. 19 16.9, 21.3.2
reg. 20 16.9, 21.3.2
reg. 21 21.3.2
reg. 23(a) 16.10
reg. 23(b) 16.10
reg. 23(c) 16.10
reg. 23(d) 16.10
reg. 23(e)(i) 16.10
reg. 25(a) 16.10
reg. 26 16.10
reg. 30 21.3.2
reg. 31 21.3.2
reg. 31(4) 21.3.2
reg. 31(5) 21.3.2
reg. 31(6) 21.3.2
reg. 31(6A) 21.3.2
reg. 32 21.3.2
reg. 33(1)每(1C) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(a) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(b) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(c) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(cc) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(d) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(da) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(da)(i) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(da)(ii) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(e) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2)(f) 21.3.2
reg. 33(2A) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(a) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(b) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(c) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(d) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(e) 21.3.2
reg. 33(3A)(f) 21.3.2
reg. 33(6) 21.3.2
reg. 33A 21.3.2
reg. 37 16.9
reg. 38 15.5
liv Environmental Taxation Law
reg. 39 15.5
reg. 40 15.5
regs 41每44 15.2
reg. 44(5)每(8) 15.2
Landfill Tax (Qualifying Material) Order 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 1528 15.2
Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996
No. 2095 6.4.3.3
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1997,
S.I. 1997 No. 248 6.4.3.1
Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations
1997, S.I. 1997 No. 648 1.4.2.2, 12.2.5.1, 19.1
reg. 2(1)(a) 19.2
reg. 3(5)(b) 19.5
reg. 4 19.4
reg. 5 19.4
reg. 5B 19.5
reg. 6 19.4
reg. 6(4)(dd) 19.5
reg. 7 19.5
reg. 9(2) 19.4
reg. 10 19.4
reg. 11(1) 19.4
reg. 21B 19.5
reg. 25 19.4
Sched. 1 19.4
Sched. 2 19.5
Sched. 3 19.2
Sched. 10 19.5
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order
1997, S.I. 1994 No. 799 (S.76) 6.4.3.1
Mines (Notice of Abandonment) Regulations 1998, S.I. 1998
No. 892 6.4.3.4
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales)
Order 1998, S.I. 1998 No. 2353 6.4.3.1
Civil Procedure Rules 1998, S.I. 1998 No. 3132
Sched. 1
para. 2 4.2.1.5
Table of Statutory Instruments lv
Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment)
(England and Wales) Regulations 1999, S.I. 1999 No. 293 6.2.4, 12.2.4
Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Extension of Section 140)
Regulations 1999, S.I. 1999 No. 396 6.3.2
Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order 1999, S.I. 1999
No. 439 (S.24) 6.4.3.1
Motor Fuel (Composition and Content) Regulations 1999, S.I. 1999
No. 3107 6.4.3.1
Contaminated Land (England) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000, No. 227 6.7
Air Navigation Order 2000, S.I. 2000 No. 1562
Art. 108 6.5.2
Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000,
S.I. 2000 No. 1973, am. S.I.
2001 No. 503 6.2.1, 6.2.3, 6.3.2, 12.2.2, 14.6
reg. 2 6.3.2
reg. 2(1) 6.2.3
reg. 3 6.2.3
reg. 4(3)(c) 6.2.3
reg. 8 6.2.2
reg. 9(1) 6.2.3
reg. 11(1) 6.2.3
reg. 11(2) 6.2.3
reg. 11(3) 6.2.3
reg. 12 6.2.3
reg. 21 6.2.3
reg. 25 6.2.3
reg. 32 6.2.3
reg. 32(2) 6.2.3
reg. 32(3) 6.2.3
Sched. 1 6.2.2
Pt I, Ch. 1
s.1.1 6.2.3, 6.4.3.1
s.1.2 6.4.3.2
s.2.1每2.3 6.2.3
s.3.1每3.4 6.2.3
s.3.5 6.2.3, 6.4.3.2
s.3.6 6.2.3
s.4.1每4.8 6.2.3, 6.3.2
s.5.1 6.2.3
s.5.2 6.2.3, 6.3.2
s.5.3 6.2.3, 6.3.2
lvi Environmental Taxation Law
s.5.4 6.2.3, 6.3.2
s.5.5 6.2.3, 6.3.2
s.6.1每6.9 6.2.3
Environmental Protection (Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls and
Other Dangerous Substances) (England and Wales) Regulations 2000,
S.I. 2000 No. 1043 6.3.2
Climate Change Levy (Registration and Miscellaneous Provisions)
Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 7
reg. 2(1) 16.2
reg. 2(2) 16.5
reg. 3 16.3
reg. 4 16.3
reg. 8 16.6
reg. 9 16.6
reg. 10 16.6
reg. 11 16.6
reg. 12 16.6
reg. 13 16.4
reg. 14 16.7
reg. 14(2) 16.7
reg. 14(3) 16.7
reg. 14(4) 16.7
reg. 14(4)(a) 16.7
reg. 14(6) 16.7
reg. 15 16.7
reg. 15(1) 16.7
reg. 16 16.7
reg. 17 16.7
reg. 17(1) 16.7
reg. 17(2) 16.7
reg. 17(3) 16.7
reg. 17(4)(a) 16.7
reg. 18 16.7
reg. 18(2)(b) 16.7
reg. 19 16.7
Climate Change Levy (General) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 838 6.4.3.1
reg. 3 16.11
regs 6A每G 16.12
reg. 10(1)(b) 16.10
reg. 10(1)(c) 16.10
reg. 10(1)(d) 16.10
reg. 10(1)(e) 16.10
reg. 10(2) 16.10
reg. 10(7) 14.4, 16.10
Table of Statutory Instruments lvii
reg. 34 14.4, 16.9
reg. 35 16.9
reg. 36 16.9
reg. 37 16.9
reg. 38 16.9
reg. 39 16.9
reg. 40 14.4, 16.9
reg. 41 14.2
reg. 44 14.6
regs 46每51 14.5
regs 51A每51M 14.5
reg. 52 14.4
reg. 54 14.2, 16.9
reg. 55 16.6
reg. 56 16.6
reg. 57 16.6
reg. 59 16.6
Sched. 1 16.9
Sched. 2 14.5
Social Security (Contributions) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1004
reg. 145 1.4.3.2
Offshore Combustion Installations (Prevention and Control of Pollution)
Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1091 28.4
Climate Change Levy (Electricity and Gas) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001
No. 1136 14.2
Climate Change Levy (Use as Fuel) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1138 14.4
Climate Change Levy (Combined Heat and Power Stations) Prescribed
Conditions and Efficiency Percentages Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001
No. 1140 14.4
reg. 5(3) 14.5
reg. 5(4) 14.5
Environmental Protection (Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls and Other
Dangerous Substances) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations
2001, S.I. 2001 No. 3359 6.3.2
Aggregates Levy (Registration and Miscellaneous Provisions)
Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 4027
reg. 2(1) 13.3, 16.2
reg. 2(3) 16.2, 16.5
reg. 2(6) 16.8
reg. 3(2) 13.2, 16.2
lviii Environmental Taxation Law
reg. 3(3) 13.2
reg. 4 16.3
reg. 8 16.6
reg. 9 16.6
reg. 10 16.6
reg. 11 16.6
reg. 12 16.4
reg. 13 8.4.5.1, 16.4
reg. 13(1) 8.4.5.1
reg. 13(2) 8.4.5.1
reg. 13(2)(a) 8.4.5.1
reg. 14 16.7
reg. 14(2) 16.7
reg. 14(3) 16.7
reg. 14(4) 16.7
reg. 14(4)(a) 16.7
reg. 14(6) 16.7
reg. 15 16.7
reg. 15(1) 16.7
reg. 16 16.7
reg. 17 16.7
reg. 17(1) 16.7
reg. 17(2) 16.7
reg. 17(3) 16.7
reg. 17(4)(a) 16.7
reg. 18 16.7
reg. 18(2)(b) 16.7
reg. 19 16.7
Income Tax (Exemption of Minor Benefits) Regulations 2002, S.I. 2002
No. 205
reg. 3 23.3
reg. 4 23.3
Aggregates Levy (General) Regulations 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 671
reg. 4 16.2
reg. 5 13.2, 16.2, 16.11
reg. 6 13.2, 16.2
reg. 7 13.2, 16.2
reg. 8 13.2, 16.2
reg. 9 13.2, 16.2
reg. 10 13.2, 16.2
reg. 10(i) 16.9
reg. 10(j) 16.9
reg. 11 13.2, 16.2
reg. 12 16.9
reg. 12(1)(a) 16.10
Table of Statutory Instruments lix
reg. 12(1)(c) 16.10
reg. 12(1)(e) 16.10
reg. 12(2) 16.10
reg. 13 16.9
reg. 34 16.6
reg. 35 16.6
reg. 36 16.6
reg. 37 16.6
Sched. 16.9
Air Navigation (Environmental Standards) Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 798
Art. 8 6.5.2
Finance Act 2001, section 16, (Appointed Day) Order 2002, S.I. 2002
No. 809 5.6.2
Fossil Fuel Levy (Amendment) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1200 6.4.3.1
Renewables Obligation Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 914
Art. 3(1)(b) 21.5
Art. 3(4) 21.5
Art. 7 21.5
Sched. 1 7.3.1, 21.5
Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002, S.I. 2002
No. 1559 6.3.2, 12.2.5.1, 15.6
reg. 1(2) 6.3.2
reg. 2 6.3.2
reg. 3(2) 6.3.2
reg. 3(4) 6.3.2
reg. 4 6.3.2
reg. 4(b) 6.3.2
reg. 5 6.3.2
reg. 6(1) 6.3.2
reg. 6(2) 6.3.2
reg. 7(1) 6.3.2
reg. 7(2) 6.3.2
reg. 7(3) 6.3.2
reg. 7(4) 6.3.2
reg. 8 6.3.2
reg. 9(1)(a) 6.3.2
reg. 9(1)(c) 6.3.2
reg. 10(1) 6.3.2
reg. 10(2) 6.3.2
reg. 10(3) 6.3.2
reg. 11 6.3.2
reg. 12 6.3.2
lx Environmental Taxation Law
reg. 13 6.3.2
reg. 14 6.3.2
Sched. 1
para. 1 6.3.2
para. 2 6.3.2
Air Navigation Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 1562 6.5.3
Art. 108 6.5.2
Aggregates Levy (Northern Ireland Tax Credit) Regulations 2002,
S.I. 2002 No.1927 16.2
Aggregates Levy (Registration and Miscellaneous Provisions)
(Amendment) Regulations 2002, S.I 2002 No. 1929 16.2
Transfer of Functions (Transport, Local Government and the Regions)
Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 2626 4.2.1.2
Pollution Prevention and Control Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003,
S.R. (N.I.) 2003 No. 46 28.4
Energy (Northern Ireland) Order, S.I. 2003 No. 419 (N.I.6) 6.4.3.1, 6.4.3.2
Art. 58 6.4.3.1
Aggregates Levy (Registration and Miscellaneous Provisions)
(Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 465 13.2
Electricity (Guarantees of Origin of Electricity Produced from Renewable
Energy Sources) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003, S.R. 2003
No. 470 6.4.3.1
Finance Act 2002, section 123, (Appointed Day Order 2003, S. I. 2003
No. 603 14.5
Climate Change Levy (General) (Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003
No. 604 14.5
Landfill Tax (Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 605 4.2.1.2
reg. 3(a) 21.3.2
reg. 4 21.3.2
reg. 5 21.3.2
Climate Change Levy (Use as Fuel) (Amendment) Regulations 2003,
S.I. 2003 No. 665 14.4
Table of Statutory Instruments lxi
Climate Change Levy (Combined Heat and Power Stations) Prescribed
Conditions and Efficiency Percentages (Amendment) Regulations 2003,
S.I. 2003 No. 861 14.5
Stamp Duty (Disadvantaged Areas) (Application of Exemptions)
Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 1056 24.5.3
Value Added Tax (Amendment) (No.2) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003
No. 1069 11.3.3
Income Tax (Exemption of Minor Benefits) (Amendment) Regulations
2003, S.I. 2003 No. 1434 23.3
Landfill Tax (Amendment) (No.2) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 2313 21.3.2
Electricity (Guarantees of Origin of Electricity Produced from Renewable
Energy Sources) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 2562 6.4.3.1
reg. 1(2) 6.4.3.1
reg. 2(1) 6.4.3.1
reg. 4(1)(a) 6.4.3.1
reg. 4(1)(b) 6.4.3.1
reg. 5 6.4.3.1
reg. 6(1) 6.4.3.1
reg. 6(3) 6.4.3.1
reg. 7 6.4.3.1
reg. 8 6.4.3.1
Sched. 2 6.4.3.1
Climate Change Levy (General) (Amendment) (No.2) Regulations 2003,
S.I. 2003 No. 2633 14.5
End-of-Life Vehicles Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 2635 19.7
Motor Fuel (Composition and Content) (Amendment) Regulations 2003,
S.I. 2003 No. 3078 6.4.3.1
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Trading Scheme Regulations 2003 S.I. 2003
No. 3311 28.4
reg. 1 28.4
reg. 2 28.4
reg. 2(1) 28.4
reg. 8 28.4
reg. 10 28.4
reg. 11 28.4
reg. 11(7) 28.4
reg. 12 28.4
reg. 13 28.4
lxii Environmental Taxation Law
reg. 14 28.4
reg. 16 28.4
reg. 18 28.4
reg. 19 28.4
reg. 19(3)(a) 28.4
reg. 19(15)(a) 28.4
reg. 19(16) 28.4
reg. 19(17) 28.4
reg. 20 28.4
reg. 21 28.4
reg. 22 28.4
reg. 23 28.4
reg. 24 28.4
reg. 25 28.4
Sched. 1 28.4
Part 2, para. 2 28.4
Environmental Protection (Waste Recycling Payments) (England)
Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 639 21.4.1
Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) (England)
(Amendment) Regulations 2003. S.I. 2003 No. 3294 19.5
Energy (2003 Order) (Commencement No. 2) Order (Northern Ireland)
2004, S.R. 2004 No. 71 (C.1)
Art. 2 6.4.3.1
Sched. 6.4.3.1
Coal Industry Act 1994 (Commencement No. 7) and Dissolution of the
British Coal Corporation Order, S.I. 2004 No. 144 (C.6) 6.4.3.4
Petroleum Licensing (Exploration and Production) (Seaward and
Landward Areas) Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004 No. 352 6.4.3.3
Landfill Tax (Amendment) Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004 No. 769
reg. 3 21.3.2
Renewables Obligation (Amendment) Order 2004, S.I. 2004
No. 924 6.4.3.1, 21.5
Aggregates Levy (Northern Ireland Tax Credit) Regulations 2004,
S.I. 2004 No. 1959 13.3
Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes Regulations 2004,
S.I. 2004 No. 1633 6.2.4
Table of Statutory Instruments lxiii
Excise Duties (Surcharges or Rebates) (Bioethanol) Order 2004, S.I.
2004 No. 3162 22.2.2
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Table of Provisions of
the European Treaty
Art. 2 12.2.1
Art. 3(1)(b) 12.2.1
Art. 3(1)(c) 12.2.1
Art. 3(1)(f) 12.2.1, 12.2.6.4
Art. 3(1)(l) 12.2.1
Art. 3(1)(u) 12.2.6.3
Art. 6 [ex-3c] 12.2.1, 12.2.4, 12.2.7.2
Art. 7(2) [ex-4(2)] 4.3.4
Art. 12 [ex-6] 12.2.6.4
Art. 14 [ex-7a] 12.3.1
Art. 23 [ex-9] 12.2.6.4, 12.3.3.2
Art. 24 [ex 10] 12.2.6.4
Art. 25 [ex-12] 7.2.1, 7.2.2.3, 12.2.6.4, 12.3.2.2
Art. 26 [ex-28] 12.2.6.4
Art. 27 [ex-29] 12.2.6.4
Art. 28 [ex-30] 12.2.6.4, 12.4
Art. 29 [ex-34] 12.2.6.4, 12.4
Art. 30 [ex-36] 12.2.6.4, 12.4
Art. 31 [ex-37] 12.2.6.4
Art. 43 [ex-52] 26.1
Art. 49 [ex-59] 12.3.1, 26.4
Art. 70 [ex-74] 12.2.6.4
Art. 71 [ex-75] 12.2.6.4
Art. 72 [ex-76] 12.2.6.4
Art. 73 [ex-77] 12.2.6.4, 12.2.7.4
Art. 74 [ex-78] 12.2.6.4
Art. 75 [ex-79] 12.2.6.4
Art. 76 [ex-80] 12.2.6.4
Art. 77 [ex-81] 12.2.6.4
Art. 78 [ex-82] 12.2.6.4
Art. 79 [ex-83] 12.2.6.4
Art. 80 [ex-84] 12.2.6.4
Art. 80(1) 12.2.6.4
Art. 80(2) 12.2.6.4
Art. 81 [ex-85] 12.3.2.1
Art. 81(1) 12.2.6.4
Art. 81(3) 12.2.6.4
Art. 82 [ex-86] 12.3.2.1
lxvi Environmental Taxation Law
Art. 87 [ex 92] 8.4, 12.3.3, 12.3.5
Art. 87(1) 12.2.5.2, 12.2.7.1
Art. 87(2) 12.2.5.2, 12.2.7.1
Art. 87(3) 12.2.5.2, 12.3.5, 12.2.7.1, 12.2.7.4
Art. 87(3)(c) 12.2.7.2, 12.2.7.3
Art. 88 [ex 93] 4.3.2, 8.4, 12.5.2, 12.2.7.1
Art. 88(1) 12.2.7.1
Art. 88(2) 12.2.7.1
Art. 89 [ex-94] 12.2.5.2, 12.2.7.1
Art. 90 [ex-95] 7.2.2.3, 7.2.2.4, 8.4.1, 12.3.2.1, 12.3.2.2, 12.3.5
Art. 92 [ex-98] 12.3.2, 27.2
Art. 93 [ex-99] 4.3.1, 12.3.1, 12.3.2, 12.3.2.1
Art. 94 [ex-100] 12.2.1, 12.3.1, 12.3.2, 12.3.2.1
Art. 95 [ex-100a] 12.2.1
Art. 95(1)(a) 12.2.1
Art. 95(2) 4.3.1
Art. 95(3) 12.2.1
Art. 131 [ex-110] 8.4.1
Art. 132 [ex-112] 8.4.1
Art. 133 [ex-113] 8.4.1
Art. 133(3) 4.3.3
Art. 134 [ex-113] 8.4.1
Art. 135 [ex-115] 8.4.1
Art. 154 [ex-129b] 12.2.6.3
Art. 174 [ex-130r] 28.2.1
Art. 174(1) 1.2.1.5, 12.2.1
Art. 174(2) 8.2.3, 12.2.1
Art. 174(3) 12.2.1
Art. 175 [ex-130s] 4.3.1, 13.2.1, 13.2.2
Art. 175(1) 28.2.1
Art. 175(2) 1.2.1.5
Art. 175(2)(a) 12.2.1
Art. 189 [ex-137] 4.3.3
Art. 190(1) [ex-138(1)] 4.3.3
Art. 190(5) 4.3.3
Art. 191 [ex-138a] 4.3.3
Art. 192 [ex-138b] 4.3.3
Art. 199 [ex-142] 4.3.3
Art. 202 [ex-145] 4.3.2
Art. 203 [ex-146] 4.3.2, 28.2.3
Art. 204 [ex-147] 4.3.2
Art. 205(1) [ex-148(1)] 4.3.2
Art. 205(3) 4.3.2
Art. 207 [ex-151] 4.3.2
Art. 208 [ex-152] 4.3.2
Art. 211 [ex-155] 4.3.2
Art. 213 [ex-157] 4.3.2
Table of Provisions of the European Treaty lxvii
Art. 214(1) [ex-158(1)] 4.3.2
Art. 214(2) 4.3.2
Art. 214(2) 4.3.3
Art. 220 [ex-164] 4.3.7
Art. 224 [ex-168] 4.3.7
Art. 226 [ex-169] 4.3.2
Art. 234 [ex-177] 4.3.7, 12.2.5.2, 12.3.2.1
Art. 251 [ex-189b] 4.3.3, 12.2.1, 12.3.2.1, 28.2.1
Art. 257 [ex-193] 4.3.4
Art. 258 [ex-194] 4.3.4
Art. 300(2) [ex-228(2)] 4.3.3
Art. 302 [ex-229] 4.3.2
Art. 303 [ex-230] 4.3.2
Art. 304 [ex-231] 4.3.2
Art. 307 [ex-234] 8.4.1
Art. 308 [ex-235] 12.2.1
Title VI [ex-V] 4.3.2
Title XIX [ex-XVI] 4.3.2
Treaty of Nice
Art. 1(17) 4.3.3
Art. 1(21) 4.3.2
Art. 12(2) 4.3.1
Protocol on Enlargement 4.3.1
Euratom Treaty (1957) 4.3, 12.2.6.3
Art. 2 4.3, 12.2.6.3
Art. 30 12.2.6.3
European Coal and Steel Community Treaty (1957) 12.2.6.3
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Table of European Community
Legislation
1 Directives
Vehicle Noise Directive, 70/157/EEC 12.2.6.4
Diesel Fuels Directive, 72/306/EEC 12.2.6.4
Waste Oils Directive, 75/439/EC 12.2.5.1
Waste Framework Directive, 75/442/EEC 6.3.2, 12.1, 12.2.5.2
Art. 1 12.2.5.2
Art. 1(a) 6.3.2, 12.2.5.2
Art. 1(c) 12.2.5.2
Art. 3(1)(a) 12.2.5.2
Art. 3(1)(b) 12.2.5.2
Art. 5(1) 12.2.5.2
Art. 5(2) 12.2.5.2
Art. 7 12.2.5.2
Art. 9 12.2.5.2
Art. 10 12.2.5.2
Art. 11 12.2.5.2
Art. 12 12.2.5.2
Art. 14 12.2.5.2
Art. 15 12.2.5.2
Annex 1 12.2.5.2
Q 1 12.2.5.2
Q 2 12.2.5.2
Q 3 12.2.5.2
Q 6 12.2.5.2
Q 8 12.2.5.2
Q 10 12.2.5.2
Q 11 12.2.5.2
Q 12 12.2.5.2
Q 16 12.2.5.2
Annex IIA 12.2.5.2
D 1 12.2.5.2
D 6 12.2.5.2
D 10 12.2.5.2
D 11 12.2.5.2
lxx Environmental Taxation Law
Annex IIB 12.2.5.2
R 1 12.2.5.2
R 2 12.2.5.2
R 3 12.2.5.2
R 4 12.2.5.2
R 8 12.2.5.2
R 9 12.2.5.2
Driver Training Directive, 76/914/EEC 12.2.6.4
Sixth VAT Directive, 77/388/EEC 1.2.1.4
Art. 2(1) 24.7
Art. 5(1) 24.7
Art. 9(1)(e) 24.7
Art. 11A(2)(a) 1.4.3.2
Art. 17(5) 24.7
Art. 19(1) 24.7
Art. 33 1.2.1.4, 27.2
Toxic and Dangerous Wastes Directive, 78/319/EEC 12.2.5.1
Wild Birds Directive, 79/11/EEC 21.4.4
Aircraft Noise Directive, 80/51/EEC 21.2.6.4
EIA Directive, 85/337/EEC 6.2.4, 12.2.4
Art. 5 6.2.4
Art. 6(2) 6.2.4
Annex IV 6.2.4
Sewage Sludge Directive, 86/278/EEC 12.2.5.1
Diesel Fuels Directive, 88/77/EEC 12.2.6.4
Combustion Plant Directive, 88/609/EEC 12.2.6.2
Chapter 2 Aircraft Directive, 89/629/EEC 12.2.6.4
Parent-Subsidiary Directive, 90/435/EEC 7.2.2.1
Council Directive 91/441/EEC 12.2.6.4
Batteries and Accumulators Directive, 91/157/EEC 12.2.5.1
Driving Licences Directive, 91/439/EEC 12.2.6.4
Hazardous Waste Directive, 91/689/EEC 6.3.2, 12.2.5.1
Art. 1(1) 12.2.5.1
Table of European Community Legislation lxxi
Art. 1(3) 12.2.5.2
Art. 1(5) 12.2.5.1
Art. 2 12.2.5.1
Art. 2(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 2(2) 12.2.5.1
Art. 2(3) 12.2.5.1
Art. 3 12.2.5.1
Art. 4 12.2.5.1
Art. 5 12.2.5.1
Art. 6(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 8(3) 12.2.5.1
Annex I
para. 1 12.2.5.1
para. 2 12.2.5.1
para. 3 12.2.5.1
para. 4 12.2.5.1
para. 5 12.2.5.1
Annex III 12.2.5.1
Vehicle Speed Directive, 92/6/EEC 12.2.6.4
Single Market Directive, 92/12/EEC 22.1
Aircraft Withdrawal Directive, 92/14/EEC 12.2.6.4
Habitats Directive, 92/43/EEC 21.4.4
Air Transport Directive, 92/81/EEC 16.16, 12.3.4
Excise Duties Directive, 92/82/EEC 12.3.4
Titanium Oxide Waste Directive, 92/112/EC 12.2.5.1
Fuel Sulphur Content Directive, 93/12/EC 12.2.6.3
Council Directive 93/59/EC 12.2.6.4
Council Directive 94/12/EC 12.2.6.4
Hydrocarbons Licensing Directive, 94/22/EC 12.2.6.3
Carriage of Dangerous Goods Directive, 94/55/EC 12.2.6.4
Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, 94/62/EC 1.4.2.2, 6.2.1,
12.2.5.1, 12.4, 19.1
Art. 1(1) 12.2.5.1
lxxii Environmental Taxation Law
Art. 3(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 4 12.2.5.1
Art. 4(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 4(2) 19.1
Art. 5 12.2.5.1
Art. 7(1)(a) 12.2.5.1
Art. 7(1)(b) 12.2.5.1
Art. 9(1) 12.2.5.1
Petrol Storage Directive, 94/63/EC 12.2.6.3
Vehicle Tax Incentives Directive, 96/1/EC 12.2.6.4
PCB/BCT Directive, 96/59/EC 12.2.5.1
Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive,
96/61/EC 6.2.1, 6.3.2, 9.1, 12.2.2, 12.2.6.2, 14.4, 21.9, 28.1
Art. 1 12.2.2
Art. 2(3) 12.2.2
Art. 2(11) 12.2.2
Art. 3 12.2.2
Art. 4 12.2.2
Art. 5 12.2.2
Art. 8 12.2.2
Art. 9(3) 28.3
Annex 1 12.2.2
Air Quality Framework Directive, 96/62/EC 12.2.6.2, 21.4
Electricity Directive, 96/92/EC 12.2.6.3
Gas Directive, 98/30/EC 12.2.6.3
Fuel Quality Directive, 98/70/EC 12.2.6.3, 21.4
Air Quality First Daughter Directive, 1999/30/EC 12.2.6.2, 16.16, 21.4
Landfill Directive, 1999/31/EC 5.2, 5.6.3, 6.3.2, 12.2.5.1, 21.4.1, 20.3, 20.7
Art. 1 12.2.5.1
Art. 2(a) 12.2.5.2
Art. 2(g) 12.2.5.1
Art. 2(m) 12.2.5.1
Art. 5(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 7 12.2.5.1
Art. 8 12.2.5.1
Art. 9 12.2.5.1
Art. 10 12.2.5.1
Table of European Community Legislation lxxiii
Art. 12 12.2.5.1
Art. 13 12.2.5.1
Art. 13(c) 12.2.5.1
Art. 14 12.2.5.1
Sulphur Content Directive, 1999/32/EC 12.2.6.3, 21.4
Heavy Goods Vehicles Directive, 1999/62/EC 12.2.6.4
Art. 2(d) 12.2.6.4
Art. 4 12.2.6.4
Art. 5 12.2.6.4
Art. 6 12.2.6.4
Art. 7(4) 12.2.6.4
Art. 7(5) 12.2.6.4
Art. 7(7) 12.2.6.4
Art. 7(9) 12.2.6.4
Art. 7(10) 12.2.6.4
Art. 9(2) 12.2.6.4
Annex 1 12.2.6.4
Gas Fuels Directive, 1999/96/EC 12.2.6.4
End-of-Life Vehicles Directive, 2000/53/EC 19.6
Water Framework Directive, 2000/60/EC 21.9.3.3, 21.9.4
Air Quality Second Daughter Directive, 2000/69/EC 12.2.6.2
Incineration Emissions Directive, 2000/76/EC 12.2.6.2, 21.6.2, 27.7
SEA Directive, 2001/42/EC 6.2.4, 12.2.4
Art. 1 12.2.4
Art. 2(1) 12.2.4
Art. 3 12.2.4
Renewables Directive, 2001/77/EC 12.2.6.3
Art. 1 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(a) 12.2.6.3
Art. 3 12.2.6.3
Art. 3(2) 12.2.6.3
Art. 3(4) 12.2.6.3
Art. 5 6.4.3.1, 12.2.6.3
Art. 6(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 7(1) 12.2.6.3
Large Combustion Plant Directive, 2001/80/EC 12.2.6.2, 21.4
lxxiv Environmental Taxation Law
National Emission Ceiling Directive, 2001/81/EC 12.2.6.2, 21.4
Third Air Quality Daughter Directive, 2002/3/EC 12.2.6.2
Road Transport Working Time Directive, 2002/15/EC 12.2.6.4
Airport Noise Directive, 2002/30/EC 12.2.6.4
Noise Abatement Directive, 2002/49/EC 12.2.6.4
Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, 2002/91/EC 21.6.1, 21.6.2
Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive,
2002/95/EC 19.1
Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive, 2002/96/EC 19.1
Biofuels Directive, 2003/30/EC
Art. 1 12.3.4
Art. 2(1)(a) 12.3.4
Art. 2(1)(b) 12.3.4
Art. 2(1)(c) 12.3.4
Art. 2(2) 21.9.3.1, 27.2
Art. 3(1)(a) 12.3.4
Art. 3(3) 12.3.4
Art. 4(1) 12.3.4
Electricity Acceleration Directive, 2003/54/EC 6.4.3.1, 12.2.6.3
recital 4 12.2.6.3
Art. 1 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(3) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(5) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(7) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(8) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(9) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(12) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(3) 12.2.6.3
Art. 3 12.2.6.3
Art. 3(6) 20.3
Art. 6(2)(c) 12.2.6.3
Art. 8 12.2.6.3
Art. 9 12.2.6.3
Art. 10 12.2.6.3
Art. 11 12.2.6.3
Art. 11(3) 12.2.6.3
Art. 12 12.2.6.3
Table of European Community Legislation lxxv
Art. 13 12.2.6.3
Art. 14 12.2.6.3
Art. 15 12.2.6.3
Art. 16 12.2.6.3
Art. 17 12.2.6.3
Art. 20(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 21(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 21(1)(a) 12.2.6.3
Art. 21(1)(b) 12.2.6.3
Art. 21(1)(c) 12.2.6.3
Gas Acceleration Directive, 2003/55/EC 6.4.3.2, 12.2.6.3
recital 4 12.2.6.3
Art. 1(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 1(4) 12.2.6.3
Art. 1(7) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(5) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(7) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(11) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(24) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(26) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(27) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(28) 12.2.6.3
Art. 2(29) 12.2.6.3
Art. 3 12.2.6.3
Art. 3(3) 12.2.6.3
Art. 3(4) 12.2.6.3
Art. 4 12.2.6.3
Art. 7 12.2.6.3
Art. 8 12.2.6.3
Art. 8(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 9 12.2.6.3
Art. 10 12.2.6.3
Art. 11 12.2.6.3
Art. 12 12.2.6.3
Art. 13 12.2.6.3
Art. 14 12.2.6.3
Art. 15 12.2.6.3
Art. 18 12.2.6.3
Art. 23(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 23(1)(a) 12.2.6.3
Art. 23(1)(b) 12.2.6.3
Art. 23(1)(c) 12.2.6.3
Art. 32(2) 12.2.6.3
Emissions Trading Directive, 2003/87/EC 20.3, 28.1
Art. 4 28.3, 28.4
lxxvi Environmental Taxation Law
Art. 5 28.3, 28.4
Art. 6 28.3, 28.4
Art. 6(2) 28.3
Art. 6(2)(e) 28.3
Art. 7 28.4
Art. 8 28.3, 28.4
Art. 9(1) 28.3
Art. 9(3) 28.3
Art. 10 28.3
Art. 11(1) 28.3
Art. 11(2) 28.3
Art. 11(3) 28.3
Art. 12 28.3, 28.4
Art. 12(1) 28.3
Art. 12(2) 28.3
Art. 12(3) 28.3, 28.4
Art. 12(4) 28.3
Art. 14 28.3
Art. 15 28.3
Art. 16 28.3
Art. 16(1) 28.3
Art. 16(3) 28.3
Art. 17 28.3
Art. 18 28.3
Art. 19 28.3, 28.4
Art. 20 28.3
Art. 21 28.3
Art. 25 28.3
Art. 25(1) 28.3
Art. 26 28.3
Art. 27 28.3
Art. 27(2) 28.4
Art. 28 28.3
Art. 30(1) 28.3
Art. 32 28.1
Annex 1 28.3
Annex 2 28.3
Energy Products Directive, 2003/96/EC 12.3.4, 14.6, 27.6, 21.2, 21.3, 28.1
recital 7 12.3.4
recital 12 12.3.4
recital 13 12.3.4
recital 25 12.3.4
Art. 4(1) 12.3.4
Art. 14 12.3.4
Art. 14(1)(a) 12.3.4
Art. 14(1)(b) 12.3.4
Table of European Community Legislation lxxvii
Art. 14(1)(c) 12.3.4
Art. 15 12.3.4
Art. 15(1)(c) 12.3.4
Art. 15(1)(d) 12.3.4
Cogeneration Directive, 2004/8/EC 12.2.6.3, 14.5
Art. 3(a) 12.2.6.3
Art. 4(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 5(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 6(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 8(1) 12.2.6.3
Art. 8(2) 12.2.6.3
Art. 10 12.2.6.3
Art. 11 12.2.6.3
2 Regulations
Unprofitable Transport Services Regulation, EEC/1191/69 12.2.7.4
Art. 2(1) 12.2.7.4
Road Transport Regulation, EEC/3820/85 12.2.6.4
Tachographs Regulation, EEC/3821/85 12.2.6.4
Council Regulation EEC/3975/87
Arts 3每19 12.2.6.4
Block Exemptions Regulation, EEC/3976/87 12.2.6.4
Art. 1(2) 12.2.6.4
Art. 6 12.2.6.4
European Environment Agency Regulation, EEC/1210/90 4.3.5
Air Route Access Regulation, EEC/2408/92 12.2.6.4
Art. 2(a) 12.2.6.4
Air Fares Regulation, EEC/2409/92 12.2.6.4
Airport Slots Regulation, EEC/95/93 12.2.6.4
Waste Management Regulation, EEC/259/93 6.3.2, 12.2.5.1, 12.2.5.2
Art. 2(a) 12.2.5.2
Art. 3 12.2.5.1
Art. 4 12.2.5.1
Art. 5 12.2.5.1
Art. 6 12.2.5.1
lxxviii Environmental Taxation Law
Art. 7 12.2.5.1
Art. 8 12.2.5.1
Art. 13 12.2.5.1
Art. 14(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 14(2) 12.2.5.1
Art. 15 12.2.5.2
Art. 16 12.2.5.1
Art. 18(1) 12.2.5.2
Art. 18(2) 12.2.5.1
Art. 19(1) 12.2.5.1
Art. 20 12.2.5.1
Art. 21(1)(a) 12.2.5.1
Art. 21(1)(b) 12.2.5.1
Art. 22 12.2.5.1
Countervailing Duty Regulation, EEC/2026/97 8.4.4
State Aid Regulation, EC/659/1999 12.2.7.1
Hushkit Regulation, EC/925/1999 12.2.6.4
Ozone Depletion Regulation, EC/2037/2000 12.2.6.2, 28.2.2
Commission Regulation, EC/1392/2001 28.2.2
State Aid to Coal Industry Regulation, EC/1407/2002 12.2.7.3
Council Regulation, EC/2371/2002 28.2.2
Transport Exemptions Regulation, EC/1/2003
Art. 39 12.2.6.4
Art. 41 12.2.6.4
Cross Border Electricity Exchanges Regulation, EC/1228/2003 12.2.6.3
CAP Reform Regulation, EC/1782/2003 27.3, 27.2
Art. 87 27.2
Council Regulation, EC/1788/2003 21.9.3.1
3 Council Decisions
Council Decision 65/271/EC 12.2.7.4
Council Decision 93/591/EC 4.3.1
Table of European Community Legislation lxxix
Council Decision 93/704/EC 12.2.6.4
Council Decision 94/69/EC 28.1
Council Decision 1999/468/EC 4.3.1
Council Decision 2002/358/EC 8.2.2
Council Decision 2002/1600/EC 12.2.3
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Table of Provisions of GATT 1994
Art. I 8.4
Art. II 7.2.2.4, 8.4, 8.4.3
Art. II(1) 8.4.3
Art. II(1)(a) 8.4.3
Art. II(1)(b) 8.4.3
Art. II(2) 12.3.2.2
Art. II(2)(a) 8.4.3, 8.4.5.1
Art. III 7.2.2.4, 8.4, 8.4.2, 8.4.3, 8.4.5.1
Art. III(2) 7.2.2.4, 8.4.3, 8.4.5.1, 12.3.2.1, 12.3.2.2
Art. III(8)(a) 8.4.3
Art. III(8)(b) 8.4.3
Art. VI 8.4, 8.4.2, 8.4.4
Art. VI(4) 4.4.1, 8.4.4
Art. XI(1) 8.4.2
Art. XVI 8.4, 8.4.3, 8.4.4
Art. XVI(A)(1) 8.4.4
Art. XX 8.4, 8.4.2, 8.4.4.1
Art. XX(b) 8.4.2
Art. XX(g) 8.4.2
Annex I 8.4.3, 8.4.4
Annex II 8.4.4
Annex III 8.4.4
WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures,
1994 1.2.1.2, 1.2.1.4, 21.9
Art. 1 8.4.5.2
Art. 1.1, n 8.4.4
Art. 1.1(a)(1) 8.4.5.2
Art. 2 8.4.5.2
Art. 2.1 4.4.1
Art. 3 8.4.5.2
Art. 4 8.4.5.2
Art. 4.8 8.4.5.2
Art. 4.9 8.4.5.2
Art. 4.10 8.4.5.2
Art. 4.11 8.4.5.2
Art. 4.12 8.4.5.2
Art. 5 8.4.5.2
Art. 7 8.4.5.2
Art. 8 8.4.5.2
lxxxii Environmental Taxation Law
Art. 8.1(a) 8.4.5.2
Art. 8.2(b) 8.4.5.2
Art. 8.2(c) 8.4.5.2
Arts 10每23 8.4.5.2
Art. 10, n35 8.4.5.2
Art. 14 8.4.5.2
Art. 17.3 4.4.1
Art. 25 8.4.5.2
Annex 1
para. (e) 8.4.5.2
para. (f) 8.4.5.2
para. (g) 8.4.5.2
WTO Agreement on Government Procurement 1994 8.5
Table of Other Treaty Provisions
Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation,
1944 6.1, 12.2.6.4, 16.16, 24.2
Statute of the International Court of Justice, 1945
Art. 38 8.2.1, 8.2.3, 8.2.4, 8.2.5
European Convention on Human Rights, 1950 4.2.2, 4.3.7, 11.3.4
First Protocol
Art. 1 12.2, 11.3.4
Paris Convention, 1960 4.4.2
Art. 2 4.4.2
Art. 6 4.4.2
Art. 6.3 4.4.2
Art. 7 4.4.2
Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, 1969
Art. 2(1)(a) 8.2.2
Art. 3 8.2.2
Art. 4 8.2.2
Art. 26 8.2.2
Art. 31(1) 8.4.2
Art. 31(2) 8.4.2
Art. 31(3) 8.4.2
Art. 31(3)(a) 8.4.2
Art. 31(3)(b) 8.4.2
Art. 31(3)(c) 8.4.2
Art. 32 8.4.2
Art. 33 8.4.2
Stockholm Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the
Human Environment, 1972 4.4.3
Principle 21 8.2.3
Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of
Wastes or Other Matter (&the London Dumping Convention*), 1972
(rev. 1993 and 1996) 4.4.4, 8.3.2
Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered
Species of Wild Flora and Fauna, 1973 4.4.4, 8.4.2
lxxxiv Environmental Taxation Law
Geneva Convention for the Control of Long-Range
Transboundary Air Pollution, 1979 4.4.3, 8.3.1.1, 8.3.1.5
Art. 2 8.3.2
Geneva Protocol on Long-term Financing of the Co-operative Programme
for Monitoring and Evaluation of Long-Range Transmission of Air
Pollutants in Europe, 1985 8.3.1.5
Helsinki Protocol on the Reduction of Sulphur Emissions or their
Transboundary Fluxes, 1985 8.3.1.5
Sofia Protocol concerning the Control of Emissions of Nitrogen Oxides
or their Transboundary Fluxes, 1988 8.3.1.5
Geneva Protocol concerning the Control of Emissions of Volatile Organic
Compounds or their Transboundary Fluxes, 1991 8.3.1.5
Oslo Second Protocol on the Further Reduction of Sulphur Emissions,
1994 8.3.1.5
Bonn Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild
Animals, 1980 8.4.2
United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, 1982 7.4.3.1, 8.3.2
Annex VI 8.2.5
Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone
Layer, 1985 4.4.4, 8.3.1.1, 8.3.1.5, 12.2.6.2
Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the
Ozone Layer, 1987 4.4.4, 8.3.1.1, 8.3.1.5, 12.2.6.2
Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements
of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal, 1989 8.3.2, 8.4.5.1, 12.2.5.1
Preamble 8.3.2
Art. 1 8.3.2
Art. 4 8.3.2
Art. 4(1)(a) 8.3.2
Art. 6 8.3.2
Lom谷 IV Convention, 1989 8.3.2
International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response
and Co-operation, 1990 8.3.2
Bamako Convention, 1991 8.3.2
Art. 4(1) 8.3.2
Table of Other Treaty Provisions lxxxv
Espoo Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a
Transboundary Context, 1991 4.4.3
Convention on Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents, 1992 8.3.2
Declaration of the United Nations Conference on Environment
and Development [&the Rio Declaration*], 1992 4.2.1.3, 4.4.3, 8.3.1.3
Principle 2 8.2.3, 8.2.6
Principle 12 8.2.6
Principle 15 8.2.3, 8.2.6
Principle 16 8.2.3, 8.2.6
Principle 17 8.2.6
Johannesburg [&the Earth Summit*], 2002 23.5
Convention on Biological Diversity, 1992 4.4.3, 4.4.4, 8.3.1.3, 21.3.2
Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, 2000 26.5
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change, 1992 4.4.3, 4, 5.4, 8.1, 8.2.2, 8.3
Art. 2 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(a) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(b) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(c) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(d) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(f) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(g) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(1)(i) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(2) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(,2)(a) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(2)(b) 8.3.1.3
Art. 4(8) 8.3.1.3
Art. 7 8.3.1.3
Art. 8 8.3.1.3
Art. 9 8.3.1.3
Art. 10 8.3.1.3
Kyoto Protocol, 1997 4.4.4, 6.4, 8.1, 8.2.2, 8.3, 14.2, 21.3.1, 21.4.3,
16.16, 26.2, 20.2, 20.3, 28.1
Art. 3 8.2.2
Art. 6 8.2.2
Art. 12 8.2.2
Art. 17 8.2.2, 28.2.2
Art. 25.1 8.2.2
Annex A 2.4.3, 28.3
lxxxvi Environmental Taxation Law
Marakesh Protocol, 2002 23.5, 26.2
North Atlantic Free Trade Area Treaty, 1993 26.4
Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in
Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters, 1998 4.4.3
Basel Protocol on Liability and Compensation for Damage Resulting
from Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their
Disposal, 1999 8.3.2
Table of Abbreviations
AB WTO Appellate Body
AC Law Reports, Appeal Cases
ACBE Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment
ACEA Association des Constructeurs Europ谷ens d*automobiles
ACP African-Caribbean-Pacific
AG German form of public limited liability company
A-G Attorney-General
AJIL American Journal of International Law
All ER All England Law Reports
ALSF Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund
APD air passenger duty
Art. Article
ASBL Belgian form of limited liability company
BAT best available techniques
BATNEEC best available technology not entailing excessive cost
BETTA British Electricity Trading and Transmission Arrangements
BISD GATT Basic Instruments and Selected Documents Series
BMW biodegradable municipal waste
BNFL British Nuclear Fuels Ltd
BSE bovine spongiform encephalopathy
BTA border tax adjustment
BTR British Tax Review
BV Dutch form of private limited liability company
BYIL British Yearbook of International Law
CA Court of Appeal (England and Wales)
CAP the Common Agricultural Policy
CBA cost-benefit analysis
CBI Confederation of British Industry
CCP Common Commercial Policy
CCT common customs tariff
C & E Commrs HM Commissioners of Customs and Excise
CDM Clean Development Mechanism
CEE charge having an equivalent effect
CFCs chlorofluorocarbons
CFI Court of First Instance
CFIT Commission for Integrated Transport
CGT capital gains tax
Ch. Law Reports, Chancery Division
ch. chapter
CH4 methane
lxxxviii Environmental Taxation Law
CHP combined heat and power
CHPQA combined heat and power quality assurance
CLR Commonwealth Law Reports
CLSA Current Law Statutes Annotated
CMLR Common Market Law Reports
Conv The Conveyancer and Property Lawyer
COREPER Committee of Permanent Representatives
CO2 carbon dioxide
CTE WTO Committee on Trade and the Environment
CTP Common Transport Policy
Defra Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
DETR Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions
DLR Dominion Law Reports
DNO distribution network operator
DSO distribution system operator
DTI Department of Trade and Industry
EAD Electricity Acceleration Directive
ECCP European Climate Change Programme
ECHR European Convention on Human Rights
ECJ Court of Justice of the European Communities
ECOSOC Economic and Social Committee
ECR European Court Reports
ECSC European Coal and Steel Community
ECT Energy Charter Treaty
EEA European Environment Agency
EELR European Environmental Law Review
EFTA European Free Trade Area
EG Estates Gazette
EIA environmental impact assessment
ELM Environmental Law and Management
ELR Environmental Law Review
ERUs emissions reduction units
ENDS Report Environmental Data Services Report
Env LR Environmental Law Reports
EPA (US) Environmental Protection Agency
EPD Energy Products Directive
ER English Reports
ESC Extra-Statutory Concession
ESH Electricity Supply Handbook
EST Energy Saving Trust
EU European Union
EU ETS European Union Emissions Trading Scheme
Euratom European Atomic Energy Community
EWCA Court of Appeal (of England and Wales)
EWHC High Court of Justice (of England and Wales)
FFL fossil fuel levy
FS Fiscal Studies
Table of Abbreviations lxxxix
FSA Financial Services Authority
GAAP Generally Accepted Accounting Practice
GAAR General Anti-Avoidance Rule
GAD Gas Acceleration Directive
GATS General Agreement on Trade in Services
GATT General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade
GDP gross domestic product
GEMA Gas and Electricity Markets Authority
GHG greenhouse gas
GLA Greater London Authority
GM genetically modified
GmbH German form of private limited liability company
HC House of Commons
HCA High Court of Australia
HFCs hydroclorofluorocarbons
Hals Halsbury*s Laws of England
HL House of Lords
HMSO Her Majesty*s Stationery Office (see TSO)
IAEA International Atomic Energy Agency
ICAO International Civil Aviation Organisation
ICCLR International Company and Commercial Law Review
ICJ International Court of Justice
ICJ Rep Reports of Judgments and Advisory Opinions of the International
Court of Justice
ICLQ International and Comparative Law Quarterly
IEA International Energy Agency
IELTR International Energy Law and Tax Review
IGC Inter-Governmental Conference
IHT inheritance tax
ILM International Legal Materials
IPC Integrated Pollution Control
IPPC Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control
IPT Insurance Premium Tax
IRC Commissioners of Inland Revenue
JAMA Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association
JEEPL Journal for European Environmental and Planning Law
JEL Journal of Environmental Law
JEPP Journal of European Public Policy
JI Joint Implementation
JLE Journal of Law and Economics
JPL Journal of Planning Law
JWT Journal of World Trade
KAMA Korean Automobile Manufacturers Association
KG German limited partnership
LAAPC Local Authority Air Pollution Control
LATS Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme
LEC levy exemption certificate
xc Environmental Taxation Law
LIFO last in, first out
LJQB Law Journal Reports (New Series) Queen*s Bench (1831每1949)
LNG liquified natural gas
LPG liquified petroleum gas
LS Legal Studies
LT Law Times
LTCS landfill tax credit scheme
MEA multilateral environmental agreement
MEP Member of the European Parliament
MLR Modern Law Review
MP Member of the UK House of Commons
MSP Member of the Scottish Parliament
MW megawatt
NAFTA North American Free Trade Area
NAP national allocation plan
NDA Nuclear Decommissioning Authority
NG natural gas
NGG National Grid Group
NICs national insurance contributions
NIROC Northern Ireland Renewable Obligation Certificate
NLJ New Law Journal
NOA National Audit Office
NOX collective term for nitrogen oxides
N2O nitrous oxide
NV Dutch form of public limited liability company
NWRU National Waste Registration Unit
ODPM Office of the Deputy Prime Minister
OECD Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
OED Oxford English Dictionary
Ofgem Office of Gas and Electricity Markets
OHG German partnership
OJ Official Journal of the European Communities
PCBs polychlorinated biphenyls
PCTs polychlorinated terphenyls
PERN package waste export recovery note
PFCs perfluorocarbons
PL Public Law
PLC UK form of public limited liability company
Porteous Andrew Porteous, Dictionary of Environmental Science and
Technology, 3rd edn (Chichester: John Wiley, 2000)
PQ Parliamentary Question
PRN packaging waste recovery note
PSA (departmental) public service agreement
PSO public service obligation
QB Law Reports, Queen*s Bench Division
QPA Quarry Products Association
RCEP Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution
Table of Abbreviations xci
REC regional electricity company
REGO renewable energy guarantee of origin
RIA regulatory impact assessment
RICS Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors
RIIA Royal Institute of International Affairs
RO Renewables Obligation
ROC Renewables Obligation Certificate
ROO 2002 Renewables Obligation Order 2002
RRC Ryde*s Rating Cases
RSPB Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
SA public limited company in France, the Iberian Peninsular and
Latin America
SARL Form of limited liability company in some EU Member States
Sched. Schedule
SCR Supreme Court Reports
SDLT stamp duty land tax
SEA strategic environmental assessment
SEA 1986 Single European Act 1986
SEPA Scottish Environment Protection Agency
SF6 sulphur hexafluoride
SI statutory instrument
SIP single income (or farm) payment
SLT Scottish Law Times
SO Parliamentary Standing Order
SpA Italian form of limited liability company
SpC Special Commissioners* Decisions
SROC Scottish Renewable Obligation Certificate
STC Simon*s Tax Cases
SWTI Simon*s Weekly Tax Intelligence
TAF Trade Association Forum
TC Tax Cases
TED turtle excluder device
TFL Transport for London
TJ Tax Journal
TN Treaty of Nice
TPA third party access to gas and electricity transmission and
distribution systems
TR Tax Reports
TREC tradeable renewable energy certificate
TSO transmission system operator
TSO The Stationery Office (see HMSO)
UK ETS UK Emissions Trading Scheme
UKHL United Kingdom House of Lords
ULR Utilities Law Review
UNCLOS United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
UNCSD United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development
UNECE United Nations Economic Commission for Europe
xcii Environmental Taxation Law
UNEP UN Environment Programme
UNICE Union of Industrial and Employers* Confederations of Europe
V&DR VAT and Duties Reports
VAT value added tax
VATTR Value Added Tax Tribunal Reports
VED vehicle excise duty
WA written ministerial answer to a Parliamentary Question
WCED World Commission on Environment and Development
WIP Waste Implementation Programme
WCA waste collection authority
WDA waste disposal authority
WFD Waste Framework Directive
WH Westminster Hall debate of the House of Commons
WIP Waste Implementation Programme
WLR Weekly Law Reports
WN Weekly Notes
WPRG waste performance reward grant
WRAP Waste and Resources Action Programme
WRA waste regulation authority
WS written Ministerial statement to Parliament
WTO World Trade Organization
WTA willingness to accept
WTP willingness to pay
PART I
PROLOGUE
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Chapter 1
Preliminaries
1.1 Introduction
The concept of the environmental tax is a new and controversial presence in the
European regulatory landscape. The UK has been a pioneer in the transformation
of this new type of tax from a twinkle in the eye of the environmental economist
to a legal reality. This book seeks to give a comprehensive but critical account of
the law relating to environmental taxes in the UK. It discusses the policies which
have shaped those taxes, together with their relationship both with other forms of
environmental regulation, and with other (non-environmental) taxes. It also offers
insights into the application of environmental taxes in practice. Throughout the book,
UK law and policy is placed in its wider international and European contexts.
In the absence of a general legislative definition,1 the ways in which environmental
taxes are to be identified and classified are, of course, key elements in this first
chapter. The discussion begins,2 however, by introducing the essence of some even
more fundamental concepts, a number of which we shall encounter again and again:
what is a tax? How does the concept differ from other levies, such as charges for
government services? Within the concept of a tax, what distinction is to be drawn
between direct and indirect taxes? What types of tax fall into each category? In each
case, we explain the specific importance of each of these questions to the key term
&environmental taxes*, both the nature and the classifications of which we discuss in
some detail below.3 Having explained the importance of each of these questions, as
well as indicating something of the policies that inform them, we then go on to set
out the approach which we have adopted to the material under consideration. The
purpose of the study, as already stated, is to offer a critical account of the subject
matter; para. 1.2.2 explains the viewpoint from which the criticism is made.
One of the all-embracing themes of the book is that of how 每 irrespective, almost,
of the jurisdiction in which they are designed and implemented 每 the feasibility and
design of environmental taxes (justified, as they often are, by reference to international
environmental agreements), are subject to the law of international trade, as embodied
in the 1994 revision of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (&GATT 1994*),
and its related agreements, and in the institutions of the World Trade Organization
(&the WTO*). The UK is no exception to this general proposition and, furthermore,
as a Member State of the EU, its own environmental levies are additionally subject
to the provisions of the European Treaty. The nature and extent of both sets of treaty
provisions, which coincide to a considerable extent, are considered in subsequent
1 None of the taxes with which this book is concerned are described as environmental taxes
within the legislative codes that created them (see para. 1.4.2 below).
2 See para. 1.2.1 below.
3 See para. 1.2.1.5 below.
4 Environmental Taxation Law
chapters.4 In this Introduction, the explanation of the essential concepts and of our
approach to the subject matter as a whole, is followed by a brief introduction to the
international and European context of the material, as well as to the place, within
that setting, of the UK and its constituent countries.5 We seek to highlight throughout
the book the governance questions to which these contexts give rise, since these
help to explain, not only why European-wide action in the field of environmental
taxation has proved so problematic, but also why the UK*s environmental taxes are
of UK-wide application, rather than being found (as, for example, in Spain)6 in its
constituent countries.
So far as the non-UK reader is concerned, the chief usefulness of the present volume,
it is hoped, will be found in the detailed critical exposition, against the background
discussed above, of the UK*s environmental levies and their institutional framework.
To this end, para. 1.4.2 below contains an introductory overview of the levies, most
importantly (in the chronological order of their introduction), landfill tax, a levy on
the landfilling of waste; climate change levy, a levy on the industrial, commercial and
agricultural use of energy; and aggregates levy, which taxes the extraction of primary
minerals. All of the levies have both a regulatory context7 and a taxation context and
paras 1.4.2 and 1.4.3 seek to give an overview of those contexts. Although, as will
be seen, HM Customs and Excise (&Customs*) is the government department mainly
responsible for the administration and enforcement of each of these levies,8 the non-
UK reader (and possibly, also, even the UK reader new to the subject), will be struck
by the myriad other bodies with some subsidiary role in at least the former process.
Paragraph 1.5 briefly introduces these bodies, by way of a prelude to the detailed,
as well as much more wide-ranging, discussion in Chapter 4 below. Together, the
elements of the discussion in this chapter will equip the reader to appreciate the fiscal
context of the levies to be discussed in the rest of the book.
These opening remarks having been made, we turn first to certain basic issues of
terminology and, specifically, to the idea of environmental taxes and the implications
of the constituent elements of the term.
4 See Chapters 8 and 12 below.
5 See para. 1.3 below.
6 See, for example, Pedro M. Herrera, &Legal Limits on the Competence of Governments
in Spain*, in Critical Issues in Environmental Taxation: International and Comparative
Perspectives: Volume I, ed. by Janet Milne, Kurt Deketelaere et al. (Richmond: Richmond
Law and Tax, 2003), pp. 111每23. This chapter is a distilled version of Herrera*s Spanishlanguage
text, Derecho tributario ambiental (Madrid: Marcial Pons 每 Ministerio de Medio
Ambiente, 2000). Neither of the present authors read Spanish.
7 Throughout the book, economic instruments (including regulatory taxes) are seen, not as
an alternative to regulation, but as a form of regulation in themselves, albeit distinct from
command and control regulation (see, for example, Robert Baldwin and Martin Cave,
Understanding Regulation 每 Theory, Strategy and Practice (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 1999), pp. 1每2.
8 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) below.
Preliminaries 5
1.2 Terminology, approach and sources
The use of the term &environmental taxation* in popular discourse tends to elide the
particular significances of each of its two constituent elements.
This para. 1.2 accordingly begins by setting out an initial definition of the concept
of a tax and briefly explaining its relationship, first, with the distinct concept of a
charge for government services and, secondly, with the concept of a fine. Both of these
distinctions, important in the study as a whole, will be revisited in more detail in a
later chapter.9 The term &levy*,10 also common in public finance literature, operates
as a generic term for both taxes and charges: the allocation of a particular levy to
one or other category, and the implications of that process, depend on isolating the
characteristics of a tax, and distinguishing it from a charge (or fee) for government
services.
Within the concept of a tax is entrenched a further distinction which, in the specific
context of environmental taxes, is also of considerable significance: that between
direct and indirect taxes. We examine the distinction in some detail here, since it will
be of fundamental importance in explaining the international aspects of environmental
taxation,11 no less than its Community law implications.12
The preceding discussion forms the basis of an examination of the technical
significance of the concept &environmental taxation*. This in turn leads into
an explanation of the approach taken in the book to the range of material under
consideration,13 as well as the sources to which we have referred.
1.2.1 Terminology
1.2.1.1 Taxes, fines and charges
The UK*s constitutional arrangements, as will become apparent, have so far tended
to discourage a narrow and prescriptive view of the tax as a legal concept.14
Fortunately, however, for constitutional reasons, there is in the Commonwealth
jurisdictions a plethora of material on the legal nature of a tax and on its relationship
with the concept of a charge or fee for government services.15 A convenient (and
enduring) definition of the former concept was applied in the Canadian case of Re
Eurig Estate.16 There, it was held that, assuming that it has legislative authority, a
levy is a tax if it satisfies all of three conditions, that is, if it is:
1. legally enforceable;
2. levied by a public body; and
3. intended for a public purpose.
9 See Chapter 7 below.
10 See OED, &levy* definition 2a.
11 See Chapter 8 below.
12 See Chapter 12 below.
13 See para. 1.2.2 below.
14 See para. 7.2.2.1 below.
15 See para. 7.2.1 below.
16 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1.
6 Environmental Taxation Law
Each of these three characteristics, as well as the decision from which they are
drawn, is analysed in more detail later in the study.17 For present purposes, however,
they provide us with a suitable working definition of a tax.
Whether and, if so, how, the tax concept is to be distinguished from a penalty or
fine has been the subject of some debate. In asserting such a distinction, Hart, whilst
acknowledging that it may often become blurred, expressed the distinction between
fines and taxes in terms that the former involves &# an offence or breach of duty in
the form of a violation of a rule set up to guide the conduct of ordinary citizens*.18
Hart*s expression of the distinction needs only to be stated for its problematic nature
in relation to environmental taxes to be obvious; we shall return to it later in the
book.19
By contrast with a tax or with a penalty, a &charge* or &fee* involves the provision
of some service direct to a particular person, which is related to the amount charged
but which does not preclude the possibility of a reasonable profit being made by
the public body in question.20 Spackman says that the essence of a charge is that
it &purchases a specific service and will generally vary with usage; the transaction
should be a market exchange of a kind which the private sector could supply (as a
principal rather than as an agent); and the charge should [emphasis added] merely
cover the cost of providing the service*,21 in this last particular differing from the
legal definition of a charge or fee.22 Conversely, the essence of a tax, it might be said,
is that it is a payment to general government which is compulsory and in relation
to which the benefit to the taxpayer is usually not in proportion to the payment.23
Obviously, certain payments will be difficult to allocate to one or other category.24
1.2.1.2 Direct and indirect taxes
Within the tax concept, both economists and lawyers traditionally make a further
distinction, that between direct and indirect taxes. The classic articulation of the
distinction comes from the Principles of Political Economy of John Stuart Mill
(1806每1873) and is as follows:
Taxes are either direct or indirect. A direct tax is one which is demanded from the very
persons who, it is intended or desired, should pay it. Indirect taxes are those which are
demanded from one person in the expectation and intention that he shall indemnify himself
at the expense of another: such as the excise or customs. The producer or importer of
a commodity is called upon to pay a tax on it, not with the intention to levy a peculiar
17 See para. 7.2.2.2 below.
18 H.L.A. Hart, The Concept of Law (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1961), p. 39.
19 See para. 7.2.3 below.
20 See para. 7.2.1 below.
21 See Michael Spackman, &Hypothecation: a view from the Treasury*, in Ecotaxation, ed.
by Timothy O*Riordan (London: Earthscan, 1997), pp. 45每51.
22 Ibid.
23 See Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Revenue Statistics 1965每
2002 (Paris: OECD, 2003), p. 285.
24 See para. 7.3.1 below.
Preliminaries 7
contribution upon him, but to tax through him the consumers of the commodity, from
whom it is supposed that he will recover the amount by means of an advance in price.25
The distinction is sometimes expressed in terms of a dichotomy between those taxes
imposed on products (that is, indirect taxes) and those imposed upon producers (that
is, direct taxes).26 Thus, the key examples of direct taxes are &taxes on wages, profits,
interests, rents, royalties, and all other forms of income, and taxes on the ownership of
real property*, whilst indirect taxes are exemplified by &sales, excise, turnover, value
added, franchise, stamp, transfer, inventory and equipment taxes, border taxes and all
other taxes other than direct taxes and import charges*.27 In Re Eurig Estate,28 after
referring to Mill*s characterisation of the distinction between direct and indirect taxes,
the majority of the Supreme Court of Canada held that probate fees of the Ontario
Court, being chargeable on a deceased individual*s executors in their representative
capacity only, were direct taxes on the deceased*s estate, rather than indirect taxes
levied on the executors personally. For the majority, Major, J. said that:
Applying Mill*s definition, the tax would be indirect if the executor was personally liable
for payment of probate fees, as the intention would clearly be that the executor would
recover payment from the beneficiaries of the estate. However, the legislation does not
make the executor personally liable for the fees. Payment is made by the executor only
in his or her representative capacity # [A]s the amount is paid out of the estate by the
executor in his or her representative capacity with the intention that the estate should bear
the burden of the tax, the probate fees fall within Mill*s definition of a direct tax.29
Despite the fact that it is not free from difficulty in economic terms,30 the distinction
between direct and indirect taxes has been highly influential, both in national legal
orders (that is, in the laws of constitutions) and also in international and supranational
legal orders (such as the EC and the GATT 1994-based system of multilateral trade
agreements). In the context of constitutional law, the distinction between direct and
indirect taxes has been used to delimit the respective taxing powers of federal and
provincial legislatures. In Re Eurig Estate, for instance, the distinction was crucial
25 John Stuart Mill, Principles of Political Economy with Some of their Applications to
Social Philosophy (&People*s Edition*) (London: Longmans, Green, 1892), Book 5,
ch. 3, pp. 495每6. See also Sir William Blackstone (1723每1780), Commentaries on the
Laws of England, Book I, 16th edn by C.J.T. Coleridge (London: Butterworths, 1825),
pp. 316每317.
26 See WTO Secretariat, Taxes and Charges for Environmental Purposes 每 Border Tax
Adjustment (WT/CTE/W/47), para. 31.
27 See 1994 WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (see para. 8.4.4
below), fn 58 thereto.
28 See para. 1.2.1.1 above.
29 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1, para. 26.
30 See John Tiley, Revenue Law, 4th edn (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2000), p. 18. One
distinction might be that indirect taxes are &shifted into prices, not only more fully but
more quickly* than are direct taxes (see Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development, Taxing Consumption (Paris: OECD, 1988), para. 1.12). See also Paul
Demaret and Raoul Stewardson, &Border tax adjustments under GATT and EC law and
general implications for environmental taxes* (1994) 4 JWT 5, 14每16.
8 Environmental Taxation Law
to deciding whether the tax in question was within the competence of the provincial
legislature. This was because, in Canada, direct taxes could be levied by both federal
and provincial governments. Indirect taxes, by contrast, were leviable only by the
federal government.31
In the world trade context, the distinction between direct and indirect taxes is
crucial to the operation of two principles of international business taxation, the
origin principle and the destination principle. The origin principle requires that
products should be taxed in the country where they are made, regardless of where
they are consumed.32 The destination principle requires that, irrespective of where
a commodity is produced, it should be taxed in the country where it is consumed.33
Direct taxes reflect the origin principle, since they imply the taxation of the producer
rather than of the product. Indirect taxes may be imposed in order to reflect either the
origin principle, in which case products are taxed in the country of their production,
or the destination principle, in which case they are taxed in the country of their
consumption. In the context of international trade, the almost invariable rule is for
indirect taxes to be applied in accordance with the destination principle. This, of
course, is because the universal application of the origin principle in a world of
divergent indirect tax rates would tend to encourage consumers to source products
from countries with lower rates of indirect taxes.
The destination principle is put into effect through the rather misleadingly-named
concept34 of the &border tax adjustment* (the &BTA*).35 The BTA refers to the
combined process of ensuring that products are exported from one country free of
tax while being imported into another country subject to a tax designed to ensure that
the products compete in tax terms on an equal footing with similar goods36 produced
domestically.37 For present purposes, the crucial point is that, while the BTA is
essential to giving effect to the destination principle, it has no application to the
origin principle,38 with the result that, traditionally, the BTA has had no application
in relation to direct taxes.39
31 See s.92, (Canadian) Constitution Act 1867. The rule might seem counter-intuitive to a
European lawyer (but see Art 92, European Treaty (ex 98) (see para. 12.3.3.1(6) below)).
32 OECD (1988), para. 7.4.
33 OECD (1988), op. cit., para. 7.3.
34 Misleading, since, where exports are exempted from tax, or imports are taxed after
importation, no adjustment is made at the border (see OECD (1988), op. cit., p. 121). The
term (&BTA*) is nonetheless in universal use.
35 See para. 8.4.3 below.
36 See Won-Mog Choi, Like Products in International Trade Law: Towards a Consistent
GATT/WTO Jurisprudence (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003).
37 OECD (1988), op. cit., para. 7.3. See also WTO Secretariat, Taxes and Charges for
Environmental Purposes 每 Border Tax Adjustment (WT/CTE/W/47), para. 28. See para.
8.4.3 below.
38 See the reports of the GATT panel of November 1976 in Domestic International Sales
Corporations (&DISCs*), GATT BISD 23d Supp 98, 114, 127 and 137 (1977), which were
adopted by the GATT Council in December 1981 (see Demaret and Stewardson, op. cit.,
pp. 10每12).
39 See Kalle Määttä, Environmental Taxes 每 From an Economic Idea to a Legal Institution
(Helsinki: Finnish Lawyers* Publishing, 1997), p. 253, referring to Lans Bovenberg
Preliminaries 9
Both the destination principle and the concomitant BTA have venerable theoretical
pedigrees. They can each be traced back at least to David Ricardo (1772每1823), one
of Mill*s intellectual mentors,40 who, taking the then topical example of corn, wrote
in 1822 that:
In the degree # in which [domestic indirect] taxes raise the price of corn, a duty should
be imposed on its importation #, and a drawback of the same amount should be allowed
on the exportation of corn. By means of this duty and this drawback, the trade would be
placed on the same footing as if it had never been taxed, and we should be quite sure that
capital would neither be injuriously for the interests of the country, attracted towards, nor
repelled from it.41
Generally, although not invariably, environmental taxes fall into the category of
indirect taxes. However, since discussions of environmental tax proposals have taken
place both at the national and the international levels, some appreciation is necessary
of the different types of direct tax, as well as of the various types of indirect tax. It is
to these distinctions that we now turn.
1.2.1.3 Categories of direct taxes
The main examples of direct taxes are those on income, profits and capital gains. In
the UK, the key direct taxes are income tax, capital gains tax (&CGT*), corporation
tax42 and national insurance contributions (&NICs*).43 Subject to the point made
below about the classification of emissions and waste taxes,44 the main significance
of direct taxes to environmental taxation is twofold: (1) the extent to which the taxes
just referred to contain environmentally-damaging &tax subsidies*;45 and (2) whether
and, if so then how, the statutory codes relating to them might be &greened*, that is,
by incorporating reliefs, exemptions, etc., designed to encourage environmentallyfriendly
behaviour.46 Additionally, however, there is the question of whether
differential tax rates built into non-environmental tax codes (for example as in
and Jocelyn Horne, &Taxes on Commodities: A Survey*, in Tax Harmonization in the
European Community: Policy Issues and Analysis, ed. by George Kopits (Washington
DC: International Monetary Fund, 1992), pp. 22每51.
40 See Samuel Hollander, The Economics of John Stuart Mill, vol. 1 (Toronto: University of
Toronto Press, 1985), p. xii.
41 See David Ricardo, &On Protection to Agriculture*, in The Works and Correspondence of
David Ricardo: Volume IV, Pamphlets and Papers 1815每1823, ed. by Piero Sraffa with
M.H. Dobb (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1951), p. 218. See also Adam Smith
(1723每1790), The Wealth of Nations, ed. by D.D. Raphael (London: David Campbell,
1991), pp. 440每45.
42 All three of which fall within the OECD*s classification category 1000 (see OECD (2003),
pp. 190每92).
43 See para. 1.4.3 below as to all of these. National insurance contributions fall within the
OECD*s classification category 2000 (see OECD (2003), op. cit., p. 190).
44 See para. 1.4.2.1(1) below.
45 See para. 7.2.4 below.
46 See Chapters 22每25 below.
10 Environmental Taxation Law
relation to the income tax treatment of a company car as a benefit in kind)47 and
intended to put a price on environmentally-undesirable behaviour might themselves
even be described as environmental taxes.48
1.2.1.4 Categories of indirect taxes
In the context of environmental taxes, the most relevant category of indirect taxes is
that of taxes on goods and services. This category, which appears as heading 5000
in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (&OECD*)*s49
Classification of Taxes,50 comprises sales taxes, excise, turnover, value added,
franchise, stamp, transfer, inventory and equipment taxes, border taxes and all other
taxes other than direct taxes and import charges. Taxes on goods and services are
in turn one of five categories of consumption taxes. The distinguished authors of
the OECD*s 1988 report on consumption taxes51 identified five ways of taxing
consumption:52
1 (as just mentioned) by imposing &taxes on goods and services themselves*;
2 through the use of &fiscal monopolies and public utilities*;
3 by making levies for the grant of licences;
4 by making other levies &that may contain an element of consumption taxation*;
and
5 by a personal expenditure tax.
Of these, 5 is not relevant in the present context, since it refers to an as yet theoretical
alternative to existing consumption taxes. The most important to the present study
of the classifications in the list are 1 and 3. Of the rest, 2 refers to the possibility that
governments may produce or distribute certain goods and sell them at a higher price
than if they had been sold untaxed in a competitive market.53 At the time that the 1988
report was written, the most important such goods would have been electricity and
gas but, following the &unbundling* of public utilities across Europe in the 1990s,54
this category is now so unimportant as not to be worth further consideration here. The
residual category in 4 refers to the hypothesis that elements of consumption taxation
may be discovered in taxes which are not specifically imposed on consumption.55
This leaves us with categories 1 and 3.
Within the category of taxes on goods and services themselves, the authors of the
OECD*s 1988 report drew a distinction between selective consumption taxes on
47 See para. 23.2 below.
48 See para. 1.2.1.5(2) below.
49 See para. 4.4.2 below.
50 OECD (2003), op. cit., pp. 283每300.
51 OECD (1988), op. cit. The report*s authorship was particularly, perhaps, distinguished,
including (as it did) Professors Cedric Sandford and Sijbren Cnossen.
52 OECD (1988), op. cit., paras 1.7每1.13.
53 Ibid., op. cit., para. 1.9.
54 See paras 2.4, 6.4.3 and 12.2.6.3 below.
55 OECD (1988), op. cit., para. 1.11.
Preliminaries 11
particular products or services, on the one hand, and general consumption taxes on
the other.56 Examples of the former are excise duties on hydrocarbon oils. The latter,
general consumption taxes, are further subdivided, however, into single stage taxes
and multi-stage taxes.57 Single-stage, or &sticking*, taxes, may be levied at any one of
the stages of supply,58 that is, from manufacturers to wholesalers, from wholesalers
to retailers or from retailers to consumers. As will be apparent later on in this chapter,
the UK*s indirect environmental taxes are of this single-stage type. Multi-stage taxes
are, however, taxes levied each time goods or their components are sold.59 Unless
credit is given for tax paid at each of the earlier stages,60 such taxes generate multiple
taxation (hence their label as &cascade* taxes) and are therefore generally regarded as
bad. The common system of value added tax (&VAT*), which does provide for such
a system of credits, is not a cascade tax. Article 33 of the Sixth Council Directive on
the Harmonisation of the Laws of the Member States relating to Turnover Taxes and
a Common System of Value Added Tax (&the Sixth VAT Directive*)61 bans multistage
taxes similar to VAT. However:
Without prejudice to other Community provisions # this Directive shall not prevent a
Member State from maintaining or introducing taxes on insurance contracts, taxes on
betting and gambling, excise duties, stamp duties and, more generally, any taxes, duties
or charges which cannot be characterised as turnover taxes, provided however that those
taxes, duties or charges do not, in trade between Member States, give rise to formalities
connected with the crossing of frontiers.
Article 33 operates against the general background of the obligation on EU Member
States, which dates from 1967, to replace their turnover taxes with VAT.62 In a series
of decisions, the ECJ has construed Art 33 as banning the adoption by a Member
State of any wide-based turnover tax that might rival VAT.63 In, for instance, Dansk
Denkavit ApS v. Skatteministeriet,64 which concerned a now-repealed levy imposed
in Denmark, the ECJ stated that:
[F]or a tax to be characterized as a turnover tax, it is not necessary for it to resemble
VAT in every respect; it is sufficient for it to exhibit the essential characteristics of VAT.
56 Ibid., op. cit., para. 1.8.
57 Ibid., op. cit., para. 1.8(b).
58 Note the potential significance of a &prior-stage* indirect tax, that is, an indirect tax levied
on goods or services used directly or indirectly in the manufacture of the product in
question (see 1994 WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (see para.
8.4.4 below), fn 58 thereto).
59 OECD (1988), op. cit., para. 1.8(b).
60 See 1994 WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (see para. 8.4.4
below), fn 58 thereto.
61 Council Directive 77/388/EEC, (1977) OJ L145 1.
62 Council Directive on the Harmonisation of Legislation of Member States Concerning
Turnover Taxes, Council Directive 67/227/EEC/EEC, (1967) OJ Sp Edn 14, Art 1.
63 See David Williams, EC Tax Law (London: Longman, 1998), p. 91. See para. 12.3.2
below.
64 C每200/90, [1992] ECR I每2217.
12 Environmental Taxation Law
In the present case, the differences which have been mentioned [that is, by the Danish
Government] do not affect the nature of a levy such as the Danish levy, which resembled
VAT in all essential respects.65
Thus, within the Member States of the EU, it is in principle permissible for a singlestage
consumption tax to be imposed, provided that it is not one that can be taken to
mimic VAT.66 An obvious example of such a tax is that imposed on plastic bags in
Eire.67 This provision gives rise to the possibility of indirect taxes on consumption
with an environmental purpose and it is one which has been embraced by a number
of Member States, including the UK.
Category 3. in the list given above creates a conundrum for anyone involved in the
study of taxes as regulatory instruments.68 As already stated, levies may be divided
into taxes and charges, the latter having a quality of reciprocity which is not shared
by the former. As suggested in the 1988 OECD report, however, there may be an
intermediate category of levies made for services which are provided direct to the
individual but which lack this element of reciprocity. Re Eurig Estate69 suggests that
such levies are taxes rather than charges.70
The relevance of the category of indirect taxes to environmental taxes is that most,
although not all, environmental taxes, are taxes on the consumption of goods and
services (that is, &product taxes*) and are therefore indirect taxes. Subject to the
points made below,71 the UK*s aggregates levy and landfill tax are probably both to
be viewed in this way, whilst climate change levy and excise duties (excise duties
being environmental taxes in a broad sense and only if there is some environmental
differential) are certainly to be regarded as product taxes.
65 [1992] ECR I每2217 (para. 14). From its earlier jurisprudence, the ECJ concluded that the
essential characteristics of VAT were that it &applies generally to transactions relating to
goods or services; it is proportional to the price of those goods or services; it is charged
at each stage of the production and distribution process; and finally it is imposed on the
added value of goods and services, since the tax payable on a transaction is calculated
after deducting the tax paid on the previous transaction* ([1992] ECR I每2217 (para. 11)).
66 See, for example, the consideration of, respectively, national meat and dairy products
marketing levies in Fazenda P迆blica v. Fricarnes SA, C每28/96, [1997] STC 1348,
and Fazenda P迆blica v. União das Cooperativas Abestacedoras de Leite de Lisboa,
C每347/95, [1997] STC 1337, stamp duty on construction contracts in Fazenda P迆blica
v. Solisnor-Estaleiros Navais SA, C每130/96, [1998] STC 191, and a local tax upon the
gross receipts from entertainment performances in NV Giant v. Commune of Overijse,
C每109/90, [1993] STC 651. See also a case involving municipal parking charges,
Fazenda P迆blica v. Câmera Municipal do Porto (Minist谷rio P迆blico, third party), C每
446/98, [2001] STC 560.
67 See para. 12.3.2 below.
68 Most environmental taxes being of this kind (see Chapter 5 below).
69 See paras 1.2.1.1 and 1.2.1.2 above.
70 See OECD (2003), op. cit., p. 286.
71 See para. 1.4 below.
Preliminaries 13
1.2.1.5 Environmental taxes
The preceding discussion enables us to reflect on the nature and classification of
environmental taxes generally.72 This should serve as a useful introduction to setting
out, in para. 1.2.2 below, the approach which we have taken to the material in the rest
of the study, as well as the sources on which the authors have placed reliance in its
preparation. Prior to that, however, it is worth noting the significance of the key word
&environmental*, as it relates to the expression &environmental taxes*.
Environmental taxes, as mentioned above, are one type of economic instrument
for environmental protection, the other main examples being transferable permit
systems, deposit-refund systems and financial assistance from government.73 Within
the last category, that is, financial assistance from government, we include measures
for &greening* a tax system, so the concept of economic instruments is taken to
include &green* exemptions and reliefs which have been built into taxes such as
income tax and corporation tax.74 Emissions trading systems, whilst schematically
distinct from taxes, operate, in one or another form, in conjunction with two of the
UK*s environmental taxes, that is, climate change levy and landfill tax. We shall
therefore make extensive reference to them throughout the rest of the study.
(1) The environmental aspect of environmental taxes
The term &environmental*, as it is used in the expression &environmental taxation*,
suggests a wide area of operation for the instruments under consideration in this
book.75 This is consistent with the use of the word &environmental* in relation to
&environmental law* and &environmental regulation* generally. Krämer, for instance,
in writing about the objectives, principles and conditions of European environmental
law, looks (naturally enough) to the European Treaty for guidance on the scope of the
notion of &the environment*. He says:
It follows from Articles [174(1) (ex 130r(1)] and [175(2) (ex 130s(2))]76 that the
environment includes humans, town and country planning, land use, waste and water
management and use of natural resources, in particular of energy. This list, which was not
meant to be exhaustive, includes practically all facets of the environment, in particular
fauna and flora which are part of the natural resources, as well as climate. The inclusion of
town and country planning makes it clear that &environment* is not limited to the natural
environment.77
72 No distinction is drawn in this book between the expressions &environmental taxes*,
&ecological taxes*, &ecotaxes* and &green taxes*.
73 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1991 Recommendation of the
Council on the Use of Economic Instruments in Environmental Policy, C(90)177/Final,
January 31, 1991 (available from www.oecd.org).
74 See Part III, Section B below.
75 See Sean Coyle and Karen Morrow, The Philosophical Foundations of Environmental
Law (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2004).
76 See para. 12.2.1 below.
77 See Ludwig Krämer, EC Treaty and Environmental Law, 2nd edn (London: Sweet and
Maxwell, 1995), p. 41.
14 Environmental Taxation Law
Bell and McGillivray, quoting Einstein as having been reported to remark that
&[t]he environment is everything that isn*t me*, adopt a wide definition of the terms
for the general purposes of their textbook on UK environmental law. In discussing
the expression &environmental law*, and therefore the scope of their book, they say:
We intend to concentrate on those laws and practices which relate primarily to the
protection of the whole or part of the general surroundings, as opposed to those where the
true objective is the protection of public health, or individual people such as workers or
consumers. [Emphasis added.]78
Finally, Winter defines the term &environmental law* as follows:
# the law regulating the relationship of us to nature, understood both as the world around
us and as the nature we carry within ourselves.79
From all of the above, a number of areas of application for environmental
taxes may be envisaged. Obvious applications of environmental taxes are in the
waste management and water protection areas, as well as in the control of air and
atmospheric pollution. Less obvious, perhaps, are resource use, town and country
planning and (not specifically referred to in the above quotations) noise abatement.
Although the UK has not yet applied an environmental tax in relation to water
pollution80 or noise, landfill tax operates in the area of waste management, now
being intended (at least in part) to assist in reducing the amount of waste being
sent to landfill,81 while climate change levy is a key instrument in the control
of air and atmospheric pollution.82 Landfill is unusual in that it can perhaps be
identified quite clearly with a single environmental problem. The same may not,
however, be true of some of the less obvious applications. In relation to resource
use, it might be a matter for debate whether the predominant justification for the
tax in question should be the conservation of resources or the control of pollution.
This is the case, for example, with aggregates levy, which, besides being justified
by reference to a need to conserve the supply of virgin aggregate, is also designed
to address the problem of the noise and visual intrusion caused by quarrying.83
Similarly, with projects for road charging or cordon pricing (such as London*s
congestion charge),84 it might be a matter for debate as to whether the predominant
78 Stuart Bell and Donald McGillivray, Ball and Bell on Environmental Law: The Law
and Policy relating to the Protection of the Environment, 5th edn (London: Blackstone
Press, 2000), p. 4. They also adopt the definition of the environment in the Environmental
Protection Act 1990, s.1, that is that the environment consists of &all, or any, of he following
media, namely, the air, water and land* (ibid.).
79 Gerd Winter, &Perspectives for Environmental Law 每 Entering the Fourth Phase* (1989)
1 JEL 39, quoted in John F. McEldowney and Sharron McEldowney, Environmental Law
and Regulation (London: Blackstone, 2001), p. 78.
80 But see para. 29.1 below.
81 See para. 6.3 below.
82 See para. 6.4 below.
83 See para. 11.3.2 below.
84 See para. 18.2 below.
Preliminaries 15
environmental concern should be traffic congestion or the pollution caused by
motor vehicles. Even in the case of air and a,tmospheric pollution, there is the
additional concern of the conservation of energy, something which (as we shall see)
is a key element in climate change levy. All these points made, it should be stressed
that environmental taxation, at least in the UK, tends not to operate specifically in
relation to plants, animals and habitats.85
Finally, it should be noted that, in referring to the use of natural resources, in
particular of energy, Krämer signposts the difficulties which have arisen from
attempts, both at Community and Member State level, to &graft* environmental
policies onto the process of &unbundling* Europe*s energy markets. This is a recurrent
theme throughout the rest of the study, since the design of UK*s tax on the industrial,
commercial and agricultural consumption of non-renewable energy, that is, climate
change levy, evidently seeks to marry up apparently contradictory objectives within
Community and UK energy policy itself.86
(2) The taxation aspect of environmental taxes
It has already been stated that none of the UK*s environmental taxes are specifically
referred to as such in the legislation which creates them.87 This may be problematic,
since, as already mentioned, environmental taxes may be susceptible to different
evaluative criteria from non-environmental taxes. The OECD has espoused
different definitions at various times but the definition reproduced in its 1997 report,
Environmental Taxes and Green Tax Reform88 has gained a certain currency. This
states that:
A tax falls into the category environmental if the tax base is a physical unit (or a proxy for
it) of something that has a proven specific negative impact on the environment, when used
or released.89
The intellectual appeal of this definition is that, in concentrating on the tax base, it
emphasises the way in which a particular tax works, rather than whatever justification
85 It seems that the abolition in 1988 of the income tax charge on commercial woodlands
was motivated by a desire to protect the income tax base by removing a tax shelter,
rather than by environmental considerations. The same point applies to the (heavily
circumscribed) inheritance tax (&IHT*) relief in respect of growing trees and underwood
forming part of an individual*s estate on death (see Inheritance Tax Act 1984,
ss.125每30).
86 See para. 21.5.2 et seq., below. Helm likens New Labour*s capacity to formulate energy
policy in this way to George Orwell*s &doublethink*, that is, &the power of holding two
contradictory beliefs in one*s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them* (see
Dieter Helm, Energy, the State, and the Market: British Energy Policy since 1979, revised
edn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), p. 294).
87 Unlike, exceptionally, s.369 of the Ecotax Law in Belgium, in which an environmental
tax, [&谷cotaxe*] is defined as a &taxe assimil谷e aux accises, frappant un produit mis 角 la
consomation en raison des nuisances 谷cologiques qu*il est reput谷 g谷n谷rer* (quoted in
Määttä, op. cit., p. 41).
88 Paris: OECD, 1997.
89 OECD (1997), p. 18.
16 Environmental Taxation Law
may be given for the introduction of the tax.90 The definition is certainly capable of
capturing energy, landfill and severance taxes.91
Faced with the problem of categorisation (which may, or may not be significant),92
Määttä makes a useful distinction93 between environmental taxes in the strict sense
and environmental taxes in the broad sense.94 Taxes which do not fall into either
category (for example income tax and corporation tax) are, naturally enough, &nonenvironmental
taxes*95 and this is so even if they embody environmentally-motivated
design features.96 One tax which would appear to be a non-environmental tax, whatever
the government*s protestations to the contrary, is air passenger duty (&APD*), a flatrate
indirect tax which, since 1994, has been chargeable on passenger flights from
the UK.97 Tiley draws our attention to the fact that APD merely imposes an excise
duty on an item which is zero-rated for VAT purposes,98 thus reducing the disparity
between items which come within and those which are outside the VAT net.99
Environmental taxes in the strict sense are &taxes about which a long-established
unanimity exists that they can be classified as environmental taxes*.100 The
examples that Määttä instances are effluent taxes, taxes on beverage containers and
incentivising tax differentiations between leaded and unleaded petrol. What each
of these have in common, whether it is to reduce the flow of effluents into water,
to reduce litter or to encourage consumers to buy unleaded petrol, is an intention to
influence behaviour.101 Such environmental taxes are incentive environmental taxes,
a category which includes, not only taxes whose revenues are less important than their
capacity to steer behaviour, but also redistributive environmental taxes, some or all
of the proceeds of which are used to incentivise taxpayers to purchase, for example,
environmental protection equipment, such as energy-saving plant and machinery.102
90 Ibid., p.18. General definitions of environmental taxes which rely on their proffered
justifications are, as Määttä reminds us, problematic (see Määttä, op. cit., p. 47).
91 Nevertheless, in its 2001 report, the OECD preferred the concept of the &environmentally
related tax* (see Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Environmentally Related Taxes in OECD Countries: Issues and Strategies (Paris: OECD,
2001)). Severance taxes are taxes levied on the extraction of minerals; they are common
in the US.
92 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 45.
93 Ibid., pp. 40每45.
94 Määttä actually uses the Latin tags of environmental taxes sensu stricto and those sensu
largo but we have eschewed the use of the Latin here.
95 Määttä, op. cit., pp. 40每53.
96 Ibid., p. 41.
97 See Finance Act 1994, ss.28每44 and Sched. 6. It is an excise duty (ibid., s.40(1)) and, as
such, is under the care and management of HM Customs and Excise. The rates are £10 per
flight, for flights within Europe, and £20 for flights to destinations elsewhere (see Finance
Act 1994, s.30(4)).
98 See Value Added Tax Act 1994, Sched. 8, Group 8, item 4(a), (c).
99 Tiley, op. cit., p. 11. See para. 27.5 below (proposed taxes on aviation).
100 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 41.
101 Anthony Ogus, &Corrective Taxes and Financial Impositions as Regulatory Instruments*
(1998) 61 MLR 767; Anthony Ogus, &Nudging and Rectifying: The Use of Fiscal
Instruments for Regulatory Purposes* (1999) 19 LS 245每66.
102 Ibid., p. 64.
Preliminaries 17
The question raised earlier,103 of whether differential tax rates which are built into
non-environmental tax codes and are intended to put a price on environmentallyundesirable
behaviour, might themselves be described as environmental taxes,
is thus answered in the affirmative, since the differential will itself constitute an
environmental tax.104 A more difficult question arises, however, when taxes whose
taxable characteristics are not, per se, the harmful characteristics of the product (for
example a tax on the carbon content of fuels) but the product itself (for example a
tax on plastic bags).105 Whether or not the revenue raised by a tax is earmarked (or
&hypothecated*) for an environmental purpose might also determine whether or not a
given tax is to be regarded as environmental in the strict sense.106 In connection with
incentive environmental taxes, it should also be stressed that a tax which intentionally
steers behaviour (that is, distorts the market) does not breach the neutrality principle.
As Tiley says: &[t]he principle of neutrality simply asserts that all distortions should
be conscious and so subject to justification through the political process*.107
By contrast with environmental taxes in the strict sense, environmental taxes in the
broad sense are taxes as to &which no unanimity exists about the nature of the tax
in the sense in question*.108 They are characterised by the fact that, whilst they are
chiefly concerned with raising revenue, they also have considerable effects on the
environment.109 Such taxes include, says Määttä, taxes on energy and taxes on motor
transport.110 Taxes falling into one or other of the above categories can be divided into
emissions taxes and product taxes in accordance with the official classifications of
the OECD and the European Commission.111 The OECD*s classification is contained
in the 1991 Recommendation of the Council on the Use of Economic Instruments
in Environmental Policy.112 The key part of the 1991 Recommendation reads as
follows:
2. Emission charges or taxes are payments on the emission of pollutants into air or water
or onto or into soil and on the generation of noise. Emission charges or taxes are calculated
on the basis of the quantity and type of pollutant discharged.
#113
4. Product charges or taxes are levied on products that are harmful to the environment when
used in production processes, consumed or disposed of. Product charges or taxes can act
as a substitute for emission charges or taxes when charging directly for emissions is not
feasible. They may be applied to raw materials, intermediate or final (consumer) products.
Product tax differentiation may be designed for the same purpose.114
103 See para. 1.2.1.3 above.
104 Ibid., p. 48.
105 Ibid.
106 Ibid., pp. 49每50. See para. 11.2.2 below (hypothecation).
107 See Tiley, op. cit., p. 11.
108 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 41.
109 Ibid., pp. 50每51.
110 Ibid., p. 41.
111 See para. 4.3.2 below.
112 C(90)177/Final, 31 January 1991. See para. 8.2.6n below.
113 Paragraph 3 of the 1991 Recommendation refers to &User charges or taxes, [which are]
payments for the costs of collective treatment of effluent or waste*.
114 C(90)177/Final, 31 January 1991.
18 Environmental Taxation Law
The Commission*s classification is contained in its 1997 Communication on the
use of environmental taxes and charges.115 This is generally to similar effect and is
worth setting out in full:
Emission levies involve payments that are directly related to the real or estimated pollution
caused, whether emitted into air, water or on the soil, or due to the generation of noise.
Existing examples are charges on emissions of NOx from large combustion plants, and
charges on pollution to water from waste water treatment plants. Levies on the emission
of noise exist in the field of aviation. In so far as these levies are applied to stationary
sources (such as industrial plants) they will to a large extent fall outside the scope of this
communication, as the cost of paying them falls only on domestic producers.
Product levies are applied to raw materials and intermediate inputs such as fertilizers,
pesticides, natural gravel, and ground water, and on final consumer products such as batteries,
one way packaging, car tyres and plastic bags. Some product levies that have existed for
many years, mainly in the field of energy, are increasingly regarded as contributing to
the integration between environmental and energy policies. Typical examples are taxes on
gasoline, diesel and heating oils and electricity.116
On the basis of the distinctions set out above, it is clear that environmental taxes
imposed on products are indirect taxes; that they are subject to the destination
principle;117 and that, as such, they are eligible for BTA.118 Equally clear is that
environmental taxes imposed on producers are direct taxes; that they are subject to
the origin principle;119 and that, being subject to the origin principle, they do not
have the benefit of BTA. Effluent or emissions taxes (including carbon taxes)120 are,
in principle, direct taxes; by the same token, energy taxes are, in principle, indirect
taxes (that is, as product taxes). Problems of classification come with waste taxes,
depending on the nature of the taxable event in relation to the tax in question.121
1.2.2 Approach and sources
The title of the present volume reflects its emphasis on the legal aspects of the UK*s
environmental levies. As was mentioned at the beginning, our overriding aim has
been to give a comprehensive, contextual and critical account of the law relating to
environmental taxation in the UK. Such an aim, although relatively modest, seems to
us to be amply justified by the absence of any comparable account of the area.
Our approach has been to centre the work on the legal analysis of the measures
under consideration. Whilst this analysis has broadly been informed by scholarship on
115 Commission Communication, Environmental Taxes and Charges in the Single Market,
COM (97) 9 final, (1997) OJ C224 6 (see para. 12.3.1 below).
116 COM(97) 9 final, para. 12.
117 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
118 Ibid.
119 Ibid.
120 See Thomas C. Schelling, &Prices as Regulatory Instruments*, in Incentives for Environmental
Protection, ed. by Thomas C. Schelling (London: MIT Press, 1983), pp. 1每40, esp. p. 15.
121 See para. 1.4.2(1) below (landfill tax).
Preliminaries 19
environmental regulation, it has not been possible, in what is already rather a large book,
to take a unifying theoretical standpoint, based, for example on the economic analysis
of law.122 Such a theoretical approach will have to await another opportunity.123
In providing a comprehensive account of the material, we have referred to a range
of sources, both theoretical and practical. The detailed reports on both environmental
and energy law and policy appearing in the Financial Times124 have proved
particularly valuable; the reader will find many references to them in the footnotes.
So fast-moving are the areas of law and policy discussed in the book that it is difficult
to imagine keeping abreast of regulatory developments without the data provided by
that newspaper. We have also made much use of the Environmental Data Services
Report (&the ENDS Report*)125 which, containing, as it does, briefings on the latest
developments in environmental regulation, is also invaluable. Again, there are many
references throughout the footnotes to reports from this source. Finally, we have
referred quite extensively to reports and other documentation published by Chatham
House (the premises of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (&the RIIA*) which
operates from them).126
Website addresses were correct on 30 September 2004.
1.3 International, European, national and regional contexts
The task of providing a clear account of the UK*s environmental taxes is complicated
by a number of factors, at least one of which is not present in other areas of tax law.
This is the interaction between environmental law and policy on the one hand, and tax
law and policy on the other. We shall return to this interaction in paragraph 1.4 below.
Another complicating factor is the place of UK environmental regulation, including its
environmental taxes, within the international and European Community*s legal order.
Before going any further, it would perhaps be helpful to give a brief indication of the
issues raised by the place of the UK and its constituent countries in that legal order.
The UK is almost, although not quite, a federal state.127 The detailed implications
of this statement will be followed up at a later stage of the discussion.128 It should,
however, be noted at the outset that, except in environmentally-related taxation matters,
122 This is the approach taken by Määttä, op. cit. See Richard Posner, Economic Analysis of
Law, 6th edn (New York: Aspen, 2003). See also the discussion of Posner*s work in David
Campbell and Sol Picciotto, &Explaining the interaction between law and economics: the
limits of formalism* (1998) 18 LS 249每78.
123 On this footing, we are content to accept the theoretical economic arguments and to analyse
the findings of the bodies (mainly Parliamentary Select Committees 每 see para. 4.2.1.1(3)
below) whose duty it is to report on how these theories have worked in practice. This is
consistent with the approach taken in, for example, Baldwin and Cave, op. cit., throughout.
124 See www.ft.com.
125 See www.endsreport.com.
126 See www.chathamhouse.org.uk. Chatham House is the origin of the so-called &Chatham
House Rule*, first promulgated in 1927.
127 See Chris Hilson, Regulating Pollution 每 A UK and EC Perspective (Oxford: Hart
Publishing, 2000), p. 47.
128 See para. 4.2.2 below.
20 Environmental Taxation Law
the Scottish Parliament and the (currently dissolved) Northern Ireland Assembly have
full legislative powers in relation to the environment.129 Although the UK Parliament
retains competence to pass primary legislation in relation to both England and Wales,
the Welsh Assembly has competence as regards Wales in relation to secondary
legislation. Since this includes the environment but, again, not environmentallyrelated
taxation, and, since most environmental legislation is secondary legislation,
the Welsh Assembly possesses considerable power in relation to the environment.
Thus, except in relation to taxes, as Hilson points out, the result of this structure is
that, &[t]he UK Parliament does not appear to have maintained any power to legislate
on the environment for the UK as a whole*.130 One practical consequence of this
situation is that environmentally-related statutory instruments covering the same
subject-matter either exist in two forms, one relating to England and Wales and the
other to Scotland,131 or, possibly, in three forms, relating to each of England, Wales
and Scotland.132 A second, more important, point is that none of Wales, Scotland or
Northern Ireland has any power to create its own environmental tax.133
If it is correct that the UK Parliament has not retained power to legislate on the
environment for the UK as a whole, one explanation may be that the legislative activity
of the UK Parliament in relation to environmental matters consists in transposing the
provisions of European Directives. This is so, even though competence to legislate
in the environmental sphere is shared between the Community and the Member
States.134 Shared, too, is competence in relation to taxation (including environmental
taxation), although, here, any decision must be unanimous135 as between the Member
States of the EU.
Finally, since the UK is a Member State of the EU, and since both the UK and the
EU are members of the WTO, any taxes designed and implemented in the UK must
comply with GATT 1994/WTO rules.136 These are very similar to Community rules on
taxation and free movement of goods137 but, despite the existence of an &environmental*
exception,138 do not easily lend themselves to environmental measures. Thus, the
129 Ibid.
130 See op. cit., p. 47.
131 Where this situation obtains, we refer only to the SI for England and Wales, in the absence
of some special consideration. This is simply for reasons of space and we hope not thereby
to offend readers from UK countries other than England.
132 Or possibly three (four) forms, where there is a separate instrument for Northern Ireland
under the current direct rule arrangements (see para. 4.2.2 below).
133 Or any other tax, for that matter. Part IV of the Scotland Act 1998 empowers the Scottish
Parliament to pass a resolution with the effect of varying the basic rate of income tax by
up to three percentage points, upwards or downwards, for a particular tax year (Scotland
Act 1998, s.73(1)). If resolved upon, such a variation affects &Scottish taxpayers*, that is,
individuals who are treated as resident in the UK and whose closest connection is with
Scotland (Scotland Act 1998, s.75). The Act grants no other tax-raising power to the Scottish
Parliament, however. &Scotland* is defined in the Scotland Act 1998, s.126(1), (2).
134 See para. 12.2.1 below.
135 See paras 4.3.1, 12.2.1 and 12.3.2 below.
136 See para. 8.4.1 below.
137 See paras 12.3 and 12.4 below.
138 See para. 8.4.2 below.
Preliminaries 21
rule that a direct tax (for example an emissions tax) cannot benefit from BTA has
controversially contributed to the inhibition of taxes on carbon emissions.139
1.4 Regulatory and taxation contexts
1.4.1 Introduction
One of the principal contextual aims of the book is to integrate our discussion of
environmental taxes into a discussion of environmental regulation more generally.
To this end, in subsequent chapters, we consider the UK*s environmental regulation,
and the place of environmental levies and other economic instruments within it, prior
to analysing the taxation context of those levies.140
The discussion of the regulatory context of the levies in Chapter 6 below is divided
into the main areas of application of environmental taxes, that is, waste management
and control of air and atmospheric pollution, as well as air passenger and road freight
transport and mineral extraction. The regulatory background to each of these areas is
discussed in some detail in Chapter 6. Meanwhile, it may assist the reader to have a
brief regulatory and taxation overview, with emphasis, in relation to the former, on
the economic instruments currently employed in the particular area of application.
It is worth noting that, whilst landfill tax and climate change levy form part of
a package of regulatory instruments in their respective areas of application,
aggregates levy forms the sole, or at least the main,141 basis of environmental
policy in the area to which it applies. Määttä would therefore classify aggregates
levy as an independent environmental tax, climate change levy and landfill tax being
complementary environmental taxes.142
1.4.2 Regulatory context of the UK*s environmental taxes
1.4.2.1 Waste management regulation
The command and control framework of waste management law forms an intricate
regulatory pattern.143 The main elements are: (1) the Integrated Pollution Prevention
and Control (&IPPC*) permit system, which covers, inter alia, the disposal of waste by
139 There are, of course, other formidable obstacles to such a tax!
140 See Chapters 6 and 7 below.
141 Town and country planning law and Environmental Impact Assessment also having a part
to play (see para. 6.6 below).
142 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 70.
143 The expression &command and control* is customarily used to refer to regulation involving
the bringing of influence to bear on the regulated by requiring standards to be met, on pain
of criminal sanction (for example via the imposition of fines). Since command and control
typically relies on licensing processes involving payments to government or government
agencies, it is often difficult for the layperson to distinguish such payments from taxation
(see category 3 in para. 1.2.1.4 above). This, together with the fact that economic
instruments (see para. 1.2.1.5 above) cannot operate satisfactorily without being backed
up by criminal sanctions, makes the distinction between each type of regulation a rather
slippery one (see Baldwin and Cave, op. cit., pp. 35每9).
22 Environmental Taxation Law
incineration or by landfill, as well as waste recovery and fuel production from waste;
(2) a waste management licensing system and a statutory duty of care in relation
to the handling of waste (both under Part II of the Environmental Protection Act
1990); (3) the banning of the co-disposal of hazardous and non-hazardous wastes,
of tyres144 and of liquid, clinical and hazardous wastes at landfill sites (pursuant to
legislation implementing the Landfill Directive);145 (4) special rules for the disposal
of special and hazardous wastes; and (5) rules on waste imports and exports.146
In addition to the above, however, the following economic instruments have a
prominent part to play,147 most importantly, landfill tax.
(1) Landfill tax
Landfill tax was introduced in the Finance Act 1996.148 It is chargeable on taxable
disposals of material as waste, by way of landfill, at landfill sites.149 The person
liable to pay the tax charged on a taxable disposal is the landfill site operator.150 It
is generally payable at a fixed amount for each whole tonne of material disposed of,
plus a proportionately reduced sum for any additional part of a tonne, or, where less
than a tonne is disposed of, just a proportionately reduced amount.151
Landfill tax is discussed in detail in Chapter 15 below but several key features of
the levy will be apparent from the foregoing. First, there is no doubt that landfill tax
is indeed a tax within the definition set out above.152 Secondly, it is also clearly an
environmental tax, since its tax base is a physical unit of something that has &negative
impact* on the environment when released.153 Whether it is treated as a direct tax
on emissions (as theoretically it might be) or an indirect tax on the consumption of
landfill services (as in practice it is) is probably unimportant.154
(2) Packaging waste recovery notes
Packaging waste recovery notes (&PRNs*) are a market-creating mechanism for the
recovery and recycling of packaging waste. They operated originally155 on a non-
144 That is, whole tyres. Landfilling shredded tyres will be banned in 2006 (see para. 6.3.2(4)
below).
145 See para. 12.2.5.1(2)(b) below.
146 See para. 6.3 below (in relation to all of these).
147 Note also the projected waste performance reward grant (&WPRG*), currently (December
2004) under consultation (see para. 6.3.3(5) below).
148 Finance Act 1996, ss.39每71, Sched. 5; Finance Act 1997, ss.50每53 and 113, Sched. 5;
Finance Act 1999, s.124; Finance Act 2000, ss.140每42, Sched. 37. There are also at least
ten statutory instruments specifically relating to landfill tax: these are referred to where
appropriate in the text below.
149 Finance Act 1996, s.40.
150 Ibid., s.41(1).
151 Ibid., s.42(1).
152 See paras 1.2.1.1 above and 8.3.1 below.
153 See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
154 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 254.
155 Since 1 January 2004, both PRNs and the newly invented PERNs have operated under
the auspices of Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) (England)
(Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 3294: see para. 19.8 below.
Preliminaries 23
statutory basis and as an adjunct to a statutory command and control regime creating
producer responsibility for packaging waste and imposing penalties for a range of
offences. That regime obliges businesses of a certain size who deal in virtually any
way with the packaging of goods to register with the relevant government agency;156
to take reasonable steps to recover and recycle particular percentages of packaging
handled in the preceding year; and to submit a certificate of compliance to the
agency at the end of the current year. Obligated business may meet their recovery
obligation, either individually, or by joining a registered compliance scheme, which
will fulfil the obligation on their behalf. The submission of PRNs is the main way
in which obligated businesses, including compliance schemes, demonstrate their
compliance. They acquire the PRNs either on their issue by accredited packaging
waste reprocessors or by purchase on the open market from other organisations.
Salmons epitomises PRNs by saying that, &[a]lthough not conceived as such when
they were introduced in 1998, [PRNs] # have rapidly evolved into a functioning
tradeable compliance credit system*.157 Packaging waste recovery notes are discussed
in detail in Chapter 19 below.
(3) The Waste Recycling Credits Scheme
A waste recycling credits scheme (&WRCS*) operates, which is designed to ensure
that neither waste disposal authorities (&WDAs*) nor waste collection authorities
(&WCAs*)158 are penalised for the costs of recycling. It is not considered further in
this study.159
(4) The Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (&the LATS*)
The framework for the landfill allowances trading scheme (&the LATS*), which is
due to come into operation in England and Wales in 2005, is contained in the Waste
and Emissions Trading Act 2003. The relevant minister160 is empowered by the 2003
Act to allocate to WDAs, in each of the four countries of the UK, allowances which
authorise the sending to landfill161 of specified amounts of biodegradable municipal
waste (&BMW*), for each year between 2004 and 2020.162 The LATS, a &cap and
trade scheme*,163 is discussed in detail in para. 20.7 below.
156 That is, the Environment Agency (see para. 4.2.1.3 below).
157 See Roger Salmons, &A New Area for Application of Tradeable Permits: Solid
Waste Management*, in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Implementing Domestic Tradeable Permits: Recent Developments and Future Challenges
(Paris: OECD, 2002), pp. 187每226, esp. pp. 199每211.
158 See paras 2.3 and 6.3.2(1) below.
159 It is currently (December 2004) the subject of government consultation (see www.defra.
gov.uk).
160 The identity of whom varies for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (see
Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.24(1)).
161 Defined in Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.22.
162 Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.4(1).
163 See Salmons, op. cit., esp. pp. 211每17.
24 Environmental Taxation Law
1.4.2.2 Control of air and atmospheric pollution
This area of environmental regulation is dominated by the UK*s commitment under
the Kyoto Protocol to reduce its 1990 levels of all greenhouse gases (&GHGs*) by
12.5 per cent by 2010.164 Although there are command and control regimes relating
to emissions and air quality, the chief regulatory instruments at work in the UK*s
climate change programme are economic ones. They are as follows:
(1) Climate change levy
Climate change levy, which was enacted in the Finance Act 2000,165 has been imposed
on supplies for industrial, commercial and agricultural purposes166 of electricity, gas,
liquid natural gas, coal, lignite and coke,167 made after 31 March 2001.168 Excluded
from the list of taxable commodities are hydrocarbon oil, road fuel gas and waste
(within the scope of the Environmental Protection Act 1990).169 There is a series of
environmentally-inspired exemptions, inter alia, for renewable source electricity and
electricity generated in combined heat and power (&CHP*) stations.170
Normally, the person liable to account for the levy is the person making the
supply.171 However, where a taxable supply is made by a non-UK resident nonutility,
the person liable to account for the levy charged on the supply is the person
to whom the supply is made.172 Exports of taxable commodities are not within the
scope of the levy, an exemption that mirrors the controversial aggregates levy relief
for the supply of aggregate to a destination outside the UK.173 The levy is charged
at different poundages, depending on the type of energy supplied, reduced rates
being applicable to supplies to horticultural producers174 and to supplies made by
certain facilities, where the operator has entered into a so-called &climate change
agreement*.175 Climate change levy is discussed in detail in Chapter 14. Introduced
164 See para. 6.4.2 below.
165 Finance Act 2000, s.30, Scheds 6 and 7. See Stephen Smith, &Environmental and Public
Finance Aspects of the Taxation of Energy*, in Environmental Policy: Objectives,
Instruments and Implementation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp. 172每202.
There are in addition around at least nine statutory instruments relating specifically to
climate change levy, and these are referred to as relevant in the text below.
166 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 8 (this effect is achieved by excluding supplies for
domestic or charity use from the scope of the levy).
167 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, paras 2 and 3(1). Coke is the &solid porous fuel that remains
after gases have been driven from coal by heating*; lignite is &a brownish black coal that
is harder than peat but usually retains the texture of the original wood* (see the Longman
Concise English Dictionary (London: Longman Group, 1985)).
168 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 10.
169 Ibid., para. 3.
170 See paras 14.3 and 14.4 below.
171 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 40(1).
172 Ibid., Sched. 6, para. 40(2).
173 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 11 (see para. 8.4.5.1 below).
174 Ibid., Sched. 6, para. 43.
175 Ibid., Sched. 6, para. 44. Gas for burning in Northern Ireland is exempted from the levy
on a temporary basis (ibid., Sched. 6, para. 11A).
Preliminaries 25
in Chapter 14, as a prelude to the discussion in Chapter 20, is the UK Emissions
Trading Scheme (&the UK ETS*), the UK ETS having been designed to bolster the
network of climate change agreements.
Despite its rather coy name, climate change levy is, like landfill tax, a true tax.176 It
is also, on the basis of the 1997 OECD definition given above,177 an environmental
tax, which takes energy consumption as a proxy for the carbon emissions released
into the atmosphere when the various taxable commodities to which it applies are
used or consumed. Since it is an energy tax rather than a carbon tax, as well as a tax
on energy products rather than a tax on emissions, it is an indirect tax. It therefore
makes use of BTA in taxing imports of taxable commodities, whilst exempting their
exportation.
(2) The UK Emissions Trading Scheme (&the UK ETS*)
The UK ETS was created in March 2002, under powers conferred on the Secretary
of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,178 by ss.3(5)(a) and 153,
Environmental Protection Act 1990. Initial participation in the scheme was on a
voluntary basis.179
There are two main types of participant in the UK ETS. First, there are &direct
participants*, who undertook emissions reduction targets in return for incentive
payments from a specially-designated government fund of £215 million. Emission
reduction targets could either relate to carbon dioxide alone or to all six Kyoto
GHGs.180 Secondly, there are &agreement participants*, whose emissions reduction
target has been fixed, not in return for an incentive payment, but in return for a onefifth
rate of climate change levy as parties to climate change agreements.
For each year of the UK ETS, direct participants receive allowances corresponding
to their emissions target for that year. Each direct participant must then possess
enough allowances at the end of the year to cover its emissions during that year.
If it does not have enough allowances, then the direct participant must buy more
allowances from other participants, to cover its excess emissions. Failure to have
enough allowances disentitles the direct participant to a slice of incentive payment
and results in the tightening of the following year*s target. If, however, the direct
participant has more than enough allowances, it may sell them to other participants.
Likewise, where an agreement participant overachieves (that is, makes fewer
emissions than its climate change agreement requires), then it is issued with allowances
to the extent of the overachievement. It can then trade these with participants lacking
sufficient allowances. Equally, where an agreement participant underachieves, it may
either purchase allowances from other participants or pay the full rate of the levy.
The detail of the UK ETS is discussed in Chapter 20 below. The scheme is an
entirely novel concept in UK law and has been highly controversial, especially with
176 See para. 1.2.1.1 above and para. 7.3.1 below.
177 See para. 1.2.1.5 above.
178 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) below.
179 For an early legal assessment of the UK ETS, see Anthony Hobley, &The UK Emissions
Trading System: Some Legal Issues Explored*, in Economics, Ethics and the Environment,
ed. by Julian Boswall and Robert Lee (London: Cavendish Publishing, 2002), pp. 61每79.
180 See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
26 Environmental Taxation Law
regard to the targets actually set. It is in part a &cap and trade scheme* and in part a
&baseline and credit scheme*.181
(3) The EU Emissions Trading Scheme (&the EU ETS*)
The EU ETS is due to start in January 2005.182 The Directive which creates the
scheme183 is based on a provision of the European Treaty which requires the EU
Council to decide on the Community action necessary to achieve the Treaty*s
environmental objectives.184 It is thus a key example of Community level governance
in an area where competences are shared, which, given the transboundary nature of the
environmental problem that it is seeking to address, seems entirely appropriate.185
Participants in the EU ETS are the operators of specified industrial installations,
each of which must have a permit in order to emit carbon dioxide. The initial
limitation of the scheme to emissions of carbon dioxide is one point of difference
with the UK ETS. Another difference is the compulsory nature of participation,
initial participation in the UK ETS having been voluntary only. A third difference is
that the installations covered include electricity generators, who were excluded from
eligibility to participate in the UK ETS.
Under the EU ETS, an operator of a specified installation is allocated with allowances
for each year, which correspond to the relevant installation*s target for the year. This
is a fourth point of difference with the UK ETS, the target being imposed rather than
being agreed in return for a share in an incentivisation fund. Allocation of allowances
is in accordance with a Community-wide emissions cap on the industries covered, the
cap being divided between the Member States in accordance with so-called &national
allocation plans* (&NAPs*).
At the end of each year, the operator of the relevant installation is required, under the
terms of its emission permit, to surrender allowances equal to the carbon dioxide that
it has actually emitted in that year. If the operator has insufficient allowances to cover
its emissions, then it must either purchase extra allowances from other operators or
pay a penalty. However, if the operator has more than enough allowances to cover its
emissions, then it may sell them to other operators.
The detail of the EU ETS, which is basically a &cap and trade* scheme similar to
earlier US examples designed to combat acid rain,186 is discussed in Chapter 28
below. Whilst unquestionably groundbreaking, as the first trans-national emissions
trading scheme, the design of the EU ETS has been described as &a pragmatic
181 See Kumi Kitamori, &Domestic GHG Emissions Trading Schemes: Recent Developments
and Current Status in Selected OECD Countries*, in OECD (2002), pp. 69每103.
182 See the overview of the EU ETS in Fiona Mullins and Jacqueline Karas, EU Emissions
Trading: Challenges and Implications of National Implementation (London: Royal
Institute of International Affairs, November 2003), pp. 12每14.
183 See para. 28.1 below.
184 See para. 28.2.1 below.
185 See para. 1.3 above.
186 See Steve Sorrell, &Turning an Early Start into a False Start: Implications of the EU Emissions
Trading Directive for the UK Climate Change Levy and Climate Change Agreements*, in
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Trading and Project-based Mechanisms (Paris: OECD, 2004), pp. 129每151, p. 130.
Preliminaries 27
compromise between economic efficiency and political acceptability*.187 Even that
pragmatic compromise may come in time to be severely tested.
(4) The Renewables Obligation (&the RO*)
The Renewables Obligation was introduced in April 2002. It was imposed under
powers granted to the relevant authorities by the Electricity Act 1989, as amended by
the Utilities Act 2000. As its name suggests, unlike the UK ETS, there was nothing
optional about it.
The RO requires an electricity supplier to prove to the regulator, the Office of Gas
and Electricity Markets (&Ofgem*),188 that, either alone or in combination with other
suppliers, it has supplied specified quantities of renewable source electricity189 to
customers in Great Britain within a specified period. The supplier must satisfy the
RO by producing so-called &Green Certificates* or &ROCs* to the regulator. Green
Certificates are traded, since the RO may be satisfied by the production of certificates
which were originally issued to a different supplier. Under the rules of the UK ETS,
the holder of Green Certificates may convert them into UK ETS allowances; the
converse is not, however, possible.190
The concept of Green Certificates is well-documented in the literature; they exist in
various forms throughout OECD countries.191
1.4.2.3 Regulation of mineral extraction
The key regulatory instrument here is, as mentioned above, aggregates levy.
The levy was introduced in the 2001 Finance Act.192 It has been chargeable,
since 1 April 2002, whenever quantities of taxable aggregate have been subjected
to commercial exploitation.193 Aggregate is rock, gravel or sand, together with
whatever substances are incorporated in the rock, gravel or sand or naturally occur
mixed with it.194 Aggregate is not taxable, inter alia, if it has previously been used
for construction purposes,195 a point which underlines the fact that the levy is aimed
at reducing the environmental impact of commercial quarrying. The width of the
&commercial exploitation* notion means that it is envisaged that imported aggregate
should be treated in the same way as aggregate originating in the UK. In line with
187 See Sorrell, op. cit., p.130.
188 See para. 4.2.1.3 below.
189 See para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) below.
190 See paras 21.5 and 20.6 below.
191 The concept of Green Certificates is referred to in the literature as a &tradeable renewable
energy certificate* (a &TREC*). See the survey of TRECs in Richard Baron and Ys谷 Serret,
&Renewable Energy Certificates: Trading Instruments for the Promotion of Renewable
Energy*, in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Implementing
Domestic Tradeable Permits: Recent Developments and Future Challenges (Paris: OECD,
2002), pp. 105每40.
192 Finance Act 2001, ss.16每49 and 109每11, Scheds 4每10.
193 Ibid., ss.16(1),(2) and 17(2).
194 Ibid., s.17(1).
195 Ibid., s.17(2)(b).
28 Environmental Taxation Law
the points discussed above, the supply of aggregate to a destination outside the UK
is relieved from the levy.196 Anyone who is responsible for subjecting aggregate to
commercial exploitation is liable to pay the levy.197 It is payable at a fixed amount
for each tonne of aggregate subjected to commercial exploitation, the amount of levy
payable on a part of a tonne being the proportionately reduced amount.198
Aggregates levy is discussed in detail in Chapter 13 below. Like climate change
levy and, despite an early governmental equivocation,199 its status as a tax is not
in doubt.200 Unlike climate change levy, it is by comparison a relatively &small*
environmental tax, lacking a panoply of associated instruments. Secondly, it is clearly
an environmental tax, the subjection to commercial exploitation of the material in
question being a proxy for the environmental effects of quarrying. Although the
argument that aggregates levy is a direct tax might be a good one, there is judicial
authority to the effect that the levy is an indirect tax.201 On this basis, the BTA for
which the tax provides is a lawful one.
1.4.2.4 Transport regulation
Two economic instruments are currently in operation (setting aside, for example,
excise duty differentials):202
1 Powers to introduce workplace parking levies were introduced by the legislation
instituting the new Mayor and Assembly for Greater London.203 Similar powers
were subsequently granted to other local authorities in England and Wales,204
which legislation also amended the earlier measures relating to London.205
Workplace parking levies are discussed in detail in Chapter 17 below. To the
authors* knowledge, no local authority has so far206 exercised these powers.
2 The legislation setting up the Mayor and Assembly for Greater London also
introduced the concept of road user charging.207 Again, similar powers were
subsequently granted to other local authorities in England and Wales,208 and
again this legislation also amended the earlier provisions relating to London.209
196 See para. 8.4.5.1 below.
197 Finance Act 2001, s.16(3).
198 Ibid., s.16(4).
199 See para. 13.1 below.
200 See para. 7.3.1 below.
201 See R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51, paras 68每78 (Moses, J.).
202 See para. 22.2 below.
203 Greater London Authority Act 1999, s.296 and Sched. 24.
204 Transport Act 2000, ss.178每190.
205 Ibid., Sched. 13, paras 19每43.
206 That is, as at December 2004.
207 Greater London Authority Act 1999, s.295 and Sched. 23. &Road user charging* is used
here in the sense of &cordon pricing* (see Stephen Ison, Road User Charging: Issues and
Policies (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2004), p. 14).
208 Transport Act 2000, ss.163每77.
209 Ibid., Sched. 13, paras 1每18.
Preliminaries 29
In 2002, the government also took powers to tax road user by heavy lorries.210
Road user charging schemes are discussed in Chapter 18 below.
To date,211 only Durham, in the northeast of England, has introduced a road
user charging scheme outside London.
1.4.2.5 Geographical and jurisdictional considerations
Each of landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates levy apply throughout
the UK. For most tax purposes, the UK consists of England, Wales, Scotland and
Northern Ireland, plus, dating from the 1973 Finance Act, the territorial sea and
continental shelf. Statutory provisions governing the territorial effect of a tax are, of
course, of the first importance on traditional tax law principles.212
Although there is no special definition of the UK in Finance Act 1996, the nature
of landfill tax means that such a definition may, in any event, be unnecessary. This
is because Finance Act 1996, s.66, provides, inter alia, that land is a landfill site at a
given time if at that time a site licence for the purposes of Part II of the Environmental
Protection Act 1990 or an IPPC permit is in force in relation to the land, in each case
authorising disposals in or on the land.213 In an electronic age, the attractions of such
a &land-bound* tax to the resourceful legislator are obvious, and this is again a point
to which we shall return.214
In relation to aggregates levy, whose status as a property tax is rather more doubtful,
the legislator has sought to achieve a comparable effect by casting very wide the net
of accountability and registrability.215 This is a particularly worrisome feature of
the levy, and it is with some relief that we find that the interpretation provisions of
Finance Act 2000 (the principal statute relating to climate change levy) do define the
UK, in the way familiar from non-environmental taxes as including the territorial
waters adjacent to any part of the UK.216
It was mentioned above that all of the devolved administrations have extensive
powers in relation to the environment.217 The non-tax measures referred to above
illustrate some of the consequences of the proposition. A good example is the LATS.
In England, the allocation of allowances under the LATS is the responsibility of the
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs;218 in Scotland, it is
the responsibility of the Scottish Ministers;219 in Wales, it is the National Assembly
210 Finance Act 2002, s.137.
211 That is, as at December 2004.
212 Two fundamental jurisdictional principles, each of which reflects an axiom of international
practice, apply with full force in UK tax law. See Government of India v. Taylor, [1955]
AC 491 (in the absence of express agreement 每 which there is within the EU 每 one state
will not enforce the revenue law of another state) and Clark v. Oceanic Contractors Inc.,
[1983] STC 35 (UK tax laws apply only in the UK).
213 See the discussion in para. 15.2 below.
214 See Chapter 26 below.
215 See para. 1.4.2.3 above and para. 13.3 below.
216 See Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 147.
217 See para. 1.3 above.
218 See Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.24(1)(a). See para. 4.2.1.2(1) below.
219 Ibid., s.24(1)(b). See para. 4.2.2 below.
30 Environmental Taxation Law
for Wales;220 and in Northern Ireland, it is ,the Department of the Environment.221
Different commencement dates are proposed, for example, 1 October 2004 (Wales)
and 1 April 2005 (Scotland) and there will be regional variations in the operation
of the scheme. For example, in Wales, allowances will not be tradeable, while in
Northern Ireland, although they will not be capable of being traded, they will be
capable of being banked and borrowed.222
1.4.3 Taxation context of the UK*s environmental taxes
1.4.3.1 Relationship between environmental and non-environmental taxes
There are seven main non-environmental taxes in the UK: income tax, VAT, national
insurance contributions (&NICs*),223 corporation tax, capital gains tax (&CGT*),
stamp duties (which are being supplemented, and largely replaced, by stamp duty
reserve tax and stamp duty land tax) and inheritance tax (&IHT*).
Each one except IHT224 will be mentioned with sufficient frequency in the rest
of the study for a brief note of its essential features to be justifiable at this stage,225
together with a brief note of its relevance to the environmental regulatory instruments
mentioned above.226
1 Income tax is chargeable on the income of individuals, trusts and estates, for socalled
&tax years*.227 In essence 每 although this is probably an over-simplification
每 the amount charged for each tax year is based on the statutory income of the
person(s) in question for the tax year. The person*s statutory income is then
reduced by any available personal allowances, with the remainder being taxed at
the starting, basic or higher rates.228
220 Ibid., s.24(1)(c). See para. 4.2.2 below also.
221 Ibid., s.24(1)(d), reflecting the dissolution of the Northern Ireland Assembly and the reimposition
of direct rule.
222 See 353 ENDS Report (2004) 47每48.
223 These ought to be treated as taxes, rather than charges, since payments are &graduated in a
way which does not relate directly to the graduation in benefit* (see Tiley, op. cit., p. 6, and
Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd v. ST Harle (Owners), [1962] SLT 114 (employers* NICs
are taxes)). As such, NICs are hypothecated taxes (see para. 11.2 below).
224 Inheritance tax is a tax which has but a small part to play in what follows. In essence,
however, it is a tax on non-commercial transfers of capital, whether during an individual*s
lifetime or on death. Lifetime transfers, where they are taxed, are taxed more favourably
than transfers on death, the latter being taxed at double the rate of the former.
225 General guides to UK tax law which can be especially recommended are: Davies:
Principles of Tax Law, ed. by Geoffrey Morse and David Williams, 4th edn (London:
Sweet and Maxwell, 2000); Tiley, op. cit.; and Lesley Browning et al., Revenue Law
每 Principles and Practice, 22nd edn (London: LexisNexis Tolley, 2004).
226 These points are developed in much greater detail in the rest of the book, especially in
Chapters 23 and 24 below.
227 6 April to the following 5 April.
228 Or the special rate on dividend income.
Preliminaries 31
2 Capital gains tax is chargeable for tax years on the realised chargeable gains,
less realised allowable losses, of individuals, trusts and estates. It is charged for
individuals at the same rate as their marginal income tax rate, and for personal
representatives and trustees at a single rate.
3 Corporation tax is chargeable at starting, small company and main rates, on the
income and net chargeable gains of companies* accounting periods.
4 National insurance contributions are chargeable on the earnings of employed
earners, and payable by both the employee (&primary contributions*) and by the
employer (&secondary contributions*). Primary and secondary contributions alike
are calculated as percentages of the employee*s earnings for so-called &earnings
periods*, from lower earning thresholds, up to an upper earnings limit.
Certain general points can be made about the four taxes summarised above: (1)
not all income is taxable (in the case of income tax and corporation tax), and not
all payments are earnings (in the case of NICs); (2) in the case of income tax and
corporation tax on income alike, the question of what is income and what is capital is,
in general, ascertained by reference to the same tedious and rather arbitrary rules;229
(3) for both income tax and corporation tax on income, income must fall within one
of the so-called &Schedules* (A, D (Cases I and II) and F)230 to be taxable, except
where (in the case of an individual) it is employment income, in which case it is
taxed under the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003; and (4) in the case
of both CGT and corporation tax on chargeable gains, the realisation of gains on the
disposal of business assets may generally be postponed when the assets in question
are being replaced.
An obvious way of &greening* each of the above taxes (but especially income tax
and corporation tax) is to create exemptions, deductions, reliefs or tax credits to
reflect various &environmentally-friendly* forms of behaviour.231
5 Value added tax is chargeable on domestic supplies of goods and services, on
cross-border acquisitions from other Member States of the EU and upon imports
from countries outside the EU. Depending on the circumstances, when it involves
a cross-border supply, it may be charged either on the origin principle or on
the destination principle.232 It differs from all of the taxes discussed above in
a number of major respects: (1) it is an indirect, as opposed to a direct, tax;233
(2) rather than merely having a counterpart in other EU Member States, it is a
European tax in the sense of being created pursuant to the terms of the European
Treaty; and (3) it features a much more complex rate structure, a structure which
in the UK context has been described as &# one of the most complex rate
structures for VAT in the developed world*.234
229 See, for example, British Insulated and Helsby Cables Ltd v. Atherton, (1925) 10 TC 177;
IRC v. Church Commissioners for England, [1976] STC 339.
230 Individuals, trusts and estates only, in the case of Schedule F.
231 See Chapters 23每25 below. The Scedules will be discontinued in 2005 for income tax.
232 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
233 Ibid.
234 See Davies, op. cit., p. 385.
32 Environmental Taxation Law
6 Stamp duties have recently attained a significance in the UK tax system which
only a few years ago would have seemed barely credible. This is in some measure
due to recent legislative steps taken to &green* the UK tax system235 but it is
also symptomatic of a current tendency of governments to favour property and
product taxes in an attempt to combat erosions in the tax base.236 Stamp duties
are taxes on particular types of document, at rates that are either ad valorem or
fixed.
Provided that the strict requirements of s.74(1), Income and Corporation Taxes
Act 1988, are met, payments in respect of environmental taxes for which no credit
has been obtained237 should be deductible in calculating trading profits238 for the
purposes of income tax and corporation tax. The same point should in principle apply
for payments made under the PRN scheme, the UK ETS, the EU ETS and the RO.239
Penalties under, for example, the UK ETS or EU ETS, are presumably not deductible
in calculating trading profits, however.240 Clearly not deductible for these purposes,
furthermore, are civil penalties imposed under the three main environmental tax
codes.241 Value added tax is, in principle, chargeable on the environmental taxinclusive
amount of the price charged for, for example, landfill services supplied
(landfill tax) or electricity supplied (climate change levy).242
1.4.3.2 Geographical and jurisdictional considerations
In the cases of income tax and corporation tax on income, the general rule is that,
where a person is resident in the UK, he is liable to tax on his worldwide income;243
where a person is not resident in the UK, then he is liable to tax only on income
arising to him in the UK. These principles reflect a series of agreed assumptions
about international taxation applicable to all OECD members, and which differ from
state to state only in matters of detail.244 They are consistent with the idea, already
referred to, that direct taxes are applied consistently with the origin principle.245 The
235 See Part II, Section B below.
236 See Chapter 26 below.
237 See para. 16.9 below.
238 Note the peculiar point on the deductibility of 10 per cent of contributions to environmental
trusts (see paras 21.3.2 and 24.8 below).
239 See para. 24.7 below for a detailed discussion of these points.
240 See McKnight v. Sheppard, [1999] 3 All ER 491.
241 Ibid. See para. 16.14 below.
242 See the Sixth VAT Council Directive 77/388/EEC, Art 11A(2)(a), which states that, for
the purposes of VAT, &the taxable amount shall include taxes, duties, levies and charges,
excluding the value-added tax itself*.
243 This is subject to the qualification that, where an individual is resident in the UK but
domiciled elsewhere, he will generally be taxed on his foreign income (and capital gains)
&only if it is remitted to the UK* (see summary in Browning et al., op. cit., para. [13.1]).
244 See also Williams, op. cit., p. 15, and, generally, Brian Arnold and Michael McIntyre,
International Tax Primer, 2nd edn (The Hague: Kluwer, 2002) and Roy Rohatgi, Basic
International Taxation (London: Kluwer, 2002), p. 12.
245 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
Preliminaries 33
same basic principles, with appropriate modifications, apply in relation to CGT and
to corporation tax on chargeable gains.246 Because of double taxation in the case of a
person resident in one jurisdiction who has a source of income in another, credits or
exemptions are available either unilaterally, or under the provisions of the relevant
double tax convention.247
Liability to each of NICs and VAT depend on a range of other rules, the effect of
which may perhaps be summarised as follows. In relation to NICs, liability depends
upon residence or presence in the UK.248 No doubt because of its nature, the position
in relation to VAT is somewhat different. Liability to VAT depends on the State in
which the supply, acquisition or importation249 has taken place, as to the determination
of which there are detailed rules,250 reflecting the origin and destination principles
discussed above.251
In relation to income tax, corporation tax and CGT, the UK is defined as Great
Britain and Northern Ireland.252 However, it is also deemed to include the territorial
sea of the UK and every designated area designated under the Continental Shelf Act
1964, s.1(7).253
As regards NICs, the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992 states
that any reference to Great Britain in the Act &includes a reference to the territorial
waters of the UK adjacent to Great Britain, [and] # any reference to the UK includes
a reference to the territorial waters of the UK*.254 The theme is continued in the VAT
legislation, the UK including, for the purpose of that tax, the territorial sea of the
UK.255 The somewhat anomalous status of the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man
should be noted in this context. They are not included within the general definition
of the UK in the Interpretation Act 1978, Sched. 1. However, for VAT purposes only,
the Isle of Man, although not the Channel Islands, and the UK are treated as a single
area.256
246 It should not be assumed from this, however, that the position is straightforward, since
there are detailed exceptions (see Whitehouse, op. cit., ch. 20 (CGT) and paras [32.121]每
[32.140]).
247 See the discussions in Williams, op. cit., pp. 12每17, and Davies, op. cit., paras 26每07每26每
09.
248 Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, s.1(6) and Social Security
(Contributions) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1004, reg. 145.
249 That is, from countries outside the EU.
250 Value Added Tax Act 1994, ss.7 (place of supply), 13 (place of acquisition) and 15(1)
(place of importation).
251 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
252 Interpretation Act 1978, Sched. 1.
253 See Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988, s.830 (inserted following the discovery of
oil in the North Sea (see para. 2.4.3 below)).
254 See Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, s.172.
255 See Value Added Tax Act 1994, s.96(11).
256 See the Isle of Man Act 1979, s.6.
34 Environmental Taxation Law
1.5 Institutional framework
It has already been mentioned that Customs is the government department mainly
responsible for administering each of landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates
levy.257 The detail of the department will be discussed in para. 4.2.1.2(2) below. For
the moment, it should simply be noted that Customs is the department traditionally
responsible for the administration of the UK*s indirect taxes, plus customs duties
and excise duties. The overall position is not as straightforward, however, as this
may suggest, since various ancillary aspects of the taxes are administered by other
Departments and bodies. For example, with climate change levy, in addition to
Customs, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (&Defra*), the
Department of Trade and Industry (&the DTI*) and Ofgem also have responsibility
for related aspects of the levy. The relevant responsibilities of each of these are also
examined in detail in Chapter 4 below.
Direct taxes (that is, in this case, non-environmental taxes) are traditionally the
responsibility of the Board of Inland Revenue (generally referred to simply as &the
Revenue*). Again, the institutional detail of the Inland Revenue will be examined
below.258 There are long-term plans to amalgamate the Revenue and Customs
Departments, following the controversy surrounding a number of recent high-profile
cases. The Revenue*s main interest in the subject matter of this book has been in
devising the environmentally-inspired tax subsidies discussed in Chapters 23 and 24
below, with a view to &greening* the UK*s direct tax system.
It should be stressed that the institutional framework of the study as a whole is
much wider than simply the departments and the executive body mentioned above.
For the moment, however, the key point is that Customs has been the tax authority
more closely involved with the UK*s environmental levies. The Department for
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, arguably, has become more involved in the
economic instruments enterprise in the last seven or so years than either of them.
1.6 Scheme of the book
All of the foregoing will have assisted the reader in gaining an idea of the basic
concepts at work in the areas covered by the book, as well as the contexts in which
those concepts operate. Chapter 2 looks at the industrial sectors whose activities
are sought to be regulated by the instruments under discussion. This should assist
in an appreciation of the design issues involved in each of the instruments under
discussion.
From Chapter 2 onwards, the discussion progresses in three main Parts. In Part
II, we examine the institutional framework referred to in the previous paragraph in
some detail. This is intended to give the reader some idea of the provenance of the
various measures under discussion. The discussion is followed, in Chapter 5, by an
analysis of the government*s proffered technical justifications for the environmental
taxes referred to above.
257 See para. 1.1 above.
258 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) below.
Preliminaries 35
The detail of the regulatory and taxation contexts referred to earlier in this
introductory chapter forms the matter of Chapters 6 and 7. Chapter 8 then widens
the scope of the discussion to look at the international context of the instruments
under discussion. This is all the more necessary given the international context of
the climate change problem which at least one of the taxes is professedly seeking to
address. This discussion is intended to provide a context for the European aspects
discussed in Chapter 12.
Part III is mainly concerned with the fine detail of the measures outlined in the
present chapter. It should thus be of interest, not only to practitioners, but also to
policy-makers, reflecting, as it does, insights into both the practical operation of the
measures under discussion and also the criticisms which can be made of them. As
to the latter point, the key chapter is Chapter 21, which, rather ambitiously, seeks
to draw together the various policy and industrial aspects of the measures under
discussion. Practitioners will no doubt be very interested in the synthesis of the
administrative provisions applicable to the three main environmental taxes, which
are discussed in Chapter 16.
Part IV concentrates on new directions in the great experiment with which the
book is concerned. Chapter 28 is devoted to the EU ETS. Taxes and other measures
canvassed but as yet not implemented are discussed in Chapter 27 of the book. Under
discussion in Chapter 27, therefore, is a combination of measures, some already
implemented, and some as yet only projected (for example an incineration tax and a
pesticides tax).
Finally, in Part V, we attempt to gather together the threads of the discussion,
with a view to offering some general conclusions about the UK*s experience of
environmental taxes thus far. This is the fruit of an immensely detailed review of the
published sources but it is hoped that it will inspire readers to test through &empirical*
study some of the conclusions to which it points.
The material under discussion is characterised by its diversity. To assist the reader
in navigating it, we have included brief &orientation* chapters at the beginning and
end of Part II and at the beginning of Part III. Although they are very short and do
not, in general, contain new material, they will help the reader to anticipate the main
themes of each of the chief components of the book.
This page intentionally left blank
Chapter 2
Regulated Sectors
2.1 Introduction
Having described the scope of the study, we next present a sketch of the structures of
the main sectors whose activities are subject to the environmental levies, subsidies
and other economic instruments introduced in the previous chapter. Such a brief
description is justifiable by the need to refer, in general terms, to the environmental
externalities created by particular sectors of industry. However, it is also desirable
because, unless the reader has at least an outline knowledge of how the regulated
sectors actually operate, together with some awareness of the commercial issues
facing those sectors, it will be difficult to gain a full appreciation of the significance
of the instruments under discussion.
In this chapter, therefore, the reader will find brief descriptions of the sectors
affected by the three environmental taxes and other instruments introduced in Chapter
1. The sectors in question are waste management, energy and mineral extraction.
Of the three, the first and third are relatively straightforward and their discussion
is therefore commensurately brief. With the energy sector, however, the position is
somewhat different. With the obvious exception of oil, the relevant industries are all
former state monopolies and the relevant post-nationalisation structures, especially
those relating to electricity and gas, are extremely complex ones.1 The issues arising
from these ex-state industries are not merely ones of technical complexity, however.
The post-nationalisation structures have also proved more than a little difficult to
reconcile with key objectives of environmental policy. Nowhere is this more apparent
than in the problematic relationship between the UK*s energy policy and the design
of climate change levy, together with its associated economic instruments. This is a
theme to which we shall return at various points in the book.
Landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates levy are all single-stage indirect
taxes.2 This being so, and although each impose considerable compliance burdens
on the industries referred to above, the three taxes rely for their incentivising effect
on the fact that, when chargeable, they are passed on to their customers. Of equal
importance, therefore, to the structures of the three industries referred to above
are those of the customers themselves. In outlining the waste management and
mineral extraction industries, therefore, we have included some brief comments
on the businesses and other bodies that they serve and on the impact on the latter
of the instruments concerned. In the case of the energy sector, we have devoted
a separate paragraph to enumerating briefly those industries which, as intensive
users of energy, are particularly relevant to climate change levy and its associated
1 The regulatory provisions are discussed in para. 6.4 below. The role of the gas and
electricity markets* regulator, Ofgem, is discussed in para. 4.2.1.3 below.
2 See paras 1.4.2.1(1), 1.4.2.2(1) and 1.4.2.3 above.
38 Environmental Taxation Law
instruments.3 Besides being liable to pay climate change levy on their energy
use, they are shortly also to become participants in the EU Emissions Trading
Scheme (&the EU ETS*) which is scheduled for introduction in January 2005.4 The
relationship between the levy and the EU ETS is an intricately-woven thread in
the discussion both of the levy and of the EU ETS. It is further complicated,
moreover, by the interaction of each one with the pre-existing UK Emissions
Trading Scheme (&the UK ETS*).5
Neither of the authors is, nor professes to be, a specialist in industrial economics or
sectoral analysis. As discussed in para. 1.2.2 above, the principal aim of the book is
to offer a critical account of the environmental taxes and other instruments making
up its subject matter. The details which we have attempted to capture in the present
chapter are therefore intended to be sufficient only to render more intelligible some
of the technical issues involved in the larger discussion. It is for this reason that
we have included at the end of the chapter a brief paragraph on the issues facing
the air transport and road freight transport industries. Although the civil aviation
industry falls outside the scope of existing economic instruments for environmental
protection,6 its prospective inclusion in the EU ETS, together with the possibility
of the &greening* of airport charges,7 makes a quick sketch of the industry useful
here. Likewise with the road freight transport industry, especially given that one
of its trade associations has 每 surprisingly perhaps 每 given cautious support to the
proposed scheme for charging heavy lorries by reference to road usage,8 which is
now due to be introduced in 2007.9
Since the larger discussion involves an examination, not only of the institutional
aspects of the instruments under consideration, but also of the processes by which
they have passed into law, reference is often made in what follows to the responses of
trade associations and environmental pressure groups to the various policy initiatives
under discussion. We have also taken the opportunity to introduce, where appropriate,
the main trade associations and environmental pressure groups that continue to
participate in those processes.
2.2 Trade associations, policy-makers and pressure groups
The commercial concerns of each of the sectors described in the present chapter are
represented by a number of trade associations. Equally, the environmental externalities
3 Together with the landfilling of waste, these are activities covered by the Integrated
Pollution Prevention and Control (&IPPC*) regime (see para. 6.2.3 below).
4 See para. 28.3 below.
5 See Chapter 20 below. Unlike the UK ETS, the EU ETS includes power stations (see para.
28.3 below). However, the beautiful simplicity of this statement is disfigured by the fact
that an electricity generator may convert Renewable Obligation Certificates into UK ETS
allowances (see paras 6.4.3.1(2), 20.6 and 21.5 below).
6 That is, on the basis that air passenger duty is not an environmental tax (see para. 1.2.1.5(2)
above).
7 See para. 2.6 below.
8 See para. 27.3 below.
9 See Wright, Financial Times, 6 February 2004, p. 5.
Regulated Sectors 39
attributable to each of those sectors have long been the preoccupation of a number
of high profile environmental pressure groups. The development of the present
government*s policy on environmental levies, subsidies and other instruments has
attempted conspicuously to build a consensus around their differing viewpoints.10
There is an extensive literature, not only on the relative influence of the interests of
economic groups and ideas on policy-making generally, but also on their influence
specifically on environmental policy-making.11 It is beyond the scope of this book
either to attempt to add to that literature or to do more than to speculate on the
relative weight of ideas and interest groups in shaping the various instruments under
consideration. However, in describing the various industrial sectors affected by the
levies, subsidies and other instruments under discussion, it is not inappropriate to
begin by drawing attention to two organisations with high profiles in debates on
economic instruments in environmental protection: the Confederation of British
Industry (&the CBI*)12 and the Friends of the Earth.13 The former body is generally
recognised as being representative of the views of British business; the latter is one
of the UK*s leading environmental pressure groups. The CBI*s activities are financed
by industry and commerce; Friends of the Earth is largely financed by individual
donations. Representatives of both groups are strident voices in the British media.14
The efforts of both bodies are highly coordinated and both have some greater or
lesser international presence.
Despite the undoubtedly high profiles of the organisations just referred to, it
would be too simplistic to view the trade associations, the policy-makers and the
environmentalists as representing three mutually antagonistic corners of a noisy
triangular debate. Setting aside both the ritual complaints of regulated industries about
the effects of regulation on competitiveness and the dissatisfactions of environmental
campaigners on the lack of progress in attaining environmental goals, arguments
about economic instruments in environmental protection tend to operate within a
broad consensus of the need for some regulatory response to commonly recognised
problems. Thus, even allowing for occasional exceptions,15 the contributions of each
to the public debate on economic instruments for environmental protection tends
to be a nuanced and balanced one. The CBI*s consistent viewpoint on economic
instruments is well demonstrated from its comment in a policy brief of April 2002
that, although &# the use of environmental economic instruments can be justified,
10 This approach has often been attributed to Anthony Giddens* argument for the renewal
of social democracy in The Third Way: The Renewal of Social Democracy (Oxford:
Polity Press, 1998) and The Third Way and its Critics (Oxford: Polity Press, 2000). Both
books draw attention to the influence of ecological movements and the latter endorses the
technical justifications for green taxes discussed in Chapter 5 below (see The Third Way
and its Critics, pp. 100每101).
11 See, for example, Anthony Giddens, The Third Way: The Renewal of Social Democracy,
pp. 54每64.
12 See www.cbi.org.uk. The current Director-General of the CBI is Sir Digby Jones, formerly
senior partner of a large firm of Birmingham solicitors.
13 See www.foe.co.uk.
14 For example, Sir Digby Jones*s eloquent objections to the EU ETS on BBC*s Today
programme on 19 January 2004.
15 See, for example, 348 ENDS Report (2004) 18每22, 20.
40 Environmental Taxation Law
# the theory does not always translate well into practical design. This leads to
sub-optimal results for both business competitiveness and the environment, which
we believe the government should put right*.16 For its part, Friends of the Earth,
commenting on the 2003 Pre-Budget Report,17 said that &[t]he Chancellor [that is, of
the Exchequer]18 has accepted the concept of sustainability as a basis for the UK*s
future economy. However recently steps taken have been increasingly cautious. The
clearest indicator is the considerable fall in environmental taxation in years, for 9.7
per cent of total taxes in 1999 to 8.8 per cent in 2002*.19 Both assessments are, of
course, highly problematic,20 although both accept the principle of using economic
instruments in environmental protection.
If, as is widely, although not universally, held to be the case, the government*s
approach to the use of economic instruments has become unnecessarily cautious,
this may itself be indicative of its preoccupation with creating an atmosphere of
consensus around its policies on environmental economic instruments. Whether this
preoccupation, with its seemingly endless streams of consultative documents and
policy justifications, masks a rather less palatable reality, is something to which we
shall presently return. Suffice it to say for the present that it is noteworthy that all of
the trade associations referred to in the subsequent paras of this chapter have been
involved, to a greater or lesser extent, and with varying degrees of success, in the
consultations leading to the introduction of the instruments discussed in this book.
The Department of Trade and Industry (the &DTI*), whose role in environmental
regulation is discussed in a subsequent chapter,21 even supports22 a body called the
Trade Association Forum (&the TAF*),23 whose membership includes a number of
the trade associations referred to in succeeding paras.
2.3 Waste management industry
According to the trade association which represents firms providing waste management
and associated services,24 almost 430 million tonnes of waste are generated in the UK
16 See Confederation of British Industry Business Environment Brief, Green Taxes: Rhetoric
and Reality (London: April 2002), p. 1. This viewpoint is closely consistent with the view
of the theory and reality of environmental taxes taken by a former Director-General of the
CBI (see Adair Turner, Just Capital: The Liberal Economy (London: Pan Books, 2002),
pp. 310每15).
17 See para. 21.3.2 below.
18 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) below.
19 See Friends of the Earth Briefing, Time for a Sustainable Economy? (London: Friends of
the Earth, November 2003), p. 1.
20 The CBI*s in that it is always possibly to lament &the shadow between the idea and the
reality*, especially from a viewpoint of some self-interest; the Friends of the Earth*s
because a drop in revenue from environmental taxes might indicate that they are actually
having some environmental effect!
21 See para. 4.2.1.2 below.
22 Together with the CBI and the TAF*s own membership.
23 See www.taforum.org.
24 The Environmental Services Association Ltd. See para. 2.2.3 below.
Regulated Sectors 41
every year.25 The association divides this into four main categories, that is, waste
arisings from agriculture, from mining and quarrying, from construction and demolition
and, finally, from other industries, commerce and households. The waste arisings in
the fourth category are estimated at 110 million tonnes per annum, over 45 per cent
coming from the relevant industrial sectors, with a little over 27 per cent arising in
each of the commercial and household sectors. Almost 60 per cent of all of the waste
arising in the UK each year is, according to the same source, sent to landfill.
The structure of the industry whose business it is to sort out, or at least to bury or
burn, the mess referred to above has recently and usefully been outlined by Barrow.26
Responsibilities relating to the collection and disposal of waste are imposed by
legislation on local authorities,27 although the services relating thereto are supplied
under contract between those authorities and private sector firms which provide the
collection and disposal services. Waste disposal is the responsibility of the waste
disposal authority (&WDA*), which is usually the county council,28 while waste
collection is the responsibility of the waste collection authority (&WCA*), usually the
relevant district council.29 Where, instead of county and district councils, there is
a unitary authority, the authority in question combines the collection and disposal
functions. The relevant WCA contracts either with its own refuse collection service
or a private sector firm for the collection of waste from commercial premises and
households. Then, under the direction of the WDA, the firm takes the waste to a landfill
site, incinerator or other disposal site. Landfill sites (usually disused quarries or mine
workings) are generally owned and operated by private sector firms with whom the
WDA has negotiated contracts. By Finance Act 1996, s.41, the landfill site operator
is, of course, the person liable to pay the landfill tax charged on a taxable disposal.30
The contracts, made between WDAs and landfill site operators, specify minimum
and maximum annual quantities of waste, are usually concluded for relatively long
periods of time and contain provisions for renegotiation in appropriate circumstances.
The gate price per tonne of waste, exclusive of landfill tax, is usually related to a
price index for the contract term. The costs of collecting the waste and transporting
it to the landfill site are borne by the WCA, while the WDA pays the gate price to the
landfill site operator. It will thus be appreciated that the landfill tax collected by the
site operator has itself been paid by a public authority out of public funds.31
The environmental effects of landfilling waste32 and the understandable public
enthusiasm for recycling are well known. Landfill produces emissions to air, water
and soil and causes disamenities such as visual intrusion, noise, odour, vermin and
25 See www.esauk.org/waste, from which some of the information in this paragraph is drawn.
26 Michael Barrow, &An Economic Analysis of the UK Landfill Permits Scheme*, (2003) 24
FS 361每81, 363. This paragraph is much indebted to the portrait of the industry structure
contained in that paper.
27 See para. 6.3.2.1 below.
28 See para. 4.2.3 below.
29 Ibid.
30 See paras 1.4.2.1(1) above and 15.2 below.
31 See para. 21.4.1 below.
32 See, for example, Cambridge Econometrics, A Study to Estimate the Disamenity Costs of
Landfill in Great Britain (London: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,
2003), section 1.
42 Environmental Taxation Law
litter.33 Despite suggestions that recycling may be more equivocal a good than it may
at first appear,34 enthusiasm for household recycling is undiminished.35
The waste management industry is characterised by a close engagement with policy
development, both at the sectoral level, via the Environmental Services Association
(&the ESA*), and at the level of individual firms. The ESA, which is a member of
the TAF,36 proclaims a vision of &an economically and environmentally sustainable
waste management industry for the United Kingdom* and, to this end, vows to assist,
not only its members, but all levels of government in the UK, to achieve the vision.37
Among particular firms, especially prominent perhaps is Biffa Waste Services Ltd,38
which has issued a number of publications dealing with policy issues in waste
management39 and has also funded mass-balance research40 through the landfill tax
credit scheme (&the LTCS*).41
2.4 Energy industries and consumers
2.4.1 Electricity
The denationalised electricity42 industry in England and Wales43 comprises four
main activities:44 generation,45 transmission, distribution and supply. Of these,
33 Cambridge Econometrics, op. cit., para. 1.5.
34 See, for example, the works referenced in Bjørn Lomborg*s The Skeptical Environmentalist:
Measuring the Real State of the World (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001),
p. 209. On the current status of Lomborg*s controversial work, see Houlder and MacCarthy,
Financial Times, 18 December 2003, p. 15. See also Richard D. North, Life on a Modern
Planet (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2001).
35 This has recently been illustrated by the easy passage through Parliament of the symbolically
important Household Waste Recycling Act 2003, originally a Private Member*s Bill
introduced by a Labour MP, Mrs Joan Ruddock (see 346 ENDS Report (2003)).
36 See para. 2.2 above.
37 See www.esauk.org.
38 See www.biffa.co.uk. Interestingly, Biffa is a subsidiary of Severn Trent plc (www.
severn-trent.com), a water utility. The latter acquired Biffa to diversify out of regulated
water activities, which are subject to severe &capping*.
39 See www.biffa.co.uk.
40 See www.massbalance.org.
41 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) below. Biffa*s sponsorship of mass-balance research seems to have been
hit by the government*s decision in November 2002 to withdraw two-thirds of the landfill
tax credit scheme (&the LTCS*) (see para. 21.3.2 below and 336 ENDS Report (2003)).
42 See Walt Patterson, Transforming Electricity: the Coming Generation of Change (London:
Earthscan, 1999), pp. 3每5. Since electricity cannot be stored (except indirectly in pumped
storage schemes), demand must exactly match supply. At every moment of every day,
therefore, the electricity being fed into the system must match the electricity being used
from the system.
43 Different arrangements apply for Scotland and Northern Ireland.
44 See Utility Week, The Electricity Supply Handbook 2004, 57th edn (Sutton: Reed Business
Information, 2004), p. 13 (&ESH*). See also www.energynetworks.org below.
45 With which &production* is synonymous.
Regulated Sectors 43
generation and supply are subject to competition, whilst transmission and distribution
are monopolies.46 The two monopoly elements have been separated by legislation47
from the competitive elements,48 making the industry among the most liberalised
electricity industries in the world.
The first competitive activity, generation, refers to the conversion of primary and
renewable energy sources into electricity.49 Most electricity is generated at power
stations fired by gas or coal, or at nuclear power stations,50 with renewables as yet
accounting for only a small proportion of the total electricity generated in the UK in
each year.51 There are around 40 major electricity generators, including Powergen (UK)
plc,52 RWE Innogy Holdings plc,53 Drax Power Ltd54 and British Energy plc.55
The second competitive element, supply, is the business of buying electricity in bulk
from generators and selling it on to domestic, commercial and industrial consumers.56
The electricity industry therefore has a wholesale stage (generators and suppliers) and
a retail stage (suppliers and customers). Under Finance Act 2000, sch. 6, paras 5(1)
and 40(1), it is the supplier who is generally the person liable to account for climate
change levy,57 which makes it a downstream, rather than an upstream, energy tax.58
The wholesale trade in electricity has taken place since March 2001 under the New
Electricity Trading Arrangements (&NETA*).59 A replacement for NETA, the British
Electricity Trading and Transmission Arrangements (&BETTA*), to include Scotland
46 See Callum McCarthy, &Ofgem: Characteristics and Issues of the British Electricity
Market* 12 [2001/2002] 6 ULR 170每72.
47 See para. 6.4.3.1 below.
48 The &unbundling* of European energy markets has been a major theme of European
Energy policy for decades (see Carlos Ocana et al., Competition in Electricity Markets
(OECD/IEA, 2001) and para. 12.2.6.3 below). The unbundled energy markets of Europe,
in which Enron was a major player, fortunately survived Enron*s collapse (see &Power
play*, Economist, 24 July 2003).
49 ESH, p. 13.
50 See DTI/National Audit Office, Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics 2004 (London:
HMSO, 2004). This is an annual publication.
51 Ibid.
52 See www.powergenplc.com.
53 See www.rweinnogy.com.
54 See www.draxpower.co.uk. See para. 21.4.3 below.
55 See www.british-energy.com. British Energy plc, whose core business is nuclear
generation, is currently the subject of a proposed £5 billion government-backed rescue,
the background to which has been heavily criticised by the House of Commons Public
Accounts Committee (see Taylor, Financial Times, 12 February 2004, p. 2). See paras
6.4.3.1(3) and 21.4.3 below.
56 ESH, p. 13.
57 Being the holder of a supply licence under Electricity Act 1989, s.6(1)(d) (see Finance Act
2000, Sched. 6, para. 150(2)(a) and paras 7.4 and 15.1 below).
58 See para. 11.3.1 below.
59 The New Electricity Trading Arrangements replaced the &pool* originally created on the
privatisation of the electricity market in 1990. On the introduction of NETA, see, for
example, &Beyond the pool*, Economist, 1 March 2001. For the background to NETA, see
Dieter Helm, Energy: The State and the Market British Energy Policy since 1979, revised
edn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), ch. 17.
44 Environmental Taxation Law
as well as England and Wales, is expected to be introduced in 2005.60 The main
electricity suppliers, among many, include npower Ltd61 and SEEBOARD Energy
Ltd.62 The retail trade utilises published tariffs and involves the reading of meters,
the issuing of bills and the processing of payments.
The monopoly elements of the electricity industry, as mentioned above, are
transmission and distribution. Transmission refers to the transport of electricity in
bulk, on the national grid,63 from the generators* power stations to the companies
responsible for distributing the electricity to consumers.64 The sole owner and
operator of the national grid is the National Grid Group (&NGG*),65 which also
operates the national transmission system for gas.66 Besides being interconnected
to the transmission systems of Scotland and Northern Ireland,67 the national grid is
connected to the French national grid.68
Distribution, the second monopoly activity, is the process of delivering electricity
from the national grid, via regional distribution networks, to consumers.69 Each
regional distribution network is owned and operated by a Distribution Network
Operator (&DNO*). There are presently 14 DNOs,70 including Aquila Networks
plc71 (the West Midlands), Northern Electric Distribution Ltd72 (the North East) and
Southern Electric Power Distribution plc73 and EDF Energy Networks (SPN) plc74
(London and the South East). Suppliers pay for electricity to be transmitted across
the national grid and distributed to their customers.75
The probable effects on climate of burning the primary fuels used in electricity
generation are both notorious and well-documented.76 The possible effects of
nuclear power generation on the environment also remain controversial, possibly
even more so.77 In these circumstances and, given the various legal and policy
60 See para. 6.4.3.1(4) below.
61 See www.npower.com. Npower is RWE Innogy*s retail business (see ESH, p. 94).
62 See www.seeboardenergy.com. SEEBOARD Energy is the retail business of EDF Energy
(see ESH, p. 73).
63 Also referred to as the transmission grid. The most obvious manifestations of the national
grid are the overhead pylons which carry the system of high voltage transmission lines.
High voltage lines may travel underground instead, although underground cables are of
course much more expensive to install and maintain than overhead ones.
64 ESH, p. 13.
65 See www.ngtgroup.com.
66 See para. 4.2.1.3 below.
67 See this para. below.
68 Thus facilitating the importation of &renewable electricity* from France and Belgium (see
331 ENDS Report (2002)).
69 See ESH, p. 13.
70 Ibid., p. 36.
71 See www.aquila-networks.co.uk.
72 See www.ce-electricuk.com.
73 See www.scottish-southern.co.uk.
74 See www.edfenergy.com.
75 ESH, p. 13.
76 See, for example, the works referenced in Lomborg, op. cit., ch. 24.
77 See, for example, 348 ENDS Report (2004) 13 on emissions of radioactive gas from
British Energy*s Hartlepool power station.
Regulated Sectors 45
commitments,78 it is unsurprising that the renewable energy sector, especially in the
shape of wind farms, has been growing,79 although it should be noted that NETA,
among other factors, has not been favourable to renewables generators.80 Moreover,
environmental benefits are promised by combined heat and power (&CHP*) electricity
generation, which enables the simultaneous generation of electricity and heat at the
point of use.81
The electricity industry has been characterised since 1990 by considerable merger
and acquisitions activity,82 which has produced corporate structures of extreme
complexity.83 For over a decade, the industry*s trade association was the Electricity
Association,84 but this has been replaced by three new associations, from the beginning
of October 2003. The three new associations reflect the differing interests of the
participators in the market: the Association of Electricity Producers;85 the Energy
Networks Association;86 and the Energy Retail Association.87 There is also the British
Wind Energy Association88 and the Combined Heat and Power Association.89
2.4.2 Gas
Although, historically, gas has been produced from both coal and oil,90 the gas used
in Britain today is natural gas, sourced from around 100 offshore gas fields around
the UK.91
78 See para. 6.4 below.
79 See, for example, 348 ENDS Report (2004) 13. A number of suppliers offer &green
electricity* tariffs (see 348 ENDS Report (2004) 29每30).
80 See Ross Fairley and Karina Ng, &Green Energy in the NETA World* 12[2001/2002] 3
ULR 57每60. See also para. 21.4.2 below.
81 See www.chpa.co.uk. See in this para. below. The term &combined heat and power* is
synonymous with &cogeneration* and &total energy*. CHP/cogeneration/total energy refers
to the simultaneous generation of useful thermal energy (such as heat or steam) and
electricity in a single process (see Finance Act 2000, s.148, for the definition applicable to
climate change levy).
82 See Electricity Association, Electricity Companies in the United Kingdom 每 a Brief
Chronology, June 30, 2003 (still available from www.electricity.org.uk).
83 See Electricity Association, Who Owns Whom in the UK Electricity Industry, June 30,
2003 (still available from www.electricity.org.uk).
84 Whose website (www.electricity.org.uk) is/was a mine of useful information.
85 See www.aepuk.com.
86 See www.energynetworks.org.
87 See www.energy-retail.org.uk.
88 See www.bwea.com.
89 See www.chpa.co.uk.
90 This was so-called &town gas*, which, prior to the first commercial offshore gas finds in
British Waters in November 1965, supplied the relatively small amounts of gas required
in the UK. Town gas was smelly; natural gas, by contrast, is odourless and is artificially
&stenched*, to enable leaks to be detected (see David Upton, Waves of Fortune: the Past,
Present and Future of the United Kingdom Offshore Oil and Gas Industries (Chichester:
John Wiley, 1996), pp. 20每22).
91 There is also an interconnector gas pipeline, permitting gas imports, which runs between
Bacton, in East Anglia, and Zeebrugge in Belgium. Plans are currently under way for
46 Environmental Taxation Law
The gas industry92 comprises six main activities: production, storage, shipment,
transmission, distribution and supply. As with the electricity industry, legislation93
has separated transmission and distribution (the monopoly components) from
production, shipment and storage and supply, all four of which are subject to
competition.
Gas production, the first competitive element, comprises the offshore extraction
of gas, its delivery onshore under contracts concluded with gas shippers and its
subsequent treatment at seven beach terminals located around the UK. There are
around 30 offshore gas producers, including BP plc,94 Shell UK Exploration and
Production plc 95 and ExxonMobil International Ltd.96
The second and third competitive elements, gas shipment and st,orage, refer to
the activities of the gas shippers once the gas has been brought ashore. Shipment
describes the process by which shippers arrange with the transmission system
operator (&the TSO*) for gas to be transported on, and taken out of, the national
transmission system (&NTS*). This is the wholesale stage of the gas industry, shippers
also being responsible for the large-scale storage of gas in massive submarine gas
storage facilities. The wholesale trade has taken place since March 1996 under the
Network Code. There are around 90 shippers, including PowerGen Gas Ltd97 and
Shell Gas Direct Ltd.98
Gas supply, the fourth competitive element, refers to the purchase of gas by
suppliers from shippers and its onward sale to customers. Gas supply thus generally
corresponds to the retail part of the industry, major suppliers including npower99
and British Gas.100 Under Finance Act 2000, Sched 6, paras 6(1) and 40(1), it is the
supplier101 who is generally the person liable to account for climate change levy;
this replicates the position for electricity and, as mentioned above, makes the tax a
&downstream* tax.
The monopoly components of the gas industry, transmission and distribution, are
the responsibility of the TSO, that is, NGG102 (&Transco*).103 Transmission refers to
upgrading the interconnector and for the construction of two further interconnectors (see
Ofgem Factsheet 37, Securing Britain*s Gas Supply (London: Ofgem, 2003)).
92 It is, of course, somewhat artificial to split out the gas industry from the oil industry (see
para. 2.4.3 below). However, we have embraced this artificiality, given that the sketch of
the industry included here is intended chiefly to elucidate elements of climate change levy,
which is inapplicable to supplies of hydrocarbon oil (see paras 1.4.2.2(1) above and 14.1
below).
93 See para. 6.4 below.
94 See www.bp.com.
95 See www.shell.co.uk.
96 See www.exxonmobil.com.
97 See www.powergen-power.co.uk.
98 See www.shellgasdirect.co.uk.
99 See www.npower.com.
100 See www.gas.co.uk.
101 Being the holder of a supply licence under Gas Act 1986, s.7A(1) (see Finance Act 2000,
Sched. 6, para. 150(3)(a) and paras 6.4 and 14.1 below).
102 See para. 2.4.1 above.
103 See www.transco.uk.com.
Regulated Sectors 47
the high pressure transport of gas in bulk on the NTS, from the beach terminals to
40 power stations,104 to a small number of large industrial consumers and to the 12
Local Distribution Zones (&LDZs*). Distribution refers to the low pressure transport
of gas on the LDZs, from the NTS to most business and to domestic consumers.
As TSO, Transco is responsible for ensuring that the transmission and distribution
systems remain in balance, being empowered to buy and sell gas to ensure that supply
matches demand.
Like the electricity industry, the gas industry has been for long characterised
by considerable merger and acquisitions activity, many gas suppliers supplying
electricity too. In 2003, the UK was only one of two G7 countries that at that time
were self-sufficient in gas, although this was liable to change.105 Gas consumption,
which is forecast to rise between 14 per cent between 2002 and 2011, presently
stands at 113bn cubic meters per annum and has grown by 66 per cent since 1992.106
A significant proportion of this growth is explicable by the increased use of gas in
electricity generation, 29.7 per cent of all gas consumption being accounted for in
this way in 2002.107 As with the electricity industry*s trade associations, different
associations represent the interests of different participators. The Energy Networks
Association108 and the Energy Retail Association109 are relevant here just as in
relation to electricity and a list of trade associations for gas (and also oil) appears
on the DTI website.110 There is also the UK Offshore Operators Association,111
which represents the offshore oil industry as well as the offshore gas industry.
One of the three fossil fuels,112 natural gas is used as a catch-all term for natural
hydrocarbon gases associated with oil production, of which the main ones are methane
(CH4) and some ethane (C2H6).113 Although the burning of natural gas produces
minimal sulphur dioxide emissions, methane is one of the six GHGs listed in Annex
A to the Kyoto Protocol.114 Scientific opinion is divided as to the sustainability of
natural gas reserves.115
104 See para. 2.4.1 above.
105 Ofgem, op. cit.
106 Ofgem, op. cit.
107 Ofgem, op. cit. There is an exemption from climate change levy for taxable commodities
used in the generation of electricity (see Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 14).
108 See para. 2.4.1 above.
109 Ibid.
110 See www.dti.gov.uk/sectors.
111 See www.ukooa.co.uk.
112 That is, coal, oil and natural gas, all of which are &derived from organic matter deposited
over geological time-scales* (Porteous).
113 Porteous.
114 See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
115 See Lomborg, op. cit., p. 126, for the (highly controversial!) view that natural gas becomes
more abundant over time.
48 Environmental Taxation Law
2.4.3 Oil
The UK has been a major producer of crude oil ever since the Argyll field in the
North Sea became the first offshore oil field to become operational in June 1975.116
Because the offshore oil production industry has never been a state-owned industry,117
and since hydrocarbon oils are outside the scope of the climate change levy,118 the
structure of the oil industry is not of central relevance to the present study. However,
since oil refineries fall within the scope of the EU ETS,119 and since we devote a
chapter below to a discussion of fuel excise duties,120 it may be useful simply to
draw attention to the fact that the oil industry is usually seen as having &upstream*
and &downstream* components. The upstream component includes the activities of
exploration, production and transportation (via oil tankers and pipelines), while the
downstream component involves the refining, distribution and supply of oil products,
such as transport fuels.
The main oil producers are the same group of around 30 companies who are also gas
producers.121 As for gas, the interests of the main UK oil producers are represented by
the UK Offshore Operators Association,122 while those of the downstream industry
are represented by the UK Petroleum Industry Association (&UKPIA*).123
Since the Second World War, oil has achieved a hegemony over coal as the main
fossil fuel. The use of oil and its distillates such as petrol and DERV for transport
purposes is a major source of carbon dioxide emissions.124 Carbon dioxide is, of
course, one of the GHGs listed in Annex A to the Kyoto Protocol.125 It also does
terrible damage when leaked or spilt from tankers, of course.126
The significance of oil should not simply be seen in terms of its use as a fuel. Oil
is also used in the chemical industry for the production of ethylene, which is in turn
used in the production of a range of end products, such as the higher glycols, acetic
acid and acetic fibre and butadiene.
116 See Upton, op. cit., p. 56. Upton relates that oil was originally discovered in commerciallyworthwhile
quantities on the British mainland at Eakring, near Sherwood Forest, in 1938,
the discovery then being kept secret. The Petroleum (Production) Act 1934 had vested
onshore petroleum reserves in the Crown (see Upton, op. cit., p. 20).
117 See Martha M. Roggenkamp et al., Energy Law in Europe: National, EU and International
Law and Institutions (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), paras 13.26 and 13.259.
With the exception of the long-defunct British National Oil Company, the UK Government
&has been content to licence the industry and collect its share of the rent* (ibid., para.
13.259).
118 Finance Act 2000, s.3(2)(a).
119 See para. 28.3 below.
120 See paras 22.2 and 22.3 below.
121 See para. 2.4.2 above.
122 See www.ukooa.co.uk above.
123 See www.ukpia.com.
124 See, for example, Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, A New Deal
for Transport: Better for Everyone, 1998 (Cm 3950, 1998), paras 1.6每1.11.
125 See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
126 One thinks of the cases of Atlantic Empress in 1979 and Exxon Valdez in 1989.
Regulated Sectors 49
2.4.4 Coal
Following the privatisation of the coal industry in 1994, UK coal production has
been entirely in the hands of private firms, the largest of which is UK Coal plc.127
Despite large helpings of state aid,128 and the fact that the privatisation arrangements
meant that the coal industry*s biggest customers would be the electricity generating
companies, the industry is now a shadow of its former self.129 In November 2002,
there were 15 deep mines in the UK, producing about 18 million tonnes of coal per
annum;130 in 1975, there were around 200 collieries, producing around 130 million
tonnes of coal.131 The coal industry*s trade association is the Confederation of UK
Coal Producers (&Coalpro*).132
Climate change levy applies to supplies of coal and lignite, as well as to coke and
semi-coke of coal and lignite.133 Tax is chargeable on any supply of these commodities
where the supply is made in the course or furtherance of a business.134 However,
coal supplies to electricity generators are generally exempt from the levy!135
The partial displacement of coal by oil as the most important fossil fuel has not
eroded the status of coal as &Environmental Enemy No. 1*.136 Although it is the
dirtiest of the fossil fuels, it is possible to reduce by various technological means the
sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions caused by the burning of coal.137 In
addition to coal*s environmental costs, there are, of course, the social costs of what
is still, even in 2004, an industry fraught with physical danger.
2.4.5 Energy-intensive sectors
Certain sectors of industry are extremely high consumers of the three fossil fuels.
Apart from oil refining and electricity generation, the main energy-intensive
sectors are the steel industry, the chemical industry, the paper industry, the glass
industry, the ceramics industry, the gypsum138 industry, the china clay industry, the
cement and concrete industries and the aluminium industry. There is an umbrella
trade organisation, the Energy Intensive Users Group,139 but also individual trade
associations for each of the individual sectors themselves.140 The significance of
127 See www.ukcoal.com.
128 See para. 12.2.6.3 below.
129 See &Bottomless pits*, Economist, 18 April 2002.
130 See www.ukcoal.com.
131 See &Bottomless pits*, Economist, 18 April 2002.
132 See www.coalpro.co.uk.
133 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, paras 3(1)(d) and 3(1)(e).
134 Ibid., Sched. 6, para. 7(2).
135 Ibid., Sched. 6, para. 14.
136 See &Environmental enemy No 1*, Economist, 6 July 2002, p. 11.
137 See Lomborg, op. cit., p. 127, citing the work in Danish of Jesper Jesperson and Stefan
Brendstrup.
138 Gypsum is hydrate calcium sulphate (CaSO4
.2H2O), which is used in the manufacture of
plasterboard (Porteous).
139 See www.eiug.org.uk. There is a separate trade association for the cement and concrete
industries, that is, the British Cement Association (see www.bca.org.uk).
140 See the links at www.euig.org.uk.
50 Environmental Taxation Law
the energy-intensive sectors in the rest of the study is that they fall within the scope
of the command and control Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (&IPPC*)
regime.141 This, in turn, makes sector participators eligible to enter into climate
change agreements (&CCAs*) and thereby to obtain an 80 per cent reduction in climate
change levy.142 As parties to CCAs, participators in each sector are likely also be
Agreement Participants in the UK ETS.143 Not voluntary, however, will be the EU
ETS which, from January 2005, will apply to all the energy-intensive sectors covered
by the earlier instruments, as well as to electricity generation and oil refining.144
Before leaving energy and its heavy consumers, it is appropriate to mention the
highly influential UK Emissions Trading Group (&the ETG*), originally formed by
the CBI and the Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment (&ACBE*)145
&to represent the UK business interest in greenhouse gas emissions trading*.146
Although the ETG has been involved in the implementation of the EU ETS in the
UK, it was the ETG that originally convinced the government of the need for the cash
subsidy to get the UK ETS going,147 using the argument that the development of a
market in GHG emissions would make the City of London a world leader in trading
emissions.148
2.5 Mineral extraction industry
There are, according to one of the quarry operators* trade associations, around 1,300
quarries in the UK, producing £3bn worth of quarry products each year.149 Quarried,
as opposed to recycled, aggregates, are generally referred to either as &virgin* or
&primary* aggregates. For the purposes of this study, two points are perhaps
significant. First, that the consumer of a considerable proportion of the products
quarried in any year is the public sector, aggregates being of course essential to public
sector construction projects (for example, school and university improvements, road
maintenance and hospital building). Secondly, that the use of recycled aggregates in
such projects seems to be increasing.
For the purposes of aggregates levy, the chargeable person is the person responsible
for subjecting aggregate to commercial exploitation,150 a concept which includes
the removal of the aggregate from the quarry in question,151 its sale,152 its use for
141 See paras 6.2.3 and 12.2.2 below.
142 See para. 14.6 below.
143 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above and para. 20.4 below.
144 See para. 1.4.2.2(3) above and para. 28.3 below.
145 See para. 4.2.1.4 below.
146 See www.uketg.com.
147 See para. 20.2 below.
148 See Helm, op. cit., pp. 358每9. This was at the time that there seemed to be a possibility
that, with the possible imposition of withholding tax on interest payments on eurobonds,
London would lose its pre-eminence in that particular field.
149 That is, the Quarry Products Association. See www.qpa.org.
150 Finance Act 2001, s.16(3).
151 Ibid., s.19(1)(a) and 19(2)(a).
152 Ibid., s.19(1)(b). See para. 13.2 below.
Regulated Sectors 51
construction purposes153 or its mixing, other than in permitted circumstances, with
any substance other than water.154 This means that the person primarily liable for
aggregates levy will be the quarry operator.
The quarrying industry has two main trade associations, the Quarry Products
Association (&the QPA*)155 and the British Aggregates Association.156 The latter was
involved in an unsuccessful challenge to the legality of the aggregates levy in April
2002.157
The environmental costs of quarrying are controversial. Certainly, there has been
by no means the same level of concern, at least at a European level, in relation to
its effects as in relation, say, to emissions of GHGs and energy consumption. A later
chapter158 will show how the government has characterised the environmental costs of
quarrying in terms of noise, dust, visual intrusion and biodiversity loss.159 However,
there remains the concern that the level of opposition to the tax, as compared to that
mounted in relation to, say, climate change levy, is a sign that the government may
not have succeeded in demonstrating the environmental case for the tax.
2.6 Air passenger and road freight transport sectors
Two parts of the transport sector figure prominently in the present study: the road freight
transport and the air transport industries. Although neither is currently subject to any
form of environmental levy,160 yet, as mentioned above, there are currently plans for
the introduction of a nationwide road-user charging (&road pricing*) scheme for heavy
lorries,161 as well as continuing concern about the international exemption from fuel
duties applicable to aircraft fuel.162 In addition, the government has decided to work to
bring the aviation industry within the EU ETS and has promised to prioritise the matter
during the UK*s 2005 EU Presidency.163 The issues facing road freight transport and
air transport therefore merit at least brief mention in the present context.
The Freight Transport Association,164 which, together with the Road Haulage
Association,165 is one of the two main trade associations for the road freight
153 Ibid., s.19(1)(c).
154 Ibid., s.19(1)(d).
155 See www.qpa.org.
156 See www.british-aggregates.com.
157 See R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51.
158 See para. 11.3.2 below.
159 Ibid.
160 Air passenger duty is not an environmental tax (see para. 1.2.1.5(2) above).
161 See para. 27.3 below.
162 See paras 8.5 and 27.5 below. See also Friends of the Earth, op. cit., p. 10 and Chris Nash,
&Transport and the Environment*, in Environmental Policy: Objectives, Instruments, and
Implementation, ed. by Dieter Helm (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp. 241每
59.
163 See Department for Transport, The Future of Air Transport: Summary (London:
Department for Transport, 2003), p. 8.
164 See www.fta.co.uk.
165 See www.rha.net.
52 Environmental Taxation Law
transport industry in the UK, estimates that road freight transport constitutes 64 per
cent of domestic transport as a whole.166 The same source also figures that a total
of around 65,000 companies operate the UK*s commercial vehicles fleet,167 which
is a 31 per cent reduction on the figures for 1996.168 The reduction has mainly been
among operators with less than half-a-dozen vehicles, with the number of businesses
operating in excess of 50 vehicles actually increasing.169 Although heavy lorries are
legendarily associated with graphic levels of noise, air pollution and congestion, it
is clear that the sector as a whole is itself contending increasingly with congestion,
whilst complaining vociferously about what it regards as disproportionately high
levels of fuel duties and road taxes in comparison with other EU Member States.170
The proposed introduction of the road-user charging scheme for heavy lorries will be
made sectorally possible only on the basis of reductions in fuel excise duties.171
The aviation industry in the UK, unlike a number of other EU Member States, has
been entirely in private hands since British Airways was privatised in 1987.172 The
main UK airlines include BMI British Midland, Britannia Airways, British Airways
and Virgin Atlantic Airways, all of which are members of the industry*s trade
association, the British Air Transport Association.173 Something in excess of 105
million passengers were carried on UK airlines in 2000, over 33 million on charter
flights and nearly 72 million on scheduled flights.174 The airlines pay airport (or
&landing*) charges to the owners of the industry*s infrastructure, the airports. Seven
of the UK*s major airports are owned by BAA plc175 (that is, Aberdeen, Edinburgh,
Gatwick, Glasgow, Heathrow, Southampton and Stansted), whilst Manchester
Airport, in common with a number of others, is owned by the relevant local authority.
The government*s White Paper on the future of air transport, of December 2003,
identified aircraft noise and the property price blight caused by proposals for airport
development as two areas of environmental concern.176 Besides envisaging schemes
requiring airport operators to tackle the latter concern, the White Paper promised
legislation on the air pollution side (&when Parliamentary time permits*) to allow
airport charges to have an emissions-related element.177 In addition, as mentioned
above, and as an acknowledgement of the growing contribution of civil aviation to
166 See Freight Transport Association, Freight Transport: Delivering for a Successful
Economy (Tunbridge Wells: Freight Transport Association, 2002), p. 2. The Road Haulage
Association puts the figure rather higher, at 80 per cent!
167 Freight Transport Association, op. cit., p. 11.
168 Ibid.
169 Ibid.
170 Freight Transport Association, op. cit., p. 14.
171 Which is why the trade associations are broadly in favour of the scheme (see Wright,
Financial Times, 6 February 2004, p. 5).
172 There is an excellent overview of the UK aviation sector in Whitaker*s Almanack 2004
(London: A. & C. Black, 2004), pp. 453每4, to which this paragraph is greatly indebted.
173 See www.bata.uk.com.
174 See Whitaker*s Almanack, above, p. 454.
175 See www.baa.plc.
176 See Department for Transport, The Future of Air Transport: Summary (London:
Department for Transport, 2003), p. 3.
177 Ibid., p. 8.
Regulated Sectors 53
carbon dioxide emissions, the government has committed itself to working to bring
the aviation industry within the scope of the EU ETS.178
2.7 Concluding remarks
The sketches of the regulated sectors given in this chapter are intended only to
clarify some of the technical issues addressed in our wider critical account of the
taxes and other instruments forming the subject matter of the study. It is appropriate
that these sketches should detail the trade associations 每 both general and sectoral
每 representing the industries in question, since, consistently with the government*s
attempts at consensus-building, they have engaged closely in the debates leading to
the implementation of the instruments in question. This engagement is well, though
not uniquely, illustrated by the involvement of the waste industry in governmental
policy debates, both at a sectoral level and at the level of particular firms. An
even more striking illustration is the success of the ETG in apparently influencing
government policy on emissions trading so dramatically.
However beautiful the empathy may 每 or may not 每 be as between government and
industry, such a phenomenon is not more important in the context of the present study
than the structures of the industries in question. It is not insignificant, for instance,
that the main bodies intended to be incentivised by landfill tax are themselves taxraising,
albeit local tax-raising, bodies. Equally, as regards climate change levy, it is
not insignificant that the person liable to account for the tax, in the cases of gas and
electricity, is not the generator 每 for such a thing would make the levy an &upstream
tax* 每 but the holder of the gas or electricity supply licence, which, in combination
with other features of the tax, makes it a downstream levy on the industrial,
commercial and agricultural consumption of non-renewable energy. If, as is widely
believed, this structure severely compromises the environmental effectiveness of the
levy, it is no less important than the effect of the structure of the electricity industry
on the potential for greater levels of renewables generation.179 Accordingly, even
if the industry sketches given above may appear somewhat cursory, they should at
least enable a closer understanding of the evaluative issues to be referred to later in
the study.
Whatever the technical strengths and weaknesses of climate change levy may be,
there is at least some measure of agreement of the environmental problem that it
is seeking to address. This, no doubt, goes a considerable way to legitimising the
tax in the eyes of those in industry who are most closely affected by it. The same
cannot, alas, be said for aggregates levy; the highly problematic environmental basis
of this tax, as well as the difficulties of making it acceptable to those affected by
it, will concern us in later chapters. The difficulties of justifying aggregates levy,
an existing tax, contrast rather vividly with the ease with which the application of
economic instruments might be justified, at least in environmental terms, to correct
the externalities created by the civil aviation industry.
178 Ibid.
179 See para. 21.6.1 below.
54 Environmental Taxation Law
Although, in this chapter, we have referred to the environmental externalities created
by each of the sectors under discussion, we have sought mainly to highlight the
structures of those industries. This is not because we are not, in Joanne Scott*s words,
&on the side of the angels*,180 or that we do not care for environmental issues. It is
simply that such issues are covered in other texts by specialists in the fields. We have
sought merely to illuminate, if only briefly, the often obscure factual background to
the regulatory and fiscal issues to be discussed in the rest of the study.
180 See Joanne Scott, EC Environmental Law (London: Longman, 1998), p. 1.
PART II
POLICY AND CONTEXTS
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Chapter 3
Introduction to Part II
Although we have already referred to the fact that various aspects of the UK*s
environmental economic instruments, including the three main environmental taxes,
are administered by several different government departments, we have not so far
elaborated on that statement. This part of the book accordingly continues our account
with an analytical discussion of the roles of those departments. Such is the intricacy
of the web of departmental involvement that this discussion is unfortunately rather
long and detailed. However, as the material much later in the book unfolds, and the
references to the different departments and government agencies accumulate, we
think that the discussion will have proved indispensable, especially for the reader
whose &home* jurisdiction is one other than the UK. This is not simply because it may
be convenient to gather all this information into one place. It is also because standard
reference works on environmental, energy and transport regulation or, for that matter,
tax law have not, historically, been written specifically with environmental economic
instruments in mind.
The discussion of government departments in Chapter 4 forms part of an overview
of the institutions of UK government divided into the central (that is, the national),
the regional and the local. Our discussion of central government begins, however, not
with government departments, but with a discussion of the committee structure of
the UK parliament. The reader may wonder why we have deemed such a discussion
of the nature and role of Parliamentary Committees to be relevant at this stage. The
reason, quite simply, is that, in Part III of the book, we refer rather extensively to
reports of Parliamentary Select Committees in attempting to map how the various
instruments under consideration have operated in practice. It is our contention that,
for the lawyer or political scientist, there is no more valuable source for discovering
what effect the various instruments are actually having (as it were) on the ground.
However, though valuable, Select Committee reports are the products of a somewhat
idiosyncratic system and, rather than accepting them at face value, it is well to be
aware of the weaknesses, as well as the strengths, of the committee system as it exists
at Westminster. The early sections of Chapter 4 accordingly attempt to convey some
sense of these points.
Besides Select Committees, whose role is to hold the government to account after
the event, there are also the Standing Committees, whose duty it is to scrutinise
legislation and thereby to ensure a measure of accountability before the event. We
have included a brief discussion of the composition of these Committees, and the
conditions under which they work, especially with regard to the length of time
allowed for debate, because pressures on parliamentary time seem too often to have
prevented the proper scrutiny of much of the legislation discussed in this book. This
is a matter to which we return in Part III below.
Whilst the accountability of the relevant government departments to parliament is
an important theme of this Part II, so also is the accountability of the various bodies
58 Environmental Taxation Law
which have been delegated to administer different aspects of the measures under
consideration. These are bodies such as the Environment Agency, which itself has
responsibility for the unit tasked with administering the system of PRNs, and Ofgem,
which, among other things, is responsible for monitoring the operation of the RO
and for issuing Green Certificates. The National Audit Office (&the NAO*), which is
discussed in the same part of Chapter 4 (as an executive non-departmental body), has,
however, the distinctive statutory task of providing financial advice and assurance
on the application of public funds. In later chapters, we shall see how its qualified
approval of the UK ETS, in a special report on the scheme, has disappointed many
who regard the incentive payments made under the UK ETS to have been a serious
misapplication of public funds. The discussion of these bodies is then followed by
a brief outline of various advisory bodies, such as the Commission for Integrated
Transport (&CFIT*), whose activities feature prominently in the public debate on
environmental matters in the UK, and whose nature and role must be understood in
order to assess the nature and value of their various contributions.
All of the foregoing relates to central government but, as mentioned in para. 1.3
above, the UK has for some years past had a quasi-federal structure. The almost
non-existent tax-raising powers of each of the devolved governments, together with
the national application of the UK*s environmental levies, means that this is not as
important a point, at present at least, as it may at first appear. However, it will also
be recalled that the devolved governments do have responsibility for various matters
other than taxation, such as environment and energy, which means that, at various
points throughout the book, we shall be drawing attention to regional differences in
the material under discussion. Also, as is perhaps implied by the foregoing, some
emphasis should be placed on the phrase &at present*, since the absence of tax-raising
powers vested in the devolved governments will almost certainly lead in time to
discussions at governmental level, either as to whether these restrictions should be
removed, or as to whether it is nonetheless possible, even as matters currently stand,
for the devolved governments to create economic instruments which nonetheless fall
short of taxes properly so called. A significant part of the discussion in Chapter 4 is
therefore devoted to the detail of the devolution arrangements.
It will be appreciated that, just as the relevant issues differ somewhat as between
central and regional government, so also do they vary at the local level. Suffice it to
say, at this stage, that local government in the UK has even more limited taxation
powers than its regional counterpart. For instance, although they are empowered to
collect and retain local taxes, local authorities have no control over the structure of
those taxes. Subject to two exceptions, there is therefore no question of unilaterally
imposed environmental levies at local level. The two exceptions, of course, are
the statutorily-conferred powers to impose workplace parking levies and road user
charging schemes which, to date (December 2004), remain overwhelmingly and
conspicuously unimplemented. That said, as will be seen, local authorities do have
extensive powers in relation to environmental command and control regulation and
the nature and extent of those powers are also briefly described in Chapter 4.
The near-federal nature of the UK, and the issues relating to environmental
regulation, whether by economic instruments or by command and control, are
mirrored in the near-federal nature of the EU. Of all global regional organisations,
the EU is the most developed and, as we shall see in Part III, it shares competences
Introduction to Part II 59
in both the environmental and taxation spheres with its Member States. In such
circumstances and, given the international context to be described in a moment, it
is not surprising that there have been a number of key Community-level initiatives
over the last decade or so to tackle air and atmospheric pollution, the quintessentially
transnational environmental issue. Early attempts at a carbon/energy tax failed but
每 against the expectations of many 每 the EU-wide emissions trading system, the
&EU ETS*, did not fail and it is due to become a reality in January 2005. Although
the detail of these measures is for consideration in Part III, this Part of the book
underlines the importance of these issues by describing the relative nature and roles
of the EU institutions which have had some part in the design of the EU ETS and may
yet need to adjudicate on disputes arising from its implementation. Most importantly,
of course, there are the European Commission, the Council of the European Union
and the European Court of Justice (&the ECJ*), each of which, together with other
Community institutions, have played a part in bringing the EU ETS to fruition.
Just as the 1990s saw an attempt to create an EU-wide carbon/energy tax, so also
did they witness academic suggestions for a global excise on carbon. Interesting as
this notion has been, it is not however the reason for the inclusion in the latter part
of Chapter 4 of a discussion of international organisations. Even a cursory glance
through this volume will indicate the considerable influence on the development of
environmental taxes and other economic instruments of the Paris-based Organisation
for Economic Co-operation and Development (&the OECD*). The reader is
accordingly introduced to the OECD as a way of illustrating the provenance of many
of the economic ideas which recur throughout the study. Equally important in this
process, however (especially as regards the development of emissions trading) is the
United Nations (&UN*), whose 1992 Framework Convention on Climate Change,
with its 1997 Kyoto Protocol, has provided the international consensus which,
with the notable exceptions of the US, China and (until September 2004) Russia,
has enabled concepts such as multinational emissions trading schemes even to be
conceivable. The UN*s benevolent role in these matters is frequently contrasted with
that of the World Trade Organization (&the WTO*), whose GATT 1994-based system
of multilateral agreements on international trade is still seen as a major obstacle
to the development on a global scale of economic instruments for environmental
protection.
If it were necessary to illustrate the pervasive influence of the OECD in the realm of
environmental taxes and their associated instruments, it would be necessary to look no
further than the technical justifications offered by the UK government for the package
of economic instruments introduced in the UK since 1997. Chapter 5 analyses an HM
Treasury policy document, which sets out these technical justifications in some detail.
The discussion covers four main areas, of which the second, third and fourth, dealing
respectively with the taxation of environmental &bads*, the correction of market
failures resulting from pollution and the price level at which intervention in the
market should be determined, follow closely the OECD*s thinking on these matters,
as expressed in various policy documents and recommendations. The discussion of
these justifications is offered in this part as a prelude to the account in Part III of the
processes by which the UK*s main environmental levies passed into law.
We asserted at the beginning of the book that the distinctive characteristic of
the UK*s environmental taxation enterprise was the use of environmental taxes in
60 Environmental Taxation Law
combination with other economic instruments and with traditional command and
control instruments.1 The UK*s environmental taxes therefore have both a taxation
context and a regulatory context, involving environmental, market and transport
regulation. Given the regulatory nature of the taxes themselves, it is perhaps useful
to consider regulatory context first. Chapters 6 and 7 seek to explore the two contexts
in detail, bearing in mind that readers whose &home* discipline is tax law will be
unfamiliar with the regulatory background, just as those whose &home* discipline
is environmental or energy law and regulation will be unfamiliar with the taxation
context. Chapter 6 therefore attempts the ambitious task of describing within a
single chapter the regulatory landscape of which environmental taxes are now such a
prominent feature. The discussion is largely concerned to map out the environmental
regulation of waste, of air and atmospheric pollution, of aircraft emissions and road
congestion, as well as the loss of amenity caused by mineral extraction. However,
it also contains a detailed discussion of the economic regulation of the &unbundled*
energy markets, as well as an examination of the economic regulation of air passenger
and road freight transport. The reader might wonder why we have cast the net so
wide. So far as the energy markets are concerned, the authors* contention is that it
is not possible to appreciate the technical legal problems associated especially with
climate change levy, nor yet the renewables generation policies that its exemptions
and exclusions are designed to complement, without understanding the economic
regulation of the energy sector. Chief among these problems is the status, already
discussed, of climate change levy as a downstream energy tax.2 Parallel comments
apply to the economic regulation of air transport, given the continued interest of both
the European Commission and the UK government either in bringing air transport
within the EU ETS or (an interest evinced so far by the Commission only) in imposing
an environmental tax on airliners* profligate consumption of kerosene.3
While Chapter 6 considers the status of economic instruments as environmental
regulation, Chapter 7 discusses the tax context of those instruments. This part of the
discussion, which is more analytical than the rather descriptive material in Chapter
6, has two main aspects. First, we are concerned to expand the definition of a tax
offered in Chapter 1 and to investigate whether and, if so, which payments made by
those regulated by the UK*s economic instruments are payments of taxes. Secondly,
we seek initially to identify the provisions by which it has been sought to &green* the
UK*s non-environmental tax codes. These latter are indeed economic instruments
and are perhaps best seen as a form of financial assistance from government.4
Since, irrespective of whether they occur in the codes on environmental or nonenvironmental
taxes, they involve an element of revenue foregone by government,
such incentivising &green* measures can be seen as tax expenditures or tax subsidies.
This is borne out, for example, by the state aid implications of the climate change
levy exemptions and reliefs which are discussed in Part III below.
Chapter 9 seeks to draw together the strands of the discussion in Part II but, before
that, Chapter 8 seeks to place the economic instruments under discussion in the
1 See Authors* Preface above.
2 See para. 2.4.1 above.
3 See Done, Financial Times, 4 October 2004, p. 8.
4 See para. 1.2.1.5 above.
Introduction to Part II 61
context of the UK*s international obligations. Whilst it may well be the case that, at
least in the environmental and world trade spheres, the UK*s role on the international
stage is as a Member State of the EU, such a statement obscures two little-known
but important analytical points. First, that, although the UK*s Kyoto obligations
are reallocated with other EU Member States under the so-called &burden-sharing
agreement*, the UK has, in its own right, both signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol.
Secondly, that, whilst the ECJ subsequently held that it should not have been, the
UK was itself a signatory, along with 14 other Member States, to the GATT 1994
Uruguay Round Treaties signed at Marrakesh in April 1994. These points apart, it
is nonetheless the case that, both in its own right and as an EU Member State, any
economic instrument designed and implemented by the UK government must satisfy,
not only the rules of Community law, to be discussed in Part III below, but also those
of GATT 1994. The inability of the Kyoto mechanisms to &mesh* satisfactorily with
the rules of GATT 1994/WTO is a key theme in Chapter 8.
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Chapter 4
Institutional Framework
4.1 Introduction
It is not easy to locate the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic instruments
into the framework of institutions responsible for their design, implementation
and administration. This is in part a function of the wide range of governmental,
Community and international institutions which have had at least some involvement
in each of these processes. It is also, however, an aspect of the authors* dilemma
in deciding what, in an already large book, should be regarded as significant in the
involvements of these various institutional actors.
With regard to the former point, we have divided the discussion into three main parts.
First, a description of the institutions of UK central, regional and local government
with an interest, or potential interest, in the design, implementation and operation of
the taxes and other instruments under consideration. Next, the same, although for
the relevant EU institutions, and finally the same again for the relevant international
institutions. Far from being counter-intuitive, this working outwards from the
UK*s domestic institutions emphasises that, unlike other forms of environmental
regulation, environmental taxes at least have implications for national sovereignty.
In each case, we emphasise the question of who is, or was, responsible for what,
since this remains one of the most opaque aspects of the combination of economic
instruments currently being operated in the UK.
In relation to the other point made at the beginning of this chapter, we have contented
ourselves with merely drawing attention to the presence or absence of accountability
mechanisms in relation each of the institutions under discussion. It is not possible,
obviously, in a book of this nature, to embark upon a legitimacy-oriented examination
of the taxes and other instruments under consideration.
4.2 Institutions of central, regional and local government
The initial stage of the discussion is intended to reflect the three main levels of
UK government: the central, the regional and the local. Within the first of these,
we make a fourfold division into the respective roles of the UK Parliament; of
the departments of government; of non-departmental agencies and public bodies;
of bodies with an advisory role; and of bodies with a judicial role, namely the
courts. The first of these involves a discussion of the Committee system, the key
accountability mechanism in the UK*s parliamentary system. The discussion of the
second, that is, of government departments, is further subdivided into a consideration
of those involved in environmental, energy and transport regulation and those
involved in taxation. Discussion of the third and fourth (that is, the advisory bodies
and the courts) is, for reasons of space, relatively short. When it comes to regional
64 Environmental Taxation Law
and local government, a detailed discussion is necessary, given the former*s role in
developing environmental policy, as well as the role of the latter in tackling traffic
congestion.
4.2.1 Central government
Following devolution and the other constitutional reforms introduced after 1997,1
the expression &central government* has come to be used in order to distinguish the
institutions of government of the UK as a whole, not only from local government, but
also from the devolved governments of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.2
Central government in the UK has never been characterised by a strict separation
of powers. The principal executive body under the UK*s unwritten constitution is
the Cabinet, headed by the Prime Minister,3 but all of its 20 or so members are also
members of one or other House of the UK Parliament. Equally, the UK Parliament is
not simply a legislature, since it sets up Select Committees of Inquiry and Committees
tasked with scrutinising the administration.4 The structures of central government, as
they have developed since 1997, are such as to make the scrutinising role of the UK
Parliament no less important, although often considerably less effective, than once
it was. This is a theme to which we shall return, not only in the present chapter, but
throughout the book.
4.2.1.1 The UK Parliament
(1) Generally
Subject to the provisions of Community law, the UK Parliament sitting at Westminster
has responsibility both for the general shape of environmental, energy and transport
regulation in England and Wales5 and for the taxation law of the UK as a whole.
1 The date is of some significance to the present study, since the General Election in May
of that year was when the current Labour Government was returned for the first time. It
was returned again in 2001, on the back of a reduced voter turnout. As at 8 September
2004, the government had 407 seats (a majority of 159), the Conservatives (the main
Opposition party) had 163 seats and the Liberal Democrats had 55 (see www.parliament.
uk/directories/hcio/stateparties.cfm). With the exception of landfill tax, the economic
instruments discussed in this book are from the period 1997 onwards (see para. 11.4
below).
2 See paras 1.3 above and 4.2.2 below.
3 Currently (December 2004) The Rt Hon. Tony Blair, MP.
4 See O. Hood Phillips and Paul Jackson, Constitutional and Administrative Law, ed. by
Paul Jackson and Patricia Leopold, 8th edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 2001), paras.
2每020.
5 See www.parliament.uk. The leading reference works on the law and customs of the UK
Parliament are Sir Thomas Erskine May*s Treatise on the Law, Privileges, Proceedings
and Usages of Parliament, ed. by Donald Limon, W.R. McKay, et al., 22nd edn (London:
Butterworths, 1997) and Griffiths and Ryle on Parliament: Functions, Practice and
Procedures, ed. by Robert Blackburn and Andrew Kennan, 2nd edn (London: Sweet and
Maxwell, 2003). For a comprehensive, but more succinct account, see Hood Phillips and
Jackson, op. cit., Part II.
Institutional Framework 65
Being the UK*s highest legislative authority, Parliament may not only pass laws
for the UK as a whole but also for any part of it individually.6 Made up of the
Queen in Parliament, the House of Lords and the House of Commons, the House
of Lords consists of life peers, hereditary peers,7 the Law Lords8 and 26 Church of
England diocesan bishops, while the House of Commons comprises a membership
(&MPs*) elected by universal adult suffrage.9 The maximum length of a Parliament
is five years, elections to the Commons being by secret ballot, with (unlike in other
countries) voting in parliamentary elections being non-compulsory. Proposed Acts
of Parliament, in draft form, are referred to as Bills, and must normally be passed by
both Houses before becoming law.10 Of the various stages through which legislation
passes before becoming law,11 of greatest interest for the purposes of the present
study is the Committee Stage, since this is the point at which Bills have traditionally
been considered clause by clause and amendments made by a Standing Committee
of the House of Commons.12
With the exceptions of the UK ETS, which was created under pre-existing statutory
powers,13 and PRNs, which seem to have developed almost by accident, all of the
economic instruments discussed in this book have a statutory basis. Whether it can
be inferred from this that they have all been fully debated is a matter which we leave
until Chapter 11.14
(2) Standing Committees
The principal purpose of Standing Committees is to consider and to amend Bills
that have been through their Second Reading and stand committed to one of the
6 By way of illustration, Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., record that, &in the first two
years of devolution [see para. 1.3 a,bove], 14 Bills that fell within the legislative powers of
the Scottish Parliament [see para. 4.2.2 below] were passed by Westminster*. They note,
however, that the consent of the Scottish Parliament was sought and given in each case.
7 Albeit now elected by their peers, except in the case of a few office holders.
8 See para. 4.2.1.5 below.
9 See above, n, for the state of the parties as at 8 September 2004. The total number of seats
is 659, consisting of 529 for England, 40 for Wales, 72 for Scotland and 18 for Northern
Ireland.
10 Bills may be public, private or hybrid, although only public ones are referred to in this
book (see Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., for further information on the consequences
of the distinction). Most Private Members* Bills are public Bills.
11 It is not appropriate to detail the procedure here, although it should be noted that, of the
stages in the passing of a Bill, legally the most informative tends to be the &Committee
Stage*, since it involves a detailed technical debate on the text of the Bill, rather than a
broader argument over political priorities. Nonetheless, as the Committee Stage of the
parts of Finance Bill 2000 relating to climate change levy demonstrated, even apparently
technical debate can uncover important information about the nature of a tax.
12 See Kenneth Bradshaw and David Pring, Parliament and Congress (London: Constable,
1972), ch. 5 (esp. pp. 258每62) for a comparison of the UK system with that of the
committee system of the US Congress.
13 See para. 1.4.2.2 above.
14 See para. 11.3 below.
66 Environmental Taxation Law
Committees.15 The Standing Orders16 of the House of Commons allow the
appointment of as many Standing Committees, consisting of anything between 16 and
50 members, as may be necessary for the consideration of Bills in this way. Members
of the Standing Committees are nominated by the Committee of Selection, a body
which is required to have regard both to the qualifications of members and to the
composition of the House in making such nominations. Standing Committee debates
are often extremely searching and, although they have little or no interpretative status,
the minutes of their debates17 provide fascinating clues, not only as to the strengths
and weaknesses of the clauses of a Bill, but also (via, mainly, the contributions of
MPs from the parties other than that of government) as to the possible governmental
motivation in shaping them as they are.18 This is well illustrated by the Standing
Committee debates on climate change levy.19
Whilst Standing Committee debates are an important factor in the accountability of
the parliamentary process, it is important to note that the government of the day has
drastic powers to curtail debate on particular Bills. Of these, the most controversial
is probably what is referred to as &the Guillotine*, a procedure the increased use
of which in the current parliament is a matter of mounting concern to a number of
commentators. The procedure, the more formal title of which is an Allocation of
Time Order, allows a government minister to move either that: (1) particular dates
and days be allocated to the various stages of a particular Bill, or (2) that the relevant
Committee must report the Bill to the Commons by a certain date, the detail being
left to the Business Committee of the House or to a business subcommittee of the
Committee.20 Guillotine motions are debated in each case for a maximum of three
hours and are almost invariably subject to a division.21 The procedure inevitably
means that large parts of Bills, including ones of great importance, might receive
very little parliamentary scrutiny. A particularly striking example of the consequences
of this situation is the curtailment of debate on the provisions of the 2003 Finance
Bill.22
(3) Select Committees
Before moving on to consider the government departments, it is important to comment
on another aspect of the Committee system of the UK Parliament. This is the operation
of House of Commons Select Committees,23 especially the departmental ones. Select
15 That is, public Bills.
16 As to which, see Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 11每004.
17 Available in Hansard on the web at www.parliament.uk. Finance Bill 2003, for instance,
was considered by Standing Committee B (see below, passim).
18 See Robert Baldwin and Martin Cave, Understanding Regulation 每 Theory, Strategy
and Practice (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), ch. 3, for the significance of this
point.
19 HC, Standing Committee H, 7th and 8th Sittings, 16每18 May 2000.
20 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 11每014.
21 As to which, see Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 11每010.
22 HC, 1 July 2003, cols 178每180 (Report).
23 These are most relevant to the present study, although it should be noted that the House of
Lords also has a number of Select Committees, for example, on the EU, on Science and
Technology and on Economic Affairs (see www.parliament.uk).
Institutional Framework 67
Committees are made up of MPs chosen by the Selection Committee, such MPs
being either regularly re-appointed or appointed from time to time.24 The powers
and authority of Select Committees, which include the power to send for persons,
papers and records, are delegated to them by the House.25 The eight Committees of
particular importance in the present context are the Environmental Audit Committee;
the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee; the Transport Committee; the
Treasury Committee; the Trade and Industry Select Committee; the Public Accounts
Committee; the Science and Technology Committee; and the Public Administration
Committee. Some comments on some of these might be appropriate.
The Trade and Industry Select Committee has the task of examining, on behalf
of the House of Commons, the expenditure, administration and policy of the
Department of Trade and Industry (&the DTI*).26 Likewise, the remit of the Treasury
Committee is to examine the same three areas in relation to HM Treasury, the Board
of Inland Revenue, the Board of HM Customs and Excise27 and certain related
public bodies. The Transport Committee, which dates from July 2002, was one of
two committees appointed to replace the former Transport, Local Government and
the Regions Committee.28 It examines the expenditure, administration and policy of
the Department for Transport29 and the public bodies associated with it.
All three of the Treasury, the Trade and Industry and the Transport Committees are,
as their names suggest, departmental Select Committees. Of the remaining three Select
Committees referred to above, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee
is a Departmental Committee, whilst the Environmental Audit Committee and the
Committee of Public Accounts (&the Public Accounts Committee*) are not. The first
of these oversees the work of Defra,30 while the second, which dates from 1997,
is intended to monitor &# the contribution made by Government departments and
agencies to environmental protection and sustainable development and # [to audit]
# progress against targets*.31 One of the predecessor Committees to the Environment,
Food and Rural Affairs Committee, the Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs
Committee, produced an early report on the operation of landfill tax in 1999.32
24 In their present form, Select Committees are a development of a change in the system
made when Mr Richard Crossman was Leader of the House. Before that, scrutiny was
through the Estimates Committee, before the event, the Public Accounts Committee
(which obviously still exists) after the event, and with other Committees scrutinising
Statutory Instruments (a vital task still performed by that Committee) and (while they still
existed) enquiring into the operation of nationalised industries.
25 Standing Orders of the House of Commons 每 Public Business 2002(2), SO 152 (see www.
publications.parliament.uk).
26 See www.parliament.uk.
27 See below in this para.
28 See below in this para. for the process of reorganisation that has resulted in the formation
of Defra.
29 See below in this para.
30 Ibid.
31 See www.parliament.uk.
32 That is, House of Commons Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Committee,
The Operation of the Landfill Tax, HC Papers, Session 1998每1999, HC 150每I (London:
Stationery Office, 1999).
68 Environmental Taxation Law
The sixth of the Select Committees listed above, that is, the Public Accounts
Committee, is also rather important in the present context. Consisting of not more
than 16 members, and chaired by a member of the Opposition,33 the Public Accounts
Committee*s task is to examine how funds granted by Parliament to meet public
expenditure have been spent. The Committee reports to Parliament, one day in
each session being devoted to debating its reports. The government undertakes to
make a reply to the debate, which is an indication of the importance attached to the
Committee*s work. The Public Accounts Committee is the only committee that has,
in the shape of the NAO,34 a strong bureaucracy.35
In recent years, both the Science and Technology Committee and the Environmental
Audit Committee have produced reports highly critical of the government*s climate
change policy and of the three economic instruments designed to tackle air and
atmospheric pollution (that is, climate change levy, the UK ETS and the RO). The
reports in question are analysed later in the book.36
The strength of the system of Select Committees is said to be that the Committees are
allowed to choose the questions that they examine. However, whatever accountability
this might be thought to lend to the parliamentary process may be compromised by
the way in which their membership is selected. Although, as mentioned above, there
is a Selection Committee tasked with appointing MPs to the Select Committees, the
House of Commons Liaison Committee*s 2000 report found that nominations were in
fact controlled by the party whips.37 Despite the potentially negative impact on public
confidence of such a system, the government rejected reform to the selection process
on the basis that it would result in less time being spent on substantive questions than
upon questions of Committee membership.38 Other accountability concerns arise out
of the use of the Guillotine. The procedure was used before the Second Reading of
the Finance Bill 2003, an extremely complex and controversial piece of legislation,
even by the standards of Finance Bills.39 Indeed, the increasing size of Finance Bills
since the mid-1990s has brought the Committee system very close to collapse.
33 Since 2001, the Conservative, Mr Edward Leigh, MP.
34 See para. 4.2.1.3 below.
35 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 12每020n.
36 See para. 21.6.2 below.
37 See House of Commons Liaison Committee, Shifting the Balance: Select Committees and
the Executive, HC 1999每2000 (London: Stationery Office, 2000).
38 HM Government, The Government*s Response to the First Report from the Liaison
Committee on Shifting the Balance, 2000 (Cm 4737, 2000).
39 An example is provided by cll 18 and 19, Finance Bill 2003, which introduced a new
s.77A and an amended Sched. 11, para. 4(2), to Value Added Tax Act 1994. These
provisions give draconic powers to HM Customs and Excise to collect tax owing by an
independent third party from a bona fide trader who they think might have been negligent
in not noticing that he was dealing with a defaulter. On the Second Reading, The Rt Hon.
Dawn Primarolo, MP, the Paymaster-General (see para. 4.2.1.2 below) referred to certain
&in-built safeguards* [HC, 6 May 2003, col. 629] but in Standing Committee B, Mr John
Healey, MP, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury (see para. 4.2.1.2 below, also) ran
into a barrage of opposition, including some from Labour backbenchers, and gave an
undertaking that Customs would only exercise the powers after having given a written
warning [Hansard HC, 15 May 2003, col. 066].
Institutional Framework 69
4.2.1.2 Government departments
Government departments, or ministries, originated from three sources. First, there
were the holders of the Great Offices of State, insofar as they were political, rather
than ceremonial 每 only one of these, that of Lord High Chancellor, still exists and is
about to be abolished, but a second, Lord High Treasurer, is technically in commission;
second, the position of Secretary of State, which is technically a single office held
jointly by a number of people, specialist responsibilities only being allocated since
1782;40 and, thirdly, what were originally committees of the Privy Council,41 called
&boards*,42 being absorbed into ministries following the First World War,43 they
being, in turn, amalgamated into departments from the 1970s onwards.
The head of each department is now a Secretary of State, who will also be a
member of the Cabinet.44 The Secretary of State will be assisted by a number of
junior ministers of two ranks 每 Minister of State and Parliamentary Under-Secretary
of State 每 and will divide the responsibilities of his department between them.
Whilst questions of policy are always reserved to a minister for decision, the detailed
administrative and research work involved in policy development has traditionally
been carried out by non-political civil servants appointed during good behaviour.45
During the spring and summer of 2003, however, there was increasing concern as to
the position of special advisers, not least the authority of the Prime Minister*s Chief
of Staff*s authority to give instructions to civil servants.46
Statutory authority is usually required both for the creation of new departments and
for the transfer of functions between them. The latter may, under the Ministers of
the Crown Act 1975, be effected by Order in Council. Environmental regulation has
been an area of government policy beset by departmental reorganisations in recent
years.
40 See David Kynaston, The Secretary of State (Lavenham: Terence Dalton, 1978).
41 The Privy Council is a body that used to advise the Crown on government policy, a role
which is now taken by the Cabinet. One of its roles is to make secondary legislation in
cases where a statute has delegated legislative powers to her Majesty in Council.
42 The last surviving such Board being the Board of Trade, the post of President of the Board
of Trade now being held by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (see below).
The title was last used by Mr Michael Heseltine, the deputy Prime Minister in the Major
Government.
43 The first &minister* was Mr David Lloyd George, when asked to take responsibility for
Munitions in 1915. He had been a senior minister and it would not have been appropriate
to rate him as President of a Board. The last full department minister was Mr Nick Brown,
whose Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food was absorbed into Defra after the food
and mouth disease outbreak of February 2001. Departmental ministers were sometimes
not in the Cabinet. The rank of Minister of State, which is now the senior grade of nondepartmental
minister, was first created for Mr Richard Law (the son of the former Prime
Minister Andrew Bonar Law) in 1943.
44 Since the June 2003 reshuffle, this principle is almost honoured in the breach, with the
Scotland and Wales Offices being entrusted to ministers with primary responsibilities
elsewhere, that is, Transport and Leadership of the House of Commons respectively.
45 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., paras 18每021每18每031.
46 Timmins, Financial Times, 12 September 2003, p. 6.
70 Environmental Taxation Law
Most government departments are subject to the supervision of the
Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (&the Ombudsman*) in cases of
maladministration.47
(1) Environmental, energy and transport regulation
At least four departments of central government contribute to the design,
implementation and enforcement of various aspects of environmental regulation, that
is, the Cabinet Office;48 the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
(&Defra*);49 the Department of Trade and Industry (&the DTI*);50 and the Department
for Transport (&the DFT*).51 In addition to these four, the Foreign and Commonwealth
Office52 and the Department for International Development53 each have a role to
play in international environmental policy issues. A further department, the Office
of the Deputy Prime Minister (&the ODPM*),54 might also be added to the list, since
this has responsibility for a wide range of policy issues touching on environmental
matters, including housing, planning, devolution and regional and local government.
The ODPM and the DFT were together, prior to May 2002, parts of the Department
of Transport, Local Government and the Regions (&the DTLR*), a Ministry that is
now itself defunct.
The government describes the role of the Cabinet Office as being &to support the
Government*s delivery and reform programme*55 by helping other departments
to strike a balance between under- and over-regulating. Whilst not having a direct
involvement in the evolution of the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic
instruments, one of the Units within the Cabinet Office, that is, the Regulatory
Impact Unit, seems to have been highly influential in translating regulatory theory
into practice. Part of the Unit*s role is to work with other government departments,
agents and regulators to help ensure that regulations are fair and effective.56 However,
it has also been responsible for promoting a &business friendly* approach to the
enforcement of regulation57 and for supporting the work of the Better Regulation
47 See the Parliamentary Commissioner Act 1967, Scheds 2 and 3. See also Sir Cecil Clothier,
&The Value of an Ombudsman* [1986] PL 204 and Mary Seneviratne, Ombudsmen: Public
Services and Administrative Justice (London: Butterworths, 2002).
48 See www.cabinet-office.gov.uk.
49 See www.defra.gov.uk.
50 See www.dti.gov.uk.
51 See www.dft.gov.uk.
52 See www.fco.gov.uk.
53 See www.dfid.gov.uk.
54 See www.odpm.gov.uk. Although the position of Deputy Prime Minister is not one
recognised by the constitution, the title has been awarded to a senior minister during
Wartime Coalitions and at various times since 1962. The Rt Hon. John Prescott, MP has
held this title since May 1997.
55 See www.cabinet-office.gov.uk/min-org/organisation/index.asp.
56 See www.cabinet-office.gov.uk/regulation/Role/Index.htm.
57 See also the Regulatory Reform Act 2001, which gives ministers extensive powers to use
secondary legislation to reform primary legislation (subject to certain safeguards) as well
as a reserve power to set out a code of good enforcement practice.
Institutional Framework 71
Task Force.58 The Prime Minister*s Strategy Unit,59 another of the Units within
the Cabinet Office60, is tasked with addressing long-term cross-sectoral problems.
One such problem is that of how to reduce dependence on landfill as the primary
method of disposing of waste, to which the Unit has responded by developing the
government*s &Waste Not, Want Not* policy,61 to which reference will be made as
relevant in the rest of the study.62
The remit of Defra is a wide one, including pollution issues (for example, policies
on waste and recycling), climate change policies and international negotiations on
sustainable development.63 The Department is headed by the Secretary of State
for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who is a Cabinet member.64 The selfproclaimed
aim of Defra, shortly after its formation in 2001, was to:
# enhance the quality of life through promoting: a better environment; thriving rural
economies and communities; diversity and abundance of wildlife resources, a countryside
for all to enjoy, sustainable and diverse farming and good industries that work together to
meet the needs of consumers.65
The Department is the culmination of a complex process of organisation and
reorganisation after the General Elections of 1997 and 2001. In 1997, the then
Department of Transport was merged with the then Department of the Environment,
to form the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions (&the DETR*).66
58 Established in 1997 to promote the idea of better, as opposed to, de- regulation (see
Cabinet Office Press Release CAB 85/97, New Better Regulation Task Force Launched,
17 September 1997).
59 See www.strategy.gov.uk.
60 Its work has since been taken over by the Performance and Innovation Unit.
61 See Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, Waste Not, Want Not: A Strategy for Tackling the Waste
Problem in England (London: Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, 2002).
62 See paras 6.3.2 and 21.4.1 below.
63 As to sustainability, Defra is responsible for the £58.6m Aggregates Levy Sustainability
Fund (&the ALSF*) (see para. 21.3.1 below). Financed, as its name suggests, by receipts
from aggregates levy, the ALSF makes grants for: &improving areas where aggregates
extraction has taken place; helping to reduce demand for primary materials by research
into alternatives; encouraging the recycling and re-use of aggregates and promoting new
methods for extracting and moving aggregates to reduce environmental damage* (see Defra
News Release, Cleaner Quarries and Fewer Lorries, 11 April 2002). Funds are distributed
through various agencies, including the Countryside Agency (see www.countryside.gov.
uk), English Heritage (see www.english-heritage.org.uk), English Nature (see www.
english-nature.org.uk) and the Waste and Resources Action Programme (&WRAP*) (see
www.wrap.org.uk and www.aggregain.org.uk 每 this latter is an information database
funded through the ALSF).
64 Currently (December 2004), the original holder, The Rt Hon. Mrs Margaret Beckett, MP.
65 Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Aims and Key Tasks, Defra, 2001,
quoted in David Hughes et al., Environmental Law, 4th edn (London: Butterworths
LexisNexis, 2002), p. 33.
66 Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Order 1997, S.I.1997
No. 2971.
72 Environmental Taxation Law
The thinking had been to integrate transport and environment policies,67 so it was
surprising when, following the 2001 General Election, the two policy areas were again
uncoupled, transport being moved to the newly-formed Department for Transport,
Local Government and the Regions (&the DTLR*), with environment being moved to
another newly-formed ministry, Defra.68 The main other component in Defra, besides
the &environmental* part of the DETR, was the larger part of the Ministry of Agriculture,
Fisheries and Food, whose responsibilities for the promotion of public health and for
the safeguarding of agriculture had long been regarded as being in mutual conflict.69
Below the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who has
overall responsibility for all departmental issues, there are two Ministers of State,
respectively for Environment and Agri-Environment70 and for Rural Affairs and
Urban Life.71 There are then two Parliamentary Under Secretaries, to whom the
responsibilities of food, farming and sustainable energy,72 and Nature Conservancy
and fisheries73 have been allocated.
Directly responsible to the Secretary of State is the Permanent Secretary, a civil
servant, to whom a number of Directorates and Directorates General report directly.
Most importantly, for present purposes, these include the Legal Services Directorate
General, different Directorates of which deal with state aid issues,74 investigations
and prosecutions on behalf of the Department, waste regulation and climate change;
and the Environmental Protection Directorate General, whose responsibilities include
waste management policy and policy on climate, energy and environmental risk.
Within Defra is also the &shadow* Emissions Trading Authority, which is responsible
for the administration of the UK ETS,75 and the Combined Heat and Power Quality
Authority.
In sum, Defra has been responsible for the design, implementation and operation of
PRNs,76 the LATS (in England),77 climate change agreements under climate change
levy78 and the UK ETS.79 As if all this were not enough, it has also been tasked with
the preparation of the UK*s national allocation plan (&NAP*) under the EU ETS.80
67 Department of the Environment Press Release 216, 11 June 1997.
68 See the Secretaries of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions and for
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Order 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 2568.
69 Most notably, of course, in relation to the BSE crisis of the mid-1990s and the foot and
mouth crisis of 2001.
70 Currently (December 2004) Mr Elliot Morley, MP (who replaced The Rt Hon. Michael
Meacher, MP in June 2003).
71 Currently (December 2004) The Rt Hon. Alun Michael, MP.
72 Currently (December 2004) Lord Whitty, the former General Secretary of the Labour
Party, who also deals with all the Department*s business in the House of Lords.
73 Currently (December 2004) Mr Ben Bradshaw, MP.
74 See para. 12.2.7 below.
75 The government had signalled its intention to establish this as an independent statutory
body when Parliamentary time allows.
76 See para. 1.4.2.1(2) above.
77 See para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
78 See para. 1.4.2.2(1) above.
79 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above.
80 See para. 1.4.2.2(3) above and para. 28.5 below.
Institutional Framework 73
The DTI, which dates from 1983,81 is responsible for trade policy, not only within
the UK, but also as regards the UK*s relationship with the EU and its Member States,
as well as third countries. At the head of the DTI is the Secretary of State for Trade and
Industry, who, like the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, is
a member of the Cabinet.82 Directorates within the Department deal with, inter alia,
company law, competitiveness, international trade policy83 and matters relating to
the production, generation and supply of energy.84 As regards the last of these:
The # [Energy Group] is committed to working with others to ensure competitive energy
markets while achieving safe, secure and sustainable energy supplies. Its role is to set
out a fair and effective framework in which competition can flourish for the benefit of
customers, the industry and suppliers, and which will contribute to the achievement of the
UK*s environmental and social objectives. These include the alleviation of fuel poverty,
and maintaining the security and diversity of the UK energy sources.85
Thus, within the Group are units dealing with energy strategy, British Energy plc,86
nuclear and coal liabilities, energy markets, energy innovation and business and
licensing and consents. Certain aspects of emissions trading are the responsibility
of the strategy unit; European Commission approval for state aids are dealt with by
the British Energy unit;87 international treaties and negotiation, as well as electricity
trading reform and regulatory issues are covered by the energy markets unit;88
renewables and coal state aid and industry sponsorship are dealt with by the energy
innovation and business unit; and oil and gas environmental matters are dealt with by
the licensing and consents unit. The DTI, in conjunction with Defra, was responsible
in February 2003 for the Energy White Paper, Our Energy Future 每 Creating a Low
Carbon Economy.89
In connection with the promotion of a low carbon economy, the DTI has a further
significance, as being one of four sponsors90 of a body called the Carbon Trust.91
An independent company limited by guarantee, the Carbon Trust was set up by
81 That is, following the amalgamation of two other ministries. Its origins can be traced
much further back, however.
82 Currently (December 2004), The Rt Hon. Mrs Patricia Hewitt, MP.
83 Including relations with the WTO and the OECD (see paras 4.4.1 and 4.4.2 below).
84 See www.dti.gov.uk/energy.
85 See www.dti.gov.uk/energy/about.shtml.
86 See para. 21.4.4 below.
87 Ibid.
88 See paras 2.4 above and 6.4.3 below.
89 DTI/Defra, Our Energy Future: Creating a Low Carbon Economy, 2003 (Cm 5761,
2003). See further Chapters 20 and 21 below.
90 The others are the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (see para.
4.2.1.2(1) below); the Scottish Executive (see para. 4.2.2 below); from the National
Assembly for Wales and from the Northern Ireland Assembly (see para. 4.2.2 below for
both). The Carbon Trust, whose total funding is £50 million per annum, also receives part
of the receipts from climate change levy (see para. 21.3.1 below).
91 See www.thecarbontrust.co.uk. This is a singularly uninformative website, high on
political rhetoric and low on technical information.
74 Environmental Taxation Law
the government &in partnership with business*, to invest in the development and
deployment of low carbon technologies.92 Since July 2002, it has had responsibility
for the everyday administration of the enhanced capital allowances scheme for
expenditure on specified environmentally-friendly energy equipment.93 The members
of the board of directors of the Carbon Trust are primarily, though not exclusively,
from the private sector. The Carbon Trust has a sibling called the Energy Saving
Trust (&the EST*),94 set up by the pre-1997 Conservative Government after the
United Nations* Conference on Environment and Development at Rio de Janeiro in
1992.95 The EST runs two schemes aimed at stimulating the market: the Community
Energy programme and the Photovoltaic Demonstration programme.96 It is difficult
to see the justification for either body, or why the functions of either body could not
be transferred to central government.97
The DFT is the result of a further stage in the reorganisation process outlined
above in relation to Defra. In 2002, the DTLR was split yet again, certain of its
transport functions being moved to this new &Department for Transport*.98 The
idea was for the DFT to provide a stronger focus on delivering the government*s
transport strategy.99 Its self-proclaimed aim is &transport that works for everyone*
and, to that end, it works in partnership with others to &tackle congestion;
improve accessibility; reduce casualties; respect the environment; and support
the economy*.100 It describes itself as working with Defra on air-quality, climate
change and sustainability and with HM Treasury,101 Defra and with the DTI on the
government*s Powering Future Vehicles strategy. The DFT has four groups, that
is, the Railways, Aviation, Logistics, Maritime and Security Group; the Strategy,
Finance and Delivery Group; the Roads, Regional and Local Transport Group; and
the Driver and Vehicle Operator Group.102
92 See House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, 4th Report. Towards a Non-
Carbon Fuel Economy: Research, Development and Demonstration (HC Papers, Session
2002每2003, HC 55每I) (London: Stationery Office, 2003), para. 38. See further para.
21.3.1 below.
93 See para. 21.3.1 below.
94 See www.est.org.uk.
95 See paras 8.2.3 and 8.3.1.3 below.
96 The Community Energy programme is funded by Defra (see para. 4.2.1.2(1) below)
and managed by the EST and the Carbon Trust and the Photovoltaic Demonstration
programme is funded by the DTI. In 2002每2003, the EST*s budget was £90 million,
made up of funds from central and regional government (see Towards a Non-Carbon Fuel
Economy: Research, Development and Demonstration, above, para. 43).
97 See Towards a Non-Carbon Fuel Economy: Research, Development and Demonstration,
above, para. 44.
98 See the Transfer of Functions (Transport, Local Government and the Regions) Order
2002, S.I. 2002 No. 2626. Note the difference in nomenclature between the post-2002
&Department for Transport* and the pre-1997 &Department of Transport*.
99 See www.dft.gov.uk.
100 Ibid.
101 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) below.
102 The DVLA is also part of the DFT.
Institutional Framework 75
(2) Taxes and tax policy
Governmental responsibilities in relation to taxation are located in three departments:
HM Treasury;103 the Board of Inland Revenue;104 and the Commissioners of Customs
and Excise.105 The latter two are to be amalgamated under the name &HM Revenue
and Customs*, a process outlined briefly below.
Her Majesty*s Treasury has ultimate responsibility for the other two departments in
the list, each being one of the UK*s two tax authorities.106 However, the Treasury*s
responsibilities extend far beyond tax administration, covering &the supervision
and control of national finance*,107 as well as the development and coordination of
economic policy. The Department*s responsibility for economic policy is of relatively
recent origin.108 That it is today one of the most important of the Department*s
functions is, however, plain from the Treasury*s website,109 where the Department*s
aim and objectives are set out. The former includes a specific commitment to the
environment.110
The Treasury Board111 comprises the First Lord of the Treasury, that is, the Prime
Minister,112 the Chancellor of the Exchequer113 and five Junior Lords.114 (Although
called &Lords*, these posts are held by members of the House of Commons.)
The Chancellor is the key Finance Minister and under him are a number of
Junior Ministers, that is, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury,115 the Paymaster-
103 See www.hm-treasury.gov.uk. The Treasury has, over the years, been the subject of
several interesting studies, for example, Joel Barnett, Inside the Treasury (London:
Andr谷 Deutsch, 1982) and Colin Thain and Maurice Wright, The Treasury and Whitehall
(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995).
104 See www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk.
105 See www.hmce.gov.uk.
106 An introductory outline of the operational aspects of the two authorities has already been
given (see para. 1.5 above).
107 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 18每007.
108 See Edmund Dell, The Chancellors (London: HarperCollins, 1996), p. 110.
109 See www.hm-treasury.gov.uk.
110 See www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/about/about_aimsobject.cfm.
111 Which constitutes, technically and historically, the Commissioners running the Treasury
while the office of Lord High Treasurer is vacant (as indeed it has been since the Duke of
Shrewsbury was appointed by Queen Anne on her deathbed in 1714).
112 As First Lord of the Treasury. The post of Prime Minister was not created until 1905,
although the person so regarded usually held that position since the era of Sir Robert
Walpole (1721每1742). Since the early 1970s, the Prime Minister has also been Minister
for the Civil Service.
113 Currently (December 2004), The Rt Hon. Gordon Brown, MP, New Labour*s original
appointment in May 1997 and the Chancellor with the longest tenure since Nicholas
Vansittart (1812每1823).
114 Although they are used to sign statutory instruments, in practice the junior Lords of
the Treasury are medium ranking House of Commons whips who rank considerably
below Parliamentary Under-Secretary in the political hierarchy. The Chief Whip holds
the (nominal) position of Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury and the next three in
seniority the posts of Treasurer, Vice-Chamberlain and Comptroller of HM Household
(see, further, Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 18每007).
115 Who is the Cabinet Minister responsible for expenditure, currently (December 2004) The
Rt Hon. Paul Boateng, MP.
76 Environmental Taxation Law
General,116 the Financial Secretary to the Treasury117 and the Economic Secretary
to the Treasury.118 Of these, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury is also, like the
Chancellor, a Cabinet Minister. The Paymaster-General used 每 before the proposed
departmental amalgamation 每 to be responsible for the Inland Revenue and has
overall responsibility for each Finance Bill. Responsibility for Customs and Excise
used to lie with the Financial Secretary to the Treasury. The fact that the Treasury has
two Cabinet Ministers tends to underline the popular impression that the Treasury
is the senior department of government. The Treasury is made up of seven main
Directorates, each of which consists of a number of Directorate Standing Teams.
Environmental taxes are dealt with by the Budget and Public Finances Directorate
and, within that, by the Environment and Transport Taxes and Saving Incentives Team.
The Treasury*s key contribution to the evolution of policy relating to environmental
taxes and other economic instruments is reflected in its policy document of 2002, Tax
and the environment: using economic instruments.119
The Board of Inland Revenue is responsible for the administration of the UK*s
direct taxes.120 By the Inland Revenue Regulation Act 1890, s.2, the Board of Inland
Revenue is constituted by a quorum of Commissioners,121 who &may do and order
and direct and permit to be done throughout the United Kingdom or in any part thereof
all acts, matters, and things related to inland revenue*.122 Currently, four of the nine
Commissioners have specific areas of responsibility, which the Revenue*s website
lists as Strategic Service Delivery, General Policy and Technical, Corporate Services
and the Valuation Office Agency.123 Below the level of the Board, the structure of
the Department is a complex one,124 made the more so by the Department*s ongoing
programme of reorganisation.125 The three aspects that are worthy of note in the
116 Currently (December 2004) The Rt Hon. Dawn Primarolo, MP, who has been the principal
Treasury Minister in charge of the Inland Revenue since May 1997.
117 In September 2004, Miss Ruth Kelly, MP was replaced by Mr Stephen Timms, MP. He
had been her predecessor in the post.
118 Currently (December 2004), Mr John Healey, MP, whose primary responsibility is for
HM Customs and Excise.
119 See Chapter 5 below.
120 See para. 1.5 above. The Board of Inland Revenue was originally constituted under the
Inland Revenue Board Act 1849.
121 Usually two. The current membership of the Board, the last permanent Chairman of which
was Sir Nicholas Montagu, KCB, until his retirement in March 2004, can be viewed at www.
inlandrevenue.gov.uk/board. Mrs Ann Chant is the current acting Chairman. In Budget
2004, delivered on 17 March 2004, proposals were announced for the amalgamation of
the Inland Revenue with Customs. Shortly thereafter the government started advertising
for an individual of major corporate experience to manage the merger, in the course of
which it was anticipated that a significant reduction in personnel would be achieved.
122 &Inland revenue* is defined, in Inland Revenue Regulation Act 1890, s.39 as &# the
revenue of the United Kingdom collected or imposed as stamp duties, taxes, and placed
under the care and management of the Commissioners, and any part thereof*.
123 See www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/board.
124 The organisation of the Department is envisaged as being along the lines of a Next Steps
Executive Agency (see para. 4.2.1.3 below).
125 See, for example, Inland Revenue, Annual Report 2003, pp. 16每17.
Institutional Framework 77
present context are: first, the Revenue Policy Division, at least three units of which
have an input into the environmentally-inspired provisions of the direct tax codes;126
secondly, the Strategic Service Delivery Division, which contains the units concerned
with enforcement; and, thirdly, the Solicitor*s Office, which conducts the Board*s
civil litigation in England, Wales and Scotland, as well as its prosecutions in England
and Wales. Within the second of these, the UK is divided up into a large number of
Tax Districts in a regional structure. Inspectors and Collectors of Taxes, who are to act
under the Board*s direction, are appointed for each of these Districts and are assisted
by the specialist units in the same Division.127 Given its direct tax-orientation, the
Revenue has not had a close involvement with environmental taxes; it has, however,
contributed to the &greening* of the UK*s direct tax system, through the measures
discussed in Chapters 23 and 24 below and has been working on the income tax and
corporation tax treatment of the UK ETS, as well as of the EU ETS.128
Whereas the Board of Inland Revenue is responsible for the administration of
the UK*s direct taxes, the Commissioners of Customs and Excise are tasked with
administering its indirect taxes. Indirect taxes include, of course, not only VAT and
duties of customs and excise, but also landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates
levy. By the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979, s.6(1):
Her Majesty may from time to time, under the Great Seal of the United Kingdom,129
appoint persons to be Commissioners of Customs and Excise, and any person so appointed
shall hold office during Her Majesty*s pleasure and may be paid such remuneration and
allowances as the Treasury may determine.
Subsection (2) of s.6 then goes on to provide that, in addition to specific
duties imposed by statute, and subject to the general control of the Treasury, the
Commissioners &# shall be charged with the duty of collecting and accounting for,
and otherwise managing, the revenues of customs and excise*. This involves the
care and management of the taxes and duties laid on them, enforcing restrictions and
prohibitions, dealing with individual taxpayer*s affairs and dealing with criminal
investigations.130 Specifically entrusted to the Commissioners are the care and
management of VAT;131 the care and management of landfill tax;132 the care and
management of climate change levy;133 and the care and management of aggregates
levy.134 However, the Department has also been responsible for the management of
the consultations relating to the design, implementation and ongoing review of each
of these taxes.135
126 For example, the Benefits and Expenses Team, which deals with transport-related benefits,
company cars and vans and green transport. See further Chapter 23 below.
127 For example, the National Insurance Contributions Office, the Tax Credit Office, etc.
128 See para. 24.7 below.
129 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., paras 18每001每18每003, as to the Great Seal.
130 See, for example, Customs and Excise, Annual Report 2001每2002, p. 113.
131 Value Added Tax Act 1994, Sched. 11, para. 1(1).
132 Finance Act 1996, s.39(2).
133 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 1(2).
134 Finance Act 2001, s.16(5).
135 See paras 11.3 and 11.4 below.
78 Environmental Taxation Law
The Department was reorganised from April 2001 to focus all of Customs*
operational activities into two &core* functions: first, the Business Services and
Taxes Directorate; and, secondly, the Law Enforcement Directorate.136 As part of
this reorganisation, an attempt was made to simplify the Department*s management
structure, as well as to separate support services from so-called &front-line functions*.
The two &core* functions, though largely self-explanatory, perhaps merit some brief
elaboration. Landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates levy, as well as VAT
and excise duties, are collected and managed by Business Services and Taxes. Law
Enforcement*s functions are primarily in relation to indirect tax fraud, it having
responsibility for investigation, detection and the recovery of criminal assets. Within
Business Services and Taxes, there is a team that deals exclusively with environmental
taxation issues, including not only aggregates levy, climate change levy and landfill
tax, but also the environmental aspects of excise duties and air passenger duty.137
Other teams, whilst not being solely dedicated to environmental taxes, deal with
the environmental aspects of the VAT code (for example, reduced rates of tax for
domestic installation of energy-saving materials).138
An important function of Customs in the context of the environmental taxes is
the Commissioners* oversight of Entrust, the regulatory body for the landfill tax
credit scheme (&the LTCS*).139 Section 53 of the Finance Act 1996 gave power
to the Commissioners to make regulations for securing that a landfill site operator
would be entitled to a credit against landfill tax if he paid a sum to an environmental
body, that is, one whose objects are or include the protection of the environment and
in relation to which certain other prescribed conditions are satisfied.140 The same
section also gave power to Customs to make regulations for requiring environmental
bodies to be approved by a regulatory body.141 The Landfill Tax Regulations 1996,
as amended,142 accordingly contain detailed provisions both as to approved bodies
and as to the appointment of the regulatory body, that is, Entrust.143
Customs have also been given control of the LRUC Management Authority, which
has been set up to run the lorry road user charge.144
Both Customs and the Revenue are subject to the supervision, not only of the
Ombudsman,145 but also of the Revenue Adjudicator, whose function is to examine
complaints from taxpayers about the manner in which the Department in question
136 As with the Revenue, this has been inspired by the Next Steps Executive Agencies (see
para. 4.2.1.3 below).
137 See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
138 See para. 21.3.1 below.
139 See www.entrust.org.uk. See also paras 16.9 and 21.3.2 below. For details of the LTCS,
see www.ltcs.org.uk.
140 See Finance Act 1996, s.53(1).
141 See Finance Act 1996, s.53(2)(b).
142 See Landfill Tax Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 1527, as subsequently amended, most
recently by Landfill Tax (Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 605. See further
para. 21.3.2 below.
143 Entrust*s website states that the body is funded by an enrolment fee from approved bodies
and an administrative fee of 2 per cent of landfill operators* donations.
144 See para. 27.3 below.
145 See the beginning of para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
Institutional Framework 79
conducts the taxpayer*s affairs.146 The office is rendered all the more important
because of both Departments* enforcement powers, particularised as necessary
throughout the rest of the study.147 Because of its &policing* role,148 Customs has the
widest prosecution and enforcement powers of any government department.
Controversy over their handling of a number of high-profile cases,149 no less than
the involvement of the Boards of both the Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise
in a PFI scheme involving an offshore intermediate lessor with existing tax losses,150
prompted the Treasury to announce a major review of the way in which the two
departments operate.151 It was announced on 17 March 2004, that the amalgamation
of the two bodies is to result from this.152 In May 2004, the chairman153 and deputy
chairman154 of the amalgamated Department, to be called &HM Revenue and
Customs*,155 were named.
4.2.1.3 Non-departmental public bodies and agencies
Of primary relevance to the environmental regulation strand in this account are a
number of non-departmental public bodies and agencies. There are essentially
four separate bodies: the Environment Agency;156 the Gas and Electricity Markets
Authority; the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets;157 and the National Audit
Office.158 All four are executive non-departmental bodies (or &quangos*),159 rather
146 See, for example, the useful summary of the Revenue Adjudicator*s functions in Lesley
Browning et al., Revenue Law 每 Principles and Practice, 22nd edn (London: Lexis Nexis
Tolley, 2004), para. 2.52.
147 See, esp. para. 16.12 below.
148 For example, in relation to smuggling, etc.
149 Resulting in Customs* prosecuting role being brought under the direct supervision of the
Attorney-General.
150 See House of Commons Treasury Select Committee, Tenth Report of Session 2002每03,
HC 834, Inland Revenue Matters (published 23 July 2003).
151 See HM Treasury Press Release 78/03, Chancellor Announces Major Review of Inland
Revenue and HM Customs and Excise, 2 July 2003. The issues are of some standing. Tiley
quotes Denis Healey (Lord Healey), the Labour Chancellor from 1974 to 1979, as saying
in his memoirs (characteristically) that the Inland Revenue, like Customs and Excise,
&considered itself to be at least as independent of the Treasury as the three armed servi,ces
were of the Ministry of Defence!* (see John Tiley, Revenue Law, 4th edn (Oxford: Hart
Publishing, 2000), p. 58n, quoting Denis Healey*s The Time of My Life (London: Michael
Joseph, 1989), p. 373).
152 The Inland Revenue has recently absorbed the Contributions Agency, which was
responsible to the Department of Social Security for the collection of NICs.
153 Mr David Varney, from a leading listed company.
154 Mr Paul Gray, a Second Permanent Secretary from a Ministry.
155 See, for example, Anon., Financial Times, 13 July 2004, p. 8 (discussing job losses as a
result of the projected merger of the two departments).
156 See www.environment-agency.gov.uk.
157 See www.ofgem.gov.uk.
158 See www.nao.gov.uk.
159 That is, quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisation.
80 Environmental Taxation Law
than Next Steps Executive Agencies.160 To the list might be added at least two other
bodies, who figure to a greater or lesser extent in what follows: the Civil Aviation
Authority,161 which deals with the economic and safety regulation of UK aviation
and airlines, and the Coal Authority,162 which is responsible for licensing coal mining
operations and ensuring the safety of abandoned mine workings.163
Set up under the Environment Act 1995, the Environment Agency took over a range of
functions and powers, including those of her Majesty*s Inspectorate of Pollution, of the
National Rivers Authority and, in relation to waste-management, of local authorities.164
The Agency is funded partly by Defra and the National Assembly for Wales and partly
by its own activities (for example, levies on local authorities and licence fees).165 It is
organised on a regional basis, with the water management boundaries being based on
the National Rivers Authority*s eight river catchment areas, and the pollution control
functions being organised largely on the same areas, but with modifications to match
the local authority boundary closest to the water management boundary.166
By s.4(1), Environment Act 1995, the principal aim of the Agency is to discharge its
functions so to protect or enhance the environment, taken as a whole, as to contribute
to the objective of achieving sustainable development.167 The principal aim is qualified
in two ways: (a) it is subject to, and the discharge of the Agency*s functions must be in
accordance with, other statutory provisions, including those of the Act itself; and (b)
the Agency must take into account any likely costs. Whether or not the wording of the
principal aim creates a legally enforceable duty, in view of its wide scope, is uncertain. As
to (a), the principal aim is overridden by other statutory provisions in cases where such
160 Environment Act 1995, s.1(1), establishes the Environment Agency as an independent
body corporate. As to Next Steps Executive Agencies and the constitutional issues they
raise, see Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 18每023.
161 See www.caa.co.uk.
162 See www.coal.gov.uk.
163 For completeness, we should also mention the roles of the Office of Fair Trading (www.
oft.gov.uk) and of the Competition Commission (www.competition-commission.org.uk)
in relation to the privatised electricity and gas markets discussed in Chapter 2 above and
Chapter 6 below.
164 The history of the Environment Agency is usefully outlined in Bell and McGillivray,
op. cit., pp. 162每163. The Agency has a Scottish equivalent in the Scottish Environment
Protection Agency (&SEPA*), see www.sepa.org.uk.
165 See, for example, Environment Agency, Annual Report and Accounts 2001每2002.
166 See Susan Wolf and Neil Stanley, Wolf and Stanley on Environmental Law, 4th edn
(London: Cavendish, 2003), p. 38.
167 The Rio Declaration (see paras 8.2.3 and 8.2.6 below) contains 27 Principles of international
environmental law, which together constitute the main outlines of the concept of sustainable
development. There is no definition of the term in the Environment Act 1995, the Agency*s
own guidance using the Brundtland Report*s definition, that is: &[D]evelopment that
meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to
meet their own needs*. The Brundtland Report (World Commission on Environment and
Development, Our Common Future (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1987) was the work
of the World Commission on Environment and Development (&WCED*) and its definition
of sustainable development has been described as &somewhat Delphic* (see Patricia
Birnie and Alan Boyle, International Law and the Environment, 2nd edn (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2002)), p. 41. See, further, Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., pp. 39每46.
Institutional Framework 81
provisions place the Agency under a duty to have regard to particular considerations or
to carry out particular acts. The latter qualification, that is, in (b), includes the costs to
any person and to the environment.168 The Secretary of State must give guidance from
time to time to the Agency with respect to the objectives that he considers it appropriate
for the Agency to pursue in the discharge of its functions.169 Specifically, such
guidance must include advice on how, having regard to the Agency*s responsibilities
and resources, it is to achieve the objective of sustainable development.170 Prior to
issuing such guidance, the Secretary of State is obliged to consult the Environment
Agency and any other appropriate bodies or persons.171 One of the key functions of
the Agency, in the context of the present study, is its administrative and enforcement
role, via its National Waste Registration Unit (&NWRU*) of the system of producer
responsibility for packaging waste and the non-statutory PRN regime.172
Other duties are imposed upon the Agency by ss.5 and 6, Environment Act
1995. Section 5(1) provides that the Agency*s pollution control powers are to be
exercisable for the purpose of preventing or minimising, or remedying or mitigating
the effects of, pollution of the environment. A very general duty is likewise imposed
on the Agency by s.6(1), which provides that the Agency must, &to such extent as it
considers desirable, # generally promote the conservation and enhancement of the
natural beauty and amenity of inland and coastal waters* (plus associated land), &the
conservation of flora and fauna that are dependent on an aquatic environment* and
&the use of such waters and land for recreational purposes*.
Section 39(1) of the Environment Act 1995 imposes a duty on the Agency to &take
into account the likely costs and benefits of the exercise or non-exercise of a power*
conferred on it, by or under an enactment, or its exercise in the manner in question.
However, the subsection continues, the duty does not apply if it is considered
unreasonable to embark upon this calculation by reference to the nature or purpose
of the power in question or in the circumstances of the particular case. The Agency*s
own guidance suggests that one consequence of this wording is that there is no duty
to conduct a cost/benefit assessment in relation to an enforcement decision.173 The
Agency*s enforcement powers, including those of inspection and entry, are wide, and
are set out in Environment Act 1995, s.108. Subsection (1) of s.108 provides that the
powers are exercisable for the purpose of: determining whether any pollution control
legislation is being complied with; exercising or performing any of the Agency*s
pollution control functions; and determining &whether and, if so, how, such a function
should be exercised or performed*. Subsection (4) of s.108 empowers an officer
appointed by the Agency, inter alia, to enter premises; to be accompanied by a police
officer in certain circumstances; and make any necessary investigation. The Agency
has published its policy in relation to the prosecution of environmental offences.174
168 Environment Act 1995, s.56(1).
169 Ibid., s.4(2).
170 Ibid., s.4(3).
171 Ibid., s.4(5).
172 See para. 1.4.2.1(2) above and Chapter 19 below.
173 Environment Agency Sustainable Development Series SD3, Taking Account of Costs and
Benefits, para. 11.1.
174 See www.environment-agency.gov.uk.
82 Environmental Taxation Law
The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (&Ofgem*) regulates the UK*s gas and
electricity industries.175 It carries out its work subject to the direction of the first
of the bodies in this list, the Gas and Electricity Markets Authority (&GEMA*), a
body corporate with the primary duty of carrying out its functions in the way
best calculated to protect the interests of gas and electricity consumers, wherever
appropriate by promoting effective competition. The Gas and Electricity Markets
Authority was established by the Utilities Act 2000 to carry out the functions
formerly carried out by the Director General of Gas Supply and the Director General
of Electricity Supply, as well as the other functions assigned to it under that Act.176
By s.1(2), Utilities Act 2000, GEMA*s functions are performed by it on behalf of
the Crown. It must make arrangements with the Gas and Electricity Consumer
Council for cooperating and exchanging information. As to Ofgem, according to
its website, Ofgem*s work concentrates on the following areas: making gas and
electricity markets work effectively; regulating monopoly businesses intelligently;
securing Britain*s gas and electricity supplies; and meeting its increased social and
environmental responsibilities.177 The Office has enforcement powers under the
Competition Act 1998.
Finally, there is the National Audit Office (&the NAO*), established by the National
Audit Act 1983. The NAO is tasked with providing independent information, advice
and assurance, both to the public at large and to Parliament, about the financial
operations of government departments and other bodies that receive public funds. The
NAO is made up of the Comptroller and Auditor-General and the staff appointed by
him.178 The NAO*s expenses are defrayed out of money provided by Parliament,179
neither the Comptroller and Auditor-General nor any of his staff being regarded as
holding office under her Majesty or as discharging any functions on behalf of the
Crown.180
4.2.1.4 Advisory bodies
Before going on to consider regional and local government, reference should
briefly be made at this point to four advisory bodies: the Royal Commission on
Environmental Pollution (&RCEP*);181 the Advisory Committee on Business and the
Environment (&ACBE*);182 the Commission for Integrated Transport (&CFIT*);183
and the Commission on Sustainable Development.184
175 Under the Gas Act 1986 and the Electricity Act 1989 (as amended by the Utilities Act
2000).
176 Utilities Act 2000, s.1(1).
177 See www.ofgem.gov.uk.
178 National Audit Act 1983, s.3(1).
179 Ibid., s.4(1).
180 Ibid., s.3(5).
181 See www.rcep.org.uk.
182 See www.defra.gov.uk/environment/acbe/default.htm.
183 See www.cfit.gov.uk.
184 See www.sd-commission.gov.uk; see also the Defra sustainability website: www.defra.
gov.uk/environment/sustainable/index.htm. The Sustainability Commission*s Chairman
is Sir Jonathon Porritt, CBE.
Institutional Framework 83
The Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution is an independent standing
body established in 1970, to advise the Queen, the government, parliament and the
public on environmental issues. As a standing Royal Commission, with its own
secretariat, it is, as Bell and McGillivray say, &a rather rare beast*.185 Besides its 20-
odd reports,186 the most visible aspect of its work, it also responds to consultations
and submits memoranda to Committees of the UK Parliament.187 Despite being
described as &constitutionally independent* from government departments, its
funding is provided by Defra, which requires the Commission to supply it with
evidence that the funding has been put to good use and that RCEP is providing value
for money.188
The other three committees mentioned above can be dealt with fairly briefly. The
Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment (&ACBE*) &provides for
dialogue between government and business on environmental issues and aims to
help mobilise the business community in demonstrating good environmental practice
and management*.189 Hughes et al. pinpointed the problem with ACBE as being that,
given that there was no attempt to combine the interests of the industrial sector and
pro-environment groups in ACBE*s membership, there was a danger that it would
become, or would be seen as becoming, &an institutionalised form of lobbying for
industry*.190 These words proved prophetic in relation to the UK Emissions Trading
Group,191 the body formed by ACBE and the CBI192 jointly, in July 1999, to represent
the business interest in emissions trading.193
The role of CFIT was identified in the government*s 1998 White Paper194 as being
&# to provide independent advice to government on the implementation of integrated
transport policy, to monitor developments across transport, environment, health and
other sectors and to review progress towards meeting # [the government*s objectives
under its 10-year transport plan]*.195 Since then, CFIT has championed a number of
185 See Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 157.
186 Some of the most important of these have been its Fifth Report, Air Pollution Control:
An Integrated Approach, 1976 (Cmnd 6371, 1976); its Tenth Report, Tackling Pollution
每 Experiences and Prospects, 1984 (Cmnd 9149, 1984); its Eleventh Report, Managing
Waste: The Duty of Care, 1985 (Cmnd 9675, 1985); its Twelfth Report, Best Practicable
Environmental Option, 1988 (Cmnd 310, 1988); its Twentieth Report, Transport and the
Environment 每 Developments since 1994, 1997 (Cm 3759, 1997); its Twenty-first Report,
Setting Environmental Standards, 1998 (Cm 4053, 1998); and its Twenty-second Report,
Energy 每 The Changing Climate, 2000 (Cm 4749, 2000).
187 See para. 4.2.1.1 above.
188 See Hughes et al., op. cit., p. 54.
189 See www.defra.gov.uk/environment/acbe/default.htm.
190 See Hughes et al., op. cit., p. 55.
191 See www.uketg.com.
192 See para. 2.2 above.
193 As the incentive payments made under the UK ETS have graphically demonstrated (see
paras 12.2.7.2, 20.1 and 20.4 below).
194 Department of the Environment Transport and the Regions, A New Deal for Transport:
Better for Everyone, 1998 (Cm 3950, 1998). For the DETR, and its subsequent fate, see
para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
195 See A New Deal for Transport, para. 4.4.
84 Environmental Taxation Law
causes, including congestion charging, in relation to which it provides excellent upto-
date information via its website.196
Finally, the Commission on Sustainable Development is the successor to the UK
Round Table on Sustainable Development and to the British Government Panel on
Sustainable Development.197 The Commission was originally set up in October 2000,
following up a commitment to do so in the 1999 report A Better Quality of Life.198
Its task is to monitor government progress in relation to sustainable development
across all relevant fields and specifically to identify policies currently undermining
such progress, with a view to their remediation. Recently, it has produced a detailed
response to the joint Treasury and DFT consultation paper on the use of economic
instruments in regulating the environmental effects of aviation.199
4.2.1.5 The court system
The quasi-federal structure of the UK has a single tax system and three different legal
systems.200 The legal system of England and Wales has a different system of appeals
from those of Scotland and Northern Ireland. The factor common to all three systems
is the ultimate appeal to the House of Lords and to the European Court of Justice
(&the ECJ*). In this para, we outline briefly the legal system of England and Wales, as
it relates to tax and environmental matters.201
Taxpayers may appeal against assessments to income tax, CGT and corporation
tax under certain conditions.202 They may choose whether to appeal to the General
Commissioners or to the Special Commissioners. The General Commissioners are
part-time and unpaid, often lay people rather than experts, and assisted by a clerk,
who is usually a solicitor.203 The Special Commissioners, by contrast, are barristers,
advocates or solicitors of at least ten years* standing.204 The Commissioners, when
they hear a case, have the right to look anew at any matter of law or fact referred
to them, and they can dismiss or alter an assessment in any way they consider to be
justified.205 By Value Added Tax Act 1994, ss.83 and 84, VAT appeals are made to
the VAT and Duties Tribunals,206 which consist of a chairman sitting either with two
196 See www.cfit.gov.uk/congestioncharging/index.htm.
197 As Hughes et al. point out, this body is not to be confused with the United Nations
Commission on Sustainable Development (see para. 4.4.3.1 below).
198 Cm 4345, 1999. See para. 5.2 below.
199 See www.sd-commission.gov.uk/pubs/aviation/index.htm. For a discussion of the joint
report itself, see para. 27.5 below.
200 See Davies: Principles of Tax Law, ed. by Geoffrey Morse and David Williams, 4th edn
(London: Sweet and Maxwell, 2000), para. 2每06.
201 See, for example, Smith, Bailey and Gunn on the Modern English Legal System, ed. by
S.H. Bailey, J.P.L. Ching, M.J. Gunn and D.C. Ormerod, 4th edn (London: Sweet and
Maxwell, 2002).
202 Taxes Management Act 1970, s.31.
203 Ibid., ss.2, 3.
204 Ibid., s.4.
205 Davies, op. cit., para. 1每12.
206 Value Added Tax Act 1994, Sched. 12.
Institutional Framework 85
other members or with one other member or alone.207 Tribunal chairmen must have
held a right of audience before the tribunal for at least seven years.208 By Finance
Act 1996, s.54(3), a person affected by a decision of Customs on landfill tax may by
notice in writing require them to review the decision. Thereafter, appeal lies to a VAT
and Duties Tribunal under Finance Act 1996, s.55. Virtually identical procedures
apply for the purposes of climate change levy209 and for aggregates levy.210 Such, in
essence, is the relevant system of tax appeals.
If the involvement of the UK courts in tax matters is as a result of appeals against
assessments, in environmental, energy and transport matters it tends to occur as a
result of applications for judicial review of administrative decisions,211 for example,
refusals to grant licences under the various command and control mechanisms212
or refusals of, or the imposition of conditions on, planning permissions.213 Review
may be sought in the High Court on a number of grounds, including procedural
flaws, procedural unfairness and irrationality. It is seen as providing a valuable
accountability mechanism after the event.214
The High Court of Justice is divided into three administrative Divisions: the Queen*s
Bench, Chancery and Family Divisions. It is served by over 100 High Court judges.
The Chancery Division hears appeals from the General and Special Commissioners
on points of law only.215 However, appeals from VAT and Duties Tribunals lie to
the Administrative Court of the Queen*s Bench Division, since they are treated as
administrative law appeals.216 Applications for judicial review are generally made to
the Queen*s Bench Division Administrative Court.
Appeals from both the Chancery Division and the Queen*s Bench Division go to
the Court of Appeal (Civil Division). Around 35 Lords Justices of Appeal serve the
Court of Appeal, but Law Lords may also occasionally sit. There is usually a panel of
three judges on the hearing of appeals, decisions being taken by a majority of them.
The House of Lords, sitting in its judicial capacity, is the final court of appeal within
the UK legal systems. Appeals are usually heard by five Law Lords, their decision
being by a simple majority. Appeals may reach the Lords either from the Court of
Appeal or, under the so-called &leapfrog procedure*, direct from the High Court.217
207 Ibid., Sched. 12, para. 5(1).
208 Ibid., Sched. 12, para. 7(4).
209 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, paras 121 and 122.
210 Finance Act 2001, ss.40 and 41.
211 See, generally, de Smith, Woolf and Jewell, Judicial Review of Administrative Action, 5th
edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1995). See also Chris Hilson, Regulating Pollution 每 A
UK and EC Perspective (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2000), pp. 52每53 and 61每64. There is
also a useful overview at Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., pp. 64每66.
212 See Chapter 6 below.
213 See para. 6.4.3.1(3) below.
214 But see Hilson, passim, on the value of this.
215 Taxes Management Act 1970, s.56(6) and 56A(1). For the distinction between points of
law and points of fact, see, for example, Edwards v. Bairstow and Harrison, [1956] AC
14.
216 See Civil Procedure Rules 1998, S.I. 1998 No. 3132, Sched. 1, para. 2; Davies, op. cit.,
para. 1每12.
217 Administration of Justice Act 1969, ss.12每15.
86 Environmental Taxation Law
4.2.2 Devolved regional government
The UK is now close to being, as already mentioned, a federal state.218 This has had
a number of paradoxical consequences. England is now the only part of the UK that
does not have its &own particular institutions*,219 and MPs in the UK Parliament who
represent Scottish seats may vote in the UK Parliament on matters that do not affect
Scotland.220
There are three devolution schemes, that is, those for each of Wales, Scotland and
Northern Ireland. They have certain similarities:221
1 unlike in the UK Parliament, there is a single legislative chamber;
2 elections are based on proportional representation;
3 powers are delegated by central government to the regions &without relinquishment
of sovereignty*;
4 there is the same scheme for referring devolution issues to higher courts;
5 each of the devolved bodies is subject to the 1950 European Convention on
Human Rights and the Human Rights Act 1998;
6 the Executive in each province is constituted from elected members, although the
functions and powers of each Executive differs considerably;
7 whereas Wales and Northern Ireland are entirely dependent for revenue on
Westminster, the Scottish Parliament may increase or decrease the basic rate of
income tax fixed by the UK Parliament by a maximum of 3 per cent;222 and
8 whereas the Scottish Parliament has primary legislative power in relation to
pollution for Scotland, and the Northern Ireland Assembly has that power in
relation to Northern Ireland, the UK Parliament retains this power in relation to
England and Wales.
Setting aside such similarities, the devolution scheme for each province is rather
different. At the time of writing, the Northern Ireland Assembly has been dissolved,
following a period of suspension.223
The Government of Wales Act 1998 provides for the election of a National
Assembly for Wales224 for a term of four years, no provision existing for early
218 See para. 1.3 above. See also Hilson, op. cit., p. 47, referring to for the distinction between
devolution and federalism, B. Burrows and G. Denton, Devolution or Federalism?
Options for a United Kingdom (London: Macmillan, 1980).
219 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 5每042.
220 This is the so-called &West Lothian Question*, so-called after the Constituency of the MP
who reputedly first raised the possibility in the 1970s (Mr Tam Dalyell, MP): see Hood
Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 5每045.
221 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., paras 5每013每5每019, to which the following
material in para. 4.2.2 is considerably indebted.
222 See para. 1.3 above.
223 It was suspended from midnight on 14 October 2002 and dissolved on 28 April 2003.
Elections to the new Assembly were held, but the majority parties on both sides of the
political divide changed and, as at December 2004, they had been unable to reach an
accommodation.
224 See www.wales.gov.uk/index.htm.
Institutional Framework 87
dissolution.225 The same period is provided for by the Scotland Act 1998, although
the Scottish Parliament226 may force an election &before the end of its four year term
if such a move has the support of two-thirds of its members, or if a vacancy arises in
the office of First Minister and no member is able to win sufficient support to form
a new government within 28 days*.227 The Northern Ireland Act 1998 also provides
for the election of the Northern Ireland Assembly for four years.228
The Welsh Assembly, a body corporate,229 has no power to enact primary legislation,
although it does have the power to enact secondary legislation (called &Assembly
Orders*). The Secretary of State for Wales230 is required to &carry out such consultation
[that is, with the Welsh Assembly] about the government*s legislative programme for
the session as appears to him to be appropriate*.231 By s.33 of the Government of
Wales Act 1998, the Welsh Assembly may consider and make &representations [to
the UK government] about any matter affecting Wales*. Besides enacting Assembly
Orders, the Welsh Assembly may issue policy statements in the form of circulars and
give guidance on the exercise of statutory powers. Within this pattern of possibilities
and constraints, the powers of the Welsh Assembly are broad, covering agriculture,
forestry, fisheries and food, culture, economic development, education and training,
the environment, health and the health services, highways, housing, industry, local
government, social services, sport and recreation, tourism, town and country planning,
transport, water and flood defence and the Welsh language.232 Limitations on the
Assembly*s powers are contained in ss.106, 107 and 108, Government of Wales
Act 1998 (respectively EU obligations, human rights and international obligations).
By s.121, Government of Wales Act 1998, the Assembly must set a new economic
agenda for Wales as well as promote sustainable development.
Like the Welsh Assembly, the Scottish Parliament only has functions falling within
its devolved competencies.233 Unlike the Welsh Assembly, however, the Scottish
Parliament has a general power to make laws234 that fall within its legislative
competence.235 Thus, whilst being unable to modify provisions of, for example, the
Human Rights Act 1998 and parts of the European Communities Act 1972, and whilst
being unable to legislate in certain areas,236 the Scottish Parliament may legislate in
a wide range of areas, including local government (and even &local taxes to fund local
225 Government of Wales Act 1998, s.3(2). A provision for early dissolution was deemed
unnecessary, since the Welsh Assembly has no power to refuse to pass government Bills.
226 www.scottish.parliament.uk.
227 See Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., para. 5每028 (Scotland Act 1998, ss.3 and 46).
228 Northern Ireland Act 1998, s.31(1).
229 Government of Wales Act 1998, s.1(2).
230 A Cabinet Minister (see para. 4.2.1 above). The office is currently held by The Rt Hon.
Peter Hain, MP (December 2004), whose main function is Leader of the House of
Commons.
231 Government of Wales Act 1998, s.31.
232 Ibid., Sched. 2.
233 See Colin Reid and Gerardo Ruiz-Rico Ruiz, &Scotland and Spain: The Division of
Environmental Competencies* (2003) 52 ICLQ 209每25.
234 Scotland Act 1998, s.28.
235 Ibid., s.29.
236 Ibid., Sched. 5.
88 Environmental Taxation Law
authority expenditure*), fishing, forestry and economic development. In particular, as
mentioned above, the Scottish Parliament may vary the basic rate of income tax up
to three percentage points up or down but (not mentioned above), in the event that
it reduces the basic rate, it must make a payment to the Board of Inland Revenue to
make up the resulting shortfall, out of the Scottish Consolidated Fund.237
The (dissolved)238 Northern Ireland Assembly*s powers fall somewhat between
those of the Welsh Assembly and of the Scottish Parliament.239 Like the Scottish
Parliament, it has a general legislative power but, unlike the Scottish Parliament, the
power is somewhat closely restricted. Crown matters, defence, elections, Parliament,
international relations, treason and national security are all so-called &excepted
matters*,240 on which the Northern Ireland Assembly has no power to legislate. Even
where it does have power to legislate, however, the Assembly must act within its
legislative competence and not, for example, pass an Act that is incompatible with
human rights or European law.
The Executive takes different forms, and has different powers, in each of the three
provinces. With Scotland, there is a Scottish Executive (&the Scottish Ministers*),
consisting of a First Minister, other ministers and the Scottish Law Officers,241
the Executive exercising devolved executive powers on behalf of the Crown.242
In Northern Ireland, a complicated structure (designed to move Northern Ireland
towards power-sharing) provides for the election of a First Minister and Deputy
First Minister by the Assembly. Their fellow ministers on the Northern Ireland
Executive Committee are elected by the Assembly, by a system of proportional
representation designed to ensure that parties have ministerial posts in proportion
to their strength in the Assembly. The Queen continues to exercise executive power
in Northern Ireland, except with respect to &transferred matters*, where ministers on
the Executive Committee and their departments exercise it on her behalf.243 With
Wales, since the Assembly is the executive, there is a Welsh Assembly Cabinet, made
up of the Assembly First Secretary, the Chairman of the Executive Committee and
the Assembly Secretaries.244 The First Secretary is known as the First Minister, and
the other members of the Executive Committee as ministers. None of these have
powers by virtue of their office. Unlike under either of the Scotland or Northern
Ireland settlements, the Welsh Cabinet exercises its functions on behalf of, and in
cooperation with, the Assembly.
The devolved administrations in Wales and Scotland have been responsible for
allocating allowances under the LATS, each choosing different commencement
237 Ibid., s.78.
238 Following the 2003 Election in which the Democratic Unionist Party became the majority
party on the Unionist side and Sinn Fein on the Nationalist side.
239 See www.ni-assembly.gov.uk.
240 Northern Ireland Act 1998, Sched. 2.
241 Scotland Act 1998, s.44. See www.scotland.gov.uk.
242 Ibid., s.53(2).
243 Northern Ireland Act 1998, s.23.
244 Government of Wales Act 1998, s.56. See the website: www.wales.gov.uk. The Executive
Committee is the formal name of the Welsh Assembly Cabinet, the Welsh Assembly
having exercised its power to designate it as such.
Institutional Framework 89
dates.245 In Northern Ireland, following the re-imposition of direct rule, allocation
has been the responsibility of the Department of the Environment for Northern
Ireland.246
Under all three sets of arrangements, Committees have an important part to play.
Section 54 of the Government of Wales Act 1998 requires the Assembly to create,
not only the Executive Committee247 but also subject committees, a subordinate
legislation scrutiny committee, an audit committee and regional committees, these
being elected by the Assembly.248 Besides being able to hold the administration to
account, the subject committees have a role in scrutinising legislation. In Northern
Ireland, s.29 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 provides for the establishment
of statutory committees &to advise and assist each minister in the formulation of
policy*. These committees have both scrutinising functions in relation to legislation
and the power to hold the Executive Committee to account. Finally, the Scottish
Parliament has mandatory committees (for example, standards, finance, audit, equal
opportunities, European, etc) but it has also established special subject committees,
one of which is that for Transport and the Environment. Unlike with the Government
of Wales and Northern Ireland Acts, the Scotland Act 1998 does not contain detailed
provisions on the establishment of committees.
The relationship between the UK and the devolved institutions is dealt with in a
1999 Memorandum of Understanding,249 together with a number of supplementary
agreements. There is also a Joint Ministerial Committee to supply a central
coordination of the relationships between the devolved institutions and the UK.250
4.2.3 Local government
Local government in England and Wales &consists of the administration by locally
elected bodies of powers conferred and duties imposed by Parliament*.251 England,
except London and the Isles of Scilly, is divided into counties and, within those
counties, into districts.252 Districts and counties may each be either metropolitan or
non-metropolitan.253 A non-metropolitan county, a district or a London Borough is
a principal area.254 Although each principal area must have a principal council,255
245 See para. 1.4.2.5 above.
246 See www.doeni.gov.uk. This is currently (December 2004) the responsibility of the
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Office.
247 See above in this para.
248 Government of Wales Act 1998, s.57.
249 Scottish Executive, Memorandum of understanding and supplementary agreements
between the United Kingdom Government, Scottish Ministers and the National Assembly
for Wales, 1999 (Cm 4444, 1999). (Subsequently revised in 2001 as Cm 5240.)
250 On both the Memorandum of Understanding and the Joint Ministerial Committee, see
Hood Phillips and Jackson, op. cit., paras 5每0475每049.
251 See 29(1) Hals, para. 1 (to which this para. 4.2.3 is indebted).
252 Local Government Act 1972, s.1(1).
253 Ibid., ss.1(2)每1(4) (but note that metropolitan county councils were abolished by the
Local Government Act 1985).
254 Local Government Act 1972, s.270(1).
255 Ibid., ss.2 and 270.
90 Environmental Taxation Law
there is an exception to this rule where, instead of both a district council256 and a
county council, there is a unitary authority.257 All three of counties, districts and
London Boroughs are local authorities within the legislative terminology.258
Constituted as corporations, local authorities are persons distinct in law from the
residents of the areas that they govern. To the extent that Parliament, whether by
primary or secondary legislation, has provided for ministers of central government to
direct, control or supervise the exercise of their powers and duties, local authorities
are subordinate to the direction, control and supervision of central government.259
Councillors for each principal area are elected by local government electors260 by
universal adult suffrage. Councillors, who must not be in paid employment with the
local authority in question, are elected for four years and must have a sufficient local
connection.261
Local authorities have for long collected and retained local taxes,262 in relation
to which they have wide powers of enforcement, but they have no control over the
structure of those taxes nor of the rules that provide for the imposition of liability
or the grant of relief.263 Under the terms of the Transport Act 2000, however, they
have acquired powers to impose workplace parking levies264 and to create road
user charging schemes.265 The exercise of these powers is discussed elsewhere in
the book.266 Waste disposal authorities, usually county councils,267 are subject to
the LATS,268 designed to restrict the landfilling of biodegradable municipal waste,
while both WDAs and WCAs269 have the benefit of the much older WRCS, which is
designed to ensure that WCAs are not penalised for the costs of recycling.270
256 A district council may petition for borough status (see Local Government Act 1972, s.245).
257 Sometimes referred to as &single tier* authorities. The government has taken powers in
Regional Assemblies (Preparations) Act 2003 to initiate referenda in the English regions
with a view to setting up Regional Authorities in place of one of the tiers of government.
Where set up, such authorities are likely to have environmental responsibilities.
258 Local Government Act 1972, s.270(1). In England, there are at present 34 non-metropolitan
counties, which are all divided into non-metropolitan districts, 45 unitary authorities and
238 non-metropolitan districts.
259 See 29(1) Hals, para. 1.
260 Local Government Act 1972, s.270(1).
261 Ibid., s.79.
262 That is, council tax (see Local Government Finance Act 1992) and the uniform business
rate (see Local Government Finance Act 1988, Part III). Council tax is a property tax
payable in respect of domestic property to contribute to the cost of local government. The
uniform business rate, which is payable on non-residential property, is also a property
tax. The uniform business rate is fixed by central government but council tax rates are
determined locally.
263 Brief accounts of both council tax and the uniform business rate can be found in CCH
Editions, CCH Tax Handbook 2003每04 (Banbury: CCH, 2003), para. 10050.
264 See Chapter 17 below.
265 See Chapter 18 below.
266 Ibid.
267 See para. 2.3 above.
268 See para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
269 See para. 2.3 above.
270 See para. 1.4.2.1(3) above.
Institutional Framework 91
By contrast with their still somewhat limited tax-raising powers, the continuing
involvement of local authorities with environmental regulation has been only slightly
diminished with the transfer of their waste management functions to the Environment
Agency in the mid-1990s.271 Their involvement covers town and country planning
under the planning legislation; the investigation and abatement of statutory nuisances
under the Environmental Protection Act 1990; the control of smoke emissions, under
the Clean Air Act 1993; the authorisation of certain atmospheric emissions under
the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part I, and under the Pollution Prevention
and Control Act 1999; the identification of areas of contaminated land under the
Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part IIA; and, in the case of County Councils,
London Borough Councils and district councils, responsibilities as so-called
&hazardous substance authorities*, under the Planning (Hazardous Substances) Act
1990.272 Local authorities have extensive powers of enforcement in relation to these
matters.
London is still a special case in the complex of local government in the UK. In
addition to the 32 London Borough Councils is the Greater London Authority
(&GLA*), which was created by the Greater London Authority Act 1999.273 It consists
of the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.274 The GLA has eight main areas
of responsibility: transport, planning, economic development and regeneration, the
environment, police, fire and emergency planning, culture and health. In relation to
transport, s.154 of the Greater London Authority Act 1999 provides for the creation
of Transport for London (&TFL*). Transport for London has a number of different
functions, including the provision of public passenger transport services to, from
or within Greater London.275 The Mayor of London is elected and holds office for
four years;276 he has the duty of setting the annual budgets for the GLA277 and
its functional bodies,278 including TFL. The Mayor appoints the members of TFL
and the other functional bodies.279 On the environmental front, he is responsible for
the London biodiversity action plan, the municipal waste management strategy, the
London Air Quality Strategy and the London Ambient Noise Strategy. The London
271 That is, under the Environment Act 1995 (see para. 4.2.1.3 above and para. 6.3.2.1(1)
below).
272 This list is based on the more detailed one in Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., pp. 54每55.
273 See www.london.gov.uk.
274 Greater London Authority Act 1999, ss.1, 2 and Sched. 1.
275 Ibid., s.173.
276 The first Mayor, Mr Ken Livingstone (who had been the last Leader of the old Greater
London Council abolished in 1985), was elected, as an independent, on 4 May 2000
(see www.london.gov.uk). He was readmitted to the Labour Party before his five year
expulsion period had expired in order to stand as the official Labour candidate in the 2004
election. He won that election also. It should be noted that the office of Mayor of London
is entirely separate and distinct from the ancient office of the Lord Mayor of London. The
latter*s authority is confined to the City, that is, &the square mile* financial district.
277 Greater London Authority Act 1999, s.122(1).
278 The four functional bodies are each separate bodies corporate: TFL, the London
Development Agency, the Metropolitan Police Authority and the London Fire and
Emergency Planning Authority (see Greater London Authority Act 1999, s.424(1)).
279 Greater London Authority Act 1999, s.154, Sched. 10, paras 2 and 3.
92 Environmental Taxation Law
Assembly, which consists of 25 elected members,280 has 14 constituency members,
that is, one constituency member for each Assembly constituency, and 11 London
members, that is, members for the whole of Greater London.281
4.3 European Union institutions
Some tension between environmental regulation, on the one hand, and taxation, on
the other, is apparent from an examination of the place of each of these areas in the
institutional framework of the EU.282 Whilst there is broad consensus among Member
States as to the role of environmental concerns in EU policy-making,283 the scope,
and even the meaning, of tax harmonisation, is very much more controversial.284
Not discussed below, although, given the importance of energy policy in the study,
nonetheless relevant to the subsequent discussion in the book, is the European Atomic
Community (&Euratom*). Eurotom was created in 1957, to support the Member
States* non-military nuclear industries, by sponsoring research, laying down safety
standards, overseeing implementation issues and monitoring the distribution of
fissionable material.285
4.3.1 The Council of the European Union286
By Art. 203, European Treaty (ex 146), &[t]he Council shall consist of a representative
of each Member State at ministerial level, authorised to commit the government
of that Member State*.287 From this wording, it follows that Council members are
therefore politicians rather than civil servants.288 Also by Art. 203, European Treaty
280 Defined ibid., s.424(1).
281 Ibid., s.2.
282 For the institutional framework of the EU, see: Stephen Weatherill and Paul Beaumont,
EU Law, 3rd edn (London: Penguin, 1999), chs 2每6 and Paul Craig and Gr芍inne de B迆rca,
EU Law: Text, Cases and Materials, 3rd edn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003),
ch. 2. See also Sir Leon Brittan, &Institutional Development of the European Community*
[1992] PL 567; J. Lewis, &The Methods of Community in EU Decision-Making and
Administrative Rivalry in the Council*s Infrastructure* (2000) 7 JEPP 67; A. Stevens,
with H. Stevens, Brussels Bureaucrats? The Administration of the European Union
(Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001); and Neill Nugent, The Government and Politics of the
European Union, 5th edn (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003).
283 See Chapter 12 below.
284 Ibid.
285 Euratom Treaty, Arts 1 and 2. See Energy Law in Europe: National, EU and International
Law and Institutions, ed. by Martha M. Roggenkamp et al. (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 2001), paras 3.120每3.123.
286 The name is the result of Council Decision 591/93/EC, (1993) OJ L281 18. The Council
of the European Union must not be confused with the European Council (that is, the
Heads of State or government of the Member States, plus the President of the Commission
(see Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., pp. 71每75)).
287 http://ue.eu.int/en/main.htm.
288 Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., p. 65.
Institutional Framework 93
(ex 146), it is provided that the office of President is to be held in turn by each
Member State in the Council for a term of six months in the order decided by the
Council acting unanimously.
Council meetings, of which there are approximately 80每100 per year, are generally
arranged according to the subject matter under discussion, different ministers attending
from the Member States according to the subject matter under consideration. Article
204, European Treaty (ex 147) provides that the Council shall meet &when convened
by its President, on his own initiative or at the request of one of its members or of
the Commission*.
By Art. 202, European Treaty (ex 145), the Council must ensure that the objectives
set out in that Treaty are attained. To this end, it must: &# ensure co-ordination of
the general economic policies of the Member States*. However, neither this wording
nor, indeed, the wording of the rest of Art. 202, conveys a sense of the true role of the
Council as a legislative body. Such a sense is apparent only from a consideration of
the European Treaty as a whole:
1 The Council*s approval is required for legislative proposals by the European
Commission. The Council must generally act by a majority of its members,
whether simple or qualified,289 the nature of the majority depending on
the Treaty Art. under which a particular measure is enacted.290 However, in
certain crucially important areas, it is provided that Council approval must be
unanimous.291
Under Title XIX, European Treaty (ex XVI), on the Environment, the areas in
which the Council*s decisions must be unanimous are specified as follows:
a. &provisions primarily of a fiscal nature*;
b. measures affecting town and country planning;
c. quantitative management of water resources or affecting, directly or
indirectly, the availability of those resources;
d. land use; and
e. measures &significantly affecting a Member State*s choice between different
energy sources and the general structure of its energy supply*.
Excepted from d. are waste management and measures of a general nature.292
289 Qualified majority voting, which is a system of weighted voting, is provided for by Art.
205(2) (ex 148). The Treaty of Nice, together with its Protocol on the Enlargement of
the EU and Declaration 20 of the Declarations adopted by the Nice IGC, has effected a
number of amendments, both current and prospective, to Art. 205(2), European Treaty (see
Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., pp. 155每6). The Treaty of Nice came into force on 1 February
2003 (see Art. 12(2), TN), the Republic of Ireland having deposited its instruments of
ratification in December 2002. For all this, see http://europa.eu.int.
290 See Art. 205(1), European Treaty (ex 148).
291 Abstentions cannot block a measure that requires unanimity (see Art. 205(3) (ex 148(3)).
For the cases where unanimity is required, see Weatherill and Beaumont, op. cit.,
pp. 89每91.
292 See Art. 175, European Treaty (ex 130s), as amended by TN.
94 Environmental Taxation Law
Environmental issues not mentioned in this list must normally be dealt with by
qualified majority voting.293
In relation to taxation, two Arts are significant: Art. 93, European Treaty (ex
99), and Art. 95(2), European Treaty (ex 100a). Both of these appear in Title
VI, European Treaty (ex V) on Common Rules on Competition, Taxation and
Approximation of Laws. Article 93, European Treaty, provided for the unanimous
harmonisation of legislation concerning turnover taxes, excise duties and other
forms of indirect taxation to the extent that such harmonisation was necessary
in the run up to the completion of the internal market on 31 December 1992.294
Article 95(2), European Treaty, reaffirms the need for unanimity when the
Council is considering a proposal of the European Commission relating to fiscal
provisions, provisions relating to the free movement of persons and provisions
relating to the rights and interests of employed persons.
2 By Art. 208, European Treaty (ex 152) the Council may request the European
Commission to undertake &# any studies the Council considers desirable for
the attainment of the common objectives, and to submit to it any appropriate
proposals*. This is a powerful weapon in the hands of the Council, since it can
be used to require the Commission to consider specific legislative proposals,295
which can themselves be evolved through COREPER296 and its workin,g
parties.
3. Since the Council can delegate powers to the Commission, under which the latter
may make detailed regulations in a particular area, and since such regulations
can be closely scrutinised by the Council, the Council can exercise close control
over delegated legislation.297
4.3.2 The European Commission
The College of Commissioners consisted until 1 May 2004, of 20 members298 and,
since enlargement, consists of 25. They are chosen on the grounds of their general
competence and on the basis that their independence is beyond doubt.299 Individual
Commissioners are appointed for a renewable period of five years.300 Under the
former wording of Art. 214(2), European Treaty (ex 158), the Commissioners and
the Commission President were appointed by common accord of the Member States,
293 See para. 12.2.1 below.
294 See also Art. 14 (ex 7a). As to whether there may still be life in Art. 93, European Treaty,
see David Williams, EC Tax Law (Longman: London, 1998), p. 34.
295 See Brittan, op. cit., pp. 568每9.
296 Article 207 (ex 151) provides that a committee consisting of the Permanent Representatives
of the Member States (&COREPER*) is to be responsible for preparing the work of the
Council and for carrying out the tasks assigned to it by the Council. See Lewis, op. cit.,
generally.
297 See Council Decision 468/99/EC, (1999) OJ L184 23.
298 www.europa.eu.int/comm/index_en.htm. See Neill Nugent, The European Commission
(Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001).
299 Art. 213 (ex 157).
300 Art. 214(1) (ex 158).
Institutional Framework 95
subject to a vote of approval by the European Parliament. Following the entry into
force of the Treaty of Nice, these provisions have been modified, as a result of which
the European Parliament should in future have a greater say in the appointment
process.301 By Art. 213, European Treaty, (ex 157) the Commission had to include at
least one, and no more than two, Commissioners from each Member State.302 Each
Commissioner has a specific portfolio.303 From November 2004, each Member State
of the enlarged EU is to have only one Commissioner.
If and when the European Constitutional Treaty, which was agreed in principle in
June 2004 but has not yet been signed or ratified, comes into force, the procedure for
selecting the Commission will change. The Council will have a full-time president.
It will also, by weighted majority voting, propose a candidate for the approval of the
Parliament for the post of President of the Commission. Once confirmation has been
received, the Commission will be selected by its President and the Council taking
into account suggestions made by Member States. One member of the Commission
will be the Union Minister for Foreign Affairs, a position which is seen as forming
part of a geographically spread troika with the two presidents. From 2014, the size
of the Commission is to be reduced from one per Member State to two-thirds of the
Member States, with an equal rotation of representation. Thus each Member State
will be represented in the Commission for only two five yearly periods out of three.
Under the present arrangements, particular legislative proposals usually begin in one
or more304 of the Commission*s Directorates General (&DGs*). The DGs of greatest
relevance to the present study are: Energy and Transport,305 Environment,306 Taxation
and the Customs Union307 and Trade.308 From the relevant DG, the draft of the
proposal is then sent to the personal staffs (or cabinets) of the relevant Commissioners
301 See Art. 214(2), as amended by Art. 1(21), TN. The Council, meeting in the composition
of Heads of State or government and acting by qualified majority, nominates the person
it intends to appoint as Commission President. This nomination must be approved by the
European Parliament. The Council, acting by qualified majority and by common accord
with the nominee for President, adopts a list of the other proposed Commissioners, drawn
up in accordance with the proposals made by each Member State. The President and
other Commissioners are then subject to a vote of approval by the European Parliament.
Following this, the Council, by qualified majority, appoints the President and the other
members of the Commission.
302 This arrangement changed in November 2004, following enlargement (see Craig and de
B迆rca, op. cit., pp. 55每6).
303 So far as relevant to the present study, they had been, prior to mid-November 2004 (when
the Prodi Commission*s extended mandate came to an end): Mr Frits Bolkestein (Internal
Market, Taxation and Customs Union); Mrs Loyola de Palacio (Energy and Transport);
Mrs Margot Wallström (Environment) and Mr Pascal Lamy (Trade). Only Mrs Wallström
is a member of the new (Barroso) Commission, but she has not retained her previous
environment portfolio (see, for example, Avril, Figaro, 28/29 August 2004, p. 4).
304 See Laura Cram, &The European Commission as a Multi-Organisation: Social Policy and
IT Policy in the EU* (1994) 1 JEPP 194.
305 www.europa.eu.int/comm/dgs/energy_transport?index_en.html.
306 www.europa.eu.int/comm/dgs/environment/index_en.htm.
307 www.europa.eu.int/comm/dgs/taxation_customs/index_en.htm.
308 http://europa.eu.int/comm/trade/index_en.htm.
96 Environmental Taxation Law
and thence to the weekly meeting of the chefs de cabinet. Having been considered
in that forum, the proposal then goes to the College of Commissioners, &which may
accept it, reject it or suggest amendments*.309
The Commission has three main functions, that is: as the initiator of legislation,
as guardian of the Treaties and as the Community*s executive. It has the right of
initiation in relation to the Treaties because, under their common format, when
making legislation, the Council and the European Parliament act on a proposal from
the Commission.310 This right of initiation is a particularly powerful weapon in the
Commission*s hands, since it enables it to develop policies via its work programme
for a particular year. Increasingly, for example, in relation to energy, the Commission
is making use of industry for its policy development.311 Undoubtedly, the most
striking achievement of the Prodi Commission (1999-2004), in the environmental
sphere, has been the design and implementation of the EU ETS.312
The Commission*s role as guardian of the Treaties arises from Art. 211, European
Treaty (ex 155), first indent:
[The Commission shall] # ensure that the provisions of this Treaty and the measures taken
by the institutions pursuant thereto are applied.
This wording enables the Commission to bring two types of proceedings:
1 actions under Art. 226, European Treaty (ex 169) against Member States who are
in breach of Community law; and
2 investigations and adjudications on Treaty violations (for example, in relation to
unlawful state aids under Art. 88, European Treaty (ex 93)).313
Craig and de B迆rca describe the Commission*s powers under (1) and (2) as &judicial
powers*. State aids have a particular importance in the context of the law and policies
under discussion in this book and are discussed in detail in Chapter 12 below.314
Finally, some of the most important of the Commission*s executive powers, so far
as environmental and tax policy is concerned, are in the field of external relations.
Three of these can be enumerated as follows:
1 to determine and conduct the EU*s external trade relations;
2 to negotiate and manage the EU*s various external agreements with third countries
and groups thereof; and
3 to represent the EU at a range of international organisations.315
309 See Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., p. 58.
310 Ibid., pp. 59每60.
311 See Peter Cameron, Competition in Energy Markets (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
2002), p. 284.
312 See para. 28.2 below.
313 See para. 12.2.7 below.
314 Ibid.
315 See Nugent, Government and Politics, op. cit., p. 145.
Institutional Framework 97
The most important of the negotiations referred to in 1 are the tariff negotiations
conducted under the auspices of the WTO.316 As to 3, Art. 302, European Treaty
(ex 229) stipulates that it is for the Commission to ensure the maintenance of all
appropriate relations with the organs of the UN and of its specialised agencies;
Art. 303, European Treaty (ex 230) stipulates that the Community must establish
all appropriate forms of communication with the Council of Europe; and Art. 304,
European Treaty (ex 231) provides that the Community shall &# establish close
cooperation with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the
details of which shall be determined by common accord*.
4.3.3 The European Parliament
The European Parliament consists &of representatives of the peoples of the States
brought together in the Community*.317 Until June 2004 it had 626 Members; the
ceiling on membership of 700 in the European Treaty, as amended by the Treaty
of Amsterdam, has been increased to 732 by the Treaty of Nice.318 Supporting the
Parliament in its work is a secretariat numbering thousands.
The Bureau of the Parliament is the body responsible for organisational, staff and
administrative matters, as well as the Parliament*s budget. The Bureau consists of
the President,319 plus the 14 Vice-Presidents, each of whom hold office for twoand-
a-half years. Both President and Vice-Presidents are elected by the Parliament
as a whole. The Bureau is assisted by five Quaestors, who also oversee financial
and administrative matters concerning MEPs. By Art. 190(5), European Treaty, (ex
138(5)) the Parliament must, after seeking an opinion from the Commission and with
the approval of the Council acting unanimously, lay down the regulations and general
conditions governing the performance of the duties of MEPs. Also, by Art. 199,
European Treaty (ex 142), the Parliament must adopt its own procedural rules.320
Committees play an important part in the Parliament*s work. It has 17 standing
committees, plus a range of subcommittees, with provision also being made for
committees of inquiry and temporary committees. Of the 17 standing committees,
particularly relevant in the present context are: the Committee on Industry, External
Trade, Research and Energy;321 the Committee on the Environment, Public Health
and Consumer Policy;322 and the Committee on Regional Policy, Transport and
Tourism.323 The Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Consumer
Policy unsuccessfully floated 73 amendments to the proposal for the EU ETS on its
first reading in October 2002.324
316 See para. 4.4.1 below and para. 8.4 below.
317 Art. 189, European Treaty (ex 137). See www.europarl.eu.int.
318 See Art. 1(17), TN.
319 That is, of the Parliament.
320 (1999) OJ L202 1.
321 See www.europarl.eu.int/meetdocs/committees/itre.
322 See www.europarl.eu.int/meetdocs/committees/envi.
323 See www.europarl.eu.int/meetdocs/committees/rett.
324 See para. 28.2.3 below.
98 Environmental Taxation Law
Of the eight political groupings in the Parliament elected in June 2004,325 the largest
is the European People*s Party, with 276 seats;326 next is the Party of European
Socialists, which has 202; and third is the enlarged Group of the European Liberal,
Democrat and Reform Party, with 84 seats. There are then several smaller groupings,
including the Greens and (for the first time) Eurosceptics, plus various MEPs who
are unaligned.327
Members of the European Parliament (&MEPs*) are elected by direct universal
suffrage,328 although the representative legitimacy of the institution is undermined
by the fact that the number of MEPs for each Member State is far from proportionate
to population size, with the result that smaller countries are disproportionately overrepresented.
329 Unhelpful too is the fact that, despite litigation and amendment to
the European Treaty by the Treaty of Amsterdam, the uniform electoral procedure
provided for by Art. 190, European Treaty (ex 138) has never come into existence.330
Finally, the turnout in Member States for European Parliament elections has been
worryingly low.331
Substantial powers are exercised by the Parliament in three areas: legislative,
budgetary and supervisory. The third of these involves the monitoring of the activities
of the other institutions by questions and committees of inquiry. The legislative powers
of the Parliament have been greatly enhanced by successive Treaty amendments,
the general effect of which has been to extend the sphere of operation of the codecision
procedure.332 The procedure, which applies wherever the European Treaty
refers to it for the adoption of an act, accords equal status to the Council and to the
Parliament in the adoption of Community legislation. It prevents the adoption of a
measure without the approval, not only of the Council, but also of the Parliament.333
In the process, the procedure places emphasis on the legislative text in question being
approved by both bodies.
In relation to the Parliament*s legislative role, a number of points are important in
the present context. First, although the Parliament has no right to initiate legislation,
it does have the power, by a majority of MEPs, to request the Commission to submit
an appropriate proposal on matters &on which it considers that a Community act is
325 See Art. 191, European Treaty (ex 138a).
326 It consists of Christian Democrats and European Democrats and is a party of the centreright.
327 See www.europarl.eu.int/presentation/default_en.htm.
328 See Art. 190(1), European Treaty (ex 138).
329 See Craig and de B迆rca, p. 76. See also, ibid., p. 77, for a breakdown of the composition
of the Parliament in terms of seats numbers to Member States, both before and after
enlargement.
330 See Craig and de B迆rca, p. 76.
331 See, for example, The 1999 Elections to the European Parliament, ed. by Juliet Lodge
(Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001). Craig and de B迆rca (op. cit., p. 78n, cite the fact that
turnout in the EU as a whole apparently dropped from 56.5 per cent in the 1994 elections
to 49.7 per cent in 1999, the turnout in the first elections held in 1979 having been 63 per
cent.
332 The procedure is contained in Art. 251, European Treaty (ex 189b) and is summarised in
Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., pp. 144每6.
333 See Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., p. 144.
Institutional Framework 99
required for the purpose of implementing [the] Treaty*.334 Secondly, not merely does
the Parliament have the power to censure the Commission,335 ever since the Treaty
of Amsterdam, its approval must also be sought in relation to the appointment of the
President of the Commission.336 Taken together with the changes made by the Treaty
of Nice to the appointment procedure of the President,337 this marks a significant
change in the political nature of the Commission, as well as in the procedure by
which the President of the Commission is appointed.338
Despite all of these legitimising factors, there are still a number of areas in
which the Parliament has no role. In the present context, a surprising one perhaps
is the Parliament*s meaningful exclusion from matters involving international
agreements.339 Article 133(3), European Treaty (ex 113(3)) does not accord to the
Parliament any role in the negotiation of such agreements and Art. 300(2), European
Treaty (ex 228(2)) merely gives the Parliament the right to be informed about matters
such as their suspension.
4.3.4 The Economic and Social Committee
The Economic and Social Committee (&ECOSOC*) is an advisory body representing
the various socio-economic organisations in the Member States.340 Article 7(2),
European Treaty (ex 4(2)) provides that the Council and Commission are to be
assisted by ECOSOC and also by the Committee of the Regions, acting in an
advisory capacity. Although the Commission or Council may, without being
obliged to do so, consult ECOSOC on certain matters, in other cases, particular
Treaty Arts require that ECOSOC must be consulted. The Committee, which has
224 members appointed for four years by the Council, acting unanimously,341 has
an increasing role to play in the legitimisation of the EU institutions.342 This is
underlined by the fact that the TN has altered Art. 257 (ex 193), to provide that
ECOSOC must consist of &representatives of the various categories of economic
and social activity*, especially &representatives of producers, farmers, carriers,
workers, dealers, craftsmen, professional occupations and representatives of the
general public*.
334 Art. 192, European Treaty (ex 138b).
335 Art. 201, European Treaty (ex 144).
336 Art. 214(2), European Treaty (ex 158(2)).
337 See para. 4.3.2 above.
338 See Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., p. 82, referring to Simon Hix, &Executive Selection in
the European Union: Does the Commission President Investiture Procedure Reduce the
Democratic Deficit?*, in European Integration after Amsterdam, ed. by K. Neunreither
and A. Weiner (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp. 95每111.
339 See para. 8.4.1 below.
340 See www.esc.eu.int/pages/en/home.asp.
341 See Art. 258, European Treaty (ex 194).
342 See ECOSOC, The ESC: A Bridge between Europe and Civil Society (Brussels: European
Economic and Social Committee, 2001).
100 Environmental Taxation Law
4.3.5 The European Environment Agency
An agency rather than an EU institution, the European Environment Agency
(&EEA*)343 gathers and supplies information to assist in the implementation of
Community policy on environmental protection and improvement. Established in
1993,344 it must publish a report on the state of the environment every three years345
but it has no enforcement or policing powers. It has also published material on the
implementation and environmental effectiveness of environmental taxes.346
4.3.6 The Committee of the Regions
Tasked with providing opinions on matters of particular regional concern, the
membership of the Committee of the Regions is drawn from local and regional
bodies, rather than from governments.
4.3.7 Court of Justice of the European Communities and Court of First
Instance
Finally, the ECJ sits in Luxembourg, and its task is to ensure that Community law is
observed in the interpretation and application of the European Treaty.347 Inter alia,
the ECJ has jurisdiction to give preliminary rulings concerning the interpretation of
the European Treaty and the validity and interpretation of acts of the Community
institutions.348 Where such an issue is raised before any court or tribunal of a Member
State, the court or tribunal may, if it considers that a decision on the issue is necessary
to enable it to give judgment, request the ECJ to give a ruling thereon.349 The Court
of Appeal of England and Wales, in Bulmer v. Bollinger,350 laid down guidelines
for determining whether a reference was necessary for these purposes.351 &Where
any such question is raised in a case pending before a court or tribunal of a Member
State against whose decisions there is no judicial remedy under national law, [reads
the relevant Treaty Art.] that court or tribunal must bring the matter before [the
ECJ]*.352 The Court of First Instance, designed to relieve the pressure on the ECJ,
has, since 1993, heard judicial review cases, as well as actions for damages against
343 See www.eea.eu.int.
344 See Council Regulation EEC/1210/90, (1990) OJ L120 1.
345 See European Environment Agency, Europe*s Environment: The Third Assessment
(Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2003).
346 See European Environment Agency, Environmental Taxes 每 Implementation and
Environmental Effectiveness (Copenhagen: European Environment Agency, 1999).
347 Art. 220, European Treaty (ex 164).
348 Art. 234, European Treaty (ex 177).
349 Art. 234, first indent, European Treaty (ex 177).
350 [1974] Ch. 401.
351 See also, for example, Naturally Yours Cosmetics Ltd v. C & E Commrs, C每230/87, [1988]
STC 879. This was a case of a VAT and Duties Tribunal obtaining a ruling direct from the
ECJ.
352 Art. 234 (ex 177), European Treaty (second indent). See, for example, the reference from
the House of Lords in C & E Commrs v. Sinclair Collis Ltd, [2001] STC 989.
Institutional Framework 101
Community institutions, although not proceedings brought by the Member States or
the Community Institutions.353
It should be noted that the ECJ is a completely distinct entity from the European
Court of Human Rights, the latter having been established by the European
Convention on Human Rights of 1950.
4.4 International institutions354
4.4.1 World Trade Organization
The World Trade Organization is the pre-eminent international trade association.355
It is intended to &provide the common institutional framework for the conduct of
trade relations among its members*.356 It is the product of the most recent (1986每
1993) round of trade negotiations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade
(&GATT 1994*), a process which has become known as the Uruguay Round.
The four principal instruments that establish the WTO and create the multilateral
trading system of which it is the principal institution are as follows:
1 the Final Act embodying the results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade
Negotiations;357
2 the Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization;358
3 the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade in Goods, 1994 Revision (&GATT
1994*);359 and
4 the General Agreement on Trade in Services (&GATS*).360
The supreme decision-making body of the WTO, which meets at least once every
two years, is the Ministerial Conference. After that, the next level down is the
General Council, which meets on a number of occasions every year and is made up
mainly of heads of delegations and ambassadors in Geneva. The General Council,
which is responsible for issues of governance not dealt with by the Ministerial
Conference, also meets under the guise of the Trade Policy Review Body and the
Dispute Settlement Body.
One of the roles assumed by the Dispute Settlement Body is the appointment of
&Panels* to investigate and report on complaints. Another is the adoption of reports
353 See Art. 224, European Treaty (ex 168).
354 In addition to the website details given below, see Bowett*s Law of International
Institutions, 5th edn, by Philippe Sands and Pierre Klein (London: Sweet and Maxwell,
2001).
355 See www.wto.org. Most of the WTO-related legal texts and other documents mentioned
below, together with summaries thereof, can be downloaded from this site.
356 See Art. 2(1), Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization.
357 (1994) 33 ILM 1.
358 (1994) 33 ILM 13.
359 (1994) 33 ILM 28.
360 (1994) 33 ILM 46.
102 Environmental Taxation Law
of the Appellate Body (the &AB*). The AB was established during the Uruguay
Round by the Dispute Settlement Understanding,361 with the power to hear appeals
on questions of law from GATT panels. Consisting of seven members, the AB is a
standing body, unlike the GATT panels. The members of the AB are individuals of
recognised authority with expertise in law, international trade and the GATT/WTO
agreements. They are elected by the Dispute Settlement Body for a four-year period
that can be renewed once.362
The various organs of the WTO obviously require massive technical support, such
support being the responsibility of the WTO Secretariat, based in Geneva, and headed
by the WTO*s Director-General.363 The Director-General of the WTO is appointed
by the Ministerial Conference and his responsibilities are &exclusively international
in character*, since he is not to seek nor to accept &instructions from any government
or any other authority external to the WTO*.364
The WTO system requires compliance with the decisions both of the Panels of the
AB. The enforcement procedure operates by removing the right of a WTO member
to suspend WTO concessions or to take other measures against another member.
In the words of Sands and Klein, &the entire scheme militates strongly against
unilateral determinations and establishes a central role for the [Dispute Settlement
Body] #*.365
The importance of the WTO agreements to environmental levies and subsidies
in general, whether existing or projected, is profound and far-reaching.366 In
recognition of this fact, the WTO founded the Committee on Trade and Environment.
Unfortunately, despite the fact that it is tasked with investigating &the relationship
between the provisions of the multilateral trading system and charges and taxes for
environmental purposes*, it has so far achieved relatively little.367 The rules contained
361 That is, the Understanding on Rules and Procedures Governing the Settlement of Disputes
(1994) 33 ILM 112.
362 Art. 17(3), Dispute Settlement Understanding, reads: &The Appellate Body shall comprise
persons of recognised authority, with demonstrated expertise in law, international trade
and the subject matter of the covered agreements generally. They shall be unaffiliated
with any government. The Appellate Body membership shall be broadly representative
of membership in the WTO. All persons serving on the Appellate Body shall be available
at all times and on short notice, and shall stay abreast of dispute settlement activities and
other relevant activities of the WTO. They shall not participate in the consideration of any
disputes that would create a direct or indirect conflict of interest.*
363 The details of the post are contained in the Agreement Establishing the World Trade
Organization, Art. VI. The current holder is HE Dr Supachai Panitchpakdi of Thailand,
whose three-year term began in September 2002. His predecessor was The Rt Hon.
Michael Moore, a former Prime Minister of New Zealand (see para. 8.2.1n below), who
held the position from September 1999.
364 Art. VI(4), Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization.
365 See Bowett, op. cit., para. 12每073.
366 See Zen Makuch, &The World Trade Organization and the General Agreement on Tariffs
and Trade*, in Greening International Institutions, ed. by Jacob Werksman (London:
Earthscan, 1996), pp. 94每115.
367 See Ole Kristian Fauchald, Environmental Taxes and Trade Discrimination (London:
Kluwer Law International, 1998), p. 4.
Institutional Framework 103
in GATT 1994 create an international legal structure that raises considerable design
problems for them.368
4.4.2 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (&the OECD*) is the
successor to an organisation called the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation.
369 It has been very influential, at least since the early 1970s, in developing
the economic arguments in favour of environmental levies and subsidies.370
The organs of the OECD are the Council, the Committees and the Secretariat. Of
these, the principal one is the Council, which is &the body from which all acts of
the Organisation derive*.371 The Council, which consists of Ministers or Permanent
Representatives of the member countries, develops priorities for the OECD*s activities
and produces directives on future work. The Organisation has a rule that decisions and
recommendations of the Council must be passed unanimously.372 There is one vote
per member country. The unanimity rule has never become a veto, however, because
of the provision that abstentions do not invalidate decisions nor prevent them from
becoming binding on other members.373 Thus, decisions bind only those member
countries that have voted for them and once their own constitutional procedures have
been complied with.374
The Committees, which number over 200, consist of experts and officials from
member countries. The OECD*s most recent work on environmentally-related taxes
has been produced by the Joint Meeting of Experts on Tax and Environment, which
is convened under the joint auspices of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs and the
Environment Policy Committee.375 Individuals who are members of the Committees
are thus in a position to feed OECD thinking into the development of national policies.
The Secretariat, headed by a Secretary-General,376 includes individuals seconded
from academia, commerce and industry, who compile and analyse economic data.377
Indeed, the OECD*s work on environmental levies and subsidies has been of an
economic, rather than of a legal, nature.378
368 See paras 1.2.1.4 above and 8.4.5 below.
369 The older organisation (&the OEEC*) had been established in 1948 to administer American
aid to Europe under the Marshall Plan (see Bowett, op. cit., para. 6每021). The OECD was
established by the Convention signed in Paris on December 14, 1960 and which came into
force on 30 September 1961.
370 See Chapter 5 below.
371 1960 Paris Convention, Art. 7.
372 Ibid., Art. 6.
373 Ibid.
374 Ibid.
375 See Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Environmentally Related
Taxes in OECD Countries (Paris: OECD, 2001), p. 3.
376 Currently (December 2004), Mr Donald J. Johnston, since June 1996.
377 See the Organisation*s database of environmentally-related taxes in OECD countries, at:
www.oecd.org.
378 See the Bibliography of Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Environmentally Related Taxes in OECD Countries (Paris: OECD, 2001), pp. 137每42.
104 Environmental Taxation Law
Article 1 of the 1960 Paris Convention states the purposes of the OECD as being:
每 to achieve the highest sustainable economic growth and employment and a rising
standard of living in member countries, while maintaining financial stability, and thus to
contribute to the development of the world economy;
每 to contribute to sound economic expansion in member as well as non-member countries
in the process of economic development; and
每 to contribute to the expansion of world trade on a multilateral, non-discriminatory basis
in accordance with international obligations.
Thus, by Art. 2 of the 1960 Paris Convention, member countries assume duties
regarding the efficient use of economic resources, regarding research and regarding
the general economic development of both member and non-member countries.379
Possibly because of the highly technical nature of the OECD*s work, possibly because
of its status as a debating forum and possibly because of the unanimity rule referred
to above, the institutional accountability or otherwise of the OECD has not been the
focus of such attention as that accorded to the WTO.
In 1974, in response to the oil crisis, the OECD established an autonomous agency,
called the International Energy Agency,380 funded by member countries via the OECD
itself, primarily to ensure energy security. Although its remit is fairly wide, one of its
key areas of activity is the relationship between energy and the environment.381
4.4.3 United Nations subsidiary bodies
The United Nations* General Assembly has established two subsidiary bodies to deal
with environmentally-related matters: the UN Environment Programme (&UNEP*)382
and the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (&the UNCSD*).383 The
former dates from 1972, following the Stockholm Conference on the Human
Environment;384 the latter was established in 1992, on the basis of the mandate given
by the UN Conference on Environment and Development.385 The United Nations
Economic Commission for Europe (&the UNECE*)386 has also had an important role
to play in promoting international environmental agreements.387
379 1960 Paris Convention, Art. 2. See also Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development, Policy Brief. Environmentally related taxes: Issues and strategies (OECD;
Paris, 2001). Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, OECD
Environment Programme 2003每2004 (Paris: OECD, 2003).
380 See www.iea.org.
381 See Roggenkamp, op. cit., paras 3.133每3.179. The IEA*s constituent instrument is the
International Energy Programme, a treaty document created following the suggestion for
greater solidarity in energy matters among OECD member countries, originally made by
US Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, in 1973 (ibid., paras 3.133每3.134).
382 See www.unep.org.
383 See www.un.org/esa/sustdev/csd/csd12/csd12.htm.
384 See para. 8.2.3n below.
385 See para. 8.2.3 below.
386 See www.unece.org and www.unece.org/env/welcome.html.
387 For example, in the promotion of the 1979 Geneva Convention for the Control of Long-
Range Transboundary Air Pollution (see Chapter 8 below); the 1991 Espoo Convention
Institutional Framework 105
The United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, which meets in
New York or Geneva, and is supported by a secretariat in the former city, is the main
UN body for sustainable development issues, and has the task of monitoring progress
and making recommendations on the implementation of Agenda 21.388 The United
Nations Environment Programme, which is based in Nairobi, is the sole UN body
exclusively dedicated to international environmental matters, with a range of tasks,
including those of promoting international environmental cooperation, providing
policy guidance on environmental programmes within the UN and promoting
scientific knowledge and information. The United Nations Environment Programme
is made up of 58 members who are elected by the General Assembly and has an
Environmental Secretariat, chaired by an Executive Director. Although it has been
responsible for the promotion of a number of international agreements, not least the
1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer389 and for the 1992
Convention on Biological Diversity,390 the underfunding of its operations, no less
than its relative lack of status within the UN structure, means that its performance
continues to disappoint many people.391
The UN*s closest environmental association is the 1992 UN Framework Convention
on Climate Change and its 1997 Kyoto Protocol. Each of these raise certain
interesting issues at an institutional level. As will be seen in Chapter 8 below,392
and as is well-known, these international agreements commit the developed parties
thereto (referred to as &Annex I Parties*)393 to targets for the reduction of their GHG
emissions.394 One of the economic instruments for achieving these targets is the
Clean Development Mechanism (&the CDM*), which &marks an interesting and
innovative new structure in international institutional arrangements, including a
formal role for non-state actors*.395
Given that the present book is much concerned with the energy markets and with the
relationship between energy and the environment, as a background to energy taxation,
it is perhaps useful at this juncture to mention the existence of the International Atomic
on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (1991) 30 ILM 802;
and (see Chapter 8 below) the 1998 Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public
Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters (1999)
38 ILM 517 (in force 30 October 2001).
388 See Chapter 8 below.
389 See para. 8.3.1.1 below.
390 See para. 8.3.1.3 below.
391 Proposals for a new UN specialised agency are discussed by Daniel Esty in Greening the
GATT: Trade, Environment and the Future (Washington DC: Institute for International
Economics, 1994). See also Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., pp. 54每7.
392 See paras 8.3.1.3 and 8.3.1.4 below.
393 The Annex I Parties, not all of whom have ratified the Protocol (see para. 8.2.2 below),
are: Australia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Denmark,
European Community, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland,
Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey,
Ukraine, United Kingdom and the US.
394 See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
395 Bowett, op. cit., para. 4每024. See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
106 Environmental Taxation Law
Energy Agency (&the IAEA*).396 Despite its name, the IAEA, which works closely
with Euratom, is an independent intergovernmental agency founded in 1957, which
is obliged to report to the UN in certain situations.397 Also relevant to proposals to
introduce emissions trading schemes for airlines is the International Civil Aviation
Organisation (&the ICAO*),398 a specialised agency of the UN, which is the treaty
organisation of the 1944 Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation.
4.4.4 Various international treaty organisations
Before closing this part of the chapter, it is useful briefly to refer for completeness
to some of the myriad treaty organisations covering environmental matters. It might
also help to refer to one of the most recent of international treaty organisations, the
1994 Energy Charter Treaty.
No doubt the significance of such organisations has been enhanced somewhat
by the relative unimportance of the UNEP. For instance, the 1973 Washington
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and
Flora399 has a Conference of the Parties, which meets at least every two years to
consider amendments to the provisions limiting trade in listed species.400 Similar
Conferences exist for the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity referred to
above;401 for the 1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer,
also mentioned above, as well as its 1987 Montreal Protocol;402 for the 1992 UN
Framework Convention on Climate Change;403 for the 1997 Kyoto Protocol;404 for
the 1972 London Dumping Convention;405 and for the 1989 Basel Convention.406
The Energy Charter Treaty which, as its name suggests, is limited in scope to
the energy sector, nonetheless has an obvious environmental significance. It is
independent of the EU and has its own Secretariat and Conference, both of which are
based in Brussels.407
4.5 Concluding comments
Finally, it falls to us to gather together the main strands of the discussion. We
began this chapter by considering the organs of central government: Parliament,
government departments, public bodies and agencies and advisory bodies. Thence,
396 See www.iaea.org/worldatom.
397 See Roggenkamp, op. cit., paras 3.49每3.57.
398 See www.icao.int.
399 See para. 8.4.2n below.
400 See www.wcmc.org.uk/CITES/eng/index.shtml.
401 See www.biodiv.org.
402 See para. 8.3.1.5 below.
403 See para. 8.3.1.3 below.
404 See para. 8.3.1.4 below.
405 See para. 8.3.2 below.
406 Ibid.
407 See www.encharter.org. See para. 8.6 below.
Institutional Framework 107
we analysed the contribution to the design, implementation and enforcement of taxes
and other economic instruments, of what is a considerable range of government
departments, non-departmental public bodies, agencies and advisory bodies. The
chief characteristic of this institutional pattern was one of almost overwhelming
complexity but, so far as central government was concerned, it indicated that, in the
UK, chief responsibility for the design and implementation of economic instruments
lies, not with any one body, but mainly with Customs, with Defra and, so far as they
relate to electricity, with Ofgem.
Next, we considered the devolution schemes applicable to Wales, Scotland
and Northern Ireland. The present significance of these to the subject matter is
constrained by the fact that, although all of them have environmental competencies,
importantly in relation to the LATS, only Scotland has any tax raising power, and
that is not relevant to environmental taxation. It seems inevitable, at this juncture,
that pressure for additional tax-raising powers will increase, pre-eminently, perhaps,
in the environmental taxation field.
With regard to the wider picture, we have seen that the ability of the EU institutions
to create environmental taxes is circumscribed by the fiscal veto provisions of the
European Treaty provisions. The successful creation of the EU ETS marks a neat
sidestepping of the problems which had been associated with the &shelved* EU
carbon/energy tax.408
The close relationship of the EU institutions with the OECD, with its commitment
to the development of policy in the environmental taxation field, will ensure
however that its work on environmental taxes and other economic instruments retain
considerable influence globally. Meanwhile, the impact on the possibilities for certain
kinds of environmental taxes (especially carbon taxes), of the rules of the multilateral
trading system, in GATT 1994, continue to be controversial and we return to them
in Chapter 8 below.
408 Note, however, the Energy Products Directive of December 2003 (see para. 12.3.4 below).
For the carbon/energy tax proposal, see para. 28.1n below.
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Chapter 5
Technical Justifications
5.1 Introduction
This chapter analyses the reasons that the UK government has itself provided, via
HM Treasury, for regulating by means of environmental taxes and other economic
instruments. These reasons should be seen in the broader context of the government*s
policy on sustainable development.1
The chapter takes the form of a commentary on HM Treasury*s 2002 paper
containing the government*s most recent detailed justifications for its policy on the
use of economic instruments in pollution regulation.2 Our discussion assumes that,
in its legislative programme on the use of economic instruments for this purpose,
the government is acting in pursuit of the public interest.3 This is in keeping with
the disciplinary approach explained in Chapter 1 above.4 The assumption as to
public interest objectives serves to underline the important distinction between the
technical justification for introducing a particular measure and a theory about why
the measure has in fact been introduced. It does not necessarily imply that, in a
particular instance, there will be found to be a disparity been the two, since a theory
that seeks to explain why a measure has been introduced may reaffirm the public
interest reason. In other words, the proffered reason, which is a good reason, may
also be the real reason.5 We have sought specifically to emphasise in this chapter the
profferred reasons, rather than the theoretical arguments for green levies generally.
Although there is some discussion of the latter, this has been minimised for reasons
of space.6
The 2002 Treasury paper covers aggregates levy, climate change levy and landfill
tax, as well as explaining the rationale for the UK ETS7 and the RO.8 It does not deal
1 See para. 4.2.1.3n above and para. 5.2 below.
2 HM Treasury, Tax and the Environment: Using Economic Instruments (London: HMSO,
2002), available from the Treasury*s website, at www.hm-treasury.gov.uk. It is referred
to alternately below as &the 2002 paper*, &the 2002 Treasury paper*, &the paper* or &the
Treasury paper*.
3 See Robert Baldwin and Martin Cave, Understanding Regulation 每 Theory, Strategy
and Practice (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), p. 9n, for a survey of the relevant
literature on why and how the motivation or explanation for regulation may differ from
the regulation*s technical justification.
4 See para. 1.2.2 above.
5 The allusion is to a statement attributed to an eminent American financier (see Jean
Strouse*s Morgan: American Financier (London: Harvill Press, 1999), p. xiii).
6 See, generally, for example, Environmental Policy: Objectives, Instruments, and
Implementation, ed. by Dieter Helm (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), esp. Part
One. The literature is vase (see nn in this book, passim).
7 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above.
8 See para. 1.4.2.2(4) above.
110 Environmental Taxation Law
in any detail with the nascent LATS,9 possibly since the enabling legislation was
introduced in the House of Lords at or around the time that the paper was published.10
Also not dealt with in much detail in the 2002 paper is the diverse package of measures
introduced in 1999 and 2000 which were designed to assist in dealing with traffic
congestion and road traffic pollution.11 These are the income tax reliefs introduced in
Finance Act 1999, to encourage employees to choose environmentally friendly ways
of commuting,12 and the provisions allowing local authorities to implement road
user charging and workplace parking levy schemes,13 brought in by the Transport
Act 2000.
The present chapter is divided into four parts:14 an overview of the government*s
policy with regard to sustainable development; a discussion of the government*s
taxation objectives in the light of that policy; a review of the economic arguments
for using fiscal measures to contribute to sustainable development by correcting
market failures resulting from pollution; and, finally, an examination of how the
decision to use fiscal measures for this purpose is taken and the price level at which
intervention in the market is determined. Our discussion of how economic policy on
environmental taxes and other economic instruments has been translated into reality
appears in Chapter 11 below.15
5.2 Sustainable development
In a rather surprising ordering of the material, the third chapter of the 2002 Treasury
paper is devoted to the government*s sustainable development targets and indicators.16
It draws on the former DETR*s17 Sustainable Development Strategy White Paper,
in which the government*s aim is stated as being &to achieve a better quality of
life for everyone, now and for future generations*.18 The White Paper reflects
the government*s approach to the commitments made at the 1992 Earth Summit
in Rio; this is somewhat different from that taken by the previous 每 Conservative
9 See para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
10 The Waste and Emissions Trading Bill was only introduced in the House of Lords on
November 14, 2002.
11 Although certain of these are used as brief examples in paras 6.18每6.23 of the 2002
paper.
12 See para. 23.3 below.
13 See Chapters 17 and 18 below.
14 Corresponding to the subject matter of four of the chapters of the 2002 paper.
15 See para. 11.3 below.
16 See Giles Atkinson, &Sustainable Development and Policy*, in Helm, op. cit., pp. 29每47,
and Victoria Jenkins, &Placing Sustainable Development at the Heart of Government in
the UK* (2002) 22 LS 578每601.
17 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
18 See Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, A Better Quality of Life: A
Strategy for Sustainable Development in the United Kingdom, 1999 (Cm 4345, 1999).
This was a revision of the previous Conservative Government*s strategy, Sustainable
Development, the UK Strategy, 1994 (Cm 2426, 1994).
Technical Justifications 111
每 administration prior to May 1997. The Rio Declaration, it will be recalled, contains
the 27 Principles of international environmental law that together constitute the main
outlines of the sustainable development concept.19
The 2002 paper reflects the 15 headline indicators of the Sustainable Development
Strategy White Paper, grouped into four &dimensions*. Only two of these four
dimensions specifically contain indicators relating to environmental matters and they
read as follows:
Effective protection of the environment:
每 emissions of greenhouse gases;
每 days when air pollution is moderate or high [sic];
每 road traffic;
每 rivers of good or fair quality;
每 populations of wild birds; and
每 new homes built on previously-developed land.
Prudent use of natural resources:
每 waste arisings and management.20
These indicators, which &should move in the right direction over time*,21 are
designed to show, in an accessible way, the progress that society as a whole is making
towards sustainable development.22 The government acknowledges in the paper that,
helpful as these indicators are in providing a snapshot of society*s progress, they
do not measure impacts directly, since, for example, road traffic levels are not in
themselves measures of emissions affecting air quality, GHG emissions, congestion
or noise implications of road use.23 Nonetheless, in reaching its aim of achieving a
better quality of life, now and for future generations,24 the government clearly sees
them as being very useful.25
The government*s comments on performance to date on the environmental, dimensions
of sustainable development have an air of disarming candour about them.26 As to
19 Ibid. and para. 4.2.1.3n above.
20 The other two groups of headline indicators are: &(1) maintaining high and stable levels
of economic growth and employment, which group comprises: total output of the
economy (&GDP*), investment in public, business and private assets and proportion of
people of working age who are in work; and (2) social progress which recognises the
needs of everyone, and which comprises: poverty and social exclusion (fuel poverty etc.);
qualifications at age 19; expected years of healthy life; homes judged unfit to live in; and
level of crime* (see 2002 paper, Box 3.1, p. 9). The social dimension had been missing
from the 1994 Conservative strategy.
21 See 2002 paper, para. 3.1.
22 Ibid., para. 3.3.
23 Ibid., para. 3.4.
24 The reference to future generations echoes the definition of sustainable development used
in the Brundtland Report of 1987 (see para. 4.2.1.3n above).
25 Ibid., para. 3.1.
26 That is, as distinct from economic growth and social progress. Progress against the
environment-related indicators contained in the White Paper is set out in Annex A to
the 2002 paper. The material in Annex A is derived from Department for Environment,
Food and Rural Affairs, Achieving a Better Quality of Life 每 Review of Progress towards
112 Environmental Taxation Law
GHGs, although on current trends, the UK is one of the few EU Member States likely
to meet its Kyoto target, after 2012 emissions targets &are likely to become tighter,
and the UK needs to be ready to take further action to continue to reduce emissions
in the longer term*.27 Likewise, with the amount of biodegradable municipal waste
sent to landfill, despite the fact that the Landfill Directive28 fixes a reviewable
target of a 35 per cent reduction on 1995 levels by 2020, &volumes of waste sent
to landfill have continued to rise over recent years*.29 Most worrying of all for
the government, perhaps, is the situation with regard to the environmental effects
of transport, since &[a]lthough the fuel efficiency of new vehicles is improving,
transport continues to be a major user of energy and source of carbon dioxide
emissions*.30
Lastly, in this third chapter of the 2002 paper, the Treasury seeks to illustrate its
own commitment to making progress on the headline indicators by drawing attention
to the various Departmental Public Service Agreements (&PSAs*). The PSAs, which
closely reflect the headline indicators referred to above, set out each Department*s
priorities and give targets against which the Department in question*s progress can
be monitored.31 For instance, the Treasury has agreed to: &Protect and improve the
environment by using instruments that will deliver efficient and sustainable outcomes
through evidence-based policies*; Defra32 has promised to: &[p]romote sustainable
development across government and the country as a whole as measured by achieving
positive trends in the government*s headline indicators of sustainable development*;
and the DFT33 has promised to: &Reduce congestion on the inter-urban trunk road
network and in large urban areas in England below 2000 levels by 2010*.34 It is
interesting that the DFT seems to view the chief environmental problem of too much
road traffic as primarily one of congestion, rather than of emissions. This is fully in
tune with modern economic thinking on the subject.
5.3 Taxation and sustainable development
Against the background of government policy on sustainable development, the
2002 Treasury paper begins35 by recalling the government*s Statement of Intent
Sustainable Development in 2001 (London: Defra, 2002), available from www.sustainabledevelopment.
gov.uk.
27 See 2002 paper, para. 3.6.
28 Council Directive 99/31/EC, (1999) OJ L182 1 (see para. 12.2.5.1(2) below). See further
para. 6.3.2.4 below.
29 See 2002 paper, para. 3.7.
30 Ibid., para. 3.8.
31 Ibid., para. 3.11.
32 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
33 Ibid.
34 See 2002 paper, Annex B (pp. 51每2). This is not a complete list of the PSAs, which are
quite extensive, and, specifically, does not include the promise of the ODPM (see para.
4.2.1.2(1) above), also extracted in Annex B to the 2002 paper.
35 Ibid., ch. 2.
Technical Justifications 113
on environmental taxation dated 2 July 1997.36 An important passage in the 1997
document is reproduced in the 2002 paper and reads as follows:
How and what governments tax sends clear signals about the economic activities they
believe should be encouraged or discouraged, and the values they wish to entrench in
society. Just as work should be encouraged through the tax system, environmental pollution
should be discouraged.37
The Statement of Intent goes on to say that, accordingly, where environmental taxes
&met the general tests of good taxation*, then the government would use them to
achieve its economic objectives, which were expressed as follows:
The Government*s central economic objectives are the promotion of high and sustainable
levels of growth and high levels of employment. By that we mean that growth must be both
stable and environmentally sustainable. Quality of growth matters; not just quantity #
[T]he Government will explore the scope for using the tax system to deliver environmental
objectives 每 as one instrument, in combination with others like regulation and voluntary
action.38 Over time, the Government will aim to reform the tax system to increase
incentives to reduce environmental damage. That will shift the burden of tax from &goods*
to &bads*;39 encourage innovation in meeting higher environmental standards; and deliver
a more dynamic economy and a cleaner environment, to the benefit of everyone.40
The translation of this statement of policy into a legal reality is discussed below.41
The Treasury seeks to draw a distinction between &[t]axes on broad aspects
of economic activity such as energy, waste and transport*42 and &much smaller
taxes which target specific environmental impacts*.43 The former, presumably
meaning climate change levy, landfill tax and environmentally-friendly excise duty
differentials, the 2002 paper states, raise significant levels of revenue which can be
used to &offset* other taxes. The latter, by contrast, &would be unlikely to raise very
much revenue and therefore would not have any significant impact on the overall tax
36 That is, Budget day. This was the Rt Hon. Gordon Brown, MP*s first Budget as Chancellor
(see HM Treasury, Tax Measures to Help the Environment, News Release, 2 July 1997,
available from HM Treasury*s website at www.hm-treasury.gov.uk).
37 See Tax Measures to Help the Environment, above.
38 Probably for presentational reasons, the government contrasts the use of economic
instruments, such as environmental levies and subsidies, with regulation. In reality, the
idea of regulation is wide enough to encompass the economic instrument concept, and it
is in this wider sense that the term is used in this study (see Baldwin and Cave, op. cit.,
pp. 1每2, and Chapter 1 above). See also Chris Hilson, Regulating Pollution 每 A UK and
EC Perspective (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2000), p. 103.
39 See Department of the Environment, First Report of the British Government Panel on
Sustainable Development (Sir Crispin Tickell, Chairman) (London: 1995), p. 12. See also,
more recently and (possibly) more influentially, Anthony Giddens, The Third Way and its
Critics (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2000), pp. 100每101.
40 See Tax Measures to Help the Environment, above.
41 See Ch. 11 below.
42 See 2002 paper, para. 2.10.
43 Ibid., para. 2.11.
114 Environmental Taxation Law
base*.44 There is no clue from the brief discussion of the &much smaller taxes* whether
those alluded to are actual or as yet only proposed, although the context seems to
suggest that the latter meaning is intended.45 If this conclusion is correct, then these
paragraphs of the 2002 paper underline the point made elsewhere in the present book
that the hypothecation of tax revenues, even in the context of environmental taxes,
is something that the Treasury still strongly resists.46 The government instead limits
itself to saying that the significant levels of revenue raised by green taxes &can be
used to offset other taxes*.47 The first part of its subsequent claim that:
The Government has used revenue from taxes such as the climate change levy and
aggregates levy to reduce employers* national insurance contributions and has also
introduced enhanced capital allowances to reduce costs of investments in environmentallyfriendly
technologies #48
is examined below, as also is the rather laconic statement which follows the one just
quoted, that is, that: &Some of the revenue [that is, from taxes such as the climate
change levy and aggregates levy] has also been used to support related spending
programmes*.49 From a technical point of view, it should be noted that the reference
to the use of environmental tax revenues to reduce labour taxes is commonly known
as &the employment double dividend* and is much contested by economists.50
The Treasury specifically relates each of the levies and subsidies discussed in this
study to the government*s sustainability policy. Thus, the goal of the totality of
44 Ibid.
45 Unless this is a reference to road user charging schemes.
46 See para. 11.2 below. As discussed there, the landfill tax code contains some mechanisms
by which an effect akin to hypothecation is achieved (see para. 11.2 below). The Treasury*s
resistance to hypothecation is highlighted by the fact that, in para. 2.11 of the 2002 paper,
it is stated that, with the much smaller taxes targeting specific environmental impacts, &#
there may be a stronger case for using most or all of the revenue to encourage a response
to the tax*.
47 See 2002 paper, para. 2.10.
48 Ibid.
49 Ibid. See para. 21.3 below.
50 A subject on which there is a considerable literature: see, for example, Lawrence Goulder,
Environmental Taxation and the &Double Dividend*: A Reader*s Guide (Cambridge,
MA: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1994); Stephen Smith, &Green* Taxes
and Charges: Policy and Practice in Britain and Germany (London: Institute for Fiscal
Studies, 1995), p. 14; Kalle Määttä, Environmental Taxes 每 From an Economic Idea
to a Legal Institution (Helsinki: Finnish Lawyers* Publishing, 1997), pp. 157每8; ed. by
Timothy O*Riordan, Ecotaxation (London: Earthscan, 1997), Part II; C.J. Heady et al.,
Study on the Relationship Between Environmental/Energy Taxation and Employment
Creation (Bath: University of Bath, 2000); Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development, Environmentally-Related Taxes in OECD Countries: Issues and Strategies
(Paris: OECD, 2001), paras 1.6.2 and 2.3; Adair Turner, Just Capital: The Liberal
Economy (London: Macmillan, 2002), pp. 310每11; and Kurt Kratena, Environmental
Tax Reform and the Labour Market: The Double Dividend in Different Labour Market
Regimes (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2002). See also the 2002 paper, paras 7.9每7.13,
esp. para. 7.11.
Technical Justifications 115
climate change levy, of the UK ETS,51 of the RO52 and of tax reliefs such as capital
allowances for expenditure on energy-saving plant and machinery,53 is to assist
the UK in meeting its carbon emissions reduction targets under the post-Kyoto EU
burden-sharing agreement.54 The objectives of the other levies, given their nature
and scope, is closer to home. Aggregates levy is designed to &tackle environmental
costs of aggregate extraction including noise, dust visual intrusion [and], biodiversity
loss*, whilst the goal of landfill tax is &[t]o internalise [the] environmental costs of
landfill e.g. methane emissions, nuisance, groundwater pollution; to give better price
signals for alternatives to landfill; and to assist in meeting waste targets in [the] most
efficient way*.55 Landfill tax is to be supported by the LATS,56 whose aim is to
restrict the landfilling of biodegradable municipal waste.57
5.4 Economic instruments and market failures
Government policy with regard to tax and the environment is thus to use the tax
system to ensure the attainment of environmental objectives and to reform it to
increase incentives to reduce environmental damage.58
The basis on which the policy is justified is that of welfare economics, a discipline
which has achieved a &near hegemonic status* as a theoretical basis for pollution
control.59 Under the heading &Why not leave it to the market?*, the 2002 paper
justifies the use of economic instruments such as environmental taxes by reference to
market failures and their distributional effects.60 To the lawyer, the discussion reads
almost as a digest of the economic learning in this area.61
Both a vibrant and influential academic literature62 and the &soft law*63 and
other policy documentation produced by the OECD64 make a persuasive welfare
economics case for the use of economic instruments in environmental regulation, the
broad outlines of which might be summarised as follows. The economic rationale for
51 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above.
52 See para. 1.4.2.2(4) above.
53 See 2002 paper, paras 6.39每6.47. See also Chapter 24 below.
54 See paras 8.2.2n and 8.3.1.4 below.
55 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1 (p.42).
56 See para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
57 Ibid.
58 See Tax Measures to Help the Environment, above.
59 See Hilson, op. cit., pp. 6每8.
60 See 2002 paper, ch. 4.
61 As to which, see, for example, Tom Tietenberg, Environmental and Natural Resource
Economics, 3rd edn (New York: Harper Collins, 1992), to take one distinguished text
from among many.
62 See Benjamin J. Richardson and Kiri L. Chanwai in &Taxing and Trading in Corporate
Energy Activities: Pioneering UK Reforms to Address Climate Change* (2003) 14(1)
ICCLR 18每27, 19.
63 See para. 8.2.6 below.
64 See para. 4.4.2 above.
116 Environmental Taxation Law
environmental regulation via economic instruments65 is the elimination of economic
waste in situations where &the unregulated price of a good does not reflect the true
cost to society of producing that good*.66 Baldwin and Cave, in a review of the
relevant arguments, provide the following example:
[A] # manufacturer of car tyres might keep costs to consumers down by dumping pollutants
arising from the manufacturing process into a river. The price of the tyres will not represent
the true costs that production imposes on society if clean-up costs are left out of account.
The resultant process is wasteful because too many resources are attracted into polluting
activities (too many tyres are made and sold) and too few resources are devoted by the
manufacturer to pollution avoidance or adopting pollution-free production methods.67
The disparities between &true social costs* and &unregulated price* are &spillover*
costs, which environmental economists generally refer to as &externalities*68 or
&diseconomies*.69 Some form of regulation 每 of state intervention 每 is necessary to
compel the internalisation of such spillover costs, on the polluter pays principle.70
There has been a market failure, that is, a specific instance of where &the competitive
outcome of markets is not efficient from the point of view of the economy as a
whole*.71 The correction of market failures by regulation might take the form of
traditional command and control mechanisms, voluntary mechanisms or economic
instruments, including environmental taxes or charges.72 The inspiration for the last
of these possibilities is usually attributed to the distinguished early-twentieth century
economist, Arthur Pigou.73 Pigou*s writing is sometimes portrayed as being much
65 See Chapter 6 below.
66 Stephen Breyer, &Typical Justifications for Regulation*, in A Reader on Regulation, ed.
by Robert Baldwin, Colin Scott and Christopher Hood (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1998), pp. 59每92, p. 68.
67 See Baldwin and Cave, op. cit., pp. 11每12.
68 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 68. Spillover costs are the norm, but Breyer acknowledges also the
possibility of a &spillover benefit* in a different situation, for example where &honeybees
fertilise nearby apple orchards, the beekeepers provide a spillover benefit to the orchard
owners, so long as the latter do not pay the former for their service* (ibid.).
69 Or &external diseconomies*: see, for example, Määttä, op. cit., p. 7.
70 See Baldwin and Cave, op. cit., p. 12.
71 See 2002 paper, para. 4.2. Factors other than externalities may cause market failure, for
example, information failures, the absence of perfect competition and even government
intervention itself (see the 2002 paper, para. 4.9, and Baldwin and Cave, ch. 2).
72 A voluntary approach, rather than a tax, has been adopted, for the time being, in relation
to pesticide use (see para. 21.9.5 below). A bid for a voluntary arrangement was tried,
and failed, in relation to aggregates levy (see para. 11.3.2 below). The role of voluntary
measures is discussed in para. 7.8 of the 2002 paper.
73 Hence the expression &Pigouvian taxes*, which is sometimes used as a synonym for
pollution (that is, environmental) taxes (see para. 1.2.1.5 above). Arthur Cecil Pigou
(1877每1959) held the Chair of Political Economy at the University of Cambridge from
1908 until 1944. Memorably, Pigou saw the inspiration of economic science as being the
&sordidness of mean streets and the joylessness of withered lives*. His ideas for pollution
taxes were expounded in The Economics of Welfare, 4th edn (London: Macmillan, 1952),
Part II, chs 2 and 3, and in A Study in Public Finance, 3rd edn (London: Macmillan, 1947),
Technical Justifications 117
more straightforward than it is; in Andersen*s words, &Pigou is much more cautious
about his pollution taxation scheme than certain of his followers*.74
The academic rationale for correcting market failure is mirrored in the OECD*s
policy documentation:
The basic theoretical premise behind the introduction of environmental instruments,
including environmentally related taxation, to correct for [sic] environmental damage
is the existence of negative environmental externalities in unregulated economies. A
negative externality is a cost that one economic agent imposes on another but does not
take into account when making production or consumption decisions. When the costs
of pollution or resource use are not reflected in prices, market inefficiencies result with
excessive production or consumption of products and activities that impose social costs.
Externalities exist because of the public goods nature of the environment. In the absence of
property rights for clean air, clean water, etc. economic agents use these services without
regard for the impact their decisions have on other economic agents, including future
generations. Even where charges or taxes are raised on a polluting activity, for example
on municipal waste disposal, often they do not fully internalise the cost of the externality.
Where environmental costs are fully internalised into the price of a product or activity a
reallocation of resources in the economy occurs according to fair and efficient prices.75
Besides the internalisation of externalities, the OECD material also claims for
economic instruments in general opportunities to realise static and dynamic
efficiencies.76 Static efficiency implies that marginal abatement costs are equalised
between polluters, without the need for regulators to seek out information about the
abatement costs of particular firms.77 Dynamic efficiency implies that firms have an
&ongoing incentive to reduce pollution abatement costs, rather than simply to meet
specific standards, which require constant review*.78
Both the academic rationale and the OECD policy statements are closely reflected
in Chapter 4 of the 2002 paper.79 The paper acknowledges the possibility, not
only of negative externalities, but also of positive externalities.80 An example of
a positive externality would be a developer cleaning up contaminated land, since
this would encourage the regeneration of the area surrounding that land.81 Negative
externalities, on the other hand, might include, for example, &the visual and noise
impacts of quarries*, says the Treasury.82 It supplies a further example of negative
Part II, ch. 8, both of which are far more difficult reading than the oft-seen &summaries* of
his work may appear to suggest.
74 See Mikael Skou Andersen, Governance by green taxes: making pollution prevention pay
(Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1994), p. 5.
75 See OECD, op. cit., para. 1.1.
76 Ibid., paras 1.3 and 1.4.
77 Ibid., para. 1.3.
78 Ibid., para. 1.4.
79 Both are referred to in the Bibliography thereto (see the 2002 paper, pp. 57每58).
80 A possibility contemplated by Pigou himself: see the example of the lighthouse in A Study
in Public Finance, above, p. 94, and Breyer*s example of the honeybees in n above.
81 See 2002 paper, para. 4.5.
82 Ibid., para. 4.5.
118 Environmental Taxation Law
externalities which develops, though not expressly, the one given by Baldwin and
Cave:
In a simple example, two firms, a factory and a fishery, use the same river as an input good.
By using the river to dispose of waste, the factory imposes costs on the fishery and reduces
its productive capacity; but the market does not reflect this cost in prices because there are
no property rights for the pollution.83 There would be an overall gain for the economy as a
whole if the amount of pollution was set where the marginal benefit accruing to the factory
from each additional unit of waste disposal was equal to the marginal cost to the fishery
of each additional unit of river pollution # The efficient outcome cannot occur while the
factory does not face the full costs of its activities 每 its own private costs and the wider
social costs.84
Moreover, the Treasury embraces the concepts of static and dynamic efficiency,
referred to above. It emphasises that a &well-designed economic instrument can
equalise the marginal abatement costs between polluters*, because industries that
face lower abatement costs will cut back on pollution relatively more.85 Also, since
polluters are required to pay tax for &residual emissions*, as well as for abatement costs,
they will have a strong financial incentive to invest in technological developments
providing greater environmental protection.86
Having identified environmental market failures, Chapter 4 of the 2002 paper then
goes on to look at their distributional implications. Environmental externalities
can lead to differential impacts on different sectors of the economy and on
different income groups; they also impose costs on those not responsible for the
externalities. Traffic congestion, according to the Treasury, impacts on business in
a different way from that in which it impacts on other sectors.87 Air pollution not
only impacts disproportionately on low income groups in the inner cities but, on
a transboundary scale, it impacts more severely on less developed than on more
developed countries. Again, adverse effects on air quality, river pollution, sulphur
emissions and climate change, can have international and even global implications,
not just for this generation but for the ones to come.88 To the extent that addressing
these distributional impacts requires value judgments to be made, these should,
says the Treasury, &be underpinned by economic analysis so that the debate is wellinformed*.
89
It should be said that a number of objections could be made to the classical rationale
described above, although they do not seem currently to garner much favour and are
not reflected in government policy. It has, for instance, been argued that &spillover
costs do not call for government intervention but, rather, for a rearrangement of
83 This seems to be intended to refer to a regulation-free situation.
84 See 2002 paper, Box 4.1, p. 13.
85 See 2002 paper, para. 6.9.
86 Ibid., para. 6.10.
87 This part of the 2002 paper is a little difficult to follow. If business is defined as economic
activity, it is difficult to exclude anyone from its scope.
88 Ibid., para. 4.14.
89 Ibid., para. 4.17.
Technical Justifications 119
private property rights*.90 Ronald Coase, writing in 1960, famously took this position,
arguing that where there are &well-defined property rights, and where the costs of
bargaining are small enough, the affected parties can bargain with one another and
agree on an efficient allocation of resources*.91 Thus, in the examples given above,
those suffering from the pollution would get together and offer to pay the polluter
either to clean up or to adopt a pollution-free production method.92 Such an argument
might be significant in the context of small-group externalities, where there are only
a few affected parties whose rights have clearly been defined93 but the unreality of
the argument in relation to large-group externalities is apparent as soon as it is stated.
Even more unreal would be this argument in relation to mass externalities, such
as emissions causing climate change. The costs of bargaining become ever more
significant with the increase in the number of people affected, and a &clear consensus
is harder to obtain*.94 In this situation, there is a continuance of spillover costs,
because of the bargaining costs to those affected in banding together.95
Especially in the light of the subsequent development of environmental regulation,
it now seems almost inconceivable that arguments based upon a rearrangement of
private property rights could ever reassert themselves at a political level, at least
in relation to mass externalities. As the Treasury itself says, &if the market does not
reflect costs properly, there will implicitly be subsidies within the economy to those
causing pollution #*.96 Be that as it may, governments should clearly beware of
justifying every environmental intervention in terms of spillover cost. Breyer suggests
that, if the spillover rationale is to be &intellectually useful, [it] should be confined to
instances where the spillover is large, fairly concrete, and roughly monetizable*.97
One can always find some 每 broadly defined 每 spillover cost rationale for regulation,
since &there is always some possible beneficial effect in reversing a market-made
decision*.98 In fairness to the authors of the 2002 Treasury paper, this is a problem of
which they are clearly aware, since they refer to market failures caused by information
failures, the absence of competition and government intervention.99
Besides providing general justifications for the creation of environmental levies
and subsidies, the Treasury specifically states the justification for all except one
of the measures that have actually been taken as being the correction of negative
90 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 69. This paragraph is indebted to Breyer*s analysis of the objections
to the rationale rehearsed in the 2002 paper.
91 See Ronald Coase, &The Problem of Social Cost* (1960) 3 JLE 1每44 (in Kalle Määttä*s
succinct summary (see Määttä, op. cit., pp. 7每8)).
92 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 59.
93 See Määttä, op. cit., p. 8.
94 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 69, and the works cited therein: J Buchanan, &An Economic Theory
of Clubs* (1965) 32 Economica 1; Mancur Olson, The Logic of Collective Action: Public
Goods and the Theory of Groups (Cambridge, MA, London: Harvard University Press,
1965).
95 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 69.
96 See 2002 paper, para. 4.6.
97 See Breyer, op. cit., p. 72.
98 Ibid.
99 See 2002 paper, para. 4.9.
120 Environmental Taxation Law
externalities.100 The exception is the positive externality which is intended to be
corrected by corporation tax relief at a notional 150 per cent of expenditure for the
costs of remedial work on contaminated land.101
5.5 The efficient level of fiscal intervention
Having elucidated the concept of market failures caused by externalities, the Treasury
then poses, in Chapter 5 of the paper, three further issues for policy consideration.102
These are the questions of:
1 how the government decides whether intervention in order to address the
externality is worthwhile; if so,
2 what the most efficient extent of any intervention would be; and
3 whether it would be most appropriate to intervene at the local, at the national or
at the international level.
The Treasury reports that the government recognises that, given that decisions should
be made on the basis of good scientific evidence, the precautionary principle103
should be invoked where the scientific case is uncertain and, in accordance with
the principles of good regulation, the intervention should be proportionate and
consistent.
The question of whether intervention would be worthwhile is answered using a costbenefit
analysis (&CBA*), part of the regulatory impact assessment (&RIA*) procedure
discussed below.104 &Cost-benefit analysis* is not here being used in a lay sense but is
&a highly specialised decision-making tool developed by economists, which provides
a formal, systematic assessment of the costs and benefits of a proposed course of
action*.105 The aim of CBA is to find the point at which the total benefits of control
outweigh the total costs by the greatest margin, since this will be the optimal level of
pollution control. This is unlikely to be the level eventually adopted, however, since
other factors have a part to play in the process of decision-making.106
The CBA involves a two-stage process, whereby an environmental good is first
valued, with the cost of taking action then being subjected to economic appraisal.
Valuing environmental goods involves either inferring the &price* of those goods or
the cost of remediating damage caused by pollution. The price of environmental goods
100 Ibid., Tables 6.1 (p. 23) and 7.1 (p. 42).
101 See Finance Act 2001, Sched 22. See paras 6.7, 7.3.4 and 24.5.1 below.
102 See 2002 paper, ch. 5.
103 See para. 8.2.6 below.
104 See 2002 paper, para. 5.2. Somewhat later in ch. 5, and somewhat inconsequentially,
given what has gone before, the 2002 paper emphasises the importance of cost-benefit
analysis in high-level target setting (see 2002 paper, para. 5.20). See also para. 11.2 below
and &Cost-Benefit Analysis and Environmental Policy*, in Helm, op. cit., pp. 48每74.
105 See Hilson, op. cit., p. 73. He gives a full discussion of the process at Hilson, op. cit.,
pp. 73每78, as to which see Chapter 11 below also.
106 See Hilson, op. cit., pp. 73每74.
Technical Justifications 121
may be inferred either from consumers* behaviour or from their stated valuation of a
good. Customers* behaviour may be tested, as appropriate, by using hedonic pricing
techniques, by travel cost models or by random utility models.107 Stated valuations
involve eliciting estimates of consumers* willingness to pay (&WTP*) or willingness
to accept (&WTA*) a particular outcome, through the use of specially-designed
questionnaires. The cost of remediating damage, by contrast, is measured simply by
estimating the costs involved in removing the source of the pollution. Inferring the
price of an environmental good places emphasis on the value of that good to society,
whereas measuring the cost of remediating the damage places emphasis on the
resource implications of the environmental damage.108 The latter, says the Treasury,
is useful for testing data obtained by the former (price inference) method.
The implications of valuing the environmental good having been described, the
Treasury then goes on to consider how the government subjects the cost of taking
action to economic appraisal. Economic appraisal also helps to determine the most
efficient extent of any intervention. There is a standard appraisal method, which is
contained in what is colloquially known as the Treasury Green Book,109 although the
government acknowledges that, particularly where significant changes are required, the
costs of taking action may be difficult to substantiate. The Treasury uses as an example
the process through which the former DETR went in deciding whether to impose
what became the aggregates levy and, in the event that it was imposed, what would be
the appropriate rate at which it should be charged.110 Essentially, the latter question
involved estimating how much people valued avoiding the effect of quarrying for rock,
sand or gravel both in their locality and in landscapes of national importance.111
In the aggregates levy consultation, 10,000 people, residing in the vicinity of 21
aggregates production sites, including quarries,112 were asked how much they would
107 For the distinctions between these, see Hilson, p. 74, and the 2002 paper, para. 5.10.
108 Pigou had not been particularly troubled about fixing the appropriate rate of tax, although
he did refer to an inquiry in Manchester showing that an annual loss of £290,000 resulted
from &the extra laundry costs, artificial light and damage to buildings as a result of heavy
air pollution* (quoted in David Gee, &Economic Tax Reform in Europe: Opportunities
and Obstacles*, in Ecotaxation, ed. by Timothy O*Riordan (London: Earthscan, 1997),
pp. 81每105, p. 87).
109 That is, HM Treasury, The Green Book: Appraisal and Evaluation in Central Government:
Treasury Guidance (London: TSO, 2003). The methodology described therein involves,
for example, discounting future costs and benefits to reflect the value that society places
on the consumption of goods and services now, as compared with future consumption.
110 See para. 11.3.2 below.
111 See 2002 paper, Box 5.1, p. 19. See London Economics, The Environmental Costs
and Benefits of the Supply of Aggregates (DETR: London, 1998); Susana Mourato and
David Pearce, Environmental Costs and Benefits of the Supply of Aggregates: A Review
of the London Economics Report (DETR: London, 1998); and London Economics, The
Environmental Costs and Benefits of the Supply of Aggregates Phase 2 (DETR: London,
1999) (this last is referred to below as &Phase Two*).
112 The list of 21 was made up of eight sites carrying out sand and gravel operations; eight
sites with hard rock quarries; three sites carrying out recycling operations and two marine
aggregate wharves (see Phase Two, above, Annex 7). Phase Two included Swinden
Quarry, a hard rock quarry near Skipton, North Yorkshire, in the Yorkshire Dales National
Park (see Phase Two, photographs at Annex 6 thereto).
122 Environmental Taxation Law
pay in the form of taxes, over a five-year period, for the quarry to be closed.113
This was a way of attributing a value to the environmental damage by those directly
affected, so these were referred to as the &local surveys*. Following this, another
1,000 people, living in 21 postcode areas not located near quarries, were asked what
they would pay to close a quarry in a National Park. This was a way of attributing
a value to the damage by those who were only indirectly affected, so these were
referred to as the &national survey*. The results of both local and national surveys
having been processed, national estimates were calculated for the average amount
that people were willing to pay for the environmental benefit of shutting down a
quarry. The national average, though weighted according to the type of output, was
calculated to be £1.80 per tonne.114
Finally, as to the question of whether, with regard to an externality, it is most
appropriate to intervene at a local, national or international level, the Treasury
makes some interesting distinctions. Road traffic congestion is characterised as a
localised problem, best tackled using a road user charging (&congestion charging* or
&cordon pricing*) scheme,115 at a local level. Problems of a national nature only (not
particularised in detail) are best dealt with at the UK level,116 whilst transboundary
problems (such as acid rain) are best dealt with at a European level and global
problems (such as climate change) are best dealt with at an international level.117
5.6 Concluding remarks
Following our discussion in Chapter 4 of the institutional structures within which
environmental levies and subsidies are developed, implemented and enforced,
we have sought to elucidate in the current chapter the technical justifications for
these instruments. Thus, the Treasury, and therefore, UK government, justifies
its green levies and subsidies primarily by reference to its policy on sustainable
development, which is itself designed to implement the environmental commitments
to which the UK is bound by various international treaties.118 We have seen how the
economic arguments for economic instruments as a means of carrying through these
commitments, have achieved an almost unchallengeable status, such that they may be
113 See Phase Two, para. 2.2. The specially-designed questionnaires used a specially-evolved
(stated) contingent valuation method, based on WTP. In relation to the early closure of
the quarry in question, people were generally asked to assume that the site was restored
in keeping with the surrounding landscape, and that the workers found new employment
(see 2002 paper, Box 5.1, p. 19, second para). See, generally, Valuing Environmental
Preferences 每 Theory and Practice of the Contingent Valuation in the US, EU and
Developing Countries, ed. by Ian J. Bateman and Ken G. Willis (Oxford: Clarendon
Press, 1999).
114 When the aggregates levy was eventually introduced in April 2002, the rate was put at the
more conservative £1.60 per tonne (see para. 13.2 below).
115 See 2002 paper, paras 5.26 and 5.32.
116 Ibid., paras 5.26 and 5.30.
117 Ibid., paras 5.26 and 5.28每5.29.
118 See Chapter 8 below.
Technical Justifications 123
seen to prevail even where the evaluation methods they employ are, to say the least,
controversial. That these arguments also have a part to play in the ongoing review
of taxes dating back before 1997 is illustrated by the ongoing review of landfill tax,
which will be considered in a later chapter.119
The 2002 Treasury paper is a profoundly interesting document, not least because,
despite being separated from the government*s original Statement of Intent on
environmental taxation by almost five years, it is remarkably consistent with
that original Statement. In para. 8.6 of the paper, the Treasury states its aims of
continuing to explore the use of economic instruments to achieve environmental
and sustainable development objectives; of continuing to keep under review the
impact of environmental policy on innovation; and of continuing to engage with
stakeholders120 on the use and design of economic instruments.121 It also states its
intentions of taking the lessons of the UK experience to European and international
discussions on the issues surrounding the use of economic instruments in meeting
environmental challenges.122
What is particularly interesting about the final chapter of the 2002 paper, however,
is that, at the very end, it clearly acknowledges the limitations of the economic
discipline as a basis for policy making, whilst at the same time emphasising the
arguments that the discipline has to offer. In para. 8.4, it is said that &[e]conomics
provides a useful framework for assessing the extent and nature of government action
to deal with environmental issues, helping to inform judgments on how to balance
environmental, economic and social impacts. So far as possible [it continues], the
actions that the government takes and the targets that it sets or agrees to need to
reflect the costs and benefits of those actions*.
119 See para. 11.4 below.
120 See above, n.
121 See 2002 paper, p. 45.
122 Ibid.
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Chapter 6
Regulatory Context
6.1 Introduction
The main purpose of the present chapter is to locate the UK*s environmental
levies and their associated economic instruments within the broader context of UK
environmental and market regulation.1 It would be possible to evolve a number of
different structures, more or less theoretical, for such an investigation. Pragmatically,
the one that we have evolved is to identify the range of regulatory instruments used
to address particular environmental concerns, their selection being suggested by
the spheres of operation of the various environmental levies and their associated
economic instruments.
Before turning, in the next chapter, to particular examples of the instruments just
referred to, it will be necessary to introduce a pervasive feature of the regulatory
scene, not only in the UK, but in the rest of the EU also: Integrated Pollution
Prevention and Control (&IPPC*). Our discussion of this concept, together with that
of its older national forebear, Integrated Pollution Control (&IPC*), is designed to
form a backdrop to the subsequent examination of the specific regimes relating to
the regulation of waste management,2 the control of air and atmospheric pollution;3
the regulation of air passenger and road freight transport,4 the regulation of mineral
extraction5 and (briefly) the regulation of contaminated land.6
The list just recited of the various regulatory spheres as they have developed in
Western Europe draws attention both to possible overlaps between the categories (for
example, as between air and atmospheric pollution and transport regulation) and to
the need to separate environmental regulation out from market regulation. Both are,
in a sense, forms of economic regulation, depending on how widely the boundaries
of economic science are set. To that extent, to draw a line of demarcation between
the &environmental* and &the market* is artificial.7 Nonetheless, that the dichotomy
1 See, inter alia: Stuart Bell and Donald McGillivray, Environmental Law, 5th edn (London:
Blackstone, 2000); Richard Burnett-Hall, Environmental Law (London: Sweet and
Maxwell, 1995); David Hughes et al., Environmental Law, 4th edn (London: Butterworths
LexisNexis, 2002); John F. McEldowney and Sharron McEldowney, Environmental Law
and Regulation (London: Blackstone, 2001); Susan Wolf and Neil Stanley, Wolf and
Stanley on Environmental Law, 4th edn (London: Cavendish, 2003); Justine Thornton
and Silas Beckwith, Environmental Law, 2nd edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 2004);
and Maurice Sunkin, David Ong and Robert Wight, Sourcebook on Environmental Law,
2nd edn (London: Cavendish, 2002).
2 See para. 6.3 below.
3 See para. 6.4 below.
4 See para. 6.5 below.
5 See para. 6.6 below.
6 See para. 6.7 below.
7 See Authors* Preface above.
126 Environmental Taxation Law
is to be found in the legislative materials under consideration appears to us to be
incontrovertible. This is especially true, for instance, of energy regulation,8 where,
as stated elsewhere, the &unbundling* of formerly nationalised industries, such as gas
and electricity supply, has been accompanied by the parallel but distinct development
of environmental law and policy.9 More recently still, there have been attempts to
graft onto the unbundling process a series of measures to safeguard environmental
interests.10 The problems raised by this afterthought are, of course, a central
preoccupation of the book.
In what follows, we have tended to give the greatest weight to the explanation of
regulatory issues which are either not covered elsewhere in the book or of which some
preliminary understanding is necessary in order to be able to gain some insight into
the strengths and weaknesses of the various levies and subsidies under consideration
later on. In indicating in the present chapter the place of environmental levies and
subsidies in the overall regulatory jigsaw, we have tended simply to cross-refer to the
more detailed explanations of them which appear elsewhere in the study. In order to
highlight the economic instruments, such as the environmental taxes, we have also
adopted the traditional classification of command and control instruments, on the one
hand, and economic instruments on the other. We are, of course, aware of the fact
that, whilst superficially appealing, such a dichotomy may, on close examination,
cease to exist. For instance, waste management licensing is seen as a command and
control instrument, yet the licence fee may be viewed as an economic one, a pure
case of the polluter having to pay. Likewise, an emissions trading system may seem
to typify the concept of the economic instrument, yet no such system will succeed
unless there is built into it a system of sanctions for non-compliance.11
We begin, as mentioned above, with cross-sectoral regulation. After considering IPC
and IPPC, we go on briefly to consider the Environmental Impact Assessment (&EIA*)
regime and the newer regime for Strategic Environmental Assessment (&SEA*). Like
much of what follows, the policy inspiration here is a Community-wide one and,
to the extent that these two concepts shift attention back to the process of planning
operations with potentially very significant environmental impacts, they are of the
greatest significance to an important element in the rest of the study. Ironically,
as we shall see, EIA and SEA may actually prove of particular significance in the
8 See Energy Law in Europe: National, EU and International Law and Institutions, ed.
by Martha M. Roggenkamp et al. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001). See also
United Kingdom Oil and Gas Law, ed. by Terence Daintith and Geoffrey Willoughby
(London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1984); Patricia D. Park, Energy Law and the Environment
(London: Taylor and Francis, 2002); and Energy Law and Regulation in the European
Union, ed. by Robert H. Tudway et al. (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1999).
9 It seems appropriate to deal with UK energy regulation first, since, during the 1990s,
the &British model of privatisation* has been taken up by the European Commission (see
Dieter Helm, Energy, the State and the Market: British Energy Policy since 1979, revised
edn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), pp. 372每3).
10 See, for example, s.4AB, Gas Act 1986, and s.3B, Electricity Act 1989 (Guidance on
social and environmental matters) and s.33BC, Gas Act 1986, and 41A, Electricity Act
1989 (Promotion of the efficient use by consumers of gas/electricity).
11 See para. 1.4.2.1 above.
Regulatory Context 127
electricity sector, where there is currently some evidence that they are hindering the
development of renewables generation.12
6.2 Integrated Pollution Control, Integrated Pollution Prevention and
Control and Environmental Assessment
6.2.1 Introduction
United Kingdom environmental regulation takes effect within the framework created
by two overarching regulatory regimes: Integrated Pollution Control (&IPC*) and
Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (&IPPC*).
The basis of the IPC regime is Part I of the Environmental Protection Act 1990,
whilst that of IPPC is the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive,13
as transcribed into the law of England and Wales by the Pollution Prevention and
Control Act 1999 and the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales)
Regulations 2000.14
The IPC regime represents an early attempt to coordinate the control of pollution
by specific regulation of all of the emissions from certain prescribed industrial
processes.15 The objective of IPPC, by contrast, is much wider, the general approach
of the IPPC legislation being to &prevent, reduce and (if possible) to eliminate
pollution and environmental impact as a whole*.16 Integrated Pollution Prevention
and Control has enhanced the role of local authorities17 in the prevention and control
of pollution;18 it should have replaced IPC by 2007.
6.2.2 Integrated Pollution Control
Part I of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 creates two systems of pollution
regulation: IPC, now under the control of the Environment Agency,19 and Local
Authority Air Pollution Control (&LAAPC*). The former was intended to regulate the
most seriously polluting processes, whilst the latter was intended for those processes
which are clearly in need of regulation but which are not so grave as to require
centralised control.
12 See para. 6.2.4 below.
13 Council Directive 96/61/EEC, (1996) OJ L25,7 26 (see para. 12.2.2 below).
14 S.I. 2000 No. 1973. According to Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., the IPPC Directive
was one of the first items of Community environmental legislation to be transposed and
implemented in the devolved UK (ibid., p. 383). See paras 1.3 and 4.2.2 above.
15 For the background, see Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, Fifth Report on
Air Pollution Control: An Integrated Approach (Cmnd 6731, 1976).
16 Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 386.
17 See para. 4.2.3 above.
18 See the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I.
2000 No 1973, reg. 8 and Sched. 1 (Part A and Part B Installations within each Section of
the Sched). See also Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., p. 291, for a further explanation.
19 See para. 4.2.1.3(1) above.
128 Environmental Taxation Law
By s.6(1), Environmental Protection Act 1990, no person must carry on a prescribed
process &except under an authorisation granted by the enforcing authority and in
accordance with the conditions to which it is subject*. Additionally, by Environmental
Protection Act 1990, s.2(5), the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural
Affairs20 may, by regulations, &prescribe any description of substance as a substance
the release of which into the environment is subject to control* under s.6 of the Act.
A prescribed process is a process21 for the carrying on of which an authorisation is
required by regulations.22 The regulations in question, the Environmental Protection
(Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations 1991,23 contain two lists of
processes, &A* and &B*, in Sched. 1 thereto, the more seriously polluting processes
falling within List A. Prescribed substances appear within Scheds 4每6, Environmental
Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations 1991. Within Sched. 1,
the prescribed processes are grouped within six chapters, according to sector:
1 fuel production processes, combustion processes and associated processes;24
2 metal production and processing;25
3 mineral industries;26
4 the chemical industry;27
5 waste disposal and recycling;28 and
6 other industries.29
Schedule 4 contains prescribed substances released into the air; Sched. 5 contains
prescribed substances released into water; and Sched. 6 contains prescribed
substances released into land.
The exemptions appearing in the Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes
and Substances) Regulations 1991, reg. 4, apply to those processes in which the
amount of a prescribed substance released is very small.
Authorisations are covered by Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.6 and Sched.
1. It is a criminal offence to carry on a prescribed process or to discharge a prescribed
substance without prior authorisation.30 This is punishable, on summary conviction,
by a fine not exceeding £20,000 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding three
months (or both). On conviction on indictment, it is subject to an unlimited fine or to
imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or to both.31
20 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
21 See Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.1(5).
22 Ibid., s.2(1).
23 S.I. 1991 No. 472, as amended at least eight times.
24 Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations 1991, S.I.
1991 No. 472, Sched. 1, ch. 1.
25 Ibid., Sched. 1, ch. 2.
26 Ibid., Sched. 1, ch. 3.
27 Ibid., Sched. 1, ch. 4.
28 Ibid., ch. 5.
29 Ibid., Sched. 1, ch. 6.
30 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.23(1)(a).
31 Ibid.
Regulatory Context 129
The enforcing authority, as mentioned above, is either the Environment Agency32
or the local authority.33 List A processes are designated for central control, whilst
List B processes are designated for local control.34
Section 7, Environmental Protection Act 1990, deals with the imposing of conditions
on the grant of authorisations. By s.6(3), Environmental Protection Act 1990, on an
application for an authorisation, the enforcing authority shall:
# either grant the authorisation subject to the conditions required or authorised to be
imposed by section 7 # or refuse the application.
In s.7 are stated the considerations that the enforcing authority may take into account
in granting an authorisation and the objectives for which the conditions may be
imposed. Among these objectives is that of ensuring that, in carrying on a prescribed
process, the best available techniques not entailing excessive cost (&BATNEEC*) will
be used for preventing or reducing the release of prescribed substances.35
The enforcing authority has wide powers, including:
1 varying and revoking authorisations;36
2 serving enforcement notices37 and prohibition notices;38 and
3 power to take reasonable steps to remedy the harm.39
6.2.3 Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control
Section 2, Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999, empowers, inter alia, the
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, to make regulations for
particular purposes, including:
1 establishing standards, objectives or requirements in relation to emissions;40
2 authorising the making of plans for the setting of overall limits, the allocation of
quotas or the progressive improvement of standards or objectives;41 and
3 authorising the making of schemes for the trading or other transfer of quotas so
allocated.42
Most importantly, Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 4, of the 1999 Act empowers the Secretary
of State to prohibit persons from operating any installations or plant of any specified
32 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
33 See para. 4.2.3 above.
34 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.5.
35 Ibid., s.7(2).
36 Ibid., ss.10每12.
37 Ibid., s.13.
38 Ibid., s.14.
39 Ibid., s.27.
40 Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999, Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 1(1).
41 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 1(2).
42 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 1(3).
130 Environmental Taxation Law
description or otherwise carrying on any activities of any specified description, except
under a permit in force under regulations and in accordance with any conditions to
which the permit is subject.43
The Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999 also empowers the Secretary of
State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to make schemes for fees and charges
in respect of applications for the grant, variation, subsistence, transfer or surrender
of permits or testing substances and regulations may require charges to be so framed
as to cover expenditure.44 Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales)
Regulations 200045 represent the exercise of these powers in England and Wales.
The basic provision of Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales)
Regulations 2000 is that &no person shall operate an installation or mobile plant
except under, and to the extent authorised by, a permit granted by the regulator*.46
An installation is a stationary technical unit where prescribed activities are carried
out and any other location on the same site where any other directly associated
activities are carried out.47 Mobile plant is plant designed to move or to be moved,
whether on roads or otherwise, and which is likewise used to carry out prescribed
activities.48
The descriptions of these activities are immensely detailed, but cover:
1 combustion activities, gasification, liquefaction and refining activities, in the
energy industries;49
2 the production and processing of metals and the surface treating of metals and
plastic materials, in the production and processing of metals;50
3 the production of cement and lime, activities involving asbestos, manufacturing
glass and glass fibre, the production of other mineral fibres, other mineral
activities and ceramic production, in the mineral industries;51
4 in the chemical industry, producing both organic and inorganic chemicals,
chemical fertilisers, plant health products and biocides, pharmaceutical products
and explosives, manufacturing activities involving carbon disulphide or ammonia
and the storage of chemicals in bulk;52
5 the disposal of waste by landfill, as well as the disposal of waste other than by
incineration or landfill, the recovery of waste and the production of fuel from
waste, in the waste management industry;53 and
43 Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999, Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 1(4).
44 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, para. 24.
45 S.I. 2000 No. 1973.
46 Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000 No.
1973, reg. 9(1).
47 Ibid., reg. 2(1).
48 Ibid., reg. 2(1).
49 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Section 1.1.
50 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Sections 2.1每2.3.
51 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Sections 3.1每3.6.
52 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Sections 4.1每4.8.
53 Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000 No.
1973, Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Sections 5.1每5.5.
Regulatory Context 131
6 other activities, that is, paper, pulp and board manufacturing activities; carbon
activities; tar and bitumen activities; coating activities, printing and textile
treatments; the manufacture of dyestuffs, printing ink and coating materials;
timber activities; activities involving rubber; the treatment of animal and
vegetable matter and food industries; and intensive farming.54
When determining the conditions to be attached to a permit, the regulator is obliged
to take account of certain general principles.55 Installations and plant should be
operated in such a way that:
(a) all the appropriate preventative measures are taken against pollution, in particular
through application of the best available techniques [BAT]; and
(b) no significant pollution is caused.56
Regulation 12, Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations
2000, specifies the conditions that must be included in a permit, and the concept of
best available techniques (&BAT*) is elaborated in reg. 3. There, &best* is defined as
meaning the most effective techniques in achieving a high general level of protection
of the environment as a whole; &available* means those techniques that have been
developed &on a scale that allows implementation in the relevant industrial sector
under economically and technically viable conditions*; and &techniques* includes
&both the technology used and the way in which the installation is designed, built,
maintained, operated and decommissioned*. Regulation 4 contains particular
provision for the case where the regulator has to decide whether or not a person
is a &fit and proper person to carry out a specified waste management activity*.57
A person will not be fit and proper to carry out those activities if, for example, he
has not made adequate financial provision to discharge his obligations under the
permit.58
The IPPC regulator59 has a large number of enforcement powers, including the
power to serve enforcement notices;60 the power to serve a revocation notice,
revoking all or part of the activities authorised by the permit;61 and the power to
serve a suspension notice if it considers that the operation of an installation involves
an imminent risk of serious injury.62 There is also a range of criminal offences
54 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, Sections 6.1每6.9.
55 Ibid., reg. 11(1).
56 Ibid., reg. 11(2). There are additional principles in the case of mobile plant (see reg.
11(3)).
57 See point 5 above.
58 See Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000
No. 1973, reg. 4(3)(c).
59 Who may be either the Environment Agency (see para. 4.2.1.3 above) or the relevant local
authority (see para. 4.2.3 above).
60 Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000 No.
1973, reg. 24.
61 Ibid, reg. 21.
62 Ibid., reg. 25.
132 Environmental Taxation Law
involving permits,63 the maximum penalty on summary conviction being a fine of up
to £20,000 and/or imprisonment for a period of up to six months, with the maximum
penalty on conviction on indictment being an unlimited fine and/or imprisonment for
a period up to five years.64
6.2.4 Environmental Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental
Assessment
It is important at this stage to note a second overarching set of provisions which
are designed to ensure that, when a public authority is considering plans for public
and private projects, it takes account of their environmental impacts.65 These
provisions originate from the Environmental Impact Assessment Directive (&the
EIA Directive*), which is examined in some detail in a later chapter of the study,66
the legislative basis of the provisions being s.2(2) of the European Communities
Act 1972. In England and Wales, the EIA Directive has been implemented by the
Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and
Wales) Regulations 1999,67 together with a number of other sets of regulations
which cover projects falling outside the scope of the law on town and country
planning.68
The requirement for an EIA in relation to specific projects has been considered in a
number of important cases in this jurisdiction, including R v. North Yorkshire County
Council, ex parte Brown69 and Berkeley v. Secretary of State for the Environment,
Transport and the Regions (No. 1).70 In the former case, the House of Lords rejected
an argument by the County Council that there had been no necessity for an EIA in a
case where it had simply imposed conditions on a planning permission of indefinite
duration originally granted in 1947 for the working of Wensley Quarry, at Prestonunder-
Scar, in the Yorkshire Dales. The Council had imposed the conditions under
s.22 of the Planning and Compensation Act 1991 and, in support of its argument,
it had contended that s.22 involved merely the detailed regulation of activities for
which the principal consent had already been given in 1947. Clearly unimpressed
with the argument, Lord Hoffmann said:
The procedure created by the Act of 1991 was not merely a detailed regulation of a project
in respect of which the substantial environmental issues had already been considered. The
purpose of the procedure was to give the mineral planning authority [that is, the Council] a
63 Ibid., reg. 32.
64 Ibid., regs 32(2) and 32(3).
65 See Stephen Tromans and Karl Fuller, Environmental Impact Assessment: Law and
Practice (London: LexisNexis Butterworths, 2003).
66 See para. 12.2.4 below.
67 S.I. 1999, S.I. No. 293.
68 For example, the Environmental Assessment (Afforestation) Regulations 1988, S.I. 1988
No. 1207, and the Land Drainage Improvement Works (Assessment of Environmental
Effects) Regulations 1988, S.I. 1988 No. 1217.
69 [2000] 1 AC 397.
70 [2001] 2 AC 603.
Regulatory Context 133
power to assess the likely environmental effects of old mining permissions which had been
granted without, to modern ways of thinking, any serious consideration of the environment
at all.71
Similarly, in the Berkeley case, the House of Lords dismissed the argument put on
behalf of the Secretary of State that, where substantial compliance with the EIA
Directive*s requirements could be demonstrated by reference to public documents,
the fact that no EIA had actually taken place did not invalidate a planning permission.
In dismissing this argument also, Lord Hoffmann said:
My Lords, I do not accept that this paper chase72 can be treated as the equivalent of an
environmental statement73 # The point about the environmental statement contemplated
by the Directive is that it constitutes a single and accessible compilation, produced by
the applicant at the very start of the application process, of the relevant environmental
information and the summary in non-technical language.74
Although both the Brown and the Berkeley cases involved the interpretation of the
predecessor regulations dating from 1988, they each illustrate the strictness with
which the courts approach the question of whether there has been compliance with
the requirements of the Directive.75
Against the background of a transposition of the EIA Directive, which has hardly been
free from difficulty, the ODPM76 consulted in spring 200477 on the implementation
of the Strategic Environmental Assessment (&SEA*) Directive.78 This was transposed
into UK law, on time, in July 2004, via four separate sets of regulations for each
of the UK*s four countries.79 Attention has recently been focused on SEAs since
they are needed for the development of arrays of coastal wave power devices for
electricity generation. The lack of an SEA for the southwest coast of England has
been a matter of considerable concern to developers (and others) looking to wave
power as a form of renewables generation.80
71 [2000] 1 AC 397, 405.
72 That is, a close reading of the documentation actually submitted in the case.
73 That is, as required by Council Directive 85/337/EEC, (1985) OJ L175 40, Arts 5, 6(2)
and Annex IV. See para. 12.2.4 below.
74 [2001] 2 AC 603, 617.
75 But see the argument on the failure to carry out an EIA in R (on the application of The
Mayor, Citizens of Westminster and others) v. The Mayor of London, [2002] EWHC 2440.
See para. 18.2 below.
76 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
77 See Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, Consultation Document on Implementation of
SEA Directive (2001/42/EC), March 2, 2004 (available from www.odpm.gov.uk).
78 See para. 12.2.4 below.
79 See, for example, for England, Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes
Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004 No. 1633. See also para. 1.3 above.
80 See 346 ENDS Report (2003).
134 Environmental Taxation Law
6.3 Waste management regulation
6.3.1 The international and European Union background
United Kingdom waste management regulation operates within the broader context
of public international law and Community law on the regulation of waste. That
broader context is considered in Chapters 8 and 12 below.
6.3.2 Command and control
The regulation of waste management has, until very recently, been dominated by
command and control regulation.81 The key set of provisions appears in Part II of the
Environmental Protection Act 1990, but account must also be taken of the relationship
between Part II, Environmental Protection Act 1990, and both IPC (in Part I of the
same statute) and IPPC (in the Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999).82
The Environmental Protection Act 1990, ss.44A and 44B, place an obligation on
the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to prepare a national
waste strategy for England and Wales. This is currently contained in what was then
the DETR*s83 Waste Strategy 2000 for England and Wales, of May 2000.84 Three
principal targets of the strategy are: to reduce, by 2005, the amount of industrial
and commercial waste sent to landfill to 85 per cent of 1998 levels; to recover value
from 45 per cent of municipal waste by 2010 and to recycle or compost at least 30
per cent of household waste by that date; and to recover value from two-thirds of
municipal waste by 2015, with at least 33 per cent of household waste being recycled
or composted by the same date.
Following concern that the targets in Waste Strategy 2000 would not be met, the
Strategy was reviewed by the Cabinet Office Strategy Unit85 in November 2002
in its now-famous Waste Not, Want Not document.86 The Strategy Unit criticised
Waste Strategy 2000 for giving too little attention to minimising waste (the Strategy
not containing any waste minimisation targets)87 and for failing to create &# the
economic and regulatory framework and enough associated policy tools to deliver
tangible improvements in waste minimisation, re-use and recycling*.88 Waste Not,
Want Not made over 30 recommendations for taking forward and monitoring by
Defra.89 The recommendations included raising landfill tax to £35 per tonne for
81 See Duncan Laurence, Waste Regulation Law (London: Butterworths, 1999).
82 See para. 6.2 above.
83 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
84 Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, Waste Strategy 2000 for England
and Wales (Cm 4693, 2000).
85 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
86 Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, Waste Not, Want Not: A Strategy for Tackling the Waste
Problem in England (London: Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, 2002).
87 Ibid., p. 30.
88 Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, op. cit., p. 30.
89 Ibid., pp. 116每39.
Regulatory Context 135
active waste90 and keeping under review the case for an incineration tax.91 They were
subsequently implemented in the government*s Waste Implementation Programme
(&WIP*), which began in June 2003.92
6.3.2.1 Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part II
There are three main elements in the Environmental Protection Act 1990:
1 a waste management licensing system;
2 a statutory duty of care in relation to how waste is handled; and
3 a reorganisation of the functions of the regulatory authorities between Waste
Regulation Authorities (&WRAs*), Waste Disposal Authorities (&WDAs*) and
Waste Collection Authorities (&WCAs*).
The WRAs were formerly the County Councils93 but, as a result of amendments made
to the Environmental Protection Act 1990 by the Environment Act 1995, the WRA is
now the Environment Agency.94 Generally speaking, the WDA is the County Council
is a non-metropolitan area and the District Council in a metropolitan area.95 The WDA
has a duty to arrange for the disposal of controlled waste (that is, household, industrial
and commercial waste)96 collected by the WCA in the area in question.97 The WCA
has a duty to arrange for the collection of household waste and of commercial waste
when so requested.98 Although, in certain circumstances, a WCA may charge for the
collection of household waste, the collection of such waste is generally free of charge.
The same is not true of industrial or commercial waste, the collection and disposal of
which is subject to the payment of some reasonable amount.99
Crucial to the whole system, of course, is the definition of &waste* itself. Although
it is possible to restate this definition in brief compass, the definition in practice
gives rise to a range of potentially extremely complex issues. &Waste* is defined in
Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(2), as:
90 Ibid., p. 124.
91 Ibid., p. 127.
92 See Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, WIP: One Year On, June 2004,
available from www.defra.gov.uk.
93 See para. 4.2.3 above.
94 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
95 See para. 4.2.3 above. See also Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., p. 203. The authors would like
to acknowledge a particular debt to this work in this para. 6.3.
96 See Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(4), and the Controlled Waste Regulations 1992,
S.I. 1992 No. 588 (see Thanet District Council v. Kent County Council, [1993] Env LR 391).
&Household waste* is defined in the Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(5); &industrial
waste* is defined in the Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(6); and &commercial waste*
is defined in the Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(7).
97 Ibid., s.51.
98 Ibid., s.45.
99 Ibid., s.45(4).
136 Environmental Taxation Law
# any substance or object in the categories set out in Schedule 2B to this Act which the
holder discards or intends or is required to discard; and for the purposes of this definition
每 &holder* means the producer of the waste or the person who is in possession of it; and
&producer* means any person whose activities produce waste or any person who carries
out pre-processing, mixing or other operations resulting in a change in the nature or
composition of this waste.100
Environmental Protection Act 1990, Sched. 2B, provides a non-exhaustive list of
items that count as waste (for example, off-specification products, residues from
industrial processes and pollution abatement processes, adulterated materials, etc.)
when they have been discarded.101
Thus, for the purposes of Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75, in determining
whether an item is &waste*, it is crucial to decide whether it has been &discarded*.102
What constitutes discarding has been a matter of considerable controversy in the
context of landfill tax,103 since that tax is charged on disposals of material as waste.104
In the context of Environmental Protection Act 1990, the ECJ has held that &discard*
has a special meaning that includes both the consignment of waste for disposal and
the consignment of waste to a recovery operation.105 This definition was followed by
Carnwath, J. in Mayer Parry Recycling Ltd v. Environment Agency (No. 1),106 where
it was held that a company, part of whose business involved receiving scrap metal
and dealing with it so that steel manufacturers could use it for making other items,
was managing &waste*.107
Besides the concept of &controlled waste*, there is also that of &special waste*.
Special waste is controlled waste in respect of which the Secretary of State for
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has made an order under the Environmental
Protection Act 1990, s.62.108 It includes waste that is especially &# dangerous or
100 This incorporates the definition in the Waste Framework Directive, Council Directive
75/442/EEC, (1975) OJ L194 39, Art. 1(a). Waste falling within this definition is therefore
often known as &Directive Waste*.
101 See para. 12.2.5.2 below.
102 See, for example, J. Cheyne and M. Purdue, &Fitting definition to purpose: the search for
a satisfactory definition of waste*, [1995] 7 JEL 149. See also the articles cited at para.
12.2.5.2n below.
103 See para. 15.2 below.
104 See para. 1.4.2.1(1) above.
105 See Criminal proceedings against Euro Tombesi and others, Joined Cases C每304/94,
C每330/94, C每342/94 and C每224/95, [1997] ECR I每3561; Inter-Environnement Wallonie
ASBL v. Region Wallonne, C每129/96, [1998] 1 CMLR 1057; and ARCO and EPON,
Joined Cases C每418每419/97, [2002] QB 646. See further para. 12.2.5.2 below.
106 [1999] Env LR 489. See also Parkwood Landfill Ltd v. C & E Commrs, [2002] STC
1536.
107 With the result that it therefore required the appropriate licences under the regulations
described in (a) below. In Mayer Parry Recycling Ltd v. Environment Agency (No. 1),
Carnwath, J. held that the material continued to be waste until the completion of the
recovery process (as to the position when that process has been completed, see Castle
Cement v. Environment Agency, [2001] EWHC Admin 224 (Stanley Burnton, J.); [2001]
Env LR 46).
108 See Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(9).
Regulatory Context 137
difficult to treat, keep or dispose of* (for example, because it is explosive, flammable
or carcinogenic, etc.).109
The exclusions from the definition of commercial waste in the Environmental
Protection Act 1990, s.75, include waste from any mine or quarry.110
(1) Waste management licensing system
Environmental Protection Act 1990, ss.35每44, contain a framework for the
management of waste. The detail is contained in the Waste Management Licensing
Regulations 1994.111 Both sets of provisions are intended to comply with the Waste
Framework Directive (&the WFD*).112
Details of the basic provisions of the 1990 Act are as follows:113
a. Section 35(1) gives the following definition of a waste management licence:
# a licence granted by a waste regulation authority114 authorising the treatment, keeping
or disposal of any specified description of controlled waste in or on specified land or the
treatment or disposal of any specified description of controlled waste by means of specified
mobile plant.
Subsections (3) and (4) of s.33, Environmental Protection Act 1990, give the
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs the power to exempt
certain activities from the licensing system. The activities thus exempted include
those covered by other statutory controls (for example, IPC)115 as well as those
falling within an exhaustive list,116 which includes the temporary storage of
waste, on the site where it is produced, pending its collection.117
b. The licence is granted to the person who is in occupation of the land (that is, to
&the site operator*) or, in the case of a mobile waste treatment plant, the person
who operates the plant.118
c. The Environment Agency*s circumscribed discretion in relation to the grant of
licences is contained in Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.36. The Agency
must refuse to issue a licence if planning permission is required in relation to
the land and no such planning permission is in force.119 Otherwise, the Agency
109 See Special Waste Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 972.
110 See Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.75(7), and the Mines and Quarries (Tips) Act
1969.
111 S.I. 1994 No. 1056.
112 See para. 12.2.5.1(1) below.
113 It should be noted, of course, that the grant of a waste management licence does not
obviate the need to comply with town and country planning law (see Hughes, op. cit.,
pp. 423每6).
114 That is, the Environment Agency (see para. 4.3.2(1) above).
115 Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 1056, reg. 16 (see
below).
116 Ibid., reg. 17 and Sched. 3.
117 Ibid., Sched. 3, para. 41(1).
118 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.35(2).
119 Ibid., s.36(2).
138 Environmental Taxation Law
must not reject the application if it is satisfied that the applicant is a fit and proper
person, unless:
# it is satisfied that its rejection is necessary for the purpose of preventing每
(a) pollution of the environment;
(b) harm to human health; or
(c) serious detriment to the amenities of the locality #120
d. The grant of a licence may be made subject to such terms and conditions relating
to the activities that the licence authorises and to the precautions to be taken and
works to be carried out.121
e. Section 43, Environmental Protection Act 1990, provides for there to be a right
of appeal from decisions of the Environment Agency to the Secretary of State.
f. By Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.33(1), it is an offence to deposit,
treat, keep or dispose of controlled waste except in accordance with a waste
management licence.122 Breach of the section makes the wrongdoer liable to
imprisonment for up to six months or a fine not exceeding £20,000 or both (on
summary conviction); or to imprisonment for up to two years and/or a fine (on
conviction on indictment).123
g. Fees are payable to the Agency for the grant, modification, transfer, etc., of the
waste management licence.124 This is a practical example of the polluter pays
principle.125
(2) Statutory duty of care as to handling of waste
Section 34 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, imposes a duty on various
categories of persons (including importers, producers and carriers) to take all such
measures applicable to them in that capacity as are reasonable in the circumstances:
a. &to prevent contravention by any other person* of Environmental Protection Act
1990, s.33;126
b. to &prevent the escape of waste from his control or that of any other person*;
and
c. on the transfer of the waste, to secure that the transfer is to an authorised
person or for authorised transport purposes only and to ensure that sufficient
written description of the waste is provided to anyone to whom the waste is
transferred.127
120 Ibid., s.36(3).
121 Ibid., s.35(3).
122 Ibid., s.33(1).
123 Ibid., s.33(8) and (9). The penalties are harsher in relation to special waste (see s.33(9)
and para. 6.3.2.6 below).
124 See Environment Act 1995, s.41, and the Environmental Licences (Suspension and
Revocation) Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 508.
125 See para. 6.2.3 above.
126 See para. 6.3.2.1(1)(a) above.
127 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.34(1) (see also Environmental Protection (Duty of
Care) Regulations S.I. 1991 No. 2839).
Regulatory Context 139
The only exception to the duty of care is for occupiers of domestic property with
regard to household waste produced on their property.128
Breach of the duty of care in s.34 is a criminal offence. It is punishable, on summary
conviction, by a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum and, on conviction on
indictment, by a fine.129
6.3.2.2 Integrated Pollution Control
Regulation 16(1)(a) of the Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994130
provides that the recovery or disposal of waste under an IPC authorisation, where
the activity is, or forms part of, a process designated for central control,131 is exempt
from the need for a waste management licence.
Moreover, no condition can be attached to an IPC authorisation that regulates the
final disposal of directive waste in or on land.132
6.3.2.3 Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control
The IPPC applies to the disposal of waste by incineration,133 by landfill134 or by other
specified means.135 It also applies to the recovery of waste136 and the production of
fuel from waste.137
Prior to June 2002,138 landfill sites were either subject to the Waste Management
Licensing Regulations 1994139 or to the IPPC Regime. If a landfill site fell outside the
wording of the relevant definition in the Pollution Prevention and Control (England
and Wales) Regulations 2000,140 then it would fall within the licensing system of
Part II of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.141
The IPPC regime has recently been extended to all landfill sites pursuant to the
measure discussed in the following para.142
128 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.34(2).
129 Ibid., s.34(6).
130 S.I. 1994 No. 1056. See para. 6.3.2.1(1)(a) above.
131 That is, under Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.2(4).
132 Ibid., s.28(1).
133 See the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I.
2000 No. 1973, Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.1.
134 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.2.
135 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.3.
136 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.4.
137 Ibid., Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.5.
138 See the Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 1559, reg. 1(2).
139 See para. 6.3.2(1)(a) above.
140 See S.I. 2000 No. 1973, Sched. 1, Pt 1, Ch. 1, section 5.2.
141 See para. 6.3.2.1(1)(a) above.
142 See the Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 1559, reg. 6(1). See
para. 6.3.2.4 below.
140 Environmental Taxation Law
6.3.2.4 Implementation of the Landfill Directive
The Landfill Directive143 aims for a 65 per cent reduction, on the basis of 1995
waste arisings, in the amount of methane producing, biodegradable household and
municipal waste that is disposed of in landfill sites.144 Although the means by which
the Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003 seeks to achieve these targets are largely
in the form of economic instruments,145 Part 1 of the 2003 Act places a duty on the
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to set the maximum
amount of biodegradable municipal waste to be sent to landfill from each of the UK*s
constituent countries.146 The UK, as an EU Member State which sent more than 80
per cent of its collected municipal waste to landfills in 1995, qualifies for the fouryear
derogation from the 2016 target.147
The need to comply with the terms of the Landfill Directive148 has also given rise to
the creation of a special regulatory regime for landfill sites. The regime is contained
in the Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002.149
The 2002 regulations apply to &landfills*, the concept of a landfill being defined,
subject to certain exclusions,150 as &a waste disposal site for the deposit of the waste
onto or into land*.151 Specifically excluded from the scope of the regulations, among
other things, is &the use of suitable inert waste for redevelopment, restoration and
filling-in work or for construction purposes*.152 The regulations operate by modifying
the conditions under which an IPPC permit relating to the disposal of waste in a
landfill (referred to as a &landfill permit*)153 may be granted under the Pollution
Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000.154
Besides specifying the conditions to be contained in a landfill permit,155 procedures
for accepting waste at landfills156 and the inspection, control and monitoring of
landfills by the Environment Agency,157 the regulations contain four key sets of
provisions:
143 Council Directive 99/31/EC, (1999) OJ L182 1.
144 See para. 12.2.5.1(2)(b) below.
145 See para. 6.3.3 below.
146 Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.1.
147 See para. 12.2.5.1(2)(b) below.
148 Council Directive 99/31/EC, (1999) OJ L182 1.
149 S.I. 2002, No. 1559.
150 Ibid., regs 3(4) and 4.
151 Ibid., reg. 3(2). See Blackland Park Exploration Ltd v. Environment Agency, [2003]
EWCA Civ 1795, [2003] All ER (D) 249 (Dec). There, the CA (Simon Brown, Mummery
and Scott Baker, L.JJ.) held that the disposal of hazardous liquid industrial wastes through
a borehole into strata around 1,000 metres below sea level was a deposit &into land* within
the 2002 regulations and that the site was therefore a &landfill*.
152 S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 4(b).
153 Ibid., reg. 6(2).
154 S.I. 2000, No. 1973. See para. 6.2.3 above.
155 S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 8.
156 Ibid., reg. 12.
157 Ibid., regs 13 and 14.
Regulatory Context 141
1 when considering the grant of planning permission for a landfill, the relevant
planning authority must take into consideration specific matters relating to its
location which indicate that the landfill &does not pose a serious environmental
risk*;158
2 before granting a landfill permit, the Environment Agency must classify the
landfill as a landfill for hazardous waste,159 a landfill for non-hazardous waste160
or a landfill for inert waste161 and must ensure that the classification is given in
the landfill permit;162
3 an absolute ban on the acceptance at landfills of certain types of waste, including
any waste in liquid form (including waste waters but not including sludge);163
infectious hospital and clinical wastes;164 whole tyres (from July 2003);165 and
shredded tyres (from July 2006);166
4 a requirement for the landfill site operator to ensure that the charges it makes
cover the costs of setting up and operating the landfill, of his financial provision
in relation to his obligations under IPPC and the estimated costs of the eventual
closure and after-care of the site.167
The provision summarised at 2 above thus bans co-disposal of hazardous and nonhazardous
waste. Furthermore, in relation to the classifications within the provisions
at 2 above, the site operator168 must generally169 ensure that the landfilled waste has
been subject to prior volume-reducing or safety treatment.170 He must also ensure
that he accepts for landfilling only waste which will not have specified adverse
effects to the environment or human health.171 Finally, if the landfill permit relates
to non-hazardous waste, the operator must landfill only municipal waste, other nonhazardous
waste and stable, non-reactive hazardous waste.172
Besides placing the target-setting duty on the Secretary of State, Part 1 of the Waste
and Emissions Trading Act 2003 requires the appropriate authority for each country
158 Ibid., reg. 5 and Sched. 2.
159 Ibid., reg. 7(2). See 12.2.5.1(3) below.
160 Ibid., reg. 7(3).
161 Ibid., reg. 7(4).
162 Ibid., reg. 7(1).
163 Ibid., reg. 9(1)(a). In Blackland Park Exploration Ltd v. Environment Agency, [2003]
EWCA Civ 1795, [2003] All ER (D) 249 (Dec), Scott Baker, L.J. commented that the
appellant company was said to be the only company in the UK bringing liquid waste onto
a site for disposal by means of an injection well (see judgment, paras 1 and 4).
164 See S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 9(1)(c).
165 Ibid., reg. 9(1)(e).
166 Ibid., reg. 9(1)(f).
167 See S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 11.
168 See the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I.
2000 No. 1973, reg. 2 (see S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 2).
169 But see S.I. 2002 No. 1559, reg. 10(1).
170 Ibid.
171 S.I. 2002, No. 1559, reg. 10(2) and Sched. 1, paras 1 and 2.
172 Ibid., No. 1559, reg. 10(3).
142 Environmental Taxation Law
of the UK173 to develop a national strategy to reduce the amount of biodegradable
municipal waste sent to landfills.174 In addition, where a local authority is a two-tier
authority,175 the WDA and the WCAs within its area must usually176 develop a joint
strategy for the management of waste from households and similar waste.177 Finally,
although the 2003 Act empowers WDAs to direct WCAs to deliver their waste in a
separated state,178 it also requires the WDA to make payments to the WCA to cover
the cost of doing this.179
6.3.2.5 Measures relating to specific types of waste
Certain categories of waste have their own disposal rules.180 For example, special
provisions apply to the disposal of waste oils;181 to the disposal of polychlorinated
biphenyls (&PCBs*) and polychlorinated terphenyls (&PCTs*);182 to the disposal
of waste from the titanium dioxide industry;183 to the agricultural use of sewage
sludge;184 and to the recovery and controlled disposal of batteries and accumulators
which are spent and contain quantities of mercury, cadmium or lead.185
6.3.2.6 Measures relating to hazardous (&special*) waste
Section 62 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 provides that, where the
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs considers that a particular
kind of controlled waste is particularly dangerous or difficult to treat, keep or dispose
of, so that special provision is needed in relation to it, then he must make regulations
173 See para. 4.2.2 above (that is, the Secretary of State in England, the Scottish Ministers
in Scotland, the National Assembly for Wales and the Department of the Environment in
Northern Ireland).
174 Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, ss.17每20.
175 See para. 4.2.3 above.
176 Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003, s.33.
177 Ibid., s.32.
178 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.48(1A) (as inserted by the Waste and Emissions
Trading Act 2003, s.31(2)).
179 Ibid., s.31(4)).
180 The categories listed here all originate in Community law. See para. 12.2.5.1(2) below.
181 See the Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 1056 and the
Special Waste Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996 No. 972.
182 See the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Extension of Section 140) Regulations 1999,
S.I. 1999 No. 396 and the Environmental Protection (Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls
and Other Dangerous Substances) (England and Wales) Regulations, S.I. 2000 No. 1043
(amended by the Environmental Protection (Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls and
Other Dangerous Substances) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2001 (S.I.
2001 No. 3359).
183 This is a prescribed process under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part 1 (see
para. 6.2.2 above).
184 See the Sludge (Use in Agriculture) Regulations 1989 (as amended), S.I. 1989 No. 1263.
185 See the Batteries and Accumulators (Containing Dangerous Substances) Regulations
1994, S.I. 1994 No. 232.
Regulatory Context 143
for dealing with such &special waste*.186 The regulations made under the section are
the Special Waste Regulations 1996,187 as amended.
6.3.2.7 Measures relating to the importation and exportation of waste
Although the Waste Shipment Regulation188 is directly applicable in the UK, it has
been transposed into UK law by the Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations
1994.189
6.3.3 Economic instruments
The main economic instruments in UK waste management regulation have for long
been landfill tax, packaging waste recovery notes (&PRNs*) and the waste recycling
credits scheme. To these will shortly be added the LATS, a form of tradeable landfill
allowance.190
6.3.3.1 Landfill tax
An outline of the tax has been given at para. 1.4.2.1(1) above.191 It is discussed in
detail in Chapter 15 below.
6.3.3.2 Packaging waste recovery notes (&PRNs*)
Again, an outline of the role of PRNs has been given above at para. 1.4.2.1(2). There
is a more detailed discussion in Chapter 19.
6.3.3.3 Waste Recycling Credits Scheme
A note on the WRCS has been given at para. 1.4.2.1(3) above. It is not considered
further in this study.
6.3.3.4 Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (&the LATS*)
The Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (&the LATS*), which is now due to begin in
186 See para. 6.3.2.1 above.
187 S.I. 1996 No. 972.
188 Council Regulation EEC/259/93, (1993) OJ L30 1. See para. 12.2.5.1(4) below.
189 S.I. 1994 No. 1137.
190 See paras 1.4.2.1(4) above and 20.7 and 21.3.2 below.
191 See D.N. Pocklington and R.E. Pocklington, &The United Kingdom Landfill Tax
每 Externalities and External Influences*, [1998] JPL 529每545; Patricia Park, &An
Evaluation of the Landfill Tax Two Years on*, [2000] JPL 3每13; and Inger Brisson and
Jane Powell, &The UK Landfill Tax*, in Environmental Policy: Objectives, Instruments
and Implementation, ed. by Dieter Helm (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000),
pp. 260每80.
144 Environmental Taxation Law
April 2005 in England and Wales,192 is discussed in para. 20.7 below. There is again
an outline of the LATS in para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
6.3.3.5 The Waste Performance Reward Grant
In January 2004, Defra issued a consultation paper on the introduction, in 2005/2006,
of a Waste Management Performance Reward Grant (&WPRG*), which is intended to
provide incentives for local authorities to improve their recycling levels.193
6.4 Control of air and atmospheric pollution
6.4.1 The international and European Union background
Issues of air and atmospheric pollution are nothing if not transboundary in their scope.
The measures discussed in this part of the chapter should therefore be understood
within the public international and Community contexts discussed in Chapters 8 and
12 below.
6.4.2 Environmental regulation
If the IPC and IPPC regimes are put to one side,194 then, with two main exceptions,195
and unlike with waste management, the instruments for carrying into effect the UK*s
climate change programme196 are primarily economic ones. That programme is
based on the UK*s commitment under the Kyoto Protocol to reduce its 1990 levels of
all greenhouse gases by 12.5 per cent by 2010.197
The two main exceptions to the predominance of economic instruments in
the area are the command and control regimes for regulating emissions contained
in the Clean Air Act 1993 and the mechanism for ensuring air quality contained in
Part IV of the Environment Act 1995. The former empowers local authorities198
to bring criminal proceedings in respect of a range of prohibited activities involving
the emission of smoke, dust and grit.199 The latter places a duty on the Secretary of
192 But not in Wales and Scotland, where the scheme began on 1 October 2004 (see 358
ENDS Report (2004) 44每45).
193 See Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Consultation Paper on the
Design of the Waste Performance Reward Grant, 7 January 2004 (available from www.
defra.gov.uk).
194 See paras 6.2.2 and 6.2.3 above.
195 Note should also be taken of the statutory nuisance provisions to be found in the
Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part III (see Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., Ch. 9).
196 See Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, Climate Change: the UK
Programme, 2000 (Cm 4913, 2000).
197 See Chapter 8 below.
198 See para. 4.2.3 above.
199 See, for example, ss.1 (prohibition of dark smoke from chimneys), 2 (prohibition of dark
smoke from industrial premises), 14 (height of chimneys for furnaces) and 15 (applications
Regulatory Context 145
State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs200 to prepare, publish and keep under
review a National Air Quality Strategy.201
Setting aside the measures to which reference has just been made, the government*s
climate change policy rests on the combination of four economic instruments:202
1 climate change levy;
2 the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (&the UK ETS*);
3 the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (&the EU ETS*); and
4 the Renewables Obligation (&the RO*).
Each of these have been outlined at the beginning of the study203 and are discussed
,in detail in the rest of the book.204 Both climate change levy and the EU ETS rely
heavily on IPPC concepts.
6.4.3 Energy regulation
6.4.3.1 Electricity
(1) Overview
The electricity supply industry205 in England and Wales206 is regulated by the
Electricity Act 1989, which has been substantially amended by the Utilities Act
2000.207 Besides creating the new regulator, Ofgem,208 Utilities Act 2000 made
the distribution of electricity a separate licensable activity from transmission,209
abolished the concept of public electricity suppliers,210 reformulated the relevant
duties of the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry211 and introduced standard
conditions for the grant of licences in the industry.
for approval of height of chimneys for furnaces). See the discussion of the Clean Air Act
1993 in Wolf and Stanley, op. cit., pp. 335每42.
200 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
201 See Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, Air Quality Strategy for
England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, 2000 (Cm 4548, 2000).
202 See Benjamin J. Richardson and Kiri L. Chanwai, &Taxing and trading in corporate energy
activities: pioneering UK reforms to address climate change*, (2003) 14(1) ICCLR
18每27.
203 See para. 1.4.2.2 above.
204 See Chapter 14 below (climate change levy); Chapter 20 (the UK ETS); Chapter 28 (the
EU ETS); and paras 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above and 21.5 below (the RO).
205 The use of this term is common but, properly speaking, supply is only one of four elements
in the sector (see para. 2.4.1 above).
206 Ibid. See also Tudway, op. cit., Ch. 25.
207 Unless otherwise indicated, all references to the Electricity Act 1989 are to the Act as
amended by the 2000 Act. See Roggenkamp et al., op. cit., paras 13.177每13.240.
208 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
209 Both terms are defined in Electricity Act 1989, s.4(4). See also para. 2.4.1 above.
210 Defined in Electricity Act 1989, s.6(9), as originally enacted, as &# any person who is
authorised by a licence # to supply electricity # to premises in his authorised area*.
211 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
146 Environmental Taxation Law
The Electricity Act 1989 is divided into three parts: Part I creates, under the
supervision of Ofgem, a regulatory structure for the electricity supply industry. By
s.4(1), the generation, transmission, distribution or supply of electricity is unlawful
unless the activity in question is authorised by an appropriate licence.212 This general
rule is, however, subject to the power given by s.5 to the Secretary of State for Trade
and Industry213 to create exemptions from the rule by secondary legislation. Part II
of the Act deals with the industry*s structure and the privatisation of the parts which
make it up; and Part III provides for measures to ensure the security of electricity
installations, for dealing with civil emergencies and for making government loans in
relation to matters of public security (for example, nuclear reprocessing). In Part I,
ss.32每3, as amended, contain measures relating to the promotion of renewable
sources of energy.214
Further changes to the regulation of the electricity industry are authorised by the
Energy Act 2004, passed on 22 July 2004.215 These will be in three main areas: the
creation of a new body to ensure the decommissioning and clean-up of public sector
civil nuclear sites; the promotion of renewable energy sources; and the creation of a
single wholesale electricity market for Great Britain, to be called &BETTA*, which,
although it will replace NETA,216 will be based upon the latter, which itself replaced
the Electricity Pool217 as recently as 2001.
The Electricity Act 1989, as amended by Utilities Act 2000, applies both to England
and Wales and to Scotland.218 In Northern Ireland, the relevant legislation is contained
in the Electricity (Northern Ireland) Order 1992,219 as amended by the Energy
(Northern Ireland) Order 2003.220 The New Electricity Trading Arrangements did not
apply to Scotland or Northern Ireland. The introduction of BETTA under the Energy
Act 2004 will, as mentioned above, extend to Scotland but not to Northern Ireland.
(2) Renewable energy sources
(a) Renewables Obligation (&RO*)
Section 32, Electricity Act 1989, as amended by Utilities Act 2000, empowers the
Secretary of State to impose by order the so-called &Renewables Obligation* (&the
RO*) on designated electricity suppliers.221 The RO is considered in more detail
212 The licences held by particular companies in the industry are usefully listed in Utility Week,
The Electricity Supply Handbook 2004, 57th edn (Sutton: Reed Business Information,
2004).
213 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
214 See para. 6.4.3.1(2) below.
215 There had been thought to be some danger of the Bill being lost (see Taylor, Financial
Times, 1 April 2004, p. 4).
216 See para. 2.4.1 above.
217 As described by Tudway, op. cit., &[t]he Pool mechanism was a contractual arrangement
between parties to the Pooling and Settlement Agreement, which set wholesale buying
and selling prices for electricity* (ibid., para. 25每49).
218 Electricity Act 1989, s.113(3).
219 S.I. 1992 No. 231 (N.I. 1).
220 S.I. 2003 No. 419 (N.I. 6).
221 Electricity Act 1989, s.32(1).
Regulatory Context 147
later in the study222 but, since the nature of the mechanisms introduced by it fall for
consideration in the next chapter,223 it will be useful to include here a brief discussion
of the primary legislation which creates the legislative framework for the secondary
legislation to be discussed later. By s.32(3), the RO is that:
# the designated electricity supplier must, before a specified day (or before each of several
specified days, or before a day specified in each year), produce to [the Gas and Electricity
Markets Authority]224 evidence of a specified kind showing 每
(a) that it has supplied to customers in Great Britain during a specified period such amount
of electricity generated by using renewable sources as is specified in relation to such a
supplier; or
(b) that another electricity supplier has done so (or that two or more others have done so);
or
(c) that, between them, they have done so.
For the purposes of s.32, renewable sources are defined as sources of energy other
than nuclear fuel or fossil fuel but including waste of which &not more than a specified
proportion is waste which is, or is derived from, fossil fuel*.225
Section 32B(1) stipulates that an order under s.32 may provide for Ofgem226
to issue from time to time a so-called &Green Certificate*227 to the operator of a
generating station or to an electricity supplier. The production by the supplier of a
Green Certificate (or &ROC*) to Ofgem is &sufficient evidence* of the facts certified
for the purposes of s.32(3) above.228 A Green Certificate certifies two matters:
(a) that the generating station or, in the case of a certificate issued to an electricity supplier,
a generating station specified in the certificate, has generated from renewable sources
the amount of electricity stated in the certificate; and
(b) that it has been supplied to customers in Great Britain (or the part of Great Britain
stated in the certificate).
In practice, it has been inferred from s.32(3)(b) above that, once issued, Green
Certificates can be traded between suppliers, since that subsection seems to assume
that a supplier can comply with the RO by producing Green Certificates originally
issued to another supplier.229
222 See para. 21.5 below.
223 See para. 7.3.1 below.
224 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
225 Electricity Act 1989, s.32(8).
226 The section actually refers to &the Authority*, that is, to the Gas and Electricity Markets
Authority (&GEMA*), whose functions are exercised through Ofgem. See para. 4.2.1.3
above.
227 This is the term used in the heading to s.32B but they are also known as Renewables
Obligation Certificates (&ROCs*). That section has been amended by Energy Act 2004,
s.116.
228 Electricity Act 1989, s.32B(3).
229 See para. 21.5 below.
148 Environmental Taxation Law
Section 32C states that an order under s.32 may provide that, instead of producing
a Green Certificate/Green Certificates, an electricity supplier may meet its RO,
whether in whole or in part, by making a payment to Ofgem.230 This power is then
backed up by provisions on fixing the amount of the payment,231 as well as a rule on
the application of the revenue generated under s.32C. The rule as to the application
of the revenue thereby received is contained in s.32(3), which provides that Ofgem
&must pay the amounts received to electricity suppliers in accordance with a system
of allocation specified in the order*. The order in due course made by the Secretary
of State under Electricity Act, ss.32每2C, is the Renewables Obligation Order 2002
(&ROO 2002*),232 which came into force on 1 April 2002.233
Section 32A(1)(b) states that an order under s.32 may make general provisions
in relation to the RO imposed by the order and, in particular, may specify that only
electricity generated using certain types of renewable source is to count towards
discharging the RO. In ROO 2002, this leads to the creation of the concept of
&eligible renewable sources*,234 which is made to exclude most hydro generating
stations commissioned before April 2002.235 The reasons for this exclusion, as well
as the other main provisions of ROO 2002 are discussed in detail in a subsequent
chapter.236
The provisions just described apply in England and Wales. In Scotland, the powers
conferred by Electricity Act 1989, ss.32每2C, are exercisable by the Scottish Ministers.
The Renewables Obligation (Scotland) Order 2002237 was made in exercise of these
powers and came into force on 1 April 2002. In Northern Ireland, the Department of
Enterprise, Trade and Investment was given power to impose an RO by the Energy
(Northern Ireland) Order 2003.238 Like the system for England and Wales, each of
the Scotland and Northern Ireland systems envisage the trading of Green Certificates
(in Scotland called &SROCs* and in Northern Ireland called &NIROCs*).
The combination of the RO and Green Certificates together replace the previous
combination of Non-Fossil Fuel Orders (&NFFOs*) and fossil fuel levy (&FFL*).239
Since some further reference will be made to the nature and purpose both of NFFOs
and of FFL,240 it may be useful briefly to describe the earlier instruments here,
notwithstanding their subsequent abolition.241
230 Electricity Act 1989, s.32C(1), replaced in part by Energy Act 2004, s.115(2).
231 Ibid., s.32C(2), replaced in part by Energy Act 2004, s.115(3).
232 S.I. 2002, No. 914 (as amended by the Renewables Obligation (Amendment) Order 2004,
S.I. 2004 No. 924).
233 S.I. 2002, No. 914, Art. 1(1).
234 Ibid., Art. 8(1).
235 Ibid., Art. 8(2).
236 See para. 21.5 below. See also para. 12.2.6.3(2) below.
237 S.S.I. 2002 No. 163.
238 S.I. 2003 No. 419 (N.I. 6).
239 See Utilities Act 2000, s.66, and Sched. 8.
240 See paras 21.4.4n and 21.6.1 below.
241 The writers are indebted for this explanation to the valuable contemporary annotations
to the Electricity Act 1989 by Patrick McAuslan and John F. McEldowney in [1989] 2
CLSA, pp. 29每52每29每54.
Regulatory Context 149
Section 32, Electricity Act 1989, as originally enacted, empowered the Secretary
of State to order public electricity suppliers242 每 that is, by the making of a NFFO
每 to ensure that specified proportions of their electricity supplies were acquired
from non-fossil fuel generators. Such generators could include, under the original
provisions, not only water, wind and solar generators,243 but also nuclear ones.244
Between 1990 and 1998, five NFFOs were made,245 each one being followed by a
tendering process for electricity generation contracts in each category specified in
the relevant NFFO.246 Only the earliest of the NFFOs (the so-called &NFFO 1*)247
included nuclear generators within the categories of non-fossil fuel generators.
The shift is perhaps explained by a greater emphasis originally being placed upon
diversity (that is, security) of supply rather than upon environmental concerns as
such.248
Fossil fuel levy was imposed under Electricity Act 1989 to subsidise the additional
costs on suppliers which NFFOs created, since it was foreseen that non-fossil fuelgenerated
electricity would tend to be more expensive than electricity generated at
fossil-fuel-powered stations. The now-repealed s.33, Electricity Act 1989, accordingly
empowered the Secretary of State, by regulations, to impose FFL both on suppliers
who were subject to an NFFO and also on other persons who were licensed to
supply electricity within the authorised areas249 of such suppliers.250 Although FFL,
which was payable each month to the Director General of Electricity Supply,251 was
charged on suppliers, the levy was actually borne by electricity consumers, since it
242 A term which is now superseded (see para. 6.4.3.1(1)n above).
243 See Electricity Act 1989, s.32(9) (as originally enacted).
244 This may be gathered from the wording of Electricity Act 1989, ss.32(8) and 32(9) (as
originally enacted).
245 That is, Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1990, S.I. 1990
No. 263 (as amended by S.I. 1990 No. 494) and Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources)
(England and Wales) (No. 2) Order 1990, S.I. 1990 No. 1859 (together referred to as
&NFFO 1*); Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1991, S.I.
1991 No. 2490 (&NFFO 2*); Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales)
Order 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 3259 (&NFFO 3*); Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources)
(England and Wales) Order 1997, S.I. 1997 No. 248 (&NFFO 4*); and Electricity (Non-
Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1998, S.I. 1998 No. 2353 (&NFFO 5*).
Contracts under NFFOs 1 and 2 have now terminated; those under NFFOs 3每5 will
continue, however, the last contract being due to terminate in 2018. Contracts under
NFFOs 3每5 are in fact replacement contracts, the originals having terminated when NETA
commenced (see Tudway, op. cit., para. 25每54).
246 See, for example, 284 ENDS Report (1998) for the schemes which were awarded contracts
under NFFO 5.
247 That is, Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales) Order 1990, S.I. 1990
No. 263 (as amended) and Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (England and Wales)
(No. 2) Order 1990, S.I. 1990 No. 1859.
248 See McAuslan and McEldowney, op. cit., pp. 29每50每29每51 (&General Note*).
249 A superseded concept. See Electricity Act 1989, s.6(9) (as originally enacted).
250 See Electricity Act 1989, s.33(1)(a) (as originally enacted). See also the Fossil Fuel Levy
Act 1998.
251 An office which is now abolished (see Utilities Act 2000, s.1(3), and para. 4.2.1.3
above).
150 Environmental Taxation Law
was incorporated in their electricity bills. After deduction of administrative expenses,
the revenue from the levy was distributed each month to public electricity suppliers
in accordance with the regulations made under s.33, Electricity Act 1989.252 Fossil
fuel levy therefore operated as a mechanism for supporting non-fossil fuel-generated
electricity.253
In parallel with the arrangements for England and Wales, three NFFOs were made
for Scotland,254 prior to their replacement, with appropriate savings, by ROO 2002.
Confusingly, the three orders were together known as the &Scottish Renewables
Obligation* (or &SRO*).255 As in the UK, FFL had been introduced to compensate the
two companies licensed to generate, transmit, distribute and supply electricity in the
post-privatisation structure.256 Section 66, Utilities Act 2000, which had abolished
FFL in England and Wales, did the same for Scotland.257 In Northern Ireland, prior
to March 1, 2004,258 Northern Ireland Electricity plc was obliged to secure quantities
of generation capacity from renewable energy sources under Art. 35 of the Electricity
(Northern Ireland) Order 1992.259 The concomitant Northern Ireland FFL260 was
abolished by Art. 58 of the Energy (Northern Ireland) Order 2003.
(b) Renewable energy guarantees of origin (&REGOs*)
The Electricity (Guarantees of Origin of Electricity Produced from Renewable
Energy Sources) Regulations 2003 are designed to transpose into the law of
England and Wales and of Scotland261 the provisions of Art. 5 of the Renewables
Directive.262 Article 5 imposes an obligation on Member States to ensure that the
origin of electricity produced from renewable energy sources can be guaranteed as
such by creating systems for granting guarantees of origin.
252 See the Fossil Fuel Levy Regulations 1990, S.I. 1990 No. 266, reg. 28.
253 Note that Utilities Act 2000, s.67, enables provision to be made for FFL to be continued in
relation to the outstanding contracts entered into under NFFOs (see the Fossil Fuel Levy
(Amendment) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1200 and other post-2000 S.I.s dealing
with FFL).
254 That is, the Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order 1994, S.I. 1994 No.
3275 (S. 190); Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order 1997, S.I. 1997 No.
799 (S. 76); and Electricity (Non-Fossil Fuel Sources) (Scotland) Order 1999, S.I. 1999
No. 439 (S. 24).
255 See Tudway, op. cit., para. 25每08.
256 That is, Scottish Power plc and Scottish and Southern Electricity plc.
257 Utilities Act 2000 applying, as it does, to England and Wales and Scotland but not to
Northern Ireland.
258 See the Energy (2003 Order) (Commencement No. 2) Order (Northern Ireland) 2004, S.R.
2004 No. 71 (C. 1), Art. 2 and Sched.
259 S.I. 1992 No. 231 (N.I. 1). The 2003 Electricity Order does, however, have saving powers
for existing contracts entered into under the pre-existing powers.
260 Which had been introduced by Art. 36, S.I. 1992 No. 231.
261 See S.I. 2003 No. 2562, reg. 1(2). The equivalent provision for Northern Ireland is
the Electricity (Guarantees of Origin of Electricity Produced from Renewable Energy
Sources) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003, S.R. 2003 No. 470.
262 That is, European Parliament and Council Directive 2001/77/EC (see para. 12.2.6.3
below).
Regulatory Context 151
The key provision of the Regulations is to be found in reg. 3, which provides for
guarantees of origin, &certifying that the electricity in respect of which the certificate
is issued was electricity produced from renewable energy sources*,263 to be issued by
Ofgem.264 Each renewable energy guarantee of origin (&REGO*) is issued in respect
of one kilowatt hour of electricity produced from renewable energy sources.265 The
general rule, contained in reg. 4(1), is that the only person who may request Ofgem
to issue a REGO is the producer of the electricity.266 However, where electricity
has been purchased under an arrangement originally made under an NFFO,267 the
only person who may request the issue of a REGO is generally the relevant NFFO
purchaser.268 Moreover, in order to issue a REGO under reg. 4, Ofgem must be
satisfied that the electricity covered by the request was produced from renewable
resources.269 Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin may be transferred to persons
other than the original maker of the request by amendment to an electronic register
of REGOs to be maintained by Ofgem.270 In circumstances such that access to plants
is denied to, or information is withheld from, the Authority, then it may refuse to
issue REGOs271 and it may also revoke them in certain circumstances.272 Finally,
reg. 9 contains provisions relating to the recognition and non-recognition of REGOs
issued in Northern Ireland and other EU Member States. This reflects the stated aim
of the Renewables Directive as being to promote an increase in the contribution of
renewable energy sources to the production of electricity in the internal market.273
No amendment is made by the Regulations either to ROO 2002274 or to the Climate
Change Levy (General) Regulations 2001.275 It would therefore appear that REGOs
neither provide a means of complying with the RO276 nor do they provide entitlement
to exemption from climate change levy.277
263 S.I. 2003 No. 2562, reg. 2(1).
264 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
265 S.I. 2003 No. 2562, reg. 6(3). Renewable energy sources are defined as &# renewable
non-fossil energy sources, that is, wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydropower,
biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogases* (see S.I. 2003 No. 2562,
reg. 2(1)).
266 S.I. 2003 No. 2562, reg. 4(1)(b).
267 See para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above.
268 S.I. 2003 No. 2562, reg. 4(1)(a). In Scotland, the reference is to the relevant SRO purchaser
(see para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above).
269 See S.I. 2003 No 2562, reg. 6(1).
270 Ibid., reg. 7 and Sched. 2.
271 Ibid., reg. 5.
272 Ibid., reg. 8.
273 See para. 12.2.6.3(2) below.
274 See para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above.
275 S.I. 2001 No. 838. See paras 14.1每14.3 below.
276 See para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above.
277 See para. 14.4 below.
152 Environmental Taxation Law
(3) Other aspects of electricity regulation
In addition to the regulatory framework discussed above, the UK*s electricity supply
industry is subject to at least four other regulatory regimes: competition law, planning
law, IPC278 and IPPC.279
Competition in the electricity supply industry is regulated both by general UK
competition law and by the specific licensing provisions applicable to the electricity
supply industry discussed above.280 The general provisions are exercisable in relation
to the industry concurrently, but subject to conditions,281 by the Director General of
Fair Trading and by Ofgem.282 These general provisions include the power under
the Fair Trading Act 1973, Part III, to take proceedings in relation to courses of
conduct detrimental to consumers;283 the power to refer monopoly situations to the
Competition Commission;284 and the power to take action in relation to courses of
conduct restricting, distorting or preventing competition.285
So far as planning law is concerned,286 Electricity Act 1989, ss.36 and 37 impose
special conditions on the construction of certain power stations and overhead lines.287
Section 36 currently provides that a generating station with a capacity greater than
50 MW must not be constructed, extended or operated, except in accordance with
a consent granted by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry.288 Section
37 likewise provides that, subject to certain de minimis exceptions, the consent
of the Secretary of State is likewise required for an overhead line to be installed
or kept installed. Although the power under s.36 has been used to impose the
moratorium on the construction of gas-fired power stations,289 both s.36 and s.37
are coming under increasing scrutiny as presenting obstacles to the development of
renewables generators, specifically wind farms. Under Electricity Act 1989, Sched.
8, notice of applications for consent under ss.36 and 37 must be served on the
local planning authority. If the planning authority objects, then a public inquiry
278 See para. 6.2.2 above.
279 See para. 6.2.3 above.
280 See para. 6.4.3.1(1) above.
281 See Electricity Act 1989, ss.43(4)每43(6A).
282 Ibid., s.43.
283 Ibid., s.43(1).
284 Ibid., s.43(2).
285 Ibid., s.43(3).
286 These issues are well discussed in John Grady, &Climate Change and Great Britain*s
Electricity Generation Policy*, [2003] IELTR 105每15, p. 114. See also Jonathan Evans,
&The Implications of the United Kingdom*s Long-Term Energy Policy for its Renewables
Market*, [2003] IELTR 233每8. It should be noted also that, on 13 May 2004, the Planning
and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004, with the avowed purpose of &speeding up the
planning system*, received the Royal Assent, although it is to be brought into effect in
ongoing stages.
287 Other provisions relate to the fuelling of power stations, compulsory acquisition of land
and street works (see the outline in Tudway, op. cit., paras 25每75每25每77). There are also
some relatively little-noted provisions in Electricity Act 1989, s.38 and Sched. 9 on the
preservation of amenity and fisheries.
288 General planning law applies to generating stations with a capacity of less than 50 MW.
289 See Grady, op. cit., p. 114. See also para. 21.4.3 below.
Regulatory Context 153
must be held.290 In relation to objections from persons other than local planning
authorities, the Secretary of State may order the holding of a public inquiry if he
thinks it appropriate to do so.291 Objections have been raised by the Ministry of
Defence, alleging the impact of wind turbines on radar signals and dangers from
the turbines to low-flying aircraft,292 and by the Royal Society for the Protection
of Birds (&the RSPB*),293 given that the proposed locations of the wind farms are
nearly all in areas of international importance for birds.294 Wind farms also give rise
to concerns over s.37, given that such installations are generally located in remote
areas and that the cost of installing overhead wires is a fraction of that of laying wires
underground.
More generally, the planning of overhead electricity cables as well as of nuclear
power stations, as well as nuclear fuel installations, is subject to the EIA regime
discussed above.295 There have traditionally been few statutory provisions specifically
relating to the decommissioning of nuclear power stations, the matter usually having
been dealt with in site licences granted under the Nuclear Installations Act 1965. The
provisions of Part 1 of the Energy Act 2004 creates a new statutory decommissioning
framework. This is one of a number of reforms to the sector to which it is necessary
to refer next.
Finally, it should, of course be noted that electricity generation is a combustion
activity within the scope of the IPPC regime.296 Likewise, combustion processes are
caught by IPC.297
(4) Regulatory reform in the electricity sector
There are, at the time of writing, two sets of further reforms at various stages of
development: those in the recently passed Energy Act 2004 and, insofar as they are
not dealt with in that Act, certain other measures that are designed to transpose into
UK law the provisions of the Electricity Acceleration Directive (the &EAD*).298 It is
290 See Electricity Act 1989, Sched. 8, para. 2(2).
291 Ibid., Sched. 8, para. 3(2).
292 See, for example, Taylor, Financial Times, 1 March 2004, p. 4. But see the case for the
Ministry of Defence presented in the letter from Williams, Financial Times, 5 March
2004, p. 18.
293 See www.rspb.org.uk.
294 See 350 ENDS Report (2004) 10每11. The ENDS correspondent reports that the RSPB
objected to 27 wind farms between 1998 and 2003. It is also reported that the RSPB has
confirmed its opposition to the 1,000MW London Array, proposed by Shell and Powergen,
on the basis that the Thames Estuary &supports large numbers of wintering red-throated
divers* (ibid.).
295 See para. 6.2.4 above.
296 See Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000
No. 1973, Sched. 1, Section 1.1. See para. 6.2.3 above.
297 See the Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations
1991, S.I. 1991 No. 472, Sched. 1, Ch. 1.
298 European Parliament and Council Directive 2003/54/EC, (2003) OJ L176 37. The
provisions of the EAD are discussed in detail in a subsequent chapter (see paras 12.2.6.3(1)
and 12.2.6.3(2) below).
154 Environmental Taxation Law
the DTI*s intention to implement the latter by a mixture of statutory instrument under
European Communities Act 1972, s.2(2) and other administrative action.299
The Energy Act 2004 affects the electricity sector in three main areas.300 First, it
provides for the establishment of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (&NDA*),
for the creation of a new Civil Nuclear Police Authority and for the authorisation of
government expenditure in relation to the restructuring of British Energy.301 Next,
the Act provides for a number of matters in relation to renewables generation. These
provisions include measures relating to the development of offshore renewable
energy sources in accordance with the rights conferred on the UK under the 1982
UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (&the UNCLOS*)302 as well as provisions for
the mutual recognition of NIROCs.303
Finally, the Energy Act 2004 establishes the basis for the creation of a single
wholesale electricity market for the whole of Great Britain (that is, England and Wales
and Scotland but not Northern Ireland), to be called the British Electricity Trading
and Transmission Arrangements (&BETTA*), based on NETA;304 for a new licensing
system applicable to electricity interconnectors, to bring them under the authority
of Ofgem; and for the Secretary of State to have the power to appoint additional
inspectors in relation to inquiries under Electricity Act 1989, ss.36 and 37.305 The new
licensing system reflects the fact that there has hitherto been no relevant legislation in
Great Britain on the regulation and exemption of interconnectors.
The elements of the EAD which are not covered by the Energy Act 2004 provisions
are, as mentioned above, to be implemented by a combination of statutory instrument
and administrative action. They relate to fuel disclosure,306 dispute settlement and
reporting requirements.307
6.4.3.2 Gas
The counterpart of the Electricity Act 1989 in the context of the gas industry is the
Gas Act 1986.308 Like the 1989 Act, the 1986 Act has, however, been extensively
299 For a detailed review of the changes, see Department of Trade and Industry, Consultation:
Implementation of EU Directive 2003/54 Concerning Common Rules for the Internal
Market in Electricity, February 2, 2004 (available from www.dti.gov.uk/energy).
300 Within these broad heads are some interesting sub-areas, for example, a special insolvency
regime for energy licensees in Chapter 3 of Part 3, following the coal power station
insolvency debacle referred to in para. 21.4.2 below.
301 See Energy Act 2004, Part 1. For the background, see paras 2.4.1 above and 21.4.3
below.
302 See para. 8.3.2 below.
303 Energy Act 2004, Part 2. For NIROCs, see para. 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above.
304 The provisions relating to BETTA originally appeared, in January 2003, in a draft
Electricity (Trading and Transmission) Bill.
305 Energy Act 2004, Part 3.
306 That is, a requirement for electricity suppliers to specify their fuel mix to customers (see
para. 12.2.6.3(1) below).
307 See Department of Trade and Industry, op. cit., para. 1.8, where the changes are
summarised.
308 See Roggenkamp et al., op. cit., paras 13.114每13.166.
Regulatory Context 155
amended by subsequent legislation (in this case, by the Gas Act 1995, as well as by
the Utilities Act 2000). However, the 1986 Act did not consolidate the whole of the
relevant legislation and parts of the Gas Act 1965, as well as the Energy Act 1976
remain in force.309
The gas industry*s regulator has, since the Utilities Act 2000, been Ofgem,310 the
2000 Act having brought the two industries into line with each other in this respect.
It should be noted, however, that, generally speaking, the liberalisation of the gas
industry in Great Britain has preceded that of electricity supply. Although the 2000
Act substituted the new regulator and redefined the duties of the Secretary of State,311
many of the most important liberalisation measures had already been taken in the
Gas Act 1995.
The Gas Act 1986, as amended, is divided into three Parts, only the first of which
is relevant in the present context. This Part contains elements of the regulatory
structure for the industry, which is placed under Ofgem*s supervision. By s.5, the
transportation,312 supply313 or shipment314 of gas is unlawful without the appropriate
licence. However, the storage of gas is still regulated by the Gas Act 1965, whilst
exploration for gas and gas production are subject to their own licensing regime.315
The requirement for a licence for each of transportation, supply and shipment is, as
for electricity, subject to the Secretary of State*s power to grant exemptions under
s.6A, Gas Act 1986. Schedule 2B, which is incorporated by s.8B, Gas Act 1986,
contains the Gas Code, which relates to the rights and obligations of licence holders
and consumers and related matters.
The DTI has identified a number of areas in which legislative action is required
in order for UK law to comply with the provisions of the Gas Acceleration
Directive (the &GAD*).316 These include the need for a new licensing system for
gas interconnectors, which appears in the Energy Act 2004, as well as a regulated
TPA system and exemptions for LNG import terminals and storage facilities, to be
effected by modifying the 1986 Act and the Petroleum Act 1998.
The legislation discussed above applies both to England and Wales and to Scotland.317
The gas industry in Northern Ireland is regulated by the provisions of the Gas (Northern
Ireland) Order 1996318 and the Energy (Northern Ireland) Order 2003.319
309 Unlike gas levy, which was provided for by the Gas Levy Act 1981 and abolished by
Finance Act 1998, s.153(2), for 1998每1999 onwards. The levy financed certain aspects of
the denationalisation arrangements introduced by the Gas Act 1986 (see Tudway, op. cit.,
para. 23每43).
310 Utilities Act 2000, s.1.
311 Gas Act 1986, s.4AA.
312 Ibid., s.5(1)(a).
313 Ibid., s.5(1)(b).
314 Ibid., s.5(1)(c).
315 See, for example, Tudway, op. cit., Ch. 23.
316 European Parliament and Council Directive 2003/55/EC, (2003) OJ L176 57. See paras
12.2.6.3(1) and 12.2.6.3(2) below.
317 Gas Act 1995, s.18(4).
318 S.I. 1996 No. 275 (N.I. 2).
319 S.I. 2003 No. 419 (N.I. 6).
156 Environmental Taxation Law
Very similar points apply in relation to competition law issues as obtain in relation
to electricity supply.320 Thus, for instance, s.36A, Gas Act 1986 tracks very closely
s.43 of the Electricity Act 1989 and, likewise, s.41E of the 1986 Act (which deals
with references to the Competition Commission) tracks the wording of s.56C of the
Electricity Act 1989.
The planning of installations, whether on- or offshore for the extraction of natural
gas, of installations for its storage and of gas pipelines is subject to the EIA regime
discussed above.321 Gasification and associated processes are also, of course, subject
to the IPC322 and IPPC regimes.323 Both off- and onshore oil and gas exploration and
production are subject to the environmental controls outlined in the next para. below.
The decommissioning of offshore oil and gas installations is covered by Part I of the
Petroleum Act 1987.
6.4.3.3 Oil
Most of the regulatory framework for the oil industry is contained in the Petroleum
Act 1998 and in delegated legislation made thereunder by the Secretary of State for
Trade and Industry.324
However, clean air legislation confers powers on the Secretary of State for
Transport325 to regulate the composition and content of motor fuels326 and health
and safety at work legislation confers powers on the same Minister in relation to the
transport and storage of petroleum.327
The five Parts of the Petroleum Act 1998 include provisions relating to the ownership
of petroleum328 reserves, the grant of licences to search, bore for and get petroleum,329
the construction and use of submarine pipelines330 and the abandonment of offshore
installations.331 Section 2 of the Act provides that:
320 See para. 6.4.3.2(3) above.
321 See para. 6.2.4 above.
322 See the Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations
1991, S.I. 1991 No. 472, Sched. 1, Ch. 1.
323 See the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, Sched.
1, Section 1.2. See para. 6.2.3 above.
324 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above. See Roggenkamp et al., op. cit., paras 13.25每13.94. The
discussion in the text is by reference to offshore (seaward) oil and gas only. For a useful
discussion of the regulation of the onshore (landward) industry, see Hughes, op. cit.,
pp. 402每4.
325 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
326 See Clean Air Act 1993, ss.30(1), 30(3), 32(1) and 63(1).
327 See Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, ss.15, 43, 82 and Sched. 3.
328 The definition of petroleum in Petroleum Act 1998, s.1, emphasises the artificiality of
dealing with it separately from natural gas (see para. 2.4.2 above). So defined, it &includes
any mineral oil or relative hydrocarbon and natural gas existing in its natural condition
in strata; but does not include coal or bituminous shales or other stratified deposits from
which oil can be extracted by destructive distillation*.
329 Petroleum Act 1998, Part I.
330 Ibid., Part III.
331 Ibid., Part IV.
Regulatory Context 157
[H]er Majesty has the exclusive right of searching and boring for and getting petroleum
# (including petroleum in Crown Land)332 which for the time being exists in its natural
condition in strata in Great Britain or beneath the territorial sea adjacent to the United
Kingdom.
Subject to petroleum rights being vested in Her Majesty the Queen in this way, the
Secretary of State for Trade and Industry may grant licences &to such persons as
he thinks fit* to &search and bore for and get [the] petroleum* covered by the Act.
Section 4 enjoins the Secretary of State to make regulations relating to applications
for licences, including the model clauses to be incorporated in such licences.333 The
construction and use of submarine pipelines is similarly restricted, s.14 requiring that
any company334 wishing to construct or use a pipeline335 in, under or over the UK*s
territorial sea or continental shelf336 may do so only with the written authorisation
of the Secretary of State.
Oil and gas exploration and production is subject to its own environmental control
regime. Besides oil pollution offences such as that of discharging oil or an oily
mixture into UK territorial waters (which can be committed wherever the pipeline in
question is located),337 environmental protection provisions are incorporated in the
exploration and development licences granted under s.4.338
The planning of oil refineries, of installations for the extraction of petroleum and of
oil pipelines is subject to the EIA regime discussed above.339 Refining mineral oils
and its associated activities are subject to the IPC340 and IPPC regimes.341
The powers delegated as above to the Secretary of State for Transport have recently
been exercised in order to ensure UK law*s compliance with standards contained
in Community law.342 Thus the lead and sulphur content of fuels, as well as their
transport and storage, is regulated by a number of statutory instruments,343 each of
which transpose Directives in these areas.
To these powers, Energy Act 2004, s.124 has added an enabling power for the
Secretary of State to impose renewable transport fuel obligations on particular
332 Defined in Petroleum Act 1998, s.2(3).
333 Petroleum Act 1998, s.4(1)(e). See the Petroleum Licensing (Exploration and Production)
(Seaward and Landward Areas) Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004 No. 352.
334 Authorisations may not be issued to individuals! (See Petroleum Act 1998, s.15(2).)
335 Defined in ibid., s.26.
336 See Continental Shelf Act 1964, s.1(7).
337 See Prevention of Oil Pollution Act 1971, s.2.
338 See the Petroleum Licensing (Exploration and Production) (Seaward and Landward
Areas) Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004 No. 352.
339 See para. 6.2.4 above.
340 See the Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations
1991, S.I. 1991 No. 472, Sched. 1, Ch. 1.
341 See Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I. 2000
No. 1973, Sched. 1, Section 1.2. See para. 6.2.3 above.
342 See para. 12.2.6.3(5) below.
343 See the Motor Fuel (Composition and Content) Regulations 1999, S.I. 1999 No. 3107;
the Motor Fuel (Composition and Content) (Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003
No. 3078; and the Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road Regulations 1996, S.I. 1996
No. 2095.
158 Environmental Taxation Law
types of transport fuel supplier. Unusually, such Orders have to be approved by an
affirmative vote in the UK Parliament.
6.4.3.4 Coal
Most of the legislation regulating the coal industry dates from the denationalisation
of the industry in the mid-1990s. The main statute is the Coal Industry Act 1994,
which sets out a basic regulatory framework, although this should be read in the
context of the general law of town and country planning.344
The 1994 Act establishes the Coal Authority as the industry*s regulatory body,345
provides for the licensing of coal-mining operations,346 sets out the rights and
obligations of coal mine operators347 and contains various supplementary provisions
relating to matters such as access to information.348 The central idea in the 1994
Act is that, the interests of the British Coal Corporation349 in unworked coal mines
having vested in the Coal Authority,350 the latter has the power to grant coal-mining
licences to persons wishing to conduct mining operations on the land to which the
application relates.351
In addition to the town and country planning law referred to above, the planning of
both underground and open cast coal mines, of fossil fuel storage facilities and coke
ovens are among the items subject to the EIA regime discussed above.352 Finally,
coal production falls within the scope both of the IPC/LAAPC353 and of the IPPC
regime.354
The abandonment of coal mines, with the potential for land contamination355 that
may result, is subject to the notification and other procedures in the Mines (Notice of
Abandonment) Regulations 1998.356
344 Currently (December 2004) the subject of the massive reform referred to at para. 6.4.3.1(3)
above. The impact of planning policy on coal mining is usefully discussed in Hughes, op.
cit., pp. 399每402. Town and country planning is outside the scope of the present volume.
345 Coal Industry Act 1994, Part I. See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
346 Ibid., Part II.
347 Ibid., Part III.
348 Ibid., Part IV.
349 Dissolved on 27 March 2004 (see Coal Industry Act 1994, s.23(2) and the Coal Industry
Act 1994 (Commencement No. 7) and Dissolution of the British Coal Corporation Order
2004, S.I. 2004 No. 144 (C.6)).
350 Coal Industry Act 1994, s.7(3). The vesting date was 31 October 1994, pursuant to Coal
Industry Act 1994, s.7(1).
351 Coal is thus an exception to the general rule of English property law that &land* includes
all mines and minerals beneath it (see Coke on Littleton, para. 4a).
352 See para. 6.2.4 above.
353 See the Environmental Protection (Prescribed Processes and Substances) Regulations
1991, S.I. 1991 No. 472, Sched. 1, Ch. 3. For LAAPC, see para. 6.2.2 above.
354 See the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000, S.I.
2000 No. 1973, Sched. 1, Section 3.5. See para. 6.2.3 above.
355 See para. 6.7 below.
356 S.I. 1998 No. 892.
Regulatory Context 159
6.5 Air passenger and road freight transport regulation
6.5.1 The international and European Union background
Since the environmental issues raised by air transport and by road freight transport
are largely (though not exclusively)357 questions of air and atmospheric pollution,
they have a significant transboundary aspect. Again, the measures discussed in this
part of the chapter should therefore be understood within the public international and
Community contexts discussed in Chapters 8 and 12 below.
6.5.2 Environmental regulation
Given the origins of the environmental aspects of transport policy in policy on air and
atmospheric pollution, the ministerial predilection for economic instruments (both
existing and, as yet, only imaginary) in the transport arena should occasion little
surprise. It is perhaps curious, however, that neither the air transport nor the road
freight transport sector is currently subject to any form of environmental levy.358
That said, there continues to be a seemingly endless discussion of the policy options,
each of which are reviewed elsewhere in this study.359
For the present, such economic instruments as do exist are embodied in excise duty
differentials,360 income tax provisions on company cars and fuel benefits361 and in
the provisions of the Transport Act 2000. This last was the result of the government*s
July 1998 White Paper, A New Deal for Transport: Better for Everyone.362 The Act
ranges over at least four distinct areas, the one with the most obvious environmental
significance appearing in Part III.363 The provisions of Part III give to local
authorities364 powers to implement two important economic instruments: workplace
parking levies and road user charging schemes. Each of these is discussed in detail
in Chapters 17 and 18 below and there is also a brief introductory outline of both
concepts in the opening chapter above.365
357 When, for example, loss of amenity through road traffic congestion is considered.
358 See para. 2.6 above.
359 See paras 2.6 above and 27.3 below (nationwide road-user charging scheme for heavy
lorries); paras 2.6 above and 27.5 below (possibility of allowing airport charges to have
an emissions-related element); and para. 2.6 above and 27.5 below (possibility of bringing
the aviation industry within the scope of the EU ETS).
360 See para. 22.2.1 below.
361 See para. 23.2 below.
362 Cm 3950, 1998.
363 This is, of course, an artificial statement, since the Transport Act 2000*s provisions on local
transport (Part II) and railways (Part IV) also have profound environmental implications.
Part IV establishes the Strategic Rail Authority, sets out its objectives and functions
and generally &makes provision for the better regulation of the railway industry*. Part II
requires local transport authorities to prepare and publish local transport plans for &safe,
integrated, efficient and economic transport facilities in their areas* (Explanatory Notes,
paras 10 and 14).
364 See para. 4.2.3 above.
365 See paras 1.4.2.4(1) and (2) above.
160 Environmental Taxation Law
It should be recognised that, in addition to the economic instruments 每 actual
or projected 每 just referred to, specific command and control measures deal with
particular environmental issues raised by transport. For example, legislation imposes
requirements on airport operators as to the noise and vibration caused by aircraft366 as
well as on airline operators, with regard to engine emissions and noise certificates.367
Equally, in addition to generally-applicable measures relating to vehicle construction
and use, such as the control of emissions368 and noise,369 there are specific provisions
relating to environmental matters in the licensing of goods vehicle operators.370 More
generally, there is extensive legislation relating to the acquisition and use of land for
the construction of highways371 as well as legislation enabling a highways authority
to make agreements with adjoining landowners to mitigate the injurious effects of
highways by tree-planting, etc.372
6.5.3 Transport regulation
The main statutes regulating the civil aviation industry are the Civil Aviation Act
1982 and the Airports Act 1986, in each case together with the relevant secondary
legislation. Transport Act 2000, Part I, establishes a public-private partnership for the
provision of air traffic services.373
The road haulage industry is regulated both by the Road Traffic Acts and by a
special goods vehicle licensing regime.374 The basic provision of the latter is that,
subject to certain exceptions, an operator*s licence is required in order for any person
to use a goods vehicle on a road, for the carriage of goods for hire or reward, or for
or in connection with any trade or business carried on by him.375
The Civil Aviation Authority (&the CAA*),376 which may charge for the statutory
functions that it discharges in relation to civil aviation,377 has, since 1971, been
responsible for the operational, economic and technological regulation of the civil
air transport industry.
The operation of airports is subject to the CAA*s licensing system,378 as is the
carryin,g of passengers or cargo for remuneration.379 An airport operator may only
366 See Civil Aviation Act 1982, s.77 and the Air Navigation Order 2000, S.I. 2000 No. 1562,
Art. 108. These provisions mean that the scope for private individuals to bring legal action
over aircraft noise is severely limited.
367 Air Navigation (Environmental Standards) Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 798, Art. 8.
368 See Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, S.I. 1986 No. 1078, reg.
3(2), Table.
369 Ibid., reg. 97.
370 See para. 6.5.3 below. See Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995, s.34.
371 See, generally, Highways Act 1980.
372 See Highways Act 1980, s.253.
373 That is, National Air Traffic Services Ltd (&NATS*). See Transport Act 2000, Pt I.
374 That is, the Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995.
375 Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995, s.2(1).
376 See para. 4.2.1.3 above.
377 Civil Aviation Act 1982, s.11(1).
378 See, generally, the Air Navigation Order 2000, S.I. 2000 No. 1562.
379 See the Licensing of Air Carriers Regulations 1992, S.I. 1992 No. 2992, reg. 2.
Regulatory Context 161
make airport charges with the authorisation of the CAA380 and then only when
the airport has, having achieved a certain level of turnover, become subject to the
economic regulation of the CAA.381
6.6 Regulation of mineral extraction
Like transport, issues arising from quarrying are hardly a discrete area of
environmental regulation. However, there is a range of general measures relating to
noise pollution382 and, in enacting the aggregates levy provisions of Finance Act 2001,
the government*s professed aims were to introduce an economic instrument similar
to landfill tax that would reflect the environmental costs of aggregates quarrying, in
terms of noise, dust, traffic, visual impacts, blasting, etc.383 Mineral development is
subject to the general law on town and country planning,384 responsibility therefore
being with local authorities, and may require an EIA to be carried out.385
An outline of aggregates levy appears at para. 1.4.2.3 above and there is a detailed
account in Chapter 13 below.
6.7 Regulation of contaminated land
The historical legacy of contaminated land is dealt with in Environmental Protection
Act 1990, Pt II, and in the Contaminated Land (England) Regulations 2000.386 A
duty is imposed on local authorities387 to inspect their areas to identify contaminated
land,388 details of which are entered on a public register and, although agreement as
to the costs of clean up may be reached between those responsible, local authorities
are empowered to serve remediation notices389 on the appropriate person or
persons,390 the failure to comply with which without reasonable excuse is a criminal
offence.391
380 See Airports Act 1986, s.38(1) and the Civil Aviation Authority (Economic Regulation of
Airports) Regulations 1986, S.I. 1986 No. 1544.
381 See Airports Act 1986, s.37.
382 See, generally, Environmental Protection Act 1990, s 79(1)(g) and (ga); Noise Act 1996;
Control of Pollution Act 1974, ss.60每67.
383 See paras 5.5 above and 11.3.2 below (see also para. 13.1 below).
384 See Mark Stallworthy, Sustainability, Land Use and Environment (London: Cavendish,
2002); Hughes et al., op. cit., Ch. 13.
385 See para. 6.2.4 above.
386 S.I. 2000 No. 227.
387 See para. 4.2.3 above.
388 See the definition in Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.78A(2) as &any land that appears
to the local authority to be in such a condition, by reason of substances in, on or under the
land, that significant harm is being caused or there is a significant possibility of such harm
being caused or pollution of controlled waters is being, or is likely to be, caused*.
389 Environmental Protection Act 1990, s.78E.
390 Ibid., s.78F(2).
391 Ibid., s.78M.
162 Environmental Taxation Law
392 See Chapter 5 above.
The command and control regulation control regulation in Environmental Protection
Act 1990, Part IIA is backed-up by an economic instrument in the form of a generous
but closely restricted tax deduction, outlined in para. 7.3.4.2 below and detailed in
para. 24.5.1 below.
6.8 Concluding comments
Only the briefest of glances at the present chapter will show the reader how far the
idea of environmental levies and their associated economic instruments has gained
ground in the regulatory landscape of the UK within the last decade.
In seeking to place environmental taxation within the context of environmental
regulation generally, this chapter has highlighted the regulatory nature of the taxes and
other levies under consideration. Such an emphasis is both necessary and appropriate.
An evaluation of the UK*s environmental taxation provisions which was divorced
from their regulatory context would be, at the very least, incomplete. It will be recalled
from earlier in the study392 that the government views environmental levies and
other economic instruments very much in terms of their cumulative effect, that is, as
part of a diet of measures together designed to deliver environmental improvements.
Thus it is important to realise that, in some areas, their significance may be greater
than in others. Hitherto, for example, economic instruments have played a relatively
insignificant role in waste management regulation, where command and control
has dominated. Equally, however, economic instruments dominate the regulation
of air and atmospheric pollution. As mentioned at the beginning, by examining in
this chapter the regulation of the industries whose products fall within the scope of
the various environmental taxes and other economic instruments, we hope to begin
the process of drawing attention to possible anomalies as between the respective
purposes and effects of what we have referred to respectively, and pragmatically, as
market regulation and environmental regulation.
What falls to us next is the task of examining the duality of environmental levies
and other economic instruments. Though spoken of, quite correctly, as regulatory
instruments, environmental levies and subsidies also fall to be considered in their
taxation context. Accordingly, in Chapter 7, we shall begin an examination of the
issues involved in describing and evaluating environmental levies and other economic
instruments in taxation terms.
Chapter 7
Taxation Context
7.1 Introduction
In previous chapters, discussion has been focused on the regulatory qualities of the
UK*s environmental taxes and other economic instruments. Attention is narrowed in
the present chapter to an examination of the nature of these instruments in tax law.
The division of the material is designed to highlight the complimentary but distinct
nature of the two contexts.
The chapter is divided into two main parts. In the earlier of these, we explore the
concepts of &taxes* and &tax subsidies*. In the course of the former discussion, we
shall be building on the definition of a tax introduced in Chapter 1 and, by reference
to case-law from different legal traditions, attempting to explain the relationship
between taxes and other, related but distinct, concepts. Thus, we shall be considering
the distinction between a tax and a charge, or fee, for government services, as well
as the relationship between the tax concept and those of tolls, penalties and fines.
The rise of environmental taxation has necessitated the revisiting of these basic
distinctions, none of which have traditionally been seen, from the legal point of
view, as important ones in the UK. Secondly, we introduce the concept, not of a tax,
but of a &tax expenditure*, or &tax subsidy*, something not so far alluded to in the
book. If the legal concept of a tax is crucial to understanding the significance of the
various environmental levies, then the idea of a tax expenditure is no less important
to understanding what is required, at least in part,1 in order to &green* a tax system.
Such tax expenditures or tax subsidies, if designed to incentivise environmentallyfriendly
behaviour, can properly be characterised as economic instruments for
environmental protection, since they represent a form of financial assistance from
government.2 We shall be particularising them in UK law in Part III, Section B
below.
The second main part of the discussion in the present chapter is the complex task of
analysing the legal nature of the various payments under consideration in the book.
These comprise, not only the environmental levies and environmentally-inspired
subsidies currently at work in the UK tax system, but also items such as payments to
government agencies on the grant of licences. The discussion in the latter part of the
chapter builds on the distinctions drawn in the earlier part, in attempting to confirm
which of the current environmental levies can properly be described as taxes, and
in describing the legal nature of &green* subsidies within the non-environmental tax
codes.3
1 Greening a tax system can, of course, involve bringing items within the tax base, just as it
is taken to refer introducing environmentally-friendly exemptions and reliefs.
2 See para. 1.2.1.5 above.
3 See para. 1.4.3.1 above.
164 Environmental Taxation Law
We turn first to the distinctions between each of charges 每 or fees 每 for government
services, taxes, tolls, fines and penalties.
7.2 Taxes and tax subsidies
7.2.1 Taxes distinct from charges (or fees)
Tiley isolates the characteristics of a charge or fee, as distinct from a tax, as
follows:4
1 with a charge, &some service must be provided direct to the individual*;5
2 a charge must be related to the service provided, not varied according &to some
other criterion # such as the value of that person*s property* or his ability to
pay;6 and
3 &it is no objection that a charge may result in a profit* to the levying authority,
&provided only that the profit is a reasonable one*.7
Re Eurig Estate,8 it will be recalled, insists on there being three criteria for identifying
a tax, as distinct from a charge. A levy is a tax if it is: compulsory,9 levied by a public
body and intended for a public purpose.10
These points are made on the basis of Commonwealth authorities. They are much
more precise than either the case-law of the ECJ discussed below on the meaning
of the expression &taxation* as it is used in Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95),11 or
GATT 1994/WTO jurisprudence on the construction of the GATT 1994 equivalent
of Art. 90, Art. III(2), GATT 1994.12 However, the Commonwealth authorities are
consistent with the proposition a levy will fall outside the scope of Art. 25, European
Treaty (ex 12), which bans customs duties as between EU Member States, only if it
4 See John Tiley, Revenue Law, 4th edn (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2000), p. 4.
5 Re Tax on Foreign Legations and High Commissioner*s Residence, [1943] SCR 208 (Can)
(Duff, C.J.).
6 Soci谷t谷 Centrale d*Hypothesques v. Cit谷 de Quebec, [1961] QLR 661. Thus, in Re Eurig
Estate (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1 (see para. 1.2.1.1 above), one of the reasons that the
probate fee was held to be a tax was that it varied with the size of the estate, there being
no link between the amount of the fee and the cost of the service for granting letters
probate.
7 Minister of Justice for Dominion of Canada v. Levis City, [1919] AC 505.
8 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1.
9 And therefore enforceable by law (see (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1, para. 17); see also, for
example, Attorney-General of New South Wales v. Homebush Flour Mills Ltd, (1937) 56
CLR 390.
10 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1, para. 15. On the public purpose requirement, see Lower Mainland
Dairy Products Sales Adjustment Committee v. Crystal Dairy Ltd, [1933] AC 168,
175每176 (Lord Thankerton); and Lawson v. Interior Tree, Fruit and Vegetable Committee
of Direction, [1931] 2 DLR 193, 197每198 (Duff, J.).
11 See para. 7.2.2.3 below.
12 See para. 8.4.3 below.
Taxation Context 165
can be shown that there was a genuine bargain between the trader and the state, that
is, that the trader receives a specific, identifiable benefit in return for the sum paid,
and that the sum paid is proportionate to the benefit received.13
7.2.2 Taxes defined
In order to further refine the definition of a tax on which the discussion has so far
proceeded, four areas of law fall for consideration:14
1 UK case-law on the concept of a tax;
2 Commonwealth case-law on the concept of a tax;
3 Case law of the ECJ on the meaning of &taxation* as it is used in the European
Treaty; and
4 Jurisprudence of the WTO Dispute Settlement Body and the AB on the meaning
of &internal taxes or other internal charges* as the phrase is used in GATT 1994.
It will be apparent to the reader that these four areas of law have been chosen for
their relevance to the UK, given its status as a member of each of the Commonwealth,
of the EU and of the WTO.15 It should, however, be noted that the scope of the
concept of a tax has been given detailed consideration in many national jurisdictions,
most notably, perhaps, those of the USA and Germany.16 Of the areas listed above, 2
and 3 yield fairly detailed information on the characteristics of a tax, whilst 1 and 4
are, possibly for historical reasons, relatively uninformative.
7.2.2.1 UK case-law on the concept of a tax
In Chapter 1 above, we stated that the UK*s constitutional arrangements have so far
tended to discourage a narrow and prescriptive view of a tax as a legal concept.17
13 See para. 12.3.3.2 below. See Commission v. Italy, C每24/68, [1969] ECR 193; W. Cadsky
SpA v. Instituto Nazionale per il Commercio Esterio, C每63/74, [1975] ECR 281; and Ford
España v. Spain, C每170/88, [1989] ECR 2305.
14 That is, from the UK perspective.
15 See para. 8.4.1 below.
16 Not considered further in this volume, although see, for example, Paul Marchetti,
&Distinguishing Taxes from Charges in the Case of Privileges* (1980) 33 NTJ 233每6. It
has recently been reported that the US Supreme Court is about to consider the nature of the
tax concept in US law in a case involving the beef levy (see Waldmeir, Financial Times,
27 September 2004, p. 12). See also, in the context of the term &taxes*, as used in the
OECD*s model double taxation convention, Klaus Vogel, Klaus Vogel on Double Taxation
Conventions, 3rd edn (The Hague: Kluwer Law, 1997), pp. 146每8 and 205.
17 See para. 1.2.1.1 above. The Bill of Rights 1689, Art. 4, simply states that: & # levying
Money for or to the Use of the Crown, by Pretence of Prerogative, without Grant of
Parliament, for longer Time, or in other Manner than the same is or shall be granted, is
illegal*. See also 8(2) Hals, para. 228, esp. n3 and the references cited therein; O. Hood
Phillips and Paul Jackson, Constitutional and Administrative Law, ed. by Paul Jackson
and Patricia Leopold, 8th edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 2001), paras 3每008每3010;
and E.C.S. Wade and A.W. Bradley, Constitutional and Administrative Law, ed. by A.W.
Bradley and K.D. Ewing, 11th edn (London: Longman, 1993), pp. 366每7.
166 Environmental Taxation Law
Probably for this reason, such English law authorities as actually exist on the nature
of a tax are unsatisfactory.18
Following devolution,19 however, the exact legal meaning of the concept of a tax
will need to be considered before much longer.20 Three well-known cases illustrate
the historically impressionistic approach of English courts to the concept.
1 In Congreve v. Home Office,21 the CA declared unlawful and void the Home
Secretary*s threatened revocation of certain television licences. The CA clearly
assumed that the television licence fee was a form of taxation, although the
judges did not consider the issue in any detail.22
2 Daymond v. South West Water Authority,23 concerned charges for household
sewage and sewerage disposal services. The claimant, whose property was not
connected to the main drainage system, and was situated 400 yards from the
nearest sewer, received a demand for payment of charges for sewerage and
sewage disposal services. He refused to pay the charges and sought a declaration
that the demand was unlawful, since the water authority had no power under the
Water Act 1973, s.30, to demand charges other than those for services performed,
facilities provided or rights made available to him by the authority. The House
of Lords24 held that, where a provision stated only that a statutory body could
demand, take and recover such charges for the services that it performed, then
the body in question could charge only those who availed themselves of its
services. It followed that the body was not empowered to charge the claimant
for services of which he did not avail himself. Whilst emphasising that the
conclusion of the majority was a matter of statutory construction, Viscount
Dilhorne asked:
Is it to be inferred that it was the intention of Parliament that [water authorities] # should
be at liberty to charge anyone they thought fit in Great Britain? That has only to be stated
18 See, for example, Brewster v. Kidgill, (1697) 88 ER 1239 (Holt, C.J.); Baker v. Greenhill,
(1842) 114 ER 463, at 470 (Lord Denman, C.J.); Attorney-General v. Wilts United Dairies
Ltd, (1921) 124 LT 319, 322每323 (Bailhache, J., overruled by CA and HL at [1922] WN
217, 218); Government of India v. Taylor [1955] AC 491; and Aston Cantlow v. Wallbank,
[2001] 3 WLR 1323, para. 40 (Sir Andrew Morrit, V.C.), overruled by HL at [2003] 3
WLR 283 (esp. para. 133) (Lord Scott of Foscote).
19 See para. 1.3 above.
20 On the near-federal nature of the UK, see, for example, Chris Hilson, Regulating Pollution
每 A UK and EC Perspective (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2000), p. 47.
21 [1976] QB 629.
22 The background to the case was interesting. The Home Secretary had announced, on 29
January 1975, that the colour television licence fee would be increased from £12 to £18
on April, 1 that year, and had made an order to that effect under the Wireless Telegraphy
Act 1949, s.2(1). In order to avoid the increase in the fee, some 24,500 licence holders had
applied for new £12 licences, before 1 April and before their existing licences had expired.
The Home Secretary acted in purported exercise of a statutory discretion to revoke these
overlapping licences.
23 [1976] AC 609.
24 Lords Wilberforce and Diplock dissenting.
Taxation Context 167
to be rejected for it is, to my mind, inconceivable that Parliament should have intended to
entrust such an extensive power of taxation to a non-elected body. Is it then to be inferred
that it was intended to give them only power to charge those living in their area and those
who came into it and made use of their services # ? I think that such a limitation must be
implied.25
Lord Kilbrandon took a similar approach:
For my part I do not consider # [the relevant statutory wording] adequate, if any other
meaning is open, to empower an ad hoc nonrepresentative body to impose what is in truth
a tax, namely an impost under the head of charges for services # upon persons who do not
directly receive such advantages.26
3 IRC v. Oc谷 van der Grinten27 concerned withholding tax under the 1980 UK/
Netherlands Double Tax Treaty. The Inland Revenue had appealed against
the Special Commissioner*s28 referral of a double taxation issue to the ECJ.
The UK subsidiary of a Dutch parent company had declared dividends of
£13 million in a particular year when the former UK imputation system (now
abolished) was in force.29 The Revenue argued that, pursuant to the double tax
treaty, the parent was liable to pay tax at 5 per cent on the total of the dividends
distributed, plus the tax credit received on those dividends. The parent argued
that the 5 per cent was a withholding tax and, as such, was forbidden by the
Parent-Subsidiary Directive.30 In agreeing that the case should be referred to
the ECJ,31 Jacob, J. held that the concept of a withholding tax was a global
question of Community law. His Lordship also commented reluctantly, at the
specific request of counsel on both sides, on the issue of whether the 5 per cent
was a &tax* in UK law:
The [tax credit] stems from the distribution of profits by the subsidiary. It is the distribution
of profits by way of dividend which causes the [tax credit] to be given to the parent. And the
amount of the [tax credit] represents part of the profits distributed. So the abatement of the
[tax credit] by the 5 per cent # is in substance a reduction in what the parent gets compared
with what it would get if there were no abatement. Putting it another way, as a result of the
abatement the Crown ends up with more money and the taxpayer less. Most people would
call the difference a &tax* and I do too. Since the &tax* stems from the distribution it seems
equally right to call the deduction a &tax on (or in respect of) the distribution*.32
25 [1976] AC 609, 640.
26 [1976] AC 609, 651.
27 [2000] STC 951.
28 See para. 4.2.1.5 above.
29 For the detail of the UK imputation system, inapplicable after 5 April 1999, see, for
example, Chris Whitehouse, Revenue Law 每 Principles and Practice, 16th edn (London:
Butterworths, 1998), paras 29.62每29.65.
30 Council Directive 90/435/EEC, (1990) OJ L225 6.
31 See Oc谷 van der Grinten v. Commissioners of Inland Revenue, C每58/01. The ECJ does
not, however, shed any light on the issue under consideration here.
32 [2000] STC 951, para. 14.
168 Environmental Taxation Law
The reasons for Jacob, J.*s evident impatience at counsels* request was presumably
that the concept of a tax had already been considered by the Special Commissioners33
in some detail.
7.2.2.2 Commonwealth case-law on the concept of a tax
Commonwealth case-law, of course, is the source of the definition of a tax upon
which reliance has so far been placed (that is, compulsory, levied by a public
body and intended for a public purpose).34 To these three may be added the fourth
criterion, which determines the lawfulness or otherwise of the tax thus identified.
This fourth criterion, it will be recalled, is that the tax must have been imposed under
the authority of the legislature.35
In Re Eurig Estate itself, the province of Ontario had imposed an ad valorem
probate fee, which varied according to the size of estates. The appellant was the
executor of the estate of her late husband. She applied to the Ontario Court (General
Division) for an order that she be issued letters probate without payment of the
probate fee and for a declaration that the regulation which required that payment
was unlawful. The basis of her argument was that the fee was in reality a tax and
was invalid, either because it was an indirect tax (and thus outside the powers of the
provincial legislature)36 or because, as a direct tax, the constitutional requirements
for its implementation had been violated. Originally unsuccessful before the Ontario
Court, the appellant appealed to the Ontario Court of Appeal, where her appeal was
dismissed. Eventually the case reached the Supreme Court of Canada.
Major, J., for the majority of the Supreme Court,37 applied the three criteria listed
above, in holding that the probate fee was a tax:
1 the fee was compulsory and therefore enforceable by law: although probate was
not the foundation of the executor*s title, but only &the authentic evidence of
it*, that authentication was &nonetheless a practical and legal necessity in most
cases*.38
2 The fee was levied by a public body, since probate fees in Ontario were levied by
the Ontario Court (General Division).39
3 The fees were intended for a public purpose, since the revenue obtained from
probate fees was &used for the public purpose of defraying the costs of court
administration in general # not simply to offset the costs of granting probate*.40
Having held that the probate fee was therefore clearly a tax, Major, J. held that,
although it was a direct tax 每 and therefore within the competence of the provincial
33 [2000] STC(SC) 127.
34 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1. See para. 1.2.1.1 above.
35 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1, para. 16.
36 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
37 Bastarache and Gonthier, JJ. dissented.
38 (1999) 165 DLR (4th) 1, para. 17.
39 Ibid., para. 18.
40 Ibid., para. 20.
Taxation Context 169
legislature41 每 it had not been implemented in accordance with the constitutional
requirements for a direct tax.42
To the three characteristics of a tax enumerated in Re Eurig Estate may be added
the following subsidiary points:43
1 A levy is not prevented from being a tax by the fact that raising revenue is not
the government*s main reason for imposing it (see Northern Suburbs Cemetery
Reserve Trust v. Commonwealth).44
2 For a levy to be capable of being a tax, it must be possible to identify &the criteria
by reference to which liability to pay the tax is imposed* and to demonstrate that
the process of applying the criteria is not arbitrary or capricious (see MacCormick
v. Federal Commissioner of Taxation).45
3 The three criteria for the existence of a tax should not be regarded as providing
an exhaustive definition of a tax (see Air Caledonie v. The Commonwealth).46
For example, in relation to the requirement that the levy must be made by a
public body, it has been held that a levy on blank tapes, to be paid to a body &set
up by the music industry* to compensate performers, was nonetheless a tax (see
Australian Tape Manufacturers* Association v. The Commonwealth).47
7.2.2.3 European Union case-law on the meaning of &taxation*
The ECJ has had to consider the meaning of the expression &taxation* as it occurs in
Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95). Article 90 provides:
No Member State shall impose, directly or indirectly, on the products of other Member
States any internal taxation of any kind in excess of that imposed directly or indirectly on
similar domestic products.
Furthermore, no Member State shall impose on the products of other Member States any
internal taxation of such a nature as to afford indirect protection to other products.
As interpreted by the ECJ, &taxation* in this context is a broad term. For the
purposes of Art. 90, taxation &includes not only taxes levied by central government
but any fiscal or parafiscal levy48 imposed by or with the authority of any level of
government, including levies charged by or for quasi-official bodies and allocated to
a specific purpose*.49
41 Ibid., para. 27. See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
42 Ibid., paras 28每37.
43 See Tiley, op. cit., p. 5, to which the summaries in these paragraphs are much indebted.
The test was considered in Airservices Australia v. Canadian Airlines International Ltd,
[1999] HCA 62 and in Luton v. Lessels, [2002] HCA 13.
44 (1993) 176 CLR 555 (High Court of Australia).
45 (1984) 158 CLR 622 (High Court of Australia).
46 (1988) 165 CLR 462, para. 6 (High Court of Australia).
47 (1993) 176 CLR 480 (High Court of Australia).
48 See para. 12.3.3.1 below.
49 See Paul Farmer and Richard Lyal, EC Tax Law (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994), p. 46.
170 Environmental Taxation Law
The approach of the ECJ in relation to Art. 90 is illustrated by the following cases:
1. In Deutschmann v. Germany,50 when concluding that the then Arts 12 (now 25)
and 95, European Treaty, were mutually exclusive, the ECJ did not consider
there to be a relevant distinction between taxes and charges for services in the
context of Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95). Advocate General Gand said:
From the fact that Article 95 appears in a chapter entitled &steuerliche Vorschriften* (&Fiscal
provisions*) and from its closeness to Article 98, the Federal Republic draws the conclusion
that it only applies to taxes in the strict sense # Fiscal terminology, already uncertain in
the national legal systems, is all the more so when it is transferred to the Common Market
sphere; such an exegesis seems to us to be rather useless and of little help in solving the
problem put to us [that is, as to whether Art. 95 of the European Treaty applied to fees
charged on the grant of import licences].
2 In Iannelli & Volpi v. Meroni,51 the ECJ had to consider two cases involving,
inter alia, Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95). One case involved subsidies of
newsprint purchased by Italian newspaper publishers, the paper being produced
in Italy with levies being paid by manufacturers and importers of paper and
cardboard. The other was about charges levied in relation to the processing of
citrus concentrates imported to Germany. One of the points that the court made
about the scope of Art. 90, was:
Since Article 95 of the Treaty refers to internal taxation of any kind the fact that a tax or
levy is collected by a body governed by public law other than the State or is collected for
its benefit and is a charge which is special or appropriated for a specific purpose cannot
prevent its falling within the field of application of Article 95 of the Treaty.52
3 Apple and Pear Development Council v. Lewis53 involved a research and
development body established by statutory instrument, which body*s activities
were financed by charges on fruit growers. One issue was whether the charges
were covered by Arts 28 and 29, European Treaty (ex Arts 30 and 34). The ECJ
said:
# the charges, being measures of a fiscal nature or of equivalent effect, fall within the
scope, not of those Articles, but of Articles 9 to 16 and 95 of the Treaty. Since the charge in
question does not apply to imported produce and only affects produce intended for export
in the same way as produce sold on the home market, it does not raise any problem in
relation to the last-mentioned articles either.54
50 C每10/65, [1965] CMLR 259.
51 C每74/76, [1977] 2 CMLR 688. See also AGF Belgium SA v. European Economic
Community, C每191/94, [1996] ECR I每1859; Weyl Beef Products BV v. Commission, Case
T每197/97, [2001] 2 CMLR 22.
52 [1977] 2 CMLR 688, para. 19.
53 C每222/82, [1984] 3 CMLR 733.
54 [1984] 3 CMLR 733, para. 30.
Taxation Context 171
Although unwilling to make fine distinctions between taxes and related concepts for
the purpose of Art. 90, European Treaty, the ECJ has been obliged to distinguish, for
the purposes of Art. 25, European Treaty (ex 12) between taxes and charges having
an effect equivalent to customs duties. Customs duties55 as well as charges having
equivalent effect,56 are of course prohibited as between Member States of the EU, by
Art. 25, European Treaty (ex 12). A charge having an equivalent effect (a &CEE*) is
defined in a key passage in the following terms:
Any pecuniary charge, however small and whatever its designation and mode of application,
which is imposed unilaterally on domestic or foreign goods by reason of the fact that they
cross a frontier, and which is not a customs duty in the strict sense, constitutes a charge
having equivalent effect # even if it is not imposed for the benefit of the State, is not
discriminatory or protective in effect and if the product on which the charge is imposed is
not in competition with any domestic product #
It follows from Article [90] # et seq. that the concept of a charge having equivalent
effect does not include taxation which is imposed in the same way within a State on similar
or comparable domestic products, or at least falls, in the absence of such products, within
the framework of general internal taxation #57
A charge may, however, escape Art. 25, if it can be shown that, rather than having an
effect equivalent to a customs duty, the charge is a tax and therefore subject to the
discipline of Art. 90. In Commission v. France,58 a tax, in this context, was defined
as a levy relating to:
# a general system of internal dues applied systematically to categories of products in
accordance with objective criteria irrespective of the origin of the products #59
in circumstances such that there is no identical or similar domestic product.
This is not the only way in which an item may escape Art. 25, however. A levy
will not count as a CEE if either it counts as consideration for a service supplied
by the importing State to the importer60 or it was imposed pursuant to mandatory
requirements of Community Law (that is, it was an administrative charge).61
Given the purpose for which the complementary Arts 90 and 25 fall to be interpreted,
these distinctions are unsurprising. Overall, however, they are consistent with a
number of the subsidiary points about taxes made in the Commonwealth cases, that
is, that:
1 the fact that the levy is allocated to a specific, as opposed to a general, purpose
does not prevent it from being a tax;
55 See, generally, Timothy Lyons, EC Customs Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
2001).
56 See Commission v. Italy, C每24/68, [1969] ECR 193 (the &statistical levy case*).
57 [1969] ECR 193, paras 9 and 11.
58 C每90/87, [1981] ECR 283.
59 [1981] ECR 283, para. 14.
60 Bresciani v. Amministrazione Italiana delle Finanze, C每87/75, [1976] ECR 129.
61 See Commission v. Germany, C每18/87, [1988] ECR 5427.
172 Environmental Taxation Law
2 a levy may be a tax where it is imposed by, and paid to, a body set up under
statutory powers, rather than directly to the government itself; and
3 it must not be arbitrary or capricious, that is, it must be possible to identify the
criteria by reference to which liability to pay the tax is imposed.62
7.2.2.4 GATT 1994/WTO jurisprudence on the meaning of &internal taxes and
other internal charges*
The equivalent provision to Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95) as regards the trade
relations of EU Member States with third countries, is Art. III(2), GATT 1994.63
Article III, which is considered in more detail later in the book,64 reads (so far as
relevant) as follows:
1. The contracting parties recognize that internal taxes and other internal charges #
affecting the internal sale, offering for sale, purchase, transportation, distribution or use
of products, # should not be applied to imported or domestic products so as to afford
protection to domestic production.
2. The products of the territory of any contracting party imported into the territory of
any other contracting party shall not be subject, directly or indirectly, to internal taxes or
other internal charges of any kind in excess of those applied, directly or indirectly, to like
domestic products. Moreover, no contracting party shall otherwise apply internal taxes
or other internal charges to imported or domestic products in a manner contrary to the
principles set forth in paragraph 1.
It will be apparent to the reader that, instead of the expression &internal taxation of
any kind*, which is the expression used in the (later) European Treaty, Art. III(2),
GATT 1994,65 refers to &internal taxes and other internal charges*. The use of the
word &charges* in Art. III(2), rather than the wider expression &levies*, emphasises
the fact that the Art. was not drafted mindful of the classification of taxes and
charges as two different types of &levy*.66 Given its purpose,67 it is plain that one
of the main purposes of Art. III(2), however, is to distinguish, not between taxes
and other types of levy, but between internal taxes, on the one hand, and customs
duties, on the other. In short, customs duties, which are subject to the discipline of
GATT 1994, Art. II,68 though clearly taxes,69 are not internal taxes. What makes a
62 Arts 25 (ex 12) and 90 (ex 95), European Treaty, are discussed in detail in Stephen
Weatherill and Paul Beaumont, EU Law, 3rd edn (London: Penguin, 1999), chs 13 and
14; and Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., ch 3.
63 See para. 12.3.3.1(1) below.
64 See para. 8.4.3 below.
65 Originally, Art. III(2), GATT 1947.
66 See para. 1.2 above.
67 See para. 8.4.3 below.
68 Ibid.
69 See Kenneth W. Dam, The GATT: Law and International Economic Organization
(London: University of Chicago Press, 1970), p. 115. As such, they are indirect taxes (see
para. 1.2.1.2 above).
Taxation Context 173
tax an internal tax, and therefore subject to GATT 1994, Art. III(2), rather than GATT
1994, Art. II, is revisited below.70 The distinction is one on which GATT and WTO
institutions seem to have been remarkably reluctant to rule definitively. What is at
least clear is that: (1) the mere fact that it is collected or enforced &at the time or point
of importation* does not prevent the tax in question from being an internal tax;71 and
(2) that, although described as internal taxes, levies may nonetheless be in reality
import (that is, customs) duties, if:
(a) they are collected at the time of, and as a condition to, the entry of the goods into
the importing country, and (b) they apply exclusively to imported products without being
related in any way to similar charges collected internally on like domestic products.72
7.2.3 Taxes distinct from tolls, penalties and fines
Tolls73 have existed for centuries, both at common law and under statute, in relation
to roads and bridges, street trading, markets, fairs and shipping and navigation. So
far as roads are concerned, the necessary powers for tolls to be charged, whether by
a highway authority or a concessionaire, have for long been taken by legislation.74
Historically, rights to take tolls or dues in relation to the use of a port or harbour
have also been conferred by immemorial usage or grant as well as by statute, tolls in
relation for example, to harbours being required to be reasonable in amount.75 Where
a toll road has been constructed pursuant to an order made under the New Roads and
Street Works Act 1991, the Secretary of State is not required to impose restrictions on
the levels of tolls charged.76 Such distinctions between tolls and taxes as historically
there might have been (that is, as to restrictions on amount and the need for statutory
authority) are not, however, relevant to the projected lorry road user charge, which is
straightforwardly characterised as a tax in the 2002 enabling legislation.77
70 See para. 8.4.3 below.
71 Note Ad Art. III, GATT 1994 (reproduced at World Trade Organization, The Legal
Texts: the Results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations (New York:
Cambridge University Press, 1999), p. 479). See para. 8.4.3n below.
72 GATT 1947 Committee Report from the 1948 Havana Conference, quoted in John H.
Jackson, World Trade and the Law of GATT (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1969), section
12.3 (esp. pp. 280每81), in turn referred to in the same author*s The World Trading System,
2nd edn (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1997), p. 397.
73 The word &toll*, or tolnetum, is defined to be a sum of money which is taken in respect of
some benefit* (see Bramwell and Willes (counsel) in argument, in Adey v. Trinity House,
(1852) 22 LJ QB 3). See also para. 12.2.6.4(2)n below.
74 For example, as in relation to the M6 toll road, north of Birmingham (see para. 27.3n
below), constructed under the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991.
75 See Lord Falmouth v. George (1828) 130 ER 1071 (fishing boats paying a toll for use of
a capstan at Sennen Cove in Cornwall).
76 See Alliance Against the Birmingham Northern Relief Road v. Secretary of State for the
Environment, Transport and the Regions and Midlands Expressway Ltd, [1999] JPL 426.
The Birmingham Northern Relief Road is the M6 toll road referred to above. The legal
background to the construction of the road is examined in the judgment of Latham, J.
77 See Finance Act 2002, s.137(1).
174 Environmental Taxation Law
Civil penalty provisions appear throughout the VAT code78 and have been transposed
into the codes for each of aggregates levy, climate change levy and landfill tax.79
Environmental taxes are closer to civil penalties in terms of the function that they
serve than are fiscal taxes, such as corporation tax and VAT.80 This proposition
seems to be particularly well illustrated by landfill tax. Even at the current main rate,
the level of the tax considerably exceeds the externalities associated with landfill.
At the ultimate rate of £35 per tonne, as currently projected under the landfill tax
escalator,81 the rate of the tax will clearly be a penal one. The significance of this
point is that, unlike taxes, penalties are not deductible in calculating trading profits
under Schedule D, Case I.82 The same point applies to fines that are imposed by the
courts for breaches of offences created by command and control environmental and
health and safety legislation.83
7.2.4 Tax subsidies distinct from taxes
Having distinguished taxes from related but distinct concepts, it is necessary to
describe the various legal concepts that are together categorised as tax subsidies or
&tax expenditures*.84
As indicated above, tax expenditures are not &free-standing* concepts, such as taxes
and charges, but are rather elements within the structure of taxes themselves. The
concept of the tax expenditure was defined by Willis and Hardwick as:
# an exemption or relief which is not part of the essential structure of the tax in question
but has been introduced into the tax code for some extraneous reason 每 eg in order to ease
the burden for a particular class of taxpayers, or to provide an incentive to apply income
in a particular way, or perhaps to simplify administration. The term is used to cover, not
merely specific exemptions but also gaps in the charge as a result of which receipts or
benefits which represent or are equivalent to income are not subjected to tax. The choice
of the term &tax expenditure* indicates that, because they are not inherent in the structure
of the tax, these reliefs are equivalent in terms of revenue foregone to direct government
expenditure and should in general be judged by the same criteria.85
Two of the different legal forms that tax expenditures may take (that is, exemptions
and reliefs) have been mentioned already. Within the structure of the various UK
taxes, however, there are a range of other forms that tax expenditures may take.
78 See, for example, ss.59每67, Value Added Tax Act 1994.
79 See para. 16.14 below.
80 See Kalle Määttä, Environmental Taxes 每 From an Economic Idea to a Legal Institution
(Helsinki: Finnish Lawyers* Publishing, 1997), pp. 207每10.
81 See para. 15.2 below.
82 See para. 1.4.3.1 above.
83 See Susan Wolf and Neil Stanley, Wolf and Stanley on Environmental Law, 4th edn
(London: Cavendish, 2003), pp. 60每64.
84 These terms are treated as being synonymous (see, for example, Määttä, op. cit., p. 28).
85 J.R.M. Willis and P.J.W. Hardwick, Tax Expenditures in the United Kingdom (London:
Heinemann, 1978), p. 1. The quotation is limited to income only because Willis and
Hardwick*s study was confined to income tax and CGT.
Taxation Context 175
The distinctions between these various possibilities can be illustrated by reference
to income tax.86
1 Exemptions remove certain items from the scope of the tax altogether (for
example income from personal equity plans87 or certain employee benefits in
kind).88
2 Permitted deductions are deductible in calculating income from particular
sources (for example trading expenses).89 Within this category can be included
the logically necessary concept of capital allowances. Within the UK system,
capital expenditure is not deductible from income, allowance instead being made
for certain categories of such expenditure through the elaborate system of capital
allowances.90
3 Charges on income are deductible in calculating total income from all sources,
though the range of payments capable of qualifying as such is now very narrow
(certain interest payments by individuals are still of this kind).91
4 Personal allowances and reliefs can, in certain cases, be deducted from total
income from all sources (for example the personal allowance).92
5 Income tax reductions give rise to credits against tax (for example the income
tax reduction provided for by the enterprise investment scheme (&EIS*)).93 This
last form of tax expenditure has become particularly popular with certain OECD
governments.
It should be emphasised that these are the tax expenditures within the income tax
code only; as mentioned above, the legal form that tax expenditures take depends on
the tax code in question.94
86 See para. 1.4.3.1 above. This part of the para. draws heavily on the useful list in CCH Tax
Handbook 2003每04 (Banbury: CCH, 2003), para. 1840.
87 Although no new personal equity plans (&PEPs*) can now be taken out, existing ones
continue to benefit from provisions allowing the income therefrom to be exempt from
income tax.
88 See Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988, ss.333 and 333A and regulations thereunder
(although note that no new PEP subscriptions have been permitted since 5 April 1999,
having been replaced by Individual Savings Accounts or &ISAs*).
89 See Chapter 24 below.
90 Ibid. Capital allowances are so complex that they are governed by their own statute, that
is, the Capital Allowances Act 2001; in the late 1960s, they were, for a time, replaced by
investment grants, a system which favoured loss-making businesses, such as the (then)
nationalised industries. As discussed in Chapter 24 below, there is a tension in the capital
allowances system between the provision of a highly stylised system of depreciation and
their use as policy incentives.
91 See, for example, Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988, s.359 (interest on loan to buy
machinery or plant).
92 See Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988, s.257(1): these have to be distinguished
from the mass of credits and deductions which have been added to the PAYE system since
1997 and which do not relate to tax allowances at all, even though they may be income
based, for example, working family tax credit and student loan repayments.
93 See Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988, ss.289每312.
94 This legal form is in each case described below.
176 Environmental Taxation Law
Tax expenditures in general have a double significance in the context of the present
study. Within the environmental tax and charging codes,95 they will tend to limit
the effectiveness of the regulatory instrument, and we should therefore expect them
to be difficult, although not impossible, to justify in terms of regulatory principle.
Conversely, it might be expected that tax expenditures within the non-environmental
tax codes96 should relatively easily be justifiable in regulatory terms.
7.3 Status of the main levies and subsidies under consideration
7.3.1 Environmental levies
Within the scope of this book are at least ten extant economic instruments, or
categories thereof, that are of an environmental nature and that involve the making
of payments. Possible payments include the following:
1 payments of aggregates levy;
2 payments of climate change levy;
3 payments of landfill tax;
4 payments of workplace parking levies;
5 payments under road user charging schemes;
6 payments made under the UK ETS;
7 payments made under the RO;
8 payments made under the EU ETS;
9 payments made for licences and permits (for example IPPC permits) under
command and control legislation; and
10 payments of airport landing charges.
There is no doubt that landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates levy are taxes.
It is unclear whether licensing schemes relating to workplace parking levies or to
road user charging impose taxes or charges; it is thought that taxes are more likely
to arise under the former than under the latter. The payments referred to below under
the UK ETS and RO also seem closer to charges than to taxes. The importance of the
distinction is not yet a constitutional one as it is in the context of the Commonwealth
jurisdictions referred to above. However, it may have a distinction in assessing the
acceptability of the levies in question.
Charges, it will be recalled, involve the provision of a service direct to the individual,
a relationship between the service and the charge and no more than a reasonable
profit accruing to the service provider. Payments of charges are requited, whereas
payments of taxes are not.
Licensing schemes for workplace parking and road user charging schemes each
involve the provision of a service direct to individuals. The service in the former case
is the provision of licences to park a certain num,ber of cars at, or in the vicinity of,
95 See Part III, Section A below.
96 Ibid., Section B below.
Taxation Context 177
particular premises, such licences being granted in favour of occupiers of premises.
In the latter case, the service is the provision of licences for motor vehicles to enter a
certain area at certain times, the registered keeper of the vehicle generally being the
person in whose favour the licence is granted.
In the case of workplace parking levies, vehicles are classified as &licensed units*
and the amount payable is based on the charge per unit. Section 186, Transport Act
2000, allows for variations in the charges according to different days or times of day,
different parts of the licensing area, different classes of motor vehicles or different
numbers of licensed units. Although Transport Act 2000, s.171, provides for the basic
elements that must be included in the order establishing the charging scheme, the
local authority is free to determine the levels of charge. There would therefore appear
to be greater scope for the level of the charge to be related to the service provided, as
opposed to extraneous criteria, in the case of road user charging schemes.
The question of whether the profit accruing to the service provider is reasonable
is, of course, a nebulous one. Suffice it to say that Transport Act 2000, Sched. 12,
contains financial provisions common to both types of scheme. The net proceeds
of both types of scheme are found by subtracting the expenses of establishing or
operating the scheme from the gross proceeds;97 net proceeds must be hypothecated
(that is, earmarked)98 such that they can only be spent in support of the authority*s
local transport plan for the first ten years of a scheme*s life;99 and, in accordance
with the general rule that local authorities must spend net proceeds only on things
that offer value for money, they are required to prepare a ten-year general plan for
spending the proceeds.100
The UK ETS has already been outlined.101 The relevant feature of the scheme for
present purposes is that, where participants make more emissions than their targets for
a particular year, it will be necessary for them to purchase extra allowances. Where
there is a failure to do this then, as an agreement participant, it will be necessary
to pay the full rate of the levy, while, as a direct participant, the incentive payment
will be lost and a tighter target will be imposed for the following year. It is thought
that, since the right to retain the specific benefit conferred 每 that is, either a tax
reduction or an incentive payment 每 is purchased at a price determined by the market,
such payments are not to be regarded as taxes but are more in the nature of fees or
charges. However, any loss of the incentive payment seems properly characterised as
a penalty, with the loss of the climate change levy reduction resulting in a payment
of the levy (that is, in the payment of tax rather than a penalty).
With the RO, which has again been described above,102 electricity suppliers are
obliged to prove that they have supplied specified quantities of renewable source
electricity to customers in Great Britain within a specified period.103 In order to
97 Transport Act 2000, Sched. 12, para. 2.
98 See para. 11.2 below.
99 Transport Act 2000, Sched. 12, para. 7.
100 Ibid., Sched. 12, paras 8每10.
101 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above.
102 See para. 1.4.2.2(4) above.
103 See Utilities Act 2000, s.62, and Renewables Obligation Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 914,
Sched. 1.
178 Environmental Taxation Law
comply with the RO, suppliers must produce ROCs or Green Certificates to Ofgem.
Where a supplier cannot produce the requisite Green Certificates, it may either pay a
penalty to Ofgem for each MWh it is short of its obligation or purchase ROCs from
other suppliers willing to trade them. Ofgem pays the funds collected in penalties to
suppliers in proportion to the amount of renewable energy they have sourced.104 To
the extent that the supplier has had to pay for Green Certificates, such payments seem
best characterised as fees or charges, since the payment is made directly to avoid the
penalty and its amount is determined by the market place. Payments to Ofgem are, of
course, in the nature of penalties.
Whatever technical issues may be raised by the levies discussed above, it is clear
that each of landfill tax, climate change levy and aggregates levy are taxes. They
are payable to a public body, that is, HM Customs and Excise; they are compulsory,
in the sense that satisfaction of the relevant conditions for liability and the absence
of any exemption or relief gives rise to a liability to pay them, which liability
is backed up by elaborate sanctions; and their proceeds are intended for a public
purpose. This is so, even though part of the revenue raised by the three taxes is, by
various means, hypothecated.105 It will be recalled from the ECJ case-law that the
fact that a levy is allocated to a specific, as opposed to a general, purpose does not
prevent it from being a tax.106 It is also unimportant to the status of these levies
as taxes whether raising revenue is the government*s primary purpose in imposing
them.107
7.3.2 Non-environmental levies
There is no issue as to the status of the UK*s seven main non-environmental taxes
as such.108
7.3.3 Tax subsidies within environmental levies
The nature of the main exemptions within the environmental levies is summarised
below. The exemptions in question are analysed in detail in the relevant paragraphs
of the rest of the study.
1 Landfill tax:109 The exemptions from the tax relate to: disposals of material
removed from water; disposals of materials removed from contaminated land; the
104 Richardson and Chanwai draw attention to the fact that energy supply companies may
pass on the costs of purchasing renewable energy to their customers and refer to the
suggestion in recent retail energy prices that the RO has added 3 per cent to consumers*
electricity bills (see Benjamin J. Richardson and Kiri L. Chanwai, &Taxing and Trading in
Corporate Energy Activities: Pioneering UK Reforms to Address Climate Change* (2003)
14(1) ICCLR 18每27).
105 See paras 11.2.2 and 21.3 below.
106 See para. 7.2.2.3 above.
107 See para. 7.2.2.2 above.
108 See para. 1.4.3.1 above.
109 See para. 1.4.2.1(1) above.
Taxation Context 179
use of inert materials for site restoration; the disposal of inert waste at quarries;
and the disposal of the remains of dead domestic pets.110 The exemptions all
operate by removing the operation in question from the scope of the concept of
the taxable disposal.
Tax rates are differentiated according to whether the waste in question is general
or inert waste.111
2 Climate change levy:112 Excluded from the levy are direct supplies for domestic
or non-business charitable use and any supply made before 1 April 2001.113
Exempted from the levy are: gas supplies for burning in Northern Ireland;114 gas
supplies for burning outside the UK; supplies for use in public transport, on the
railways, or international shipping; supplies to producers of taxable commodities
other than electricity; supplies other than for use as fuel, that is, the electrolytic
processes, steam reformation, dual use functions and non-heating uses specified
in regulations; supplies where the person supplied intends the commodity to be
used as fuel in a recycling process; and supplies of renewable source and good
quality combined heat and power (&CHP*) electricity.115
Excluded supplies are outside the scope of climate change levy, whereas exempt
supplies are ones that, if not exempted, would have been within the scope of the
levy.
There are reduced rates of tax for horticultural producers installations within
the IPPC regime that have entered into climate change agreements.116
The exemptions and reduced rate provisions were subsidies for which state aid
clearance was required.117
3 Aggregates levy: The exemptions from aggregates levy operate either by
exempting the aggregate itself or by exempting the spoil and other by-products
of a process, that is, an exempt process.
Exempt aggregate includes aggregate consisting wholly or mainly of coal,
lignite, slate or shale and the spoil or waste from an industrial combustion process
or from the smelting or refining of metal.118
Exempt processes include the cutting of any rock to produce stone with one or
more flat surfaces; any process by which certain substances (including anhydrite
and ball clay) are extracted or separated from any aggregate; and any process
for the production of lime or cement, from lime alone or lime and another
substance.119
The levy is charged at a single rate.120
110 See para. 15.3 below.
111 See para. 15.1 below.
112 See para. 1.4.2.2(1) above.
113 See para. 14.3 below.
114 On a temporary basis only (see para. 14.2 below).
115 See para. 14.3 below.
116 See para. 14.1 below.
117 See para. 12.2.7 below.
118 See para. 13.4 below.
119 See para. 13.5 below.
120 See para. 13.2 below.
180 Environmental Taxation Law
4 Workplace parking levies: Transport Act 2000, s.187, grants powers to
set exemptions, reduced rates or limits on workplace parking charges by
regulations.121
5 Road user charging: Transport Act 2000, s.172, provides the power for regulations
to set exemptions from charges, reduced rates or limits on charges which will
apply to all charging schemes. By s.172(2), any charging scheme will be able to
set additional exemptions, reductions or limits as the authority wishes, subject to
approval.
Under the Central London scheme, a discount of 90 per cent of the standard
£5 charge is available to residents living within the congestion charging zone,
and there is also a range of exemptions for particular types of vehicle. Some of
these are of a purely environmental nature (for example for electrically propelled
vehicles) but they are not exclusively so.122
6 The UK Emissions Trading Scheme: Direct participants in the UK ETS are
eligible to receive incentive payments, calculated in accordance with the rules
of the Scheme. Agreement participants are entitled to a reduced rate of tax. Both
mechanisms were in the nature of subsidies, for which state aid clearance was
required.123
7.3.4 Environmental subsidies within non-environmental levies
Below are summarised the main environmental exemptions and reliefs within the
non-environmental tax codes. They are discussed in detail as indicated in the relevant
paras of the rest of the book.
7.3.4.1 Employee taxes
(1) Income tax
a. Exemptions: In general, the earnings of an office or employment, including the
value of any benefits in kind (usually their &cash equivalent*), are chargeable to
income tax under the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003.124 However,
a number of relevant items are outside the scope of, what was, until 5 April 2003,
Schedule E, altogether. These include: the provision for employees of works
bus services; financial or other support for bus services used by employees; the
provision for employees* use of cycles or cyclists* safety equipment; payments
made to employees for carrying other employees travelling on business; the
provision of up to six free meals per annum for employees cycling to work; and
the use of works minibuses for certain shopping trips from work.125
Although not a case of exemption, the rules for bringing into charge the &cash
equivalent* of vehicles and fuel are not as favourable as once they were. The
121 There are as yet (December 2004) no such schemes but the first workplace parking levy
scheme is likely to be introduced in Nottingham in April 2005 (see para. 17.1 below).
122 See para. 18.2 below.
123 See para. 12.2.7 below.
124 See para. 1.4.3.1 above.
125 See para. 23.3 below.
Taxation Context 181
amount of the cash equivalent is now based on the car*s carbon dioxide emissions,
no allowance being made for high business mileage or the age of the car.126
b. Permitted deductions: These are very restricted and, significantly, do not include
the expenses of ordinary commuting.127
(2) National insurance contributions
Since the tax base of National insurance contributions (&NICs*) is the employed
earner*s earnings, albeit in separate legistaion from that applicable to income tax, the
general rule is that a payment in kind, or by way of the provision of services, board
and lodging or other facilities is to be disregarded in the calculation of earnings.128
On this basis, and without more, all of the items within the income tax exemptions
that are not &earnings* for NICs purposes would fall outside the scope of NICs.
However, the position is not as simple as this, since certain items that do not qualify
as &earnings* under the general definition are nonetheless brought within the scope of
NICs. These include non-cash vouchers, the range of exemptions for which is apt not
to include, for example, vouchers provided to employees for use on works buses.129
7.3.4.2 Business taxes
1 Income tax and corporation tax: The scope of capital allowances in respect
of expenditure on machinery and plant covers at least two areas of &green*
expenditure: expenditure on cars which are either electrically propelled or have
low carbon dioxide emissions and on energy-saving plant and machinery of
a type specified by the government.130 One hundred per cent allowances are
available in both cases. Additionally, 100 per cent allowances are available
against rental income for the conversion of space above shops into small selfcontained
flats.131
Relief for acquisitions as trading stock, or as capital assets of a trade or a
property business, for expenditure on remedial works on contaminated land, is
also available. Tax relief is available on a notional 150 per cent of expenditure,
which may explain why it is very closely circumscribed.132
2 Value added tax: A 5 per cent VAT rate is available for grant-aided installation in
dwellings of energy saving materials and heating equipment.133
3 Stamp duties: There is an exemption from stamp duty land tax (&SDLT*) for both
conveyances and transfers and leases of land. This is subject to a value cap for
residential properties but is complete for non-residential ones until 2006.134
126 See para. 23.2 below.
127 See para. 23.1 below.
128 See Social Security (Contributions) Regulations 2001, S.I. 2001 No. 1004, reg. 25 and
Sched. 3, Part II, para. 1.
129 See para. 23.3 below.
130 For details, see paras 21.3.1, 24.3 and 24.4 below.
131 See para. 24.5.2 below.
132 See para. 24.5.1 below.
133 See para. 21.3.1 below.
134 See para. 24.5.3 below.
182 Environmental Taxation Law
7.4 Concluding comments
Throughout the study thus far, the pattern of the overall discussion has been one
of a gradual move from the general to the specific. The material in the present and
previous chapter has been designed to shown how environmental taxes and other
economic instruments can be analysed both in environmental and energy law terms
and in tax terms. Environmental taxation law occupies a difficult terrain across what
in the UK, at least, have traditionally been regarded as entirely distinct areas of law.
Chapter 8
International Aspects
8.1 Introduction
This chapter seeks to complete the conspectus of the contexts of environmental
taxation law by locating the UK*s environmental levies and subsidies within the
framework both of international environmental law and the multilateral rules on the
taxation of international trade.
The discussion unfolds in three main stages, followed by two brief paras dealing with
subsidiary issues. Paragraph 8.2 provides a general introduction for the non-specialist
to the nature and sources of public international law. Some idea of this background
material is necessary for a full appreciation of the topics considered elsewhere in the
chapter, since the principal instrument in both the international environmental and the
international trading contexts is the treaty, or international agreement. A significant part
is played also, however, at least in the environmental context, by more controversial
concepts, such as customary international law and so-called &soft law*, including
declarations and recommendations. The principal characteristics of these sources of
law are also delineated in para. 8.2. This background material is of some significance,
in terms of the study as a whole, since it helps to explain the extent and shape of the
environmental and taxation rules applicable within the EU and its Member States.
Such internal EU issues will form the subject matter of Chapter 12 below. The main
theme of the present chapter, however, is the UK*s environmental and taxation ties, via
the law and institutions of the EU, with the world beyond the EU*s borders.
International agreements have, of course, been reached on a number of the most
serious environmental problems, most importantly air and atmospheric pollution.
Chief among these, arguably, is the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change and its eponymous Kyoto Protocol of 1997. The details of the main
agreements in this sector are explored in para. 8.3, where they are briefly related
to the economic instruments justified in the UK by reference to those agreements.1
Although there is some discussion of the main international agreements concluded
in order to control pollution by waste, this is relatively brief, since these have been
by no means as influential in the creation of the UK*s waste tax as have been the
initiatives of the European Commission. Discussion of these initiatives is accordingly
postponed to the consideration of internal EU issues in Chapter 12 below.
The third main stage of the discussion, contained in para. 8.4, seeks to locate the
UK, together with its existing green levies and subsidies, within the framework of
the 1994 revision of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (&GATT 1994*). In
doing so, it seeks to elucidate the nature of the relationship between the international
environmental agreements referred to above and the system of multilateral trade
agreements based on GATT 1994. Since UK environmental regulation, as it relates to
1 See Chapter 6 above for details of the UK*s transposition of its international and EU
obligations into domestic law.
184 Environmental Taxation Law
air and atmospheric pollution, has its origins in international environmental law then,
to the extent that regulatory instruments comprise environmental levies and subsidies,
those already in existence must be consistent with the relevant provisions of GATT
1994, while the discussion of those as yet only envisaged must take place with those
provisions in mind. Besides explaining the place of the UK*s existing environmental
taxes and other economic instruments in the environmental and trade contexts, the
present chapter therefore paves the way for the discussion of new directions in these
areas in Part IV of the book.
Prior to summing up on Part II of the book, in Chapter 9, we briefly highlight two
further relevant areas of public international law: those relating to energy and to air
transport. The international aspects of each of these areas are not major themes in Parts
III and IV but they do embody some key factors regarding the possibilities for future
policy directions, especially, in the case of air transport, in relation to international tax
or emissions trading schemes for airlines. The fact that air transport falls outside the
provisions of the Kyoto Protocol is one of the Protocol*s most striking features.
We begin this chapter, however, with a brief examination of the nature and sources of
public international law, with special relevance to examples drawn from international
environmental law and the law of international trade.
8.2 Public international law
8.2.1 Preliminary
Within the scope of public international law2 are the intersecting areas of
international environmental law and world trade law.3 The expression &international
environmental law*,4 invariably used but not universally accepted,5 is a convenient
way of describing the whole body of public and private international law relating
to environmental issues,6 much of which originates in a series of UN-sponsored
international agreements. Alongside the international agreements on the environment
is the GATT 1994-based system of multilateral agreements on international trade that
are administered by the World Trade Organization (&the WTO*).7 The extent, if any,
to which the objectives of the two sets of treaties are reconcilable is one of the great
questions of our time.8 The crux of the legal argument is that, at present, international
2 See, generally, I. Brownlie, Principles of Public International Law, 5th edn (Oxford:
Oxford University Press, 1999).
3 That is, insofar as the latter relates to the rules and institutions of the world trading system,
as opposed to the rules and principles of the conflict of laws in relation, for example, to
international contracts.
4 See Philippe Sands, Principles of International Environmental Law, 2nd edn (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2003).
5 See, for example, Brownlie, op. cit., ch. 12.
6 See Patricia Birnie and Alan Boyle, International Law and the Environment, 2nd edn
(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), pp. 1每2.
7 See para. 4.4.1 above.
8 The WTO*s position is discussed in Michael Moore, A World Without Walls 每 Freedom,
Development, Free Trade and Global Governance (Cambridge: Cambridge University
International Aspects 185
policy neither endorses any general environmental exception to the principle of free
trade, nor does it seek to give free trade priority over environmental protection.9
Public international law is usually divided into &hard law* and &soft law* components.
As set out in Art. 38 of the 1945 Statute of the International Court of Justice, the
sources of international law, that is, the &hard* law component, are:
# international conventions, whether general or particular, establishing rules expressly
recognised by the contesting states;10 (b) international custom, as evidence of a general
practice accepted as law; (c) the general principles of law recognised by civilised nations;
(d) subject to the provisions of Article 59,11 judicial decisions and the teachings of the most
highly qualified publicists of the various nations, as subsidiary means for the determination
of rules of law.
None of these forms of hard law is necessarily such as to create rights upon which
private persons can rely, nor can they invariably be used as the basis for legal action
against the state or other public authority, in the way that European legislation
may sometimes be used.12 They do, however, create rules and principles that are
enforceable between one state and another in respect of the relations between them.
It is useful briefly to describe the forms of hard law in turn, although it should
Press, 2003). Moore, a former Prime Minister of New Zealand, was the Director-General
of the WTO from 1999 to 2002. For a somewhat different view, see The Case Against the
Global Economy and for a Turn Toward the Local, ed. by J. Mander and E. Goldsmith
(San Francisco: Sierra Club Books, 1996). The problems of evaluating the arguments on
each side and of the absence of data are summarised in, for example, Gerd Winter, &The
GATT and Environmental Protection: Problems of Construction* (2003) 15 JEL 113每40
(esp. pp. 113每15).
9 Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 698. The chapter of Birnie and Boyle entitled &International
Trade and Environmental Protection* was contributed by Thomas J. Schoenbaum. As
Schoenbaum points out (Birnie and Boyle, ibid.), the preamble to the 1994 Marrakesh
Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization recognises that expanding the
production of, and trade in, goods and services, must allow for: &# the optimal use of the
world*s resources in accordance with the objective of sustainable development, seeking
both to protect and preserve the environment and to enhance the means for doing so
in a manner consistent with their respective needs and concerns at different levels of
economic development #*. See also the Rio Declaration, Principle 12, referred to in para.
8.2.6 below. The bald statement of the legal issue in the text barely does justice to the
range of economic, political and even moral issues surrounding it. For an insight into the
strength of the various arguments, see the websites of the myriad charitable and political
organisations engaged in the debate.
10 The concept of international conventions includes treaties, &acts*, &agreements*,
&covenants*, &pacts*, &protocols*, etc.
11 It is by virtue of Art. 59 that the decisions of the ICJ have no binding force except as
between the parties and in respect of the case under consideration.
12 Stuart Bell and Donald McGillivray, Ball and Bell on Environmental Law: The Law and
Policy relating to the Protection of the Environment, 5th edn (London: Blackstone Press,
2000), p. 91. For the direct effect of EU law and actions for damages against Member
States, see, for example, Stephen Weatherill and Paul Beaumont, EU Law, 3rd edn
(London: Penguin, 1999), ch. 11.
186 Environmental Taxation Law
perhaps be stressed that, among the five, treaties and custom are the main sources of
international law in general.13
8.2.2 Treaties
Treaties are defined in the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties14 as
&international agreements concluded between states in written form and governed
by international law, whether embodied in a single instrument or in two or more
related instruments and whatever their particular designation*.15 The basic principle
of the law of treaties is that a treaty cannot be applied until it has been ratified
and come into force.16 The process of ratifying, and hence, of the coming into
force of a treaty, can 每 unless the two take place at the same time17 每 be a slow
and painful one. As an extreme example, the 1997 Kyoto Protocol18 to the 1992
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change19 (always referred to
as &the Kyoto Protocol*) provided that the Protocol would enter into force on the
ninetieth day after the date on which not less than 55 parties to the 1992 Convention,
including those that accounted in total for at least 55 per cent of the total 1990 carbon
dioxide emissions of those parties, had deposited their instruments of ratification,
acceptance or accession.20 The law and procedure applicable to making, operating
and terminating treaties21 are contained in the 1969 Vienna Convention. The most
recent multilateral environmental agreements (&MEAs*) have been signed by the EU,
as the relevant regional economic integration organisation.22 This means that both
the EU and its Member States may be parties to the MEA in question. In the case of
the Kyoto Protocol, the burden of the EU*s commitment to an 8 per cent reduction
in greenhouse gas emissions by 2010 is thus shared between the EU Member States
under a so-called &burden-sharing agreement*.23
13 Anthony Aust, Modern Treaty Law and Practice (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 2000), p. 10.
14 The 1969 Vienna Convention was drafted by the International Law Commission, a
body established in 1947 by the UN General Assembly, with the object of promoting
the progressive development of international law and its codification (see Aust, op. cit.,
pp. 6每7).
15 1969 Vienna Convention, Art. 2(1)(a).
16 Ibid., Art. 26.
17 Aust, op. cit., p. 75.
18 (1998) 37 ILM 22.
19 (1992) 31 ILM 851.
20 Kyoto Protocol, Art. 25(1).
21 Although the 1969 Vienna Convention does not apply to oral agreements, this does not
affect the legal force of such agreements, &or the application to them of any of the rules in
the Convention to which they would be subject under international law independently of
the Convention, such as customary international law* (see 1969 Vienna Convention, Art.
3 and Aust, op. cit., pp. 7 and 16).
22 See Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 87.
23 See now Council Decision 02/358/EC, (2002) OJ L130 1. Article 4 of the Kyoto Protocol
allowed parties thereto to fulfil their commitments thereunder jointly; EU Member States
accordingly entered into the burden-sharing agreement of 16每17 June 1998 (Doc. 9702/98
International Aspects 187
Recent developments in the interpretation of GATT 1994 have indicated that
GATT 1994 should be interpreted, not in accordance with GATT 1994 interpretation
norms, but with the provisions of Arts 31每33 of the 1969 Vienna Convention.24 The
principles contained in these articles, headed &Interpretation of Treaties*, may briefly
be summarised as follows:
1 Article 31(1) provides for the interpretation of treaties &in good faith in accordance
with the ordinary meaning to be given to the terms of the treaty in their context
and in the light of its object and purpose*; Art. 31(2) then states what the context
comprises; and Art. 31(3) specifies what, together with the context, must be taken
into account, that is: &any subsequent agreement between the parties regarding the
interpretation of the treaty or the application of its provisions;25 any subsequent
practice in the application of the treaty which establishes the agreement of the
parties regarding its interpretation;26 and any relevant rules of international law
applicable in the relations between the parties*.27
2 Article 32 allows recourse to supplementary means of interpretation (including
travaux pr谷paratoires) to confirm the meaning resulting from the application of
Art. 31 or to determine the meaning where interpretation under Art. 31 leaves the
meaning ambiguous or obscure or leads to a manifestly absurd or unreasonable
result.
3 Generally speaking, by Art. 33, a treaty is equally authoritative in each language
in which it has been authenticated.
8.2.3 Customary international law
Customary international law, the second source of hard law referred to in Art. 38 of
the ICJ statute, consists of two elements: &(1) a general convergence in the practice of
states from which one can extract a norm (standard of conduct); and (2) opinio juris,
the belief by states that the norm is legally binding on them*.28 Such a definition
needs only to be stated for it to be evident that the ascertainment of the relevant
custom in a particular case is potentially fraught with difficulty, involving, as it
may, both research and the exercise of careful judgment.29 As to (1), the practice of
states is thought to cover any act or statements by a state from which views about
of 19 June 1998, Annex I). The burden-sharing agreement actually allows Greece, Spain,
Iceland, Portugal and Sweden to increase their greenhouse gas emissions, these being
offset by greater than expected reductions in other Member States, notably the UK! (see
Maurice Sunkin, David Ong and Robert Wight, Sourcebook on Environmental Law, 2nd
edn (London: Cavendish, 2002), pp. 99, 143 and 148). See further P.G.G. Davies, &Global
warming and the Kyoto Protocol* (1998) 47 ICLQ 446每61.
24 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 704, and paras 8.4.2(2) and 8.4.2(3) below.
25 1969 Vienna Convention, Art. 31(3)(a).
26 Ibid., Art. 31(3)(b).
27 Ibid., Art. 31(3)(c).
28 Aust, op. cit., p. 10. See Malcolm Shaw, International Law, 5th edn (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2003), pp. 65每92.
29 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 16.
188 Environmental Taxation Law
customary law may be inferred30 whilst, as to (2), the belief that the practice is
obligatory by virtue of the existence of a rule of law requiring it, is a subjective
requirement.31 To customary international law may be owed, in the environmental
context, the precautionary principle or &precautionary approach*, the polluter pays
principle32 and the preventive principle. Principle 15 of the 1992 Declaration of
the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, made at the UN
Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 (&the
Rio Declaration*)33 states that:
In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied
by states according to their capabilities. Where there are threats of serious or irreversible
damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing costeffective
measures to prevent environmental degradation.
In his dissenting opinion in a famous ICJ decision,34 one judge described the
precautionary approach as one that was gaining increasing support as part of the
international law of the environment.35 As to the polluter pays principle, this is
reflected in Principle 16 of the Rio Declaration, which runs as follows:
National authorities should endeavour to promote the internalisation of environmental costs
and the use of economic instruments, taking into account the approach that the polluter
should, in principle, bear the cost of pollution, with due regard to the public interest and
without distorting international trade and investment.
The 1990 International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation,
as well as the 1992 Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial
Accidents, referred to the polluter pays principle as &# a general principle of international
environmental law*.36 The principle has for long been promoted by the OECD37 and
is specifically referred to in Art. 174(2), European Treaty (ex 130r) as one of the bases
30 See M. Akehurst, &Custom as a Source of International Law* (1974每75) 47 BYIL 1.
31 See Nicaragua v. US, [1986] ICJ Rep. 14, 108每109.
32 See Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 92.
33 UN Doc. A/CONF151/26/Rev. 1, reproduced in Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 69.
34 Request for an Examination of the Situation in Accordance with Paragraph 63 of the
Court*s Judgment in the 1974 Nuclear Tests case, [1995] ICJ Rep. 288.
35 [1995] ICJ Rep. 288, 342 (Judge Weeramantry).
36 In the US, this has been taken to surprising lengths, under the &Carter Act* (Comprehensive
Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act 1980), for instance resulting
in a UK investment trust, Fleming American Investment Trust plc, which had owned a
factory nearly a century before, in a previous guise, having to contribute towards the
clean-up costs.
37 See, for example, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Environmentally-Related Taxes in OECD Countries: Issues and Strategies (Paris: OECD,
2001), p. 16, which contains the OECD*s definition of the polluter pays principle, as
originally expressed by the organisation in 1972. The OECD there emphasises that, in the
context of environmentally related taxation, the principle is a non-subsidisation principle,
&meaning simply that governments should not as a general rule give subsidies to their
industries for pollution control* (ibid.).
International Aspects 189
of Community policy on the environment. Finally, the preventive principle, that is, the
prohibition of any activity which actually causes, or will cause, environmental damage
or pollution,38 is reflected in Principle 2 of the Rio Declaration:
States have, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and the principles of
international law, the sovereign right to exploit their own resources pursuant to their own
environmental and developmental policies, and the responsibility to ensure that activities
within their jurisdiction or control do not cause damage to the environment of other states
or of areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction.39
8.2.4 General principles of law
General principles of law recognised by civilised nations are the third source of law
referred to in Art. 38 of the Statute of the ICJ. It is unclear whether the reference
here is to the principles of international law (for example, as to the freedom of the
seas) or simply to the principles of domestic legal systems (for example, as to the
admissibility of evidence in legal proceedings). It appears, however, that this source
is most frequently used, when it is used at all, in order to reason from analogy in
relation, for example, to rules of procedure, evidence and jurisdiction. &General
principles of law* thus have little specific application to environmental issues but are
of general significance in international law.40
8.2.5 Judicial decisions and jurisprudential writing
Finally, Art. 38 of the ICJ statute refers to &judicial decisions and the teachings of
the most highly qualified publicists of the various nations, as subsidiary means for
the determination of rules of law*. This is expressly subject to Art. 59 of the ICJ
statute, which provides that the decisions of the ICJ have no binding force, &except
as between the parties and in respect of the case under consideration*. Subject to
this qualification, the judicial decisions referred to here are those of the ICJ itself; of
other international courts (including arbitral tribunals);41 of the European Court of
Human Rights;42 of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea43 and of the
38 See Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 49.
39 See also Principle 21 of the 1972 Stockholm Declaration of the United Nations Conference
on the Human Environment, reproduced in Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 63.
40 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 20.
41 See Brownlie, op. cit., pp. 19每24 and Robert Jennings, &The Judiciary, International and
National, and the Development of International Law* (1996) 45 ICLQ 1每12. But see the
comment in Bowett*s Law of International Institutions, ed. by Philippe Sands and Pierre
Klein, 5th edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 2001), para. 13每042, where the learned
editors note that: &What the Court has not done is refer to judgments of other international
courts, no doubt bearing in mind its position as the ※principal judicial organ of the United
Nations§. Whether this approach is tenable over the long term, given the increased
specialisation of various areas of international law, remains unclear*.
42 See para. 4.3.7 above.
43 Set up under the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention, Annex VI (not discussed elsewhere in
this book).
190 Environmental Taxation Law
national courts of particular states.44 With regard to the writings of publicists, besides
including the writings of eminent international lawyers, these may also include
reports of international codification bodies, such as, for example, the International
Law Commission.
8.2.6 Soft law
Besides the various sources of hard law, there is what is usually referred to as &soft
law*. The idea behind the terminology is to show that the relevant document is not
law as such but that specific attention must be accorded to it because of the influence
that it exerts on the international scene. Bell and McGillivray draw together a number
of examples of soft law. It is characterised, they say, by the fact that &# it contains
general norms rather than specific rules # [and] provides a guide as to how disputes
might be resolved rather than hard-and-fast rules applying to specific situations*.45
Their list of examples consists of the following:
1 declarations;
2 principles;
3 recommendations; and
4 standards.46
Two of these merit some comment in the present context. Besides reflecting the
agreed aspirations of the international community, declarations also contribute to the
creation of customary international law and the consolidation of existing customs. The
Rio Declaration, setting out 27 Principles of international environmental law, which
together constitute the main outlines of the concept of sustainable development,47
is a key example of this form of soft law. Principles 2 (the preventive principle), 15
(the precautionary principle) and 16 (the polluter pays principle) have already been
mentioned. Other Principles of some importance in the present context are Principles
12 and 17. Principle 12 reads as follows:
States should co-operate to promote a supportive and open international economic
system that would lead to economic growth and sustainable development in all countries,
to better address the problems of environmental degradation. Trade policy measures
for environmental purposes should not constitute a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable
discrimination or a disguised restriction on international trade. Unilateral actions to deal
with environmental challenges outside the jurisdiction of the importing country should
be avoided. Environmental measures addressing transboundary or global environmental
problems should, as far as possible, be based on an international consensus.
44 See para. 4.2.1.5 above.
45 Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 94.
46 That is, other than those that do have the force of law, for example, Community regulations
that impose standards (see, for example, John F. McEldowney and Sharron McEldowney,
Environmental Law and Regulation (London: Blackstone Press, 2001), esp. pp. 12每14).
47 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., pp. 44每47.
International Aspects 191
Principle 17 provides for environmental impact assessments (&EIAs*):48
Environmental impact assessment, as a national instrument, shall be undertaken for
proposed activities that are likely to have a significant adverse impact on the environment
and are subject to a decision of a competent national authority.
As to recommendations, also of some significance in the present study are OECD
recommendations on the development of environmental policy. These include the
1991 OECD Council Recommendation on the use of economic instruments in
environmental policy,49 which sought to make a general case for the more consistent
and extended use of economic instruments. Amongst its main exhortations were the
following:
that Member countries:
i. make a greater and more consistent use of economic instruments as a complement or a
substitute to other policy instruments such as regulations, taking into account national
socio-economic conditions;
ii. work towards improving the allocation and efficient use of natural and environmental
resources by means of economic instruments so as to better reflect the social cost of
using these resources;
iii. make effort to reach further agreement at international level on the use of environmental
policy instruments with respect to solving regional or global environmental problems
as well as ensuring sustainable development #
The special importance of such a Council Recommendation is that it is a unanimous
recommendation from OECD member governments to themselves.50
8.3 International environmental law
Having illustrated the main sources of public international law by reference to the
environment and international trade, we now turn to look in somewhat more detail at
MEAs in two sectors: air and atmospheric pollution and the disposal of waste. The
discussion of each of these topics will then be related to the economic instruments
which have been deployed in the UK to assist in the achievement of that country*s
obligations under international law.
48 See paras 6.2.4 above and 12.2.4 below.
49 Recommendation of the Council on the Use of Economic Instruments in Environmental
Policy, 31 January 1991 每 C(90)177/Final. See Organisation for Economic Co-operation
and Development, Environmental Policy: How to Apply Economic Instruments (Paris:
OECD, 1991). See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
50 See Bowett, op. cit., para. 11每007; also, David Williams, EC Tax Law (Longman: London,
1998), p. 11.
192 Environmental Taxation Law
8.3.1 Air and atmospheric pollution
8.3.1.1 Introduction
Reference has already been made to the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention
on Climate Change, as well as to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol thereto.51 These are
considered in somewhat more detail in the present para., together with (briefly):
1 the 1979 Geneva Convention for the Control of Long-Range Transboundary Air
Pollution (&the 1979 Geneva Convention*)52 and its related Protocols;
2 the 1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer;53 and
3 the 1987 Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.54
Before describing the treaty sources of air and atmospheric pollution regulation,
it is important to note the principle of customary international law applied in the
famous Trail Smelter arbitration.55
8.3.1.2 The Trail Smelter arbitration
Still the only example of an international adjudication on transboundary air pollution,
the Trail Smelter arbitration saw the application by the arbitral tribunal of the principle
that:
# no state has the right to use or permit the use of its territory in such a manner as to cause
injury by fumes in or to the territory of another or the properties or persons therein, when
the case is of serious consequence and the injury is established by clear and convincing
evidence.56
The arbitral tribunal had been established to determine whether damage had been
caused in the state of Washington by smoke emissions from a smelter located in
Canada, seven miles from the US border. If it had, then the tribunal had to decide
the level of compensation that had to be paid and the measures that had to be taken
in order to prevent further damage. Having determined the causation question on
scientific evidence, and in reliance on the principle extracted above, the tribunal went
on to lay down a regime for the operation of the smelter in the future, in reliance on
a precursor to the preventive principle.57 The nature of the Trail Smelter principle,
applicable as it is only in claims between states, has meant that it has been of limited
utility,58 although it seems to be a good basis for a general principle that customary
51 See paras 8.1 and 8.2.2 above.
52 (1979) 18 ILM 1442.
53 (1987) 26 ILM 1529.
54 Ibid., 1550. This is generally taken to be a particularly successful agreement.
55 (1939) 33 AJIL 182 and (1941) 35 AJIL 684.
56 (1941) 35 AJIL 684, 716.
57 See para. 8.2.3 above.
58 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 505.
International Aspects 193
international law forbids one state from significantly harming another*s environment
through transboundary pollution.
8.3.1.3 The 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
Together with the Convention on Biological Diversity,59 the 1992 United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change (&the Framework Convention*)60
was opened for signature at the United Nations* Conference on Environment
and Development at Rio de Janeiro in 1992 (the conference known as &the Earth
Summit*). Having entered into force in March 1994, the Framework Convention has
now been signed by 166 parties, 188 parties having ratified it, accepted it, approved
it or acceded to it.61 Article 2 of the Framework Convention states its objective as
being the:
# stabilisation of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would
prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Such a level should
be achieved within a time frame sufficient to allow eco-systems to adapt naturally to
climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened and to enable economic
development to proceed in a sustainable manner.
Among other things, by Art. 4 of the Framework Convention, the states parties
undertake to:
1 develop, periodically update and publish national inventories of anthropogenic
emissions by sources and removals by sinks of all greenhouse gases not controlled
by the Montreal Protocol;62
2 &formulate, implement, publish and regularly update national and, where
appropriate, regional programmes containing measures to mitigate climate
change*;63
3 &promote and cooperate in the development, application and diffusion #
of technologies, practices and processes that control, reduce or prevent
anthropogenic emissions* as above in all relevant sectors, including the energy,
transport, industry, agriculture, forestry and waste management sectors;64
4 &promote sustainable management and conservation of all greenhouse gases not
controlled by the Montreal Protocol, including biomass, forests and oceans as
well as other terrestrial, c,oastal and marine eco-systems*;65
59 (1992) 31 ILM 818.
60 (1992) 31 ILM 851.
61 That is, as at 23 September 2004 (see www.unfccc.de/resource/convkp.html). Acceptance
and approval has the same effect as ratification and accession has the same effect
ratification but is not preceded by signature (see Aust, op. cit., p. xxxiii).
62 Framework Convention, Art. 4(1)(a). For the Montreal Protocol, see para. 8.3.1.5
below.
63 Framework Convention, Art. 4(1)(b).
64 Ibid., Art. 4(1)(c).
65 Ibid., Art. 4(1)(d).
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5 so far as feasible for the states parties so to do, to take climate change considerations
into account in policy-making:
# and employ appropriate methods, for example impact assessments, formulated and
determined nationally, with a view to minimising adverse effects on the economy, on
public health and on the quality of the environment, of projects or measures undertaken by
them to mitigate or adapt to climate change; #66
6 promote and cooperate in scientific, technological, technical, socioeconomic and
other research related to the climate system;67 and
7 &promote and cooperate in education, training and public awareness related to
climate change and encourage the widest participation in this process*.68
By Art. 4(2) of the Framework Convention, developed country parties, as well as
certain other parties,69 commit themselves to taking the lead in modifying longer-term
trends in anthropogenic emissions consistent with the objective of the Convention
and specifically to &adopt national policies and take corresponding measures on the
mitigation of climate change, by limiting # anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse
gases and protecting and enhancing # greenhouse gas sinks and reservoirs*.70
Under Art. 4(2)(b) of the Framework Convention, the same parties must submit
within six months of the Framework Convention coming into force, and periodically
thereafter, detailed information on the matters referred to above, &with the aim of
returning individually or jointly to their 1990 levels these anthropogenic emissions
of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases not controlled by the Montreal
Protocol*.71 This information, continues Art. 4(2)(b), will be periodically reviewed
by the Conference of the Parties.
Financial resources to enable the developing country parties to meet their obligations
and to assist them in coping with the effects of climate change are to be provided by
the developed country parties72 under Arts 2(3) and 2(4). By Art. 4(8), the parties
agree to give full consideration to what actions are necessary under the Framework
Convention to assist developing country parties that may be, for example, small
island countries, countries with low-lying coastal areas, countries prone to natural
disasters, etc.
Article 7 establishes the Conference of the Parties as the supreme body of the
Framework Convention, with the function of reviewing its implementation, etc, and
(by Art. 8) a secretariat is to be established, together with a subsidiary body for
scientific and technological advice and a subsidiary body for implementation.73
66 Ibid., Art. 4(1)(f).
67 Ibid., Art. 4(1)(g).
68 Ibid., Art. 4(1)(i).
69 Ibid., Annex I.
70 Ibid., Art. 2(a).
71 Ibid., Art. 2(b).
72 Ibid., Annex II.
73 Ibid., Arts 9 and 10.
International Aspects 195
8.3.1.4 The Kyoto Protocol
The 1997 Kyoto Protocol74 to the Framework Convention, although notoriously not
yet in force,75 sets out the detail of the legally-binding greenhouse gas (&GHG*)
emissions reduction targets. Article 3 provides, in part:
1. The Parties included in Annex I76 shall, individually or jointly, ensure that their aggregate
anthropogenic carbon dioxide equivalent emissions of the greenhouse gases listed in Annex
A do not exceed their assigned amounts, calculated pursuant to their quantified emission
limitation and reduction commitments inscribed in Annex B and in accordance with the
provisions of this Article, with a view to reducing their overall emissions of such gases by
at least 5 per cent below 1990 levels in the commitment period 2008 to 2012.
2. Each Party included in Annex I shall, by 2005, have made demonstrable progress in
achieving its commitments under this Protocol #
The GHGs listed in Annex A are six in number:
1 carbon dioxide (CO2);
2 methane (CH4);
3 nitrous oxide (N2O);
4 hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs);
5 perfluorocarbons (PFCs); and
6 sulphur hexafluoride (SF6).
Annex B contains differentiated targets for the Annex I parties with, for example, the
EU having a reduction target of 8 per cent, the US 7 per cent and Japan 6 per cent. In
this connection, it should be noted that, under the burden-sharing agreement referred
to above,77 the EU*s 8 per cent commitment is translated into a commitment on the
part of the UK to reduce its 1990 levels of all greenhouse gases by 12.5 per cent by
2010.78
Besides detailing the targets, however, the Kyoto Protocol also includes provisions
for the parties to use economic instruments to achieve their targets (the so-called
&Kyoto flexible mechanisms*), including the following:
1 emissions trading schemes;
2 joint implementation (&JI*); and
3 the Clean Development Mechanism (&the CDM*).79
74 (1998) 37 ILM 22.
75 That is, as at December 2004. See para. 20.2 below.
76 That is, to the Framework Convention (see para. 8.3.1.3 above). See also para. 4.4.3n
above (Annex I parties).
77 See para. 8.2.2n above.
78 See Chapter 12 below and para. 8.2.2n above.
79 See Scott Barrett, &Political Economy of the Kyoto Protocol*, in Environmental Policy:
Objectives, Instruments, and Implementation, ed. by Dieter Helm (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2000), pp. 111每41.
196 Environmental Taxation Law
Emissions trading schemes are provided for by Art. 17, which states:
The Conference of the Parties shall define the relevant principles, modalities, rules and
guidelines, in particular for verification, reporting and accountability for emissions trading.
The Parties included in Annex B may participate in emissions trading for the purposes of
fulfilling their commitments under Article 3. Any such trading shall be supplemental to
domestic actions for the purpose of meeting quantified emission limitation and reduction
commitments under that Article.
Joint implementation, provided for by Art. 6, allows the parties listed in Annex I to
the Framework Convention, for the purpose of meeting their commitments under
Art. 3, to:
# transfer to, or acquire from, any other such Party emission reduction units [&ERUs*]
resulting from projects aimed at reducing anthropogenic emissions by sources or enhancing
anthropogenic removals by sinks of greenhouse gases in any sector of the economy.
The exercise of this power is subject to a number of provisos, including those that any
such project must have the approval of the parties involved and that the acquisition
of ERUs be supplemental to domestic actions for meeting Art. 3 commitments.80
Theoretically at least, such JI projects are a cost-efficient way for global targets
to be achieved since, at the margin, it is cheaper for some countries to abate their
greenhouse gases compared to other countries.81
The CDM, which is defined in Art. 12, has the stated purpose of assisting non-Annex
I parties to achieve sustainable development and to contribute to the Framework
Convention*s ultimate objective,82 whilst also assisting Annex I parties to meet their
commitments under Art. 3.83 This is to be achieved through the method elaborated
in Art. 12(3), by which non-Annex I parties benefit from project activities resulting
in certified emission reductions, that is, &credits*, which credits may then be used by
Annex I parties to contribute to compliance with part of their quantified emission
limitation and reduction commitments under Art. 3.
A major source of GHG emissions, of course, is international civil aviation. Of the
six GHGs listed in Annex A to the Kyoto Protocol, the most relevant to aviation is
carbon dioxide. Article 2(2) of the Protocol gives the Annex I parties responsibility
for limiting or reducing GHG emissions from aviation bunker fuels, international
aviation emissions being excluded from the Protocol*s emissions reduction targets.
This is to be achieved by working through the ICAO,84 the relevant UN specialised
agency.
80 Kyoto Protocol, Arts 6(1)(a) and 6(1)(d).
81 See A.D. Ellerman, H.D. Jacoby and A. Decaux, The Effects on Developing Countries
of the Kyoto Protocol and Carbon Dioxide Emissions Trading (Washington DC: World
Bank Policy Research Paper 2019, 2000). See also Zhong Xiang Zhang, &Greenhouse Gas
Emissions Trading and the World Trading System* (1998) 32 JWT 219每39.
82 See para. 8.3.1.3 above.
83 Kyoto Protocol, Art. 12(2).
84 See para. 4.4.3 above.
International Aspects 197
8.3.1.5 Other relevant agreements
It remains briefly to consider the other treaties referred to above, that is, the 1979
Geneva Convention and its related Protocols; the 1985 Vienna Convention for the
Protection of the Ozone Layer;85 and the 1987 Montreal Protocol on Substances that
Deplete the Ozone Layer.86
The 1979 Geneva Convention for the Control of Long-Range Transboundary
Air Pollution (&the 1979 Geneva Convention*)87 came into force in 1983. It is &the
only major regional multilateral agreement devoted to the regulation and control
of transboundary air pollution*,88 and was negotiated through the United Nations
Economic Commission for Europe (&UNECE*).89 It applies to pollution having
&adverse effects in the area under the jurisdiction of another state at such a distance
that it is not generally possible to distinguish the contribution of individual emission
sources or groups of sources*.90 The contracting parties promise only to &endeavour
to limit and, as far as possible, gradually reduce and prevent air pollution including
long-range transboundary air pollution*.91 However, each contracting party also
&# undertakes to develop the best policies and strategies including air quality
management systems, and, as part of them, control measures compatible with
balanced development, in particular by using the best available technology which is
economically feasible and low and non-waste technology*.92 The institutions of the
1979 Geneva Convention comprise an executive body, made up of environmental
advisers to UNECE governments93 and a secretariat provided by the UNECE.94 So
far, five protocols related to the 1979 Geneva Convention have entered into force,95
with three others having been adopted.96
85 (1987) 26 ILM 1529.
86 Ibid., 1550.
87 (1979) 18 ILM 1442.
88 Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 508.
89 See www.unece.org.
90 1979 Geneva Convention, Art. 1(b).
91 Ibid., Art. 2.
92 Ibid., Art. 6.
93 Ibid., Art. 10.
94 Ibid., Art. 11.
95 That is, the 1984 Geneva Protocol on Long-term Financing of the Co-operative Programme
for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-Range Transmission of Air Pollutants in
Europe, (1985) 24 ILM 484; the 1985 Helsinki Protocol on the Reduction of Sulphur
Emissions or Their Transboundary Fluxes, (1988) 27 ILM 707; the 1988 Sofia Protocol
Concerning the Control of Emissions of Nitrogen Oxides or Their Transboundary Fluxes,
(1989) 28 ILM 212; the 1991 Geneva Protocol Concerning the Control of Emissions of
Volatile Organic Compounds or Their Transboundary Fluxes, (1992) 31 ILM 568; and the
1994 Oslo Second Protocol on the Further Reduction of Sulphur Emissions, (1994) 33
ILM 1540.
96 The Protocol on Heavy Metals and the Protocol on Persistent Organic Pollutants (see
www.unece.org/env).
198 Environmental Taxation Law
The 1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer97 and its
1987 Montreal Protocol98 were negotiated under the auspices of the United Nations
Environment Programme (&UNEP*).99 In advance of firm scientific proof as to harm
to the ozone layer caused by chlorofluorocarbons (&CFCs*), the Convention seeks
to address increasing concerns over the possibility. Parties are to take &appropriate
measures*, including the adoption of legislation and administrative controls, to
protect human health and the environment &# against adverse effects resulting
or likely to result from human activities which modify or are likely to modify the
ozone layer*.100 The 1987 Montreal Protocol to the Convention sets clear targets for
reducing and ultimately eliminating consumption of ozone damaging chemicals.
8.3.1.6 UK domestic law
In order to meet its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol, as translated into the
European context by the EU*s burden-sharing agreement,101 the UK has introduced
three economic instruments: climate change levy, the UK ETS and the Renewables
Obligation (&RO*), a structure for trading in renewable energy supply obligations.
Climate change levy has been outlined in para. 1.4.2.2(1) above and is discussed in
detail in Chapter 14 below. The UK ETS was introduced in para. 1.4.2.2(2) above and
is discussed in detail in Chapter 20 below. The RO was outlined in paras 1.4.2.2(4)
and 6.4.3.1(2)(a) above and is discussed in para. 21.5 below. The EU ETS, also
having Kyoto-based objectives, has been outlined at para. 1.4.2.2(3) above and is
discussed in detail in Chapter 28 below.
8.3.2 International transportation and dumping of waste
The regulation of waste by international agreement has concentrated on two principal
aspects:
1 the transport of, and trade in, waste between countries; and
2 the disposal of waste outside national jurisdictions, that is, on the high seas.102
In addition, whilst the definition of the concept of waste in EU law is a relatively
wide one, public international law on waste concentrates on hazardous waste.
The reasons for these emphases are not hard to discern: sensitivities concerning
national sovereignty and the problems of opportunities for arbitrage. As to the
former, any treaty designed to regulate the transport and disposal of waste within the
jurisdictions of states would constrain unacceptably the freedom of action of national
governments.103 As to arbitrage, costs of waste disposal rose with the tightening of
97 (1987) 26 ILM 1529.
98 (1987) 26 ILM 1550.
99 See www.unep.org.
100 1985 Vienna Convention, Art. 2 (see para. 12.2.6.2 below).
101 See para. 8.3.1.4 above.
102 See Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 343.
103 Ibid., p. 344.
International Aspects 199
disposal regulation in the US and Europe. The result of this was that hazardous wastes
were historically either dumped at sea or exported to less developed countries where,
because of lower standards, disposal costs were less.104 International measures taken
to address these problems lie outside the scope of the present study. Since, however,
they would be a relevant element in assessing the feasibility of some form of global
economic instrument, a brief indication of their nature and scope is justifiable here.
There are four key measures:105
1 the 1972 Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of
Wastes and Other Matter (&the London Dumping Convention*);106
2 the 1989 Basel Convention on the Control of Trans-boundary Movements of
Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal (&the 1989 Basel Convention*);107
3 the 1999 Basel Protocol on Liability and Compensation for Damage Resulting
from Trans-boundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal (&the
Basel Protocol*);108 and
4 the 1991 Bamako Convention.109
Revised in 1993, the London Dumping Convention (&the LDC*) will eventually be
replaced by a 1996 Protocol, although the latter is not yet in force.110 The LDC operates
within the general principles laid down in the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of
the Sea (&the UNCLOS*). Under the LDC, the states parties are obliged to take all
practicable steps to prevent the pollution of the sea by the dumping of waste and other
hazardous matter, such dumping being prohibited or regulated according to which of
three lists a particular substance belongs. Besides the UNCLOS and the LDC, there
are a number of agreements relating to specific regions, that is, to the North Sea, the
Baltic, the North East Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the South Pacific.
The 1989 Basel Convention, although not accepted by African states, attempts to
establish a global regime for the control of international trade in hazardous and other
wastes.111 It confirms the sovereign right to ban imports, whether on a unilateral,
bilateral or regional basis, but the exercise of this right must be notified to the other
parties through the Convention*s Secretariat;112 it promotes disposal at source and
104 See Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., p. 467.
105 But note also (not discussed in the text) the 1989 Lom谷 IV Convention made between the
EU and a group of African, Caribbean and Pacific countries (prohibits export of hazardous
wastes from the EU to these countries) and the 1991 and 1994 Decisions by OECD
Member States prohibiting trade in hazardous wastes, whether for disposal or recycling
and/or recovery, between themselves and non-OECD countries (OECD Decisions I/22
(1992) and II/12 (1994)).
106 (1972) 11 ILM 1294.
107 (1989) 28 ILM 657.
108 Reproduced in Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 369每80. Not yet in force. Described
in Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., pp. 435每6.
109 (1991) 30 ILM 775.
110 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 420.
111 1989 Basel Convention, Art. 1.
112 Ibid., Preamble and Art. 4(1)(a).
200 Environmental Taxation Law
embodies the principle of minimising the generation of hazardous waste;113 and,
most significantly, in the conduct of international trade in hazardous wastes, the 1989
Basel Convention requires the prior, informed and written consent of both transit
and import states.114 The Basel Protocol, adopted in 1999 but not yet in force,115
provides for liability (strict and otherwise) for environmental damage arising from
international trade in hazardous wastes.
As mentioned above, African states did not accept the 1989 Basel Convention.
Rather than being parties to a compromise between regarding trade in waste as an
emerging market opportunity or a growing environmental threat, they decided, in the
Bamako Convention, to ban imports of hazardous wastes into Africa from non-parties
altogether,116 and to regulate trade in waste among African states themselves.
Whilst none of the above is of direct relevance to the existing pattern of economic
instruments in UK waste regulation,117 it may become relevant if moves for global
regulation of waste disposal using economic instruments118 gather momentum.
Noting the problems surrounding international waste regulation mentioned above,
however, it is not surprising that &soft* forms of public international law have had
a part to play in the international regulation of waste disposal. In this connection,
the influence of the OECD has been decisive. Reference has already been made to
the 1991 OECD Council Recommendation on the use of economic instruments in
environmental policy.119 Specifically in relation to waste management, it made five
recommendations, covering financing (user) charges, emission charges, product
charges and deposit-refund systems.120
8.4 International trade law
The legal implications of the intersection of the various types of agreement discussed
above, of their consequent implementation and reflection in national policies and their
relationship with the regulation of world trade, are extremely complex.121 This part
113 1989 Basel Convention, Art. 4.
114 Ibid., Arts 4 and 6.
115 See S.D. Murphy, &Prospective Liability Regimes for the Transboundary Movement of
Hazardous Wastes* (1994) 88 AJIL 24每75.
116 Bamako Convention, Art. 4(1). The prohibition is confined to non-parties to the Bamako
Convention and membership of the Convention is restricted to Member States of the
Organisation of African Unity (&OAU*), since March 2001 the African Union (not
discussed elsewhere in this book).
117 See para. 6.3 above.
118 Such as the Austrian waste tax.
119 See para. 8.2.6 above.
120 OECD Council Recommendation C(90)177/Final, January 31, 1991, paras 41每45 (see
para. 1.2.1.5 above).
121 See Ole Kristian Fauchald, Environmental Taxes and Trade Discrimination (London:
Kluwer Law International, 1998). For a brief, although extremely useful account, see
Michael J. Trebilcock and Robert Howse, The Regulation of International Trade, 2nd edn
(London: Routledge, 1999), ch. 15. The classic account of GATT 1994/WTO in English
is John H. Jackson*s The World Trading System, 2nd edn (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press,
International Aspects 201
of the chapter cannot, of course, attempt an exhaustive analysis of this conjunction.
The aim of this next main part of the chapter is a much more modest one: it is simply
to show why and how, as an EU Member State, the UK*s environmental taxes and
other economic instruments, introduced pursuant to the international agreements
discussed above, are subject to the discipline of GATT 1994122 and its associated
Uruguay Round agreements.123
As a preliminary to that discussion, a brief overview of the most relevant GATT
1994 articles may be useful. Besides reminding the reader of the outlines of world
trade law, these should also be useful in drawing attention to the close correspondence
between the GATT discipline and the rules for intra-EU trade contained in the
European Treaty.124
a. GATT 1994, Art. I, provides for general most-favoured nation treatment;
b. GATT 1994, Art. II, provides for schedules of concessions (or &bindings*) with
regard to customs duty rates and the freezing of rates of other duties and charges.
Article II has some significance in the context of environmental levies and is
considered in greater detail below;
c. GATT 1994, Art. III, bans protective and discriminatory internal tax and
protective quantitive regulations. Article III is deeply significant in the context
of environmental taxes and is subjected to detailed analysis below. Similar
prohibitions, as Lyons points out,125 are to be found in Arts 90 and 28, European
Treaty (ex 95 and 30);126
d. GATT 1994, Art. VI &permits the imposition of anti-dumping and countervailing
duties*, a possibility with which the basic EC measures are consistent. Again, this
is of potential significance in relation to economic instruments and is considered
below;
e. GATT 1994, Art. XVI, contains provisions limiting state subsidies, which are
again mirrored in the European Treaty (see Arts 87 and 88 (ex 92 and 93));127
and
f. GATT 1994, Art. XX, contains general exceptions to GATT, including those
which are sometimes described as the &environmental exceptions*, although it
1997), although, possibly since it predates many of the developments discussed in para.
8.4.2 below, it somewhat understates environmental issues in the context of the system it
describes.
122 See Kirsten Borgsmidt, &Ecotaxes in the Framework of Community Law* [1999] EELR
270每81.
123 GATT 1994 and its associated Uruguay Round agreements, as well as decisions of the
Appellate Body from 1996 onwards, are available from the WTO website, that is, www.
wto.org. For a hard copy version of the agreements, see World Trade Organization, The
Legal Texts: the Results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations (New
York: Cambridge University Press, 1999).
124 Grateful acknowledgement is made to a similar survey in Timothy Lyons*s EC Customs
Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), p. 14, to which the present paragraph is
indebted.
125 See Lyons, op. cit., p. 14.
126 See paras 12.3.3.1 below and 12.4 below.
127 See para. 12.2.7 below.
202 Environmental Taxation Law
should be noted that the term &environment* does not appear. The relevance of
Art. XX to the present area is both obvious and intricate and is revisited in detail
below.
The discussion in para. 8.4 begins by examining how the GATT 1994 rules constrain
the freedom of action of member countries, including Member States of the EU,
with regard to fiscal policy (see para. 8.4.1 below). Paragraph 8.4.2 then considers
in detail the so-called &environmental exceptions* to GATT 1994 that are contained
in Art. XX. Article XX is the focus of a developing jurisprudence, the significance
of which to the international development of environmental taxes is widely-agreed
to be absolutely crucial.128 The analysis of the case law on Art. XX is then followed
by a detailed examination (in para. 8.4.3 below) of Arts II and III, GATT 1994, and
the possibility of the incorporation in the design of environmental taxes the concept
of the border tax adjustment. Together with para. 8.4.4, on GATT 1994 anti-subsidy
rules, para. 8.4.3 provides a context for the examination of the shape of the UK*s
environmental levies and subsidies in para. 8.4.5.
8.4.1 Restrictions on fiscal policy under GATT 1994
The necessity for such of the UK*s tax law rules as touch upon international trade to
comply with the relevant rules of GATT 1994 derives both from the UK*s membership
of the EU and from the UK*s and the EU*s membership of the WTO.
When the European Economic Community Treaty (the Treaty of Rome)
was concluded in 1957, the EEC*s founding members were already bound by
GATT 1947.129 What is now Art. 131, European Treaty,130 espoused objectives
corresponding closely to those of GATT 1947, and Art. 307, European Treaty (ex
234) provided that rights and obligations arising from agreements concluded before
January 1958 between one or more Member States, on the one hand, and one or more
non-Member States (that is, &third countries*), on the other, were not to be affected
by the provisions of the EEC Treaty. Even though the Community was not a GATT
1947 contracting party, the ECJ subsequently held that the Community was bound by
GATT 1947 by a process of substitution for the Member States.131 In International
128 See, for example, Geert van Calster, &Topsy-Turvy: the European Court of Justice and
Border (Energy) Tax Adjustments 每 Should The World Trade Organization follow suit?*,
in Critical Issues in Environmental Taxation, ed. by Janet Milne et al. (Richmond:
Richmond Law and Tax, c.2003), pp. 311每41 esp. pp. 332每5.
129 See the Preamble to GATT 1947. In 1957, there were six Member States of the EEC:
France, the Federal Republic of Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg
(see, for example, Weatherill and Beaumont, op. cit., pp. 1每5 for the early history of the
EEC). Four of the six had been original signatories to GATT 1947, whilst Italy had signed
GATT 1947 in 1950 and West Germany in 1951 (see www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/
gattmem_e.htm).
130 Articles 131每135, European Treaty (ex 110每15), set out the EU*s (incomplete) common
commercial policy (&the CCP*).
131 See Dominic McGoldrick, International Relations Law of the European Union (London:
Longman, 1997), pp. 194每5.
International Aspects 203
Fruit Company NV v. Produktschap voor Groenten en Fruit,132 the ECJ reached the
conclusion that &# in so far as, under the EEC Treaty, the Community has assumed
competences previously exercised by the member-States in the sphere of application
of [GATT 1947] #, the provisions of [GATT 1947] # have the effect of binding the
Community*.133
The ECJ began by noting that, &# at the time of concluding the Treaty instituting the
European Economic Community, the member-States were bound by the undertakings
of [GATT 1947]*.134 It then inferred from the EEC Treaty, and especially from Arts 131
(ex 110) and 307 (ex 234), European Treaty, a desire on the part of the Member States
to abide by the terms of GATT 1947.135 Referring to the Community*s assumption
of the functions inherent in its tariff and trade policy, the Court said that this marked
the Member States* readiness to bind the Community by the obligations which they
had contracted under GATT 1947.136 Finally, and especially since the establishment
of the common customs tariff (&the CCT*),137 &# the Community, acting through
its institutions, # [had] appeared as a participant in the tariff negotiations and as a
party to the agreements # concluded within the framework of [GATT 1947] #*.138
The International Fruit case illustrates, therefore, that, although Member States
remained parties to GATT 1947, the EU took on the principal role in conducting the
relationship between the Member States and the other contracting parties.
The position just summarised was subsequently developed following the EU*s
becoming an original member of the WTO in 1995.139 In Re the Uruguay Round
Treaties,140 the ECJ explained in detail the competences of each of the EU and
its Member States in relation to the WTO agreement, which had been signed in
Marrakesh in April 1994.141 The Court interpreted Art. 133, European Treaty (ex
113) as according competence to the EU to conclude multilateral agreements on
trade in goods, to the exclusion of its Member States, the EU and its Member States
having joint competence, subject to certain exceptions,142 in relation to trade in
services (under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (&GATS*)) as well as
trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights (under the TRIPS agreement).143
132 C每21每24/72, [1975] 2 CMLR 1 (decision, December 1972).
133 [1975] 2 CMLR 1, para. 18.
134 Ibid., para. 10.
135 Ibid., paras 12 and 13.
136 Ibid., paras 14 and 15.
137 That is, on 1 July 1968. For a valuable discussion of the CCT, see Timothy Lyons, op. cit.,
esp. (in the present context) pp. 58每60.
138 [1975] 2 CMLR 1, paras 16 and 17.
139 See Asif Qureshi, The World Trade Organization (Manchester: Manchester University
Press, 1996), pp. 164每91. For further details, see the WTO website: www.wto.org.
140 Opinion 1/94, [1995] 1 CMLR 205.
141 The Uruguay Round of GATT 1947 was concluded in December 1993, the WTO
Agreement being signed in April 1994 in Marrakesh.
142 That is, those provisions of GATS and TRIPS that relate to cross-frontier supplies of
services (&GATS*) and the means of enforcement of intellectual property rights (&TRIPS*),
each of which fell within Art. 133, European Treaty (ex 113) and therefore the exclusive
competence of the EU.
143 That is, Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights.
204 Environmental Taxation Law
It followed that when, following the conclusion of the Uruguay Round, not only the
EU but also its Member States,144 had signed the WTO agreement, incorporating
GATT 1994, GATS and TRIPS, the latter should not (in the Court*s opinion) have
done so. Indeed, the fact that Arts 131每135, European Treaty (ex 110每15), relating
to the common commercial policy (&the CCP*), deny individual Member States any
freedom of action in relation to GATT 1947/GATT 1994 has been reaffirmed in a
succession of ECJ decisions.145
On its accession to the EU in 1973, the UK*s trade policy was thus already subject
to the rules of GATT 1947. Following the signature of the WTO agreement in 1994,
by the EU and its Member States, that policy is now constrained by their membership
of the WTO.146 The restraints placed on the EU and its Member States by GATT
1994, Williams tells us, are fundamental, being &# a form of basic law to that
constitution*.147 As a member of the WTO, the EU has a duty to ensure that the UK,
as an EU Member State, complies with the requirements of GATT 1994. As will be
seen in Chapter 12, the rules of the European Treaty mirror the rules of GATT in
many respects.148 Nonetheless, the obligation of the UK as an EU Member State to
comply with the EU*s international obligations is independent of, and separate from,
the duties imposed on it as a result of the creation of the single market.149
Thus, in the design and implementation of the UK*s environmental taxes, it is
necessary for policy makers to keep in mind the potential legal implications of the
UK*s and the EU*s membership of the WTO and the subjection of its tax law to the
discipline of GATT 1994.
144 Of which there were at that time only 12.
145 See, for example, Re OECD Local Costs Standard, Opinion 1/75, [1975] ECR 1355;
International Fruit Company NV v. Produktschap voor Groenten en Fruit, C每21每24/72,
discussed in the text above; Diamantarbeiders v. Indiamex, C每37每38/73, [1973] ECR
1600, Donckerwolcke, C每41/76, [1976] ECR 1921. See the discussion in Stefano Inama
and Edwin Vermulst, Customs and Trade Laws of the European Community (The Hague:
Kluwer Law International, 1999), para. 1.1. For a qualification to the point made in the
text, see Inama and Vermulst, op. cit., para. 1.3.5.
146 See David Williams, EC Tax Law (Longman: London, 1998), p. 9.
147 Williams, op. cit., p. 10.
148 This similarity was an important part of the ECJ*s reasoning in International Fruit
Company NV v. Produktschap voor Groenten en Fruit, C每21每24/72, discussed in the
text above. In referring to the Members States* desire to abide by the terms of GATT
1947, the Court said that the Members States* readiness &# to respect the undertakings
of the General Agreement results as much from the provisions of the EEC Treaty itself
as from the declarations made by the member-States when they presented the Treaty to
the Contracting Parties of the General Agreement in accordance with Article XXIV of the
latter* ([1975] 2 CMLR 1, para. 12). See, further, Lyons, op. cit., pp. 11每20.
149 Williams, op. cit., p. 71. Thus, Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95), which applies to intra-
Community trade, is both similar to, and crucially different from, Art. III, GATT 1994
(see below in this chapter and para. 12.3 below).
International Aspects 205
8.4.2 Environmental exceptions to GATT 1994 restrictions
Before considering in detail the WTO provisions of most relevance to environmental
taxes and other economic instruments (that is, those on customs duties, internal taxes
and subsidies), it is useful to refer to the general exceptions to the GATT discipline,
contained in GATT 1994, Art. XX (&General Exceptions*). Interestingly, the terms
&environment* and &environmental* do not appear; instead, the relevant wording runs
as follows:
Subject to the requirement that such measures are not applied in a manner which would
constitute a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination between countries where the
same conditions prevail, or a disguised restriction on international trade, nothing in this
Agreement shall be construed to prevent the adoption or enforcement by any contracting
party of measures:150

(b) necessary to protect human, animal or plant life or health;

(g) relating to the conservation of exhaustible natural resources if such measures are made
effective in conjunction with restrictions on domestic production or consumption; #
Four general points might be made about this wording:151
1 clearly, it does not suggest any straightforward means of reconciling the tensions
between free trade and environmental protection referred to above;
2 the burden of demonstrating that one of the exceptions in Art. XX is applicable
in a particular case falls upon the party seeking to use it as a defence;152 mainly
because Art. XX is construed strictly, the burden has not often been discharged;
3 Article XX, GATT 1994, is the subject of a developing jurisprudence, which
may see some resolution of the international environmental law/world trade law
tension referred to in para. 8.2.1 above; and
4 If Art. XX, GATT 1994 applies, then it disapplies the relevant GATT 1994 rule,
for example, Art. III or Art. VI.
Three cases help to particularise the point made in 2 above.153 They represent a
developing jurisprudence, so 1 below must be read subject to 2 and 3.
1 In Restrictions on Imports of Tuna154 (&the Tuna-Dolphin I case*), the US had
imposed restrictions on imports of yellowfin tuna because of concerns that they
150 This introductory wording is referred to as &the chapeau* of the Article.
151 For a fuller treatment, see, for example, Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., pp. 701每2.
152 See Canada 每 Administration of the Foreign Investment Review Act, GATT, BISD 30
Supp 140 (1984), para. 5.20.
153 Each decision is notoriously long, if not complex. Great assistance has been derived in
the following summaries from the summaries in Trebilcock and Howse, op. cit., ch. 15;
Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., pp. 701每14; and Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., pp. 105每8.
154 (1991) 30 ILM 1598.
206 Environmental Taxation Law
were caught using methods dangerous to dolphins, a protected species under the
US Marine Mammal Protection Act. A GATT dispute settlement panel upheld
Mexico*s complaint that this violated GATT 1947, Art. XI(1) and rejected
a justification based on Art. III, GATT 1947.155 The panel also held that the
exemptions in GATT 1947, Arts XX(b) and XX(g) did not apply. In relation to
Art. XX(b), the panel held that &necessary* did not simply mean &needed* but that
no other reasonable alternative existed,156 whilst, under Art. XX(g), it held that
&relating to* and &in conjunction with* meant &primarily aimed at*.157 Since the
restrictions were imposed to force other countries to change their environmental
policies, they were not &necessary*, within Art. XX(b), nor were they &primarily
aimed at* conserving exhaustible natural resources. The decision in the Tuna-
Dolphin I case was not, however, adopted by the GATT Council.158
Note that the dispute settlement panel accepted that dolphins were an
&exhaustible natural resource* within Art. XX(g), GATT 1947.
2 Standards for Reformulated and Conventional Gasoline159 (&the US Gasoline
Standards decision*) concerned the reformulated and conventional gasoline
programmes created under the US Clean Air Act 1990. Under both programmes,
changes were required in the composition of gasoline sold to consumers, with
1990 being used as the baseline year. The US Environmental Protection Agency
(&EPA*) distinguished, in their baseline establishment rules, between foreign and
domestic producers and refiners. Domestic refiners were allowed to establish
individual 1990 baselines, whilst foreign refiners had to use instead the EPA*s
statutory baselines. The WTO Appellate Body (&the AB*) held that the scheme
was caught by the chapeau of Art. XX as &unjustifiable discrimination* and a
&disguised restriction on international trade*.160 In so doing, the AB applied a
two-stage test:
In order that the justifying protection of Article XX may be extended to it, the measure at
issue must not only come under one or another of the particular exceptions 每 paragraphs
(a) to (j) 每 listed under Article XX; it must also satisfy the requirements imposed by the
opening clauses of Article XX. The analysis is, in other words, two-tiered: first, provisional
justification by reason of characterization of the measure under Article XX(g); second,
further appraisal of the same measure under the introductory clauses [that is, the chapeau]
of Article XX.161
The AB held that the second clause of Art. XX(g) appeared to &# refer to
governmental measures like the baseline establishment rules being promulgated
155 See para. 8.4.3 below for a full treatment of Art. III, GATT 1994.
156 (1991) 30 ILM 1598, para. 5.28.
157 Ibid., para. 5.31.
158 The reasoning in Tuna-Dolphin I was also followed by the panel in Restrictions on Imports
of Tuna, (1994) 33 ILM 839 (the Tuna-Dolphin II case), which was again not adopted by
the GATT Council.
159 (1996) 35 ILM 603 (see Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 701).
160 (1996) 35 ILM 603, 633.
161 Ibid., 626.
International Aspects 207
or brought into effect together with restrictions on domestic production or
consumption of natural resources # The clause is a requirement of evenhandedness
in the imposition of restrictions, in the name of conservation,
upon the production or consumption of exhaustible natural resources*.162
Furthermore, when considered in the light of the introductory clauses of Art. XX,
it was clear that the baseline establishment rules involved arbitrary or unjustified
discrimination. The US had failed adequately to explore means of mitigating the
administrative problems that it had relied on in imposing the statutory baselines
on foreign refiners; it had also failed to count the costs for foreign refiners of
denying them individual baselines.163
Note that the wide view of &exhaustible natural resources* taken by the dispute
settlement panel in the Tuna-Dolphin I case was accepted by the AB, the latter
agreeing that &clean air* was an exhaustible natural resource within Art. XX(g).164
Furthermore, the AB found that the baseline establishment rules related to the
conservation of natural resources,165 given their primary aim, and having regard
to their purpose and effect.166
3 Finally, in Import Prohibition of Certain Shrimp and Shrimp Products,167 (&the
Shrimp-Turtle case*), a national US measure required countries exporting shrimp
to the US to show either that their fishing environments did not pose a threat of
the incidental taking of sea turtles168 in the course of shrimp harvesting, or that
their fishing industry was regulated to standards comparable to those in force in
the US. Countries exporting to the US to which either possibility applied were so
certified; those to which neither possibility applied were banned from exporting
shrimp to the US. Applying the two-tiered test in the US Gasoline Standards
decision, the AB held that the measure was not justified under Art. XX, GATT
1994. Although the measure qualified for provisional justification under Art.
XX(g), it failed to meet the requirements of the chapeau thereto.169
a. In finding that the measure was provisionally justified under Art. XX(g), the
AB took a similarly wide view of exhaustible natural resources as had been
162 Ibid., 624每5.
163 Ibid., 632. The panel observed that: &There was more than one alternative course of action
available to the United States in promulgating regulations implementing the # [Clean
Air Act]. These included the imposition of statutory baselines without differentiation as
between domestic and imported gasoline. This approach, if properly implemented, could
have avoided any discrimination at all. Among the other options open to the United States
was to make available individual baselines to foreign refiners as well as domestic refiners*
(see (1996) 35 ILM 603, 629).
164 See (1996) 35 ILM 603, 613每14, the Panel already having accepted this point also.
165 See the opening words of Art. XX(g).
166 (1996) 35 ILM 603, 623.
167 (1999) 38 ILM 118.
168 Five species of sea turtles fell within the regulations: loggerhead (Caretta caretta),
Kemp*s ridley (Lepidochelys kempi), green (Chelonia mydas), leatherback (Dermochelys
coriacea) and hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata).
169 See para. 8.4.2 above.
208 Environmental Taxation Law
taken in the two previous decisions. It rejected an argument put forward
by India, Pakistan and Thailand as joint appellees that &exhaustible natural
resources* referred to finite resources such as minerals, rather than biological
or renewable resources, the AB noting that living species were capable of
depletion, exhaustion and extinction.170 Referring to the UNCLOS,171 to the
Convention on Biological Diversity,172 to the Rio Declaration173 and to other
international environmental agreements,174 it found that the relevant species
of sea turtle were &exhaustible* because they were recognised as endangered
species.175 In referring to these instruments, the AB was following the
general rule in the 1969 Vienna Convention, Art. 31(3), allowing account
to be taken of relevant rules of international law applicable in the relations
between the parties.176
As regards the remaining requirements for the measure to fall within Art.
XX(g), the AB found that the measure related to177 the conservation of
exhaustible natural resources:
Focusing on the design of the measure here at stake, it appears to us that # [it] is not
disproportionately wide in its scope and reach in relation to the policy objective of
protection and conservation of sea turtle species. The means are, in principle, reasonably
related to the ends.178
Finally, the AB found that the measure was an &even-handed* one, the
measure being made effective in conjunction with restrictions on domestic
production or consumption.179
b. Although the AB was satisfied as to the provisional justification for the
measure under Art. XX(g), it then went on to find that the measure failed
to meet the requirements of the chapeau to Art. XX. The chapeau, it will
be recalled, makes the application of the General Exceptions in Art. XX
subject to the requirement that the measure in question must not be applied
&# in a manner which would constitute a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable
discrimination between countries where the same conditions prevail*.
170 (1999) 38 ILM 118, para. 128.
171 See para. 8.3.2 above.
172 See para. 8.3.1.3 above.
173 See para. 8.2.3 above.
174 Including, not mentioned elsewhere in this chapter, the 1973 Washington Convention
on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, (1973) 12 ILM
1085 and the 1979 Bonn Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild
Animals, (1980) 19 ILM 15.
175 (1999) 38 ILM 118, para. 132. Bell and McGillivray, op. cit., pp. 107每8, regard it as
significant that the sea turtles* exhaustibility depended on the fact that they were already
recognised as endangered, not because action was required to prevent endangering them.
176 See para. 8.2.2 (point 1) above and Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 704.
177 See the opening words of Art. XX(g), GATT 1994.
178 (1999) 38 ILM 118, para. 141.
179 Ibid., paras 143每4: see the second part of Art. XX(g), GATT 1994.
International Aspects 209
The AB concluded that the measure in question was rigid and inflexible;180
that the certification processes followed by the US were &singularly informal
and casual*, to the point that they could result in the negation of rights of WTO
members;181 and that the measure lacked transparency and fairness.182 For
all three reasons, the measure amounted to arbitrary discrimination between
countries where the same conditions prevailed.183
Besides being arbitrary, the measure constituted a means of unjustifiable
discrimination:
i. The measure lacked flexibility, since the US inquired only into whether
exporting country used TEDs (that is, &turtle excluder devices*) not
whether they authorised comparable methods;184
ii. the measure also had the effect of banning imports of shrimp to the US
which had been caught using TEDs, where the shrimp had originated in
the waters of countries not certified under the measure;185
iii. thirdly, the US had failed to engage the appellees, as well as other
countries exporting shrimp to the US, &# in serious, across-the-board
negotiations with the objective of concluding bilateral or multilateral
agreements for the protection and conservation of sea turtles, before
enforcing the import prohibition against the shrimp exports of those
other [WTO] Members*.186 Among other things, the US had failed to
take account of Principle 12 of the Rio Declaration.187 Finally,
iv. the US had made differing levels of effort in transferring the TED
technology to other countries. Far greater efforts had been made to
transfer the technology to 14 wider Caribbean/western Atlantic countries
than to other exporting countries, including the appellees.188
In the light of the above decisions, it may well be the case that Art. XX, GATT
1994 will come to play a greater role in rendering certain types of environmental tax
lawful which would otherwise fall foul of its discipline. The most obvious candidate
would be a carbon tax, which, as a direct tax, is not, on present learning, capable of
incorporating a BTA,189 even on environmental grounds.
8.4.3 GATT 1994 provisions on customs duties and internal taxes
Articles II and III, GATT 1994, distinguish between customs duties and import
charges, on the one hand, and internal taxes and charges, on the other. The distinction
180 Ibid., para. 177.
181 Ibid., para. 181.
182, Ibid., para. 183.
183 Ibid., para. 184.
184 Ibid., para. 164.
185 Ibid., para. 165.
186 (1999) 38 ILM 118, para. 166.
187 See para. 8.2.6 above.
188 (1999) 38 ILM 118, para. 175.
189 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
210 Environmental Taxation Law
forms the basis of two different sets of rules. Article III is of the greater relevance
in the present context, since it allows the imposition of levies that are indirect 每
as opposed to direct190 每 on domestic and imported products alike. Such blanket
imposition is necessary in the case of environmental levies, as with other levies, to
guarantee both the competitiveness of domestic products as well as the &tax base* of
the environmental levy in question.
In relation to customs duties and import charges, Art. II(1)(a), GATT 1994, requires
WTO members to accord to the commerce of other members a treatment no less
favourable than that provided for in the agreed schedules of concessions annexed to
the WTO agreement. Thus, Art. II(1)(b), GATT 1994, reads:
The products described in # the Schedule relating to any contracting party, which are
the products of territories of other contracting parties, shall, on their importation into the
territory to which the Schedule relates, and subject to the terms, conditions or qualifications
set forth in that Schedule, be exempt from ordinary customs duties in excess of those set
forth and provided therein.191
The obligation contained in Art. II(1) is generally referred to as the &tariff-concession
obligation*, the tariff commitments of each country or regional trading organisation in
the schedules to the WTO agreement being referred to as &bindings* or &concessions*.
These schedules range from the voluminous, in the cases of the EU and the US, to
the relatively brief, in the case of less developed countries.192 In accordance with
the CCP provisions of the European Treaty discussed above, Member States of the
EU are represented at the WTO by the European Commission,193 which has the sole
right to speak for its Member States at virtually all WTO meetings, including tariff
negotiations.194 Furthermore, just as the European Treaty bans Member States from
unilaterally imposing customs duties on goods from third countries,195 so also does
it outlaw charges having equivalent effect to customs duties on imports from nonmember
countries.196
So far as internal taxes and charges are concerned,197 Art. III, GATT 1994 subjects
them to the so-called &national treatment obligation*. Article III(1) articulates the
general policy goal that internal taxes and charges &# should not be applied to
imported or domestic products so as to afford protection to domestic production*.198
Referring to the goal mentioned in Art. III(1), Art. III(2) then goes on to require that:
190 Ibid.
191 GATT 1994, Art. II(1)(b).
192 The maximum tariffs are contained in Part I of each country*s or customs territory*s fourpart
goods schedule (see www.wto.org).
193 See para. 4.3.2 above.
194 For further details, see Williams, op. cit., pp. 62每4.
195 Sociaal Fonds voor de Diamantarbeiders v. SA Ch Brachfeld & Sons and Chougal
Diamond Co, C每2/69 and 3/69, [1969] ECR 211.
196 Aprile Srl, in Liquidation v. Amministrazione Delle Finanze dello Stato, C每125/94, [1995]
ECR I每2919, para. 34.
197 See para. 7.2.2.4 above.
198 Besides internal taxes and charges, GATT 1994, Art. III(1) refers to &laws, regulations and
requirements*.
International Aspects 211
The products of the territory of any contracting party imported into the territory of any
other contracting party shall not be subject, directly or indirectly, to internal taxes or
other internal charges of any kind in excess of those applied, directly or indirectly, to like
domestic products. Moreover, no contracting party shall otherwise apply internal taxes
or other internal charges to imported or domestic products in a manner contrary to the
principles set forth in [Art. III(1)].
Exceptions to the national treatment obligation are limited, and are set out in Art.
III(8). They consist of an exception for government purchases,199 as well as one for
the payment of subsidies exclusively to domestic producers.200 These are in addition
to the general exceptions in GATT 1994, Art. XX referred to above. It is plain from
Art. III, GATT 1994, that the design of new internal taxes and charges in WTO
member countries must comply with the national treatment obligation.
Turning back to Art. II(2)(a), GATT 1994, we find it stated that the provisions of Art.
II (which covers customs duties and import charges) do not prevent WTO members
from imposing at any time on the importation of any product &a charge equivalent
to an internal tax, in respect of the like domestic product, or in respect of an article
from which the imported product has been manufactured or produced, whether in
whole or in part*.201 However, Art. II(2)(a) also says that any such charge must be
imposed consistently with the provisions of Art. III(2).202 When taken together, it is
apparent from the wording of Arts II and III that the distinction between a customs
duty and an internal tax or other charge does not depend on when or where the
levy in question is imposed.203 Instead, it depends on whether the levy on imported
products is also borne by like domestic products. If it is, then the levy falls within
Art. III; if it is not, then the levy falls within Art. II.204 In other words, an internal
tax or charge, provided it complied with Art. III(2), could be applied at the border
with the third country. Subject to the application of the border tax adjustment (&BTA*)
rules, Art. III(2) is not prima facie infringed, therefore, by an internal tax or other
charge, imposed by an EU/WTO member, which is designed simply to ensure parity
of tax treatment between domestic products and third country products and which is
imposed at the border.
Whilst the BTA concept is a simple one to articulate, its application to environmental
taxes involves a number of difficult questions.205 Briefly, a BTA is designed to put
199 GATT 1994, Art. III(8)(a).
200 Ibid., Art. III(8)(b).
201 This division is then underlined by a note to GATT 1994, Art. III in Annex I, which states
that &# [a]ny internal tax or other internal charge # which applies to an imported product
and to the like domestic product and is collected or enforced in the case of the imported
product at the time or point of importation, is nevertheless to be regarded as an internal
tax or other internal charge # and is accordingly subject to the provisions of Article III*.
202 See above in this para.
203 Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 729.
204 See WTO Secretariat, Taxes and Charges for Environmental Purposes 每 Border Tax
Adjustment (WT/CTE/W/47), para. 55.
205 See 1.2.1.2 above. See also Paul Demaret and Raoul Stewardson, &Border Tax Adjustments
under GATT and European Law and General Implications for Environmental Taxes*
(1998) 28 JWT 5每65.
212 Environmental Taxation Law
into effect the general principle of international indirect taxation206 that goods should
be taxed where they are used or consumed.207 The definition of a BTA used by the
WTO was originally used by the OECD and defines a BTA as:
# any fiscal [measure] which put[s] into effect, in whole or in part, the destination principle
(that is, which enable[s] exported products to be relieved of some or all of the tax charged
in the exporting country in respect of similar domestic products sold to consumers on the
home market and which enable imported products sold to consumers to be charged with
some or all of the tax charged in the importing country in respect of similar domestic
products).208
The phenomenon of BTAs is assumed throughout GATT 1994, not only in Arts II and
III, but also, as will be seen, in Art. XVI, GATT 1994.209 It rests in turn on a second
assumption that is made in GATT 1994, that is, that of the distinction between direct
and indirect taxes.210 As explained at the beginning of the book, only indirect taxes
are eligible for BTA.211 Thus, only internal indirect taxes imposed by an EU/WTO
member state, which are designed to ensure parity of tax treatment between domestic
products and third country products (whether or not they are imposed at the border),
are capable of satisfying GATT 1994 requirements.
The availability of BTA for environmental taxes, under GATT/WTO rules, is a
major technical consideration in their design. The idea of a carbon tax, as mentioned
above, has famously been controversial in this context. How the UK*s environmental
levies have sought to address the technical challenge involved is considered below.
8.4.4 GATT 1994 anti-subsidy rules
The WTO*s anti-subsidy rules are to be found in GATT 1994, Arts VI (anti-dumping
and countervailing duties) and XVI (subsidies), as well as in the 1994 WTO Agreement
on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (&the Subsidies Agreement*).212 Here, no
less than in the Art. III context, the distinction between direct and indirect taxes,213
and the consequent availability of BTA, are crucial technical questions.
Article VI, GATT 1994, permits WTO members to deal with the problem of
dumping, that is, the introduction of the products of one country into the commerce
206 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
207 Ibid.
208 WT/CTE/W/47, para. 28.
209 The 1970 WTO Working Party on Border Tax Adjustments agreed that the main provisions
of GATT relating to BTA codified practices that existed in commercial treaties when it was
drafted (see WTO Secretariat, Taxes and Charges for Environmental Purposes 每 Border
Tax Adjustment (WT/CTE/W/47), para. 29).
210 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
211 WT/CTE/W/47, para. 33每35. See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
212 See, generally, Konstantinos Adamantopoulos and Mar足a J. Pereyra-Friedrichsen, EU
Anti-Subsidy Law and Practice (Bembridge: Palladian, 2001), and A. Leigh Hancher,
Tom Ottervanger and Piet Jan Slot, EC State Aids, 2nd edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell,
1999), ch. 5.
213 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
International Aspects 213
of another country at less than the normal value of the products, by the imposition of
countervailing duties. Article XVI, GATT 1994, deals with the related, but distinct,
phenomenon of subsidisation by Governments of exporting countries; it is divided
into a Section A, entitled &Subsidies in General*, and a Section B, headed &Additional
Provisions on Export Subsidies*. Article XVI(A)(1) obliges WTO members to
notify to the Ministerial Conference the granting or maintaining of &# any subsidy,
including any form of income or price support, which operates directly or indirectly
to increase exports of any product from, or to reduce imports of any product into,
its territory*. Article XVI(B)(4) bans the direct or indirect grant of &# any form of
subsidy on the export of any product other than a primary product which subsidy
results in the sale of such product for export at a price lower than the comparable
price charged for the like product to buyers in the domestic market*.
The Subsidies Agreement, which dates from the Uruguay Round, deals with two
major areas: the regulation of subsidies that impact on international trade and advice
to WTO members on the best ways of protecting their domestic industries from those
subsidies.214 The Subsidies Agreement is incorporated in Community law via the
1997 Council Regulation on Protection against Subsidized Imports from Countries
not Members of the European Community (usually referred to as &the Basic
Regulation* or &the Countervailing Duty Regulation*).215 The Basic Regulation is
intended to provide greater transparency and effectiveness in the application by the
European Community of the rules laid down in the Subsidies Agreement, as regards
subsidised imports into the EU. It does not affect the virtually identical obligations
of the EU and its Member States under the Subsidies Agreement, which continues to
govern claims by third countries in respect of governmental subsidies in the EU as a
whole or any of its Member States.216
In practice, these provisions have presented far fewer problems for environmental
taxes than have those of Art. III, GATT 1994. The Interpretative Note Ad Article
XVI, GATT 1994 makes it plain that:
The exemption of an exported product from duties or taxes borne by the like product when
destined for domestic consumption, or the remission of such duties or taxes in amounts not
in excess of those which have accrued, shall not be deemed to be a subsidy.
Moreover, Art. VI(4), GATT 1994, states that the exemption of exported products
from taxes borne by like domestic products, as well as the refund of such taxes,
cannot be subject to anti-dumping or countervailing duties. The principles of Arts VI
and XVI are then underlined in the footnote to Art. 1.1 of the Subsidies Agreement,
which reads:
In accordance with the provisions of Article XVI of GATT 1994 (Note to Article XVI)
and the provisions of Annexes I through III of this Agreement, the exemption of an
214 See Raymond Luja, &WTO Agreements versus the EC Fiscal Aid Regime: Impact on
Direct Taxation* (1999) 27 Intertax 207每25, esp. pp. 207每11.
215 Council Regulation EC/2026/97, (1997) OJ L288 1.
216 The granting of subsidies by EU Member States to their national industries is dealt with by
the state aid rules (see Arts 87每89, European Treaty (ex 92每94)), insofar as such subsidies
affect trade between Member States (see para. 12.2.7 below).
214 Environmental Taxation Law
exported product from duties or taxes borne by the like product when destined for domestic
consumption, or the remission of such duties or taxes in amounts not in excess of those
which have accrued, shall not be deemed to be a subsidy.
Thus, when designing environmental taxes or, indeed, other economic instruments, it
is necessary for the UK to take into account the anti-subsidy rules.
8.4.5 UK environmental levies and subsidies in the GATT 1994 context
8.4.5.1 GATT 1994 aspects of the UK*s environmental taxes
The design of each of aggregates levy and of climate change levy is conceptually
somewhat similar. One area in which this conceptual similarity is apparent is the
attempted assimilation of the international dimension of each tax to the discipline
both of GATT 1994 and of the European Treaty.217
Aggregates levy and climate change levy are unusual among the existing UK
environmental levies, as having a cross-border dimension. Although conceived within
the GATT 1994/European Treaty discipline, landfill tax is designed in such a way as
to obviate the need for dealing specifically with cross-border issues. A substantially
similar point might obviously be made about the concepts of workplace parking
levies and road user charging schemes. Landfill tax, it will be recalled, is charged
on a disposal of material as waste by way of landfill at a landfill site.218 By Finance
Act 1996, s.66, a site is a landfill site at any given time if one of five alternative
types of licence is in force in relation to the land, which authorises disposals on the
land.219 Since a landfill site, as so defined, must necessarily be within the UK,220
there is no need within the landfill tax code for any special provisions relating to the
taxation of imports of waste from, and exports of waste to, other Member States of
the EU or to third countries.221 Moreover, the structure of rates and exemptions does
not differentiate between waste generated within the UK or outside it. Given these
design features of the tax, there would therefore seem to be no issue in relation to any
of the arts of GATT 1994 discussed above.
However, by contrast with the landfill tax code, each of the aggregates levy and
climate change levy codes contain provisions relating to imports and exports of the
products in question. As such, certain aspects of each may be difficult to justify
under the GATT 1994 discipline, although the true position is unclear. On one view,
the structure of the taxes means that, in the absence of special factors, no GATT
1994 issue is likely to arise, irrespective of Art. XX. This view is based on a close
reading of the respective tax codes in the light of the GATT 1994 provisions. It can
be summarised as follows.
217 See Chapter 12 below.
218 See paras 1.4.2.1(1) above and 15.2 below.
219 See para. 15.2 below.
220 Generally, this is a landfill permit (see para. 6.3.2.4 above).
221 Such international trade in waste is in any event restricted by the requirements of the
1989 Basel Convention, the European Waste Shipment Regulation and other international
agreements (see paras 8.3.2 above and 12.2.5.1(4) below).
International Aspects 215
The aggregates levy provisions relating to the importation of aggregates appear
in Finance Act 2001, ss.16(2) and 19(1). Together, these two subsections impose a
charge to aggregates levy whenever taxable aggregate is subjected to commercial
exploitation in the UK, such exploitation being made to include the two situations
envisaged in s.19(1), that is, when:

(b) #[taxable aggregate] becomes subject to an agreement to supply it to any person; [or]
(c) it is used for construction purposes #
Whatever the other ambiguities of the wording of s.19 may be,222 a number of
points seem clear, no less from the section itself, as from the structure of the tax
as a whole. First of all, it is apparent that, when applied to imports of aggregates,
the levy is an internal tax within Art. III, GATT 1994, rather than a customs duty
or charge with equivalent effect under GATT 1994, Art. II. This is because the
concept of subjecting taxable aggregate to commercial exploitation in the UK makes
no distinction between aggregate originating within the UK or that originating
outside it. The tax is charged on imported and domestic products alike. Secondly,
it seems unlikely that aggregate imported into the UK from a third country would
be subject, even indirectly, to a charge to the levy in excess of the amount applied
to domestically-produced aggregate. Thirdly, aggregates levy is clearly an indirect
tax,223 in respect of which the BTA built into its structure is designed to ensure parity
of treatment between domestic aggregate and third country aggregate.224 As to the
second of these factors, unlikely as it may be that there is any indirect discrimination,
it is not inconceivable that, whilst the tax appears on its face to be non-discriminatory,
various circumstances in the market place or elsewhere might have the effect in a
particular case of &tilting the scales against the imported product*.225
A similar conclusion, as regards the treatment of imports of taxable commodities
from third countries, seems possible in the case of climate change levy. With climate
change levy, all supplies of taxable commodities which are not excluded or exempt
from the levy count as taxable supplies,226 irrespective of whether the supplier is
resident in the UK.227 In the absence of special factors, climate change levy is thus
again a tax borne by domestic and imported like products alike, and lawful under
GATT 1994 as an internal indirect tax for ensuring parity of tax treatment between
domestic and third country products.228
222 See paras 13.2 and 13.3 below.
223 See para. 1.4.2.3 above.
224 See para. 12.4 below.
225 See Jackson, op. cit., p. 216.
226 Finance Act 2001, Sched. 6, para. 2(2).
227 For the definition of &resident in the UK* for these purposes, see Finance Act 2000, Sched.
6, para. 156, discussed at para. 16.7n below.
228 Under Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 40(2), the person liable to account for the
levy charged on the supply is the person to whom the supply is made. Where either of
these requirements is missing, then Customs have wide powers to appoint a resident
tax representative (see para. 16.7 below). For the formalities associated with imports of
216 Environmental Taxation Law
As regards the treatment of exports within the aggregates levy code, Finance Act
2001, s.30(1)(a), provides for the making of relevant regulations for the purpose of
conferring entitlement to tax credits on the exportation of aggregate &in the form
of aggregate*. The relevant regulations accordingly appear in the Aggregates Levy
(General) Regulations 2002,229 reg. 13:
(1) This regulation applies to a person who has commercially exploited taxable
aggregate and who has accounted for the aggregates levy chargeable on that commercial
exploitation.
(2) Such a person is entitled to a tax credit in respect of any aggregates levy accounted for
in respect of that commercial exploitation where the taxable aggregate in question 每
(a) is exported or removed from the United Kingdom without further processing;
#230
There is judicial authority for the proposition that this provision is cast in terms of
a tax credit, rather than an exemption, to reflect the fact that it cannot be ascertained
whether aggregate otherwise taxable is in fact exempt until it is known what has
happened to the aggregate in question.231 In any event, it would seem plain from the
provisions just discussed that there is no unlawful subsidy under GATT 1994, since
the effect of the tax credit is merely to remit taxes in amounts not exceeding those
that have accrued.232 Moreover, the remission on exportation of duties and taxes
borne by a like product when destined for domestic consumption does not entitle a
third country to impose anti-dumping or countervailing duties.233
Within the climate change levy code, the exportation of commodities is covered
by the wording of Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 11. This provides that, where
a taxable commodity234 is caused to be exported from the UK, then the supply is
exempt from the levy, provided that the recipient has previously notified the supplier
that he intends to cause the relevant commodity to be exported from the UK and has
taxable commodities, see HM Customs and Excise Notice CCL 1, Climate Change Levy
(March 2002), pp. 13每14 (available from www.hmce.gov.uk).
229 S.I. 2002 No. 671. See para. 16.9 below.
230 See also HM Customs and Excise Notice AGL 1, Aggregates Levy (March 2003), pp. 21每
2 for the formalities (available from www.hmce.gov.uk).
231 See R (on the application of British Aggregates Associates and others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51, para. 29 (Moses, J.). See paras 12.1,
12.3.3.1 below.
232 See para. 8.4.4 above.
233 Ibid.
234 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 3 (see para. 14.1 below). It should be noted that, although
a distinction between goods and services is not part of the structure of climate change
levy, the commodities which fall within its scope are also subject to customs duties as
goods under the CCT (for the categories into which they fall, see the &TARIC* web-pages
on the EU website, www.europa.eu.int). This is consistent with the classification of the
supply of any form of power, heat, refrigeration or ventilation as a supply of goods in the
VAT legislation (see Value Added Tax Act 1994, Sched. 4, para. 3). TARIC, it should be
noted, is the single register representing the collected tariffs on goods imported into, and
exported from, the EU (see Williams, op. cit., p. 62n).
International Aspects 217
no intention of causing it to be brought back into the UK thereafter.235 Again, so far
as third countries are concerned, there would seem to be no unlawful subsidy, since
the exemption is expressly permitted by GATT 1994 provisions on subsidies and
countervailing duties.236
On the basis of the foregoing, and in the absence of special factors, there would
appear to be little possibility for conflict between the GATT 1994 provisions and
those of the domestic legislation. However, it is instructive to reflect on certain other
features of the two taxes, insofar as they relate to imports, in the light of possible
bases for green taxes generally.237 As we noted much earlier in this study,238 the
OECD distinguishes between three possible forms of environmental tax or charge:
those based on the emission of pollutants, including (in the case of air) noise, into
various media (&emission taxes*); those based on the cost of collective treatment
of effluent or waste (&user taxes*); and those based on products (including raw
materials, intermediate or final products) that are harmful to the environment when
used in production processes (&product taxes*).239 There is clearly an environmental
link between the first and third of these and, indeed, the OECD acknowledges that
&product # taxes can act as a substitute for emission # taxes when charging directly
for emissions is not feasible*.240 Since the scope of landfill tax is geographically
limited, the fact that it appears to be a hybrid of an emissions tax and a user tax241
does not seem to raise any issue. However, the other two green taxes discussed above,
not being geographically limited, appear to give cause for some concern, if only at
the margins. This is because both climate change levy and aggregates levy may be
regarded as a hybrid of an emissions tax and a product tax. The reason why this is
significant is that, whilst BTA is lawful for taxes on products under GATT 1994, Art.
III(2), it is not lawful to apply it to taxes on emissions, since such taxes are regarded
within GATT 1994 as a tax on the producer.242 Both points are well made by a close
reading of Arts II(2)(a) and III, GATT 1994. Article II(2)(a), the outline of which has
already been mentioned, provides:
Nothing in this Article shall prevent any contracting party from imposing at any time on
the importation of any product # [authors* emphases] a charge equivalent to an internal
tax imposed consistently with the provisions of paragraph 2 of Article III in respect of the
like domestic product or in respect of an article from which the imported product has been
manufactured or produced in whole or in part.
235 See HM Customs and Excise Notice CCL 1, Climate Change Levy, above, p. 10, and HM
Customs and Excise Notice CCL1/3, Reliefs and Special Treatments for Taxable Supplies
(available from www.hmce.gov.uk).
236 See para. 8.4.4 above.
237 See Chapter 5 above.
238 See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
239 See OECD Council Recommendation C(90)177/Final, paras 2每4. See also para. 1.2.1.5(2)
above.
240 OECD Council Recommendation C(90)177/Final, para. 4.
241 See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
242 See Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 730.
218 Environmental Taxation Law
If each of the taxes is properly seen as a product tax, then the two articles are clearly
not infringed. However, if they are properly seen as taxes on emissions, that is, on
resource use, then they fall foul of Art. II(2)(a).243 The position is, in the view of the
present writers, unclear.244
8.4.5.2 GATT 1994 aspects of UK tax subsidies
In Chapter 7, when examining the taxation, as opposed to the regulatory, context of
the UK*s green levies and subsidies, we divided the discussion of subsidies into tax
subsidies within the environmental levies and environmental subsidies within the
non-environmental taxes.245
Tax subsidies within the green levies were characterised as having been introduced
into the structure of the levy in question for reasons, not of regulatory efficiency, but of
sectoral competitiveness. By contrast, green subsidies within the non-environmental
tax codes were characterised as having been introduced into the structure of the tax
for reasons of regulatory efficiency.
For present purposes, it is proposed to treat the two types of subsidy together, whilst
noting their difference of function. The question here is whether, in either case, the
subsidies in question are such as to infringe the relevant provisions of the Subsidies
Agreement.246 In common with the rest of the discussion in the present chapter, the
analysis is intended to be read not simply in connection with existing subsidies, upon
which it does not purport to offer a conclusive view, but also with those that have
already been, or may yet be, proposed.247
The Subsidies Agreement begins by defining the concept of a &subsidy*,248 with
&specificity*249 as the fundamental condition of actionability. It then divides subsidies
into three categories, each of which is subject to different rules:
1 prohibited subsidies;250
2 actionable subsidies;251 and
3 non-actionable subsidies.252
243 A related, but different, problem does not however seem to arise with climate change levy,
although it might have done with a more traditionally-conceived carbon tax. If a tax were
to be imposed on energy consumed in the production process of a product, then it would be
extremely doubtful whether the tax would be lawful under art II(2)(a), GATT 1994. Article
II(2)(a) permits the imposition of a tax under Art. III, GATT 1994, only on an article &from
which*, that is, not &with the help of which*, the &imported and the like domestic product
were produced* (see Birnie and Boyle, op. cit., p. 731). See para. 1.2.1.4n above.
244 See, generally, WT/CTE/W/47, above.
245 See paras 8.3.3 and 8.3.4 above.
246 See para. 8.4.4 above.
247 See Chapter 27 below.
248 Subsidies Agreement, Art. 1.
249 Ibid., Art. 2.
250 Ibid., Art. 3.
251 Ibid., Art. 5.
252 Ibid., Art. 8.
International Aspects 219
For the purposes of the Subsidies Agreement, a subsidy includes a financial
contribution by a government or public body within the territory of a WTO member
where, among other things, &government revenue that is otherwise due is foregone
or not collected (for example, fiscal incentives such as tax credits)*.253 However, a
benefit must thereby be conferred.254
Article 2 of the Subsidies Agreement distinguishes specific subsidies from those
which are non-specific. Non-specific subsidies are ones which are generally available
to all enterprises or industries in the WTO member country. Specific subsidies are
those access to which is, formally or in fact, confined to certain specific enterprises,
industries, groups of enterprises or industries, or to enterprises in a specific
geographical region.255 Only specific subsidies are actionable under the Subsidies
Agreement.256
Where a subsidy is prohibited, the complaining WTO member may seek the
removal of the subsidy through the WTO dispute settlement mechanism, a
procedure which may result in its being authorised to take appropriate, proportionate
countermeasures.257 There is no need for the complaining member to demonstrate
adverse effects. Prohibited subsidies include the following:
(e) The full or partial exemption, remission or deferral specifically related to exports,
of direct taxes or social welfare charges paid or payable by industrial or commercial
enterprises.
(f) The allowance of special deductions directly related to exports or export performance,
over and above those granted in respect to production for domestic consumption, in the
calculation of the base on which direct taxes are charged.
(g) The exemption or remission, in respect of the production and distribution of exported
products, of indirect taxes in excess of those levied in respect of the production and
distribution of like products when sold for domestic consumption.258
If a subsidy, rather than being prohibited, is one which is actionable, the WTO
complaining member must follow a very similar procedure to the one just described.259
However, the complaining member must obviously demonstrate that the conditions
for actionability are made out. These are that the subsidy in question has adverse
effects consisting of injury to the complaining member*s domestic industry, the
nullification or impairment of benefits under GATT 1994, or serious prejudice to its
interests.260 It follows from this that, even if a subsidy is actionable, it will not have
a relevant adverse effect on international trade if its economic effects are confined
253 Ibid., Art. 1, esp. Art. 1.1(a)(1).
254 Ibid., Art. 14, which excludes certain items from the scope of a &benefit*.
255 This neat summary of the intricacies of Art. 2, Subsidies Agreement, is adopted from
Hencher et al., op. cit., para. 5每012.
256 Subsidies Agreement, Art. 8.1(a).
257 Ibid., Art. 4, esp. Art. 4.8每4.12.
258 Ibid., Annex I, paras (e)每(g).
259 Ibid., Art. 7.
260 Ibid., Art. 5.
220 Environmental Taxation Law
within national borders.261 The procedure in relation to an actionable subsidy may
again result in the complaining WTO member being authorised to take proportionate
countermeasures.262
Finally, if a subsidy is non-actionable, then it cannot be challenged under the dispute
settlement procedure, provided however that it has been duly notified in advance to
the WTO*s Committee on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures.263 Non-actionable
subsidies are ones which are either non-specific or specific but meet the conditions of
Art. 8 of the Subsidies Agreement. Article 8 comprises three categories:
1 assistance for certain research activities, subject to stringent conditions;
2 assistance to disadvantaged regions within the territory of a Member given pursuant
to a general framework of regional development and non-specific (within the meaning
of Article 2) within eligible regions # [subject to the satisfaction of detailed criteria];
#264
3 assistance to promote adaptation of existing facilities to new environmental requirements
imposed by law and/or regulations which result in greater constraints and financial
burdens on firms # [subject to the satisfaction of detailed criteria].265
Under Arts 10每23 of the Subsidies Agreement, read in conjunction with GATT
1994, Art. VI, WTO members may impose countervailing duties in conjunction with
invoking the dispute settlement mechanism in cases of prohibited and actionable
subsidies, although not subsidies that are not actionable.266
From the foregoing, it is apparent that, as regards all of the tax subsidies identified
in Chapter 7 above:
1 all are subsidies within Art. 2 of the Subsidies Agreement;
2 if access to any of them is, formally or in fact, confined to certain specific
enterprises, industries, groups of enterprises or industries, or enterprises in a
specific geographic region, then they are specific subsidies;
3 one of them appear to be prohibited subsidies;
4 any specific subsidies that have a relevant adverse effect beyond the borders of
the UK will entitle a complaining WTO member (for example, the EU, via the
European Commission) to take steps under the dispute settlement mechanism;
and
5 any that are specific but non-actionable will be incapable of challenge by the EU
or any other WTO member.
261 See Hancher et al., op. cit., para. 5每013.
262 Subsidies Agreement, Art. 7.
263 Ibid., Art. 25.
264 Ibid., Art. 8.2(b).
265 Ibid., Art. 8.2(c).
266 Ibid., note 35 (Art. 10).
International Aspects 221
8.5 International air transport law
We referred at the beginning of the chapter to the need to allude, if only briefly, to
international agreements governing air transport. This is in order to provide a context
for the discussion in Chapter 27 below267 of proposals to introduce new economic
instruments in relation to the noise and carbon emissions externalities caused by air
transport. The key multilateral treaty, as mentioned in Chapter 4 above, is the 1944
Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation,268 as amended and clarified by
subsequent policy guidance issued by the International Civil Aviation Organization
(&the ICAO*).269 The UK, in common with most other developed countries, including
the EU Member States,270 is a party to the Chicago Convention.
The Chicago Convention is significant in the context of the present book for two
reasons. One of these, of course, is the exclusion already mentioned of international
aviation emissions from the scope of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol targets.271 The other
is that Art. 24 (a) of the Chicago Convention provides that:
Fuel, lubricating oils, spare parts, regular equipment and aircraft stores on board an aircraft
of a contracting State, on arrival in the territory of another contracting State and retained
on board on leaving the territory of that state shall be exempt from customs duty, inspection
fees or similar national or local duties and charges.
The subsequent ICAO policy guidance referred to above strongly recommends that
&any environmental levies on air transport which States may introduce should be
in the form of charges rather than taxes272 and that the funds collected should be
applied in the first instance to mitigating the environmental impact of aircraft engine
emissions*; that there should be no fiscal purpose to the charges; that such charges
should be related to costs; and that they should not discriminate against air transport
as compared with other transportation modes.273
Although the Chicago Convention is the fundamental multilateral agreement on
civil aviation, it should be noted that there is also a network of bilateral agreements,
made between pairs of states and based on the UK/US &Bermuda II* agreements,
and having the chief purpose of shielding national airlines from competition.274
Such bilateral agreements reflect the ICAO*s traditional policy guidance275 of
267 See para. 29.8 below.
268 International Civil Aviation Organization Doc. 7300/8, Convention on International Civil
Aviation, 8th edn (Montreal: ICAO, 2000), available from www.icao.int. See also para.
4.4.3 above.
269 See, especially, International Civil Organization Doc. 8632, ICAO*s Policies on Taxation
in the Field of International Air Transport, 3rd edn (Montreal: ICAO, 2000) and ICAO
Council Resolution on Environmental Charges and Taxes, 9 December 1996 (available
from www.icao.int).
270 Before enlargement in 2004.
271 See para. 8.3.1.4 above.
272 See para. 7.2.1 above.
273 See 1996 Council Resolution, paras 4 and 5.
274 See Rosa Greaves, EC Transport Law (Harlow: Pearson Education, 2000), pp. 65每7.
275 See International Civil Organization Doc. 8632, above.
222 Environmental Taxation Law
recommending &the reciprocal exemption from all taxes levied on fuel taken on board
by aircraft in connection with international air services, #, and also # [the reduction
or elimination of] taxes related to the sale or use of international air transport*.276
8.6 International energy law
The Energy Charter Treaty (&the ECT*)277 is, in origin, the most recent of the
multilateral agreements referred to in this chapter, having been opened for signature
at Lisbon in December 1994.278 Its purpose is to &establish a legal framework in order
to promote long-term co-operation in the energy field, based on complementarities
and mutual benefit #*.279 Although the scope of the ECT is limited to one sector,
it creates a range of legal obligations and rights within the energy sector relating to
investment and trade, while also creating a number of rights and obligations which
relate to the environment. The ECT is an extremely innovative document, making
explicit reference to the philosophy of economic liberalism, while also holding out
the possibility of at least in part having direct effect in signatory countries.280
The basic tenor of the ECT investment provisions, which appear in Part III thereof,
is to ensure that investors receive a basic minimum standard of fair treatment from
the contracting parties. These include a commitment to accord to the investments of
investors &fair and equitable treatment*.281 By Art. 13, a contracting party may not
nationalise or expropriate the investment of another contracting party, except subject
to certain conditions, one of which is the payment of &prompt, adequate and effective
compensation*. In the present context, Art. 13, which deals with expropriation, has a
twofold importance. First, it certainly covers windfall and other confiscatory taxation,
such the windfall tax imposed on the UK*s privatised utilities in 1997.282 Secondly,
it might, according to Waelde, cover expropriation by exorbitant environmental
276 See 1996 Council Resolution, recital d.
277 See para. 4.4.4 above. The text of the Energy Charter Treaty is available from the website
referred to in that para.
278 This paragraph is heavily indebted to Energy Law in Europe: National, EU and
International Law and Institutions, ed. by M. Roggenkamp et al. (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2001), ch. 4 (authored by Craig Bamberger, Jan Linehan and Thomas
Waelde).
279 Energy Charter Treaty, Art. 2.
280 See the painstaking examination of the Energy Charter Treaty*s provisions in Thomas
Waelde, &International Investment under the 1994 Energy Charter Treaty* (1995) 29 JWT
5每72.
281 Energy Charter Treaty, Art. 10.
282 See para. 2.4 above. The windfall tax was created by Finance (No.2) Act 1997, ss.1每5
and Scheds 1每2. The problem was that most of the original allottees had sold out and
so the &clawback* was against investors who had not received the alleged &benefit*.
See Dieter Helm, Energy, the State and the Market: British Energy Policy since 1979,
revised edn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), pp. 288每90, and Thomas Waelde,
&Renegotiating Previous Governments* Privatisation Deals: The 1997 UK Windfall Tax
on Utilities and International Law* (1997) 2 Journal of the Centre for Energy, Petroleum
and Mineral Law and Policy (available from www.dundee.ac.u/cepmlp).
International Aspects 223
regulation.283 However, Art. 13 must be read subject to Art. 21 on taxation, which
provides that nothing in the ECT creates rights or imposes obligations with regard
to the domestic tax laws of the contracting parties and, if there is any inconsistency
between Arts 13 and 21, Art. 21 is to prevail.
The ECT*s trade provisions, which are set out in Art. 29 of the ECT, are designed,
in essence, to bring the trade of contracting parties who are not parties to GATT 1994
into line with the provisions of GATT 1947.284 As regards environmental matters, Art.
19, ECT, contains merely hortatory commitments of good environmental practice.
It is a pity that it is not possible here, for reasons of space, to go into greater detail
on the ECT; it has been described as &arguably the most innovative of the modern
international economic treaties*.285 The ECT:
# breaks away from the pattern of multilateral trade agreements by making Governments
directly accountable to aggrieved investors before non-national tribunals for important
duties specified in the [ECT]. It also pushes the concept of state responsibility further
than in traditional international law by formulating a concept of State responsibility for
regulating private enterprises.286
8.7 Concluding remarks
This chapter has covered two main sets of multilateral agreements in detail: the
MEAs, mainly UN-sponsored, which cover matters of international environmental
law, and the GATT 1994-based system of multilateral trade agreements administered
by the World Trade Organization. In addition, we have briefly considered the
interaction of each of these two main sets of agreements with the sectorally-specific
multilateral agreements on international aviation law (most importantly the 1944
Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation) and international energy law
(as embodied in the 1994 Energy Charter Treaty).
The heart of the discussion in the present chapter has been the problem of reconciling
the objectives of international trade law with those of international environmental law.
In the EU as a whole, as we shall see,287 meeting the GHG emissions reduction targets
in the Kyoto Protocol has meant, inter alia, the introduction of the EU Emissions
Trading Scheme (&the EU ETS*), which specifically envisages the linking of the EU
ETS with the Kyoto flexible mechanisms of JI and the CDM from 2008. The EU ETS
is more easily assimilated to GATT 1994 than would be an EU-wide carbon/energy tax,
given the problems that the latter presents for the GATT 1994 concept of the BTA.288
283 See Thomas Waelde, &Sustainable Development and the 1994 Energy Charter Treaty:
Between Pseudo-Action and the Management of Environmental Investment Risk*, in
International Economic Law with a Human Face, ed. by Freidl Weiss, Erik Denters and
Paul de Waart (The Hague: Kluwer Law International, 1998), pp. 223每70.
284 See Roggenkamp et al., op. cit., pp. 188每9.
285 Ibid., p. 208.
286 Ibid. See Energy Charter Treaty, Arts 7(6) and 22.
287 See Chapter 28 below.
288 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
224 Environmental Taxation Law
The UK, for its part, has decided to meet its own emissions reduction targets through
three economic instruments, that is, the RO, the UK ETS and climate change levy.
The last of these avoids the problems associated with the BTA by being structured as
a product, rather than an emissions, tax.
Setting aside the three instruments just referred to, the two other main environmental
taxes have also clearly been designed with the GATT 1994 discipline in mind.
Aggregates levy, although obviously not inspired by Kyoto, sacrifices adherence to
the possibility, under GATT 1994, of rebating exports. Landfill tax, whose scope does
not extend to imports and exports of waste, neatly sidesteps technical considerations
under GATT 1994 altogether.
The key question for the present is whether it would be possible to design a
future environmental tax which was lawful, not because it satisfied general GATT
1994 norms, but because it was held to be exonerated from the general GATT 1994
discipline by Art. XX.
One of the most problematic aspects of Kyoto is the exclusion from its scope of
aircraft emissions. The ECT may act as a &brake* on increases in rates of energy
taxes
Chapter 9
Conclusions on Part II
We began this part by alluding to the intricate web of departmental involvement in
the design and implementation of the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic
instruments. In fact, as has also been explained, the range of relevant institutional
actors at the central government level is even wider than this would suggest, since
it includes advisory bodies, such as the Advisory Committee on Business and the
Environment (&ACBE*) and non-departmental public bodies and agencies, such as
Ofgem and the Environment Agency. In summary, the involvement of the various
departments, bodies and agencies of central government in the instruments under
discussion in the book is as follows.
The biggest of the environmental taxes, climate change levy, has been, subject to
one particular aspect,1 designed, implemented and administered by HM Customs and
Excise. Customs is responsible for registering holders of electricity supply licences,
that is, the privatised utilities and, in the case of a non-resident supplier, the consumer,
as the persons liable to account for the tax. The Department is also responsible for
making the credits and repayments referred to in Chapter 16 below.2 Furthermore,
Customs is empowered to enter and search premises for, as well as to copy and
remove, documents, as well as to take samples. Customs* wide-ranging powers in
relation to the levy also include those of charging interest on overdue tax, imposing
civil penalties for incorrect returns and taking criminal proceedings in cases of
fraudulent evasion of the tax. Their enforcement powers include arrest, distress and
diligence and the provision of security. The existence of each of these powers, which
are discussed in detail in Chapter 16 below, underline the oft-made point that economic
instruments are not necessarily any less exhaustive of administrative time and effort
than are the more traditional command and control ones. They also underscore the
importance to economic instruments of &backstop* penalty regimes. The mechanism
by which Customs is held to account is a combination of Parliamentary scrutiny (via
the various Select Committees)3 and scrutiny by the courts (via judicial review).4
Although, as will been seen in Chapter 21 below, there have been a range of Select
Committee reports relating, among other things, to the operation of climate change
levy, there has, to the authors* knowledge, been not a single judicial review case
involving Customs* administration of the levy.
It was ment,ioned in Part I of the book that a key characteristic of climate change
levy is its operation in combination with three other economic instruments, that is, the
UK Emissions Trading Scheme (&the UK ETS*), the EU Emissions Trading Scheme
(&the EU ETS*) and the Renewables Obligation (&the RO*). Unlike the levy, however,
1 See below in this chapter.
2 See para. 16.9 below.
3 See para. 4.2.1.1(3) above.
4 See para. 4.2.1.5 above.
226 Environmental Taxation Law
various aspects of these instruments are managed by various different departments,
public bodies and agencies. Furthermore, the exception to Customs* control of
climate change levy administration referred to above consists of the responsibility
of Defra for the administration of the system of climate change agreements.5 Of
the three other instruments, Defra is responsible for administering the UK ETS and
for the production of the UK*s national allocation plan (&NAP*) under the EU ETS.
Interestingly, however, the regulator of the EU ETS, in relation to installations located
in England and Wales, will be, not Defra, but instead the Environment Agency.6
Finally, Ofgem is responsible for monitoring the operation of the RO and for issuing
the Green Certificates which are used as a way of demonstrating compliance with
it. Each of the Environment Agency and Ofgem are accountable, in the sense of
having to give an account of their activities in an annual report.7 In addition, they
are subject, of course, to Select Committee scrutiny and to judicial review. As to the
latter, it is perhaps rather surprising, in view of the astonishing complexity of the
climate change agreement system, that there have been no reported judicial review
proceedings relating to it. This is especially so when it is considered that, as was
pointed out in the Standing Committee debates on Finance Bill 2000, the effect of
the climate change agreement system was to give the Secretary of State a discretion
to fix the rate of the levy as between different businesses.8 What is truly surprising,
given the enormous complexity both of the levy and its interaction with its associated
economic instruments, is that is the least-litigated of the UK*s environmental taxes.
There have, in fact, to the authors* knowledge, been no reported cases involving the
levy.
By contrast with the intricate regime surrounding climate change levy, aggregates
levy is, has already been mentioned, a self-standing economic instrument. The sole
regulatory authority for the tax is therefore HM Customs and Excise. The peculiarities
of the tax mean that Customs has some unusually wide powers, however, in relation
to registration for the tax. These include a power to determine the boundaries of
a site, which is a point discussed in Chapter 16 below.9 This is in addition to the
provision for joint and several liability to the tax from among a class.10 As with
climate change levy, Customs is also tasked with dealing with tax credits and
repayments of tax.11 Customs is also empowered, as for climate change levy, to enter
and search premises for documents and samples. Again, Customs* powers in relation
to aggregates levy include those of charging interest on overdue tax, imposing civil
penalties for incorrect returns and taking criminal proceedings where appropriate.
Their enforcement powers for the levy again include arrest, distress and diligence
and the provision of security. In a contrast with climate change levy, however,
Customs did fall prey to an 每 albeit unsuccessful 每 judicial review action in relation
5 See paras 1.4.2.2(1) and 4.2.1.2(1) above.
6 See para. 28.4 below.
7 See para. 21.5 below.
8 HC, Standing Committee H, 8th Sitting, 18 May 2000, c.2.30 pm.
9 See para. 16.2 below.
10 Ibid.
11 See para. 16.9 below.
Conclusions on Part II 227
to aggregates levy.12 There has also been litigation on Customs* exercise of their
power to exclude registrables from registration.13
Like aggregates levy, landfill tax has, until very recently, been a self-standing
environmental tax. However, as discussed below, the need to comply with the
Landfill Directive has shifted the policy emphasis away from the internalisation of
externalities, to the need to meet the targets laid down in the Directive.14 With this
shift has come an attempt to coordinate the tax with other economic instruments, in
the form of packaging waste recovery notes (&PRNs*) and the Landfill Allowances
Trading Scheme (&the LATS*). Thus, whilst Customs remains in charge of landfill
tax, the responsibility for the design and implementation of economic instruments in
waste management as a whole lies with the Environment Agency, as regards PRNs,
and, as regards the LATS, with a combination of Defra and (so far as England at
least is concerned) local authorities, via their WDAs.15 The same comments as to
the accountability and responsibilities of Customs apply in relation to landfill tax as
in relation to the other taxes referred to above. It is striking that, despite its relative
longevity, none of the litigation on landfill tax16 has involved judicial review. All
the reported cases have been tax disputes between Customs, on the one hand, and
the taxpayer on the other. This may be because the legislation creating the tax 每
that is, Finance Act 1996 每 contains fewer provisions conferring a discretion on the
Commissioners.
We have already commented on the UK*s quasi-federal structure. Its significance in
relation to the material discussed above in this Part II is that of fixing the appropriate
level of fiscal intervention. There was some discussion of this point in Chapter
5 above, in the context of the technical justifications for the instruments under
discussion. Indeed, on reflection, it is rather strange that, having referred to the fact
some environmental problems (for example climate change), are best dealt with at
an international level, the 2002 Treasury paper does not take account of the unilateral
action typified by each of the UK ETS and climate change levy.17 In seeking to address
possibly the largest environmental issue of all, that is, the emissions responsible for
global warming, on a unilateral basis, each of these two instruments may be said, in
Steven Sorrell*s words, to have turned &an early start into a false one*.18 At the same
time, it must be stressed that the problem is the political one of acceptance, easier to
achieve unilaterally, perhaps, than on an EU basis, a point that is vividly illustrated
by the EU carbon/energy tax proposal19 and which may yet have consequences for
12 That is, R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and Others) v. C & E
Commrs, [2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51 (see para. 11.3.2 below).
13 See para. 13.2 below.
14 See para. 6.3.2.4 above.
15 See para. 1.4.2.1(4) above.
16 See para. 15.3 below.
17 See para. 5.5 above.
18 See Steve Sorrell, &Turning and Early Start into a False Start: Implications of the EU
Emissions Trading Directive for the UK Climate Change Levy and Climate Change
Agreements*, in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Greenhouse
Gas Emissions Trading and Project-based Mechanisms (Paris: OECD, 2004), pp. 129每51.
19 See para. 28.1n below.
228 Environmental Taxation Law
the EU ETS. However, just as some environmental problems are best dealt with at the
international level, so also are others best dealt with locally or regionally. The current
inability of the devolved administrations in the UK to levy environmental taxes
comparable to those levied, for example, in Spain, will no doubt for this reason come
under greater scrutiny in the future. Equally, the same issue may arise in relation to
local authorities, although their general failure to exercise the environmental taxation
powers contained in the Transport Act 2000 (that is, in relation to the imposition of
workplace parking levies and congestion charging)20 does not suggest that, at least in
the absence of a more general overhaul of local government finance, this is presently
a particularly fruitful line of inquiry.
If the level of governance at which environmental levies are sought to be imposed
is one factor affecting their political acceptability, so also is their status as taxes.
In Chapters 6 and 7 above, for the purposes of explaining the relationship between
environmental taxes and other types of environmental regulation, we looked in turn
at the regulatory context and taxation context of environmental levies. It goes without
saying that this separation is in a way artificial. However, it will also have been
clear that, even where regulation is command and control based, in fixing standards,
the range of possible payments, for example, for licences, is still considerable and
encompasses payments which might fairly be regarded as taxes. That is why Chapter
7 has taken some time to separate out taxes, properly so called, from concepts which
may at first appear similar but which are crucially different.
The question of whether a particular payment under a regulatory regime is a tax has
a double significance for the rest of the book. The first is that, as a tax, a payment is
susceptible to fairly well-established criteria for separating out taxes which are well
designed from those which are not. Of course, some allowance is necessary in this
context for the nature of the taxes under discussion as environmental, rather than as
fiscal, taxes. These are matters to which we shall allude in Chapter 29. However,
evaluation is not the only significance of designating particular payments as taxes
and thereby segregating them from concepts which may at first appear similar. There
is also an analytical and legal reason. This is that the nature of a payment as a tax and,
in the cases mentioned at the beginning of the book, its allocation to one or other of
the categories of &direct* or &indirect* taxes,21 has a universal significance in the law
of constitutions and in the law of treaties. We have already hinted at the potential
significance of a precise definition of a tax in the devolution of powers to the regions
of the UK. However, it also has a significance for the issues discussed in Chapter 8;
not, perhaps, for the use of the term in GATT 1994 but certainly for the pricing of air
transport and the ban in the 1944 Chicago Convention on taxes on aircraft fuel.22 We
shall return to this issue in Chapter 27.
20 See para. 1.4.2.4 above.
21 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
22 See paras 8.5 above and 12.2.6.4(3) below.
PART III
PRACTICE
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Chapter 10
Introduction to Part III
In Part II, we examined the institutional, theoretical and regulatory contexts in which
the UK has evolved its policies on environmental taxes and their associated economic
instruments. In this Part, we examine the practical operation of each instrument, both
in terms of an analysis of the legal shape that they have ultimately taken and in terms
of the findings of Parliamentary Select Committees on the way in which they have
thus far operated.
The discussion in Part III is split into two Sections, the earlier (A) dealing with
the UK*s environmental taxes and their associated economic instruments, the latter
(B) covering the &greening* of the UK tax system. Such a division of the material is
sanctioned, for example, by the approach of the OECD in successive reports.1
Within Section A of Part III, we have made a fivefold division of the material.
Division 1 of Section A consists of two chapters, the earlier (Chapter 11) dealing with
the process by which each of the post-1997 environmental taxes came to be designed
and implemented, as well as the process in which the pre-1997 tax, landfill tax, has
been monitored. We have not included an account of the design and implementation
of the UK ETS in Chapter 11, thinking it more natural for that history to be traced in
the Chapter which deals with the UK ETS.2 Likewise, the design and implementation
of the EU ETS is analysed as part of the general discussion of the EU ETS in Chapter
28 below.3 Chapter 12, the later part of Division 1, is devoted to analysis of those
areas of Community law which have had the most immediate impact on the design
and implementation of the UK*s environmental taxes and their associated economic
instruments.
Section A, Division 2, is devoted to the detailed analysis of the tax codes relating
to each of aggregates levy, climate change levy and landfill tax. These three taxes
have broadly similar administrative structures, so it was decided to deal with these
together, in Chapter 16.
The third Division of Part III, Section A, is devoted to the two local levies
introduced in earlier chapters, that is, workplace parking levies and road user
charging schemes.
The environmental tax or charge, especially the Pigouvian tax,4 is the archetype
of the economic instrument. However, as has been often stated, each of landfill tax
and climate change levy operate as one of a combination of economic instruments.
These other economic instruments are the subject matter of Division 4 of Part III.
Thus, packaging waste recovery notes (&PRNs*) are discussed in Chapter 19, while
1 See, for example, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Environmental Taxes and Green Tax Reform (Paris: OECD, 1997).
2 See para. 20.2 below.
3 See para. 28.2 below.
4 See para. 5.4 above.
232 Environmental Taxation Law
the Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (&the LATS*) is discussed in para. 20.7.
Each of these operate in conjunction with landfill tax. The UK Emissions Trading
Scheme (&the UK ETS*), which is discussed in Chapter 20, operates in conjunction
with climate change levy and with the Renewables Obligation (&the RO*), the detail
of which has already been considered in Chapter 6 above.5 As from January 2005,
these three instruments will operate alongside the EU ETS, the detailed discussion of
which is allocated to a separate chapter in Part IV.6
Whilst much has been written about the theoretical possibilities presented by
environmental taxes and other economic instruments, data on how they have
operated in practice, especially in relation to their broader regulatory context, is
altogether much scarcer. In the UK, a valuable source of information are the reports
of Parliamentary Select Committees, and these are analysed, so far as they relate
to the instruments under discussion, in Chapter 21. Although Select Committee
evaluation of the various instruments has tended to concentrate on their efficiency
and effectiveness in relation to their avowed environmental goals, this is not the only
aspect on which it is possible to comment in the light of experience. We return to
some of the possible criticisms in Chapter 29 below. One of the key justifications for
environmental taxes, however, has been their potential for delivering the so-called
&employment double dividend*. How this has translated into reality in the UK over
the last seven years or so is also discussed in Chapter 21.
Section B of Part III, by far the shorter of the two Sections, is devoted to nonenvironmental
levies and to the measures taken so far by the UK government, both to
remove hidden subsidies within those levies which tend to encourage environmentallyunfriendly
behaviour, and to introduce tax incentives for more environmentallyfriendly
behaviour. We have made a three-way partition of the material, the second
and third of which, employee taxation (Chapter 23) and business taxation (Chapter
24) are essentially self-explanatory. Excise duties, relating, as they do, to motor
vehicles, are not susceptible to quite so straightforward a thematic allocation and
have therefore been considered separately, in Chapter 22. The elements of these
three chapters are predictable enough and, whilst they are mainly concerned with the
statutory removal of subsidies and the provision of incentives, they are not entirely
confined to this territory. An important issue also covered in Chapters 23 and 24, one
to which brief reference was made in Chapter 1 above, is that of the interaction of
environmental levies with non-environmental ones.
5 See para. 6.4.3.1(2) above.
6 See Chapter 28 below.
PART III, SECTION A
ENVIRONMENTAL LEVIES AND
OTHER ECONOMIC INSTRUMENTS
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Division 1
General
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Chapter 11
Design and Implementation
11.1 Introduction
The key HM Treasury policy document, from 2002, on the use of economic instruments
in environmental regulation,1 has already been discussed in some detail in a previous
chapter.2 One topic that has not yet been discussed in detail, however, is the outline
of the process of policy development which is presented in the 2002 paper. Chapter
7 of the 2002 paper is devoted to providing illustrations of the process by which
policy has been developed in relation to environmental taxes and other economic
instruments. The sole purpose of the present chapter is to examine the discussion in
the 2002 paper by reference to the stages by which the UK*s environmental taxes
have passed into law. Its concern, in other words, is to demonstrate how the economic
theories discussed in an earlier chapter of the book3 have actually been translated
into practice.
The discussion in the present chapter is divided into three main parts. Paragraph
11.2 offers an overview of the design and implementation process deployed when
new regulation, in whatever form, is proposed. This is based on the concept of the
&regulatory impact assessment* (the &RIA*). Regulatory impact assessment, which is
not to be confused with environmental impact assessment (&EIA*),4 is the process by
which a government department compares the benefits of regulatory proposals with
their costs, on the basis that, if the latter are thought to be excessive in relation to the
former, the proposals in question should be abandoned.5 Subsequently, in para. 11.3,
we trace the policy development process in relation to the design and implementation
of the two post-1997 environmental taxes, that is, climate change levy and aggregates
levy.6
The story of landfill tax is rather different from the other two taxes, given that, when
the present government came to power in 1997, the tax was already in existence.7
What has instead happened with landfill tax, is that an ongoing process of review and
legislative amendment has taken place that has seen the original policy objectives of
the tax transformed from the relatively modest one, of internalising the externalities
caused by the landfilling of waste, to its enlistment in the much more ambitious
1 HM Treasury, Tax and the Environment: Using Economic Instruments (London: HMSO,
2002). This is referred to below as &the 2002 Treasury paper* or, simply, &the paper*.
2 See Chapter 5 above.
3 Ibid.
4 See para. 6.2.4 above and para. 12.2.4 below.
5 See Chris Hilson, Regulating Pollution 每 A UK and EC Perspective (Oxford: Hart
Publishing, 2000), p. 49.
6 This is derived in part from Jeremy de Souza and John Snape, &Environmental Tax
Proposals: Analysis and Evaluation* (2000) ELR 74每101.
7 See para. 15.1 below.
238 Environmental Taxation Law
project of meeting the targets imposed by the Landfill Directive.8 This process of
reorienting the objectives of the tax is traced in paragraph 11.4 below.
We restrict the coverage in this chapter to the development of the three environmental
taxes referred to above. The background to the design and implementation of the
seven other main economic instruments is, however, discussed in various places
elsewhere in the book.9
11.2 Regulatory impact assessment
11.2.1 Overview
The explanation of the development process in the 2002 paper is cast in terms of
a general description of the stages of the RIA, with outline accounts of how that
process was in fact followed through in relation to the design and implementation
of each of aggregates levy and climate change levy.10 These outline accounts are
elaborated in the discussion below.
Regulatory impact assessment replaced the previous Conservative Government*s
two separate &compliance cost assessment*11 and &regulatory appraisal* procedures.12
Although a unified process, the inspiration behind RIA is essentially the same as
those earlier procedures, however,13 since it is &an assessment of the impact of policy
options in terms of the costs, benefits and risks of a proposal*.14 In accordance,
therefore, with RIA procedures in the field, the stages involved in the development
and implementation of environmental taxes and other economic instruments are
described in the 2002 paper as follows:15
8 See para. 6.3.2.4 above and para. 12.2.5.1(2)(b) below.
9 See paras 19.1 below (background to PRNs); 20.7 below (background to the LATS);
20.2 below (background to the UK ETS); 28.2 (background to the EU ETS); 21.5
(background to the RO); 17.1 (workplace parking levies); and 18.1 (road user charging
schemes).
10 The 2002 paper also contains a summary of the pesticides tax consultation, which is
discussed in para. 21.9.5 below, and which has not as yet (December 2004) resulted in a
pesticides tax being imposed.
11 See Department of Trade and Industry, Checking the Cost of Regulation: A Guide to
Compliance Cost Assessment (London: HMSO, 1996).
12 See Cabinet Office Deregulation Unit, Regulation in the Balance: A Guide to Regulatory
Appraisal Incorporating Risk Assessment (London: Cabinet Office, 1996).
13 See Cabinet Office, Better Policy Making: A Guide to Regulatory Impact Assessment,
2003.
14 See Better Policy Making: A Guide to Regulatory Impact Assessment, para. 1.1. In August
1998, the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon. Tony Blair, MP, &announced that no policy proposal
which has an impact on business, charities or voluntary bodies, should be considered by
Ministers without an RIA being carried out* (ibid., para. 1.2). See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
15 In the chapter below, press releases and other documents issued during the development
and implementation process have been referenced where possible to Simon*s Weekly Tax
Intelligence (&SWTI*), as a ready source of reference. Reports of Parliamentary debates in
Hansard are available on the web from 1989 onwards, at www.parliament.uk.
Design and Implementation 239
1 the establishment of the long-term goal or environmental objective for the
economic instrument in question;
2 the institution of a long consultation period;
3 an announcement by an &early signal* that the government is minded to intervene,
or further intervene, in the market;
4 the active collection of evidence;
5 an announcement, again by an &early signal*, of the government*s choice of
economic instrument;
6 the consideration of how best to use the revenue raised;
7 a willingness to consider voluntary alternatives;16
8 the easing of the adjustment to the new instrument by introducing other fiscal
measures which facilitate investment in new technology;
9 the provision of compensation and relief for the groups most seriously affected
by the instrument;
10 a commitment to ongoing monitoring and evaluation of the instrument;
11 a commitment to future policy flexibility; and
12 a commitment, if possible, to working internationally.17
It should be emphasised that the 12 stages listed above can, and indeed do, run in
parallel: stage 3 above, for instance, leaves scope for additional discussion with
interested parties18 on the possibilities for voluntary arrangements as an alternative
to a tax (see stage 7 above).19
11.2.2 Hypothecation and recycling of revenues
Stage 6 above had been a matter of considerable debate prior to the introduction in
2001 and 2002, respectively, of climate change levy and aggregates levy, part of the
revenue from each of which has been &earmarked* or &hypothecated* for particular
purposes since the introduction of each respective tax. This was because HM
Treasury, in common with finance ministries generally in developed countries, had
traditionally resisted the notion of the earmarking of taxes.20 Hypothecated taxes were
very much the exception in the UK*s taxation landscape.21 Even the LTCS (the tax
rebate which had operated since 1996 in conjunction with landfill tax)22 represented
what O*Riordan characterised as a clever ruse &to accommodate the ※sustainability
reality§ of quasi-hypothecation to the ※other world§ reality of Treasury-speak that
hypothecation has not taken place*.23
16 See 2002 paper, ch. 6.
17 Ibid., Table 7.1 (first column), pp. 42每3.
18 The government*s term is &stakeholders* (see the Foreword to the 2002 paper by The Rt
Hon. Gordon Brown, MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer). See para. 4.2.1.2(2) above.
19 See 2002 paper, para. 7.5.
20 See Martin Daunton, Just Taxes: The Politics of Taxation in Britain, 1914每1979
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 6 and 35.
21 Notoriously so, after the case of the road fund tax of the 1920s (see para. 21.2 below).
22 See para. 21.3.2 below.
23 See Timothy O*Riordan, &Editorial Introduction to the Hypothecation Debate*, in
Ecotaxation, ed. by Timothy O*Riordan (London: Earthscan, 1997), pp. 37每44, p. 40.
240 Environmental Taxation Law
11.3 Design and implementation of the two post-1997 taxes
11.3.1 Climate change levy
The 2002 Treasury paper24 traces the proposals for climate change levy back to the
March 1998 report of the Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment
(&ACBE*).25 This decided in favour of a policy framework over the long term within
which, without harming competitiveness, businesses in the UK could produce carbon
savings. However, as Helm points out,26 the idea of a carbon tax 每 as opposed to an
energy tax 每 was much older, and economic instruments had been advocated in a
Government White Paper as long ago as 1990.27
Subsequently, in his March 1998 Budget speech, the Chancellor of the Exchequer,
the Rt Hon. Gordon Brown MP, announced that Sir Colin Marshall, then the
chairman of British Airways and President of the CBI,28 would head &a Government
review into economic instruments to improve the industrial and commercial use of
energy*.29 If, as has subsequently been claimed, this announcement was the prelude
to a merely &paper* exercise, then the manner in which it was expressed 每 in terms
of energy consumption, rather than carbon emissions 每 may well suggest a foregone
conclusion.30 Nonetheless, Marshall forthwith invited all interested parties to submit
their views, before 1 August 1998, on how industry and commerce could best contribute
to tackling climate change. He also met a wide range of what the government refers
to as &stakeholder groups* to discuss the issues involved.31 Finally, with the support
of a task force of senior civil servants from HM Treasury, the former DETR,32 from
the DTI33 and from Customs,34 he published a 64-page report in November of the
Hypothecation can take a number of subtly different forms (ibid., pp. 45每51, referring to
Charging for Government: User Charges and Earmarked Taxes in Principle and Practice,
ed. by R.E. Wagner (London and New York: Routledge, 1991) and M. Wilkinson, &Paying
for Public Spending: Is There a Role for Earmarked Taxes?* (1994) 15 FS 119每35.
24 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1.
25 Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment, Climate Change: A Strategic
Issue for Business, March 1998 (London: Department of Transport, Environment and the
Regions, 1998). See para. 4.2.1.4 above.
26 See Dieter Helm, Energy, the State, and the Market: British Energy Policy since 1979,
revised edition (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), p. 354.
27 See Department of the Environment, This Common Inheritance: Britain*s Environmental
Strategy, 1990 (Cmnd 1200, 1990), pp. 271每8.
28 Sir Colin had become Lord Marshall of Knightsbridge by the time of the publication of his
report in November 1998. As Helm points out, &Marshall had not been previously known
for his environmental expertise, but he did have wide industrial experience, and therefore
could be regarded as better able to &sell* an unpopular tax to industry* (see Helm, op. cit.,
p. 354).
29 Hansard HC, 17 March 1998, cols 1108每9.
30 See Helm, op. cit., pp. 354每5.
31 See 2002 paper, para. 7.26.
32 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
33 Ibid.
34 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) above.
Design and Implementation 241
same year.35 The evidence collected in this period of just over four months, and set
forth in the Marshall Report, seems to represent the extent of the consultation and
active evidence collection involved in the production of the Marshall Report. A total
of around 140 individuals, companies and other organisations had responded to the
original request for views.36
The Marshall Report concluded that &the leading option for a tax would appear to be
a downstream tax on the final use of energy by industrial and commercial consumers*,
rather than an upstream carbon tax on energy suppliers, with the rates of tax reflecting
&at least in broad terms* the carbon content of different fuels.37 However, Marshall
cautioned that the design of any tax should ensure that combined heat and power
(&CHP*) was not disadvantaged and that the tax should aim, wherever possible, &to
increase incentives for the take-up of renewable sources of energy*.38 The report
also recommended the full &recycling* of tax revenues to business, possibly through
carbon trust-type schemes, and that any measures taken should be &subject to detailed
consultation about their design*.39
When the Chancellor made his Budget speech in March 1999, he confirmed that
the government had decided to implement Marshall*s recommendations from April
2001.40 The Chancellor also announced that the levy would be brought in, after
further consultation with the industry, on a revenue-neutral basis, with &no overall
increase in the burden of taxation on business*.41 To this end, the introduction of the
levy would be accompanied by a reduction in the main rate of employers* NICs42
from 12.2 per cent to 11.7 per cent.43
The Chancellor*s announcement was followed by a further period of consultation
with various interested parties, during which the Rt Hon. Patricia Hewitt, at that
time the Financial Secretary to the Treasury,44 was asked to make a statement in the
House of Commons,45 on 24 June 1999, on the climate change levy generally. The
Minister described in broad terms the purpose of the levy, briefly explained why the
government expected the levy to involve no increase in the overall burden of tax on
business, and recognised a need for the government to give special consideration to
the position of energy-intensive industries. The purpose of the levy was to encourage
energy efficiency in business, which in turn would enable the government to meet
its target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions laid down by the Kyoto Protocol.46
There would be no increase in the overall burden of tax on business, since the revenue
35 Lord Marshall, Economic Instruments and the Business Use of Energy (London: HM
Treasury, 1998).
36 Ibid., Table A.3, p. 34.
37 Ibid., p. 21.
38 Ibid., p. 3.
39 Ibid., p. 2.
40 See 2002 paper, para. 7.27.
41 See Hansard HC, 9 March 1999, col. 181.
42 See para. 1.4.3.1 above.
43 See Hansard HC, 9 March 1999, col. 181.
44 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) above.
45 See para. 4.2.1.1(1) above.
46 As modified by the EU burden-sharing agreement (see para. 8.3.1.4 above).
242 Environmental Taxation Law
raised by the levy would fund a 0.5 per cent cut in the main rate of employer*s
NICs. The position of energy-intensive industries would be reflected in lower rates
of levy for those energy intensive sectors which agreed targets with the government
for improving the efficiency of their energy consumption.47
Mrs Hewitt had revealed the fact that negotiations between the government and
representatives of energy-intensive industry sectors were already ongoing when she
made her Parliamentary statement on 24 June 1999. On 27 July 1999, a matter of
some four weeks later, the Treasury announced that three Ministers, including Mrs
Hewitt, had met representatives of these sectors.48 Mrs Hewitt stressed that it was the
Government*s wish to co-operate, not only with industry, but with other interested
parties, in order to make sure that the ※environmental effectiveness§ of the projected
climate change levy was maximised, while attempting to ensure that the levy did not
compromise the competitiveness of industry. In the same announcement, Mrs Hewitt
indicated that the exemption for coal and gas used in chemical reactions would be
extended to electricity, following representations on the point.49
In his Pre-Budget Statement of 9 November 1999,50 the Chancellor of the
Exchequer announced further structural amendments to climate change levy. These
amendments had two main strands, one of which was the introduction of climate
change agreements51 and the measures needed to implement them.52 The other
strand was described as a recognition of the need to increase the environmental
effectiveness of the levy. This was to be achieved in two ways: by the exemption
from the levy of electricity generated from renewable sources of energy and good
quality CHP stations;53 and by the creation of a further bolster to the levy in the
form of the introduction, from the tax year 2001/2002,54 of enhanced income tax
and corporation tax relief for expenditure on energy-saving investments.55 The 2002
Treasury paper referred to above sees the exemptions for renewable source and CHP
electricity56 as evidence of the government*s willingness to compensate sectors that
would otherwise have been particularly badly affected by the introduction of the
47 See House of Commons Written Answers, vol. 110, cols 461, 462, 24 June 1999. On the
same occasion, Mrs Hewitt gave a somewhat elliptical explanation for the imposition of
the levy on CHPs, as originally envisaged (see para. 14.4 below).
48 HM Treasury Press Release, 27 July 1999 (reproduced in [1999] SWTI 1348). The Rt
Hon. Michael Meacher, MP, the Environment Minister, and Mr John Battle, MP, the Trade
and Industry Minister, were the other ministers involved.
49 [1999] SWTI 1348, 1349.
50 See Hansard HC, 9 March 1999, col. 889.
51 See para. 1.4.2.2(1) above and para. 14.6 below.
52 See HM Treasury Press Release, 9 November 1999 (reproduced in [1999] SWTI 1818).
53 As envisaged at the time, &renewable energy sources* would included solar power, wind,
wave and tide and hydroelectricity; solid renewables, such as wood, straw and waste;
and gaseous renewables such as landfill and sewage gas (see HM Customs and Excise,
Budget 99: A Climate Change Levy 每 A Consultation Document (HM Customs and Excise:
London, 1999), p. 4).
54 That is, from April 2001.
55 See HM Treasury Press Release, 9 November 1999 (reproduced in [1999] SWTI 1816).
56 The exemptions were enacted as Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, paras 15 and 19 (see paras
14.4 and 14.5 below).
Design and Implementation 243
levy and underscores the point by stating that the levy was designed to be revenueneutral
and that it was not designed to apply to the domestic sector because of issues
of fuel poverty.57 Likewise, the same document sees the enhanced income tax and
corporation tax relief, in the form of generous capital allowances, as evidence of the
government*s commitment to support investment in new technology in order to ease
adjustment to the levy. These measures were eventually enacted, to coincide with the
introduction of the levy, in the Finance Act 2001.58
Published with the 1999 Pre-Budget Report was a detailed description of the design
of climate change levy.59 Useful though this description was, practitioners had to
wait until 26 November 1999 for Customs to publish drafts of the clauses creating
the levy, designed to be included in Finance Bill 2000.60 On 11 November 1999,
as the draft clauses were being awaited, Mr Stephen Timms MP, the new Financial
Secretary to the Treasury, had emphasised that any expectations that particular sectors
or firms had, for being exempted from the levy, would be disappointed.61 Just before
Christmas 1999, it was confirmed that the Secretary of State and representatives of
energy-intensive sectors had reached climate change agreements.62
Climate change levy passed into law in the Finance Act 2000, although it was
expressly provided that any supply made before 1 April 2001 was excluded from its
scope.63 Thereafter, although the rates of the levy have been reviewed annually as
part of the Budget process, they have so far remained unchanged.64 The impact of
the levy is being monitored by Customs, with details of the environmental outcomes
being published, not only in pre-Budget report documentation but that relating to the
Budgets themselves.65 The government*s commitment to future policy flexibility,
with the climate change levy is reflected, says the 2002 Treasury paper, in two
developments that have occurred since its introduction in April 2001: the introduction
of the general exemption for electricity produced in good quality CHP stations66 or
from coal mine methane67 and from certain secondary recycling processes;68 and
the introduction of the UK ETS in April 2002,69 with its link to the levy via climate
change agreements.70
57 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1.
58 See Capital Allowances Act 2001, ss.45A每45C, as inserted by Finance Act 2001, s.65,
and Sched. 17, para. 2.
59 Reproduced in [1999] SWTI 1794每1798.
60 See House of Commons Written Answers, vol. 339, col. 255, 26 November 1999.
61 Ibid., vol. 337, col. 768, 11 November 1999.
62 See Brown, Financial Times, 22 December 1999, p. 3.
63 Finance Act 2000, Sched. 6, para. 10.
64 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1. The levy rates as finally enacted are given in paras 14.1 and
14.2 below.
65 2002 paper, Table 7.1.
66 Finance Act 2002, s.123(1), inserting new para. 20A in Sched. 6, Finance Act 2000.
67 Ibid., s.126, inserting new paragraph 19(4A) in Sched. 6, Finance Act 2000.
68 Business Brief 18/02, Climate change levy 每 new exemption for certain recycling
processes, 8 July 2002.
69 See para. 1.4.2.2(2) above.
70 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1. See para. 14.6 below.
244 Environmental Taxation Law
11.3.2 Aggregates levy
Whereas the goal of climate change levy has an international significance, that of
aggregates levy is much more specific, possibly even parochial. Also, whereas climate
change levy is one of three economic instruments designed to tackle climate change,
aggregates levy is the key regulatory instrument in relation to mineral extraction.71
With some linguistic imprecision, the 2002 Treasury paper describes the goal of
aggregates levy as being &to tackle the environmental costs of aggregate extraction
including noise, dust, visual intrusion and biodiversity loss*.72 At the same time, the
government has stressed that it is essential that there continues to be an adequate
supply of aggregates.73
The government approached the issue of whether or not to create, as it was originally
called, an &aggregates tax*, with considerable dedication, if not zeal.74 In his very first
Budget speech, barely eight weeks after the current government was first returned in
1997, the Chancellor announced that he was considering the imposition of a tax on
aggregates extraction, together with one on water pollution:75
The extraction of aggregates 每 including stone, sand and gravel 每 involves significant
environmental costs and damage to the landscape, which may go beyond that recognised
in the scope and level of the landfill tax. Too little is also being done to discourage water
pollution. The environmental case for charges on polluters needs to be examined carefully.
After a period of consultation, I will return with any proposals in those two areas in my
next Budget.76
This was the early signal that intervention in the market for primary aggregates was
likely, although it is not identified as such in the 2002 paper.77 The DETR accordingly
commissioned a research project from London Economics78 which, beginning in
September 1997, undertook an investigation of the environmental costs and benefits
of the supply of aggregates.79
The London Economics report was published by the DETR in April 1998.80 It
indicated, as many had expected that it would, that aggregates extraction had
considerable environmental costs which were not already subject to regulation.81 It
also identified a number of areas in which further work would be necessary, since it
had only been possible to take a small sample of sites and the work, which involved
71 The other being town and country planning regulation.
72 See para. 5.3 above, quoting 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
73 See, for example, HM Treasury, Pre-Budget Report 1998, 3 November 1998, para. 5.60.
74 See para. 13.1 below.
75 See para. 21.9 below.
76 The aggregates tax proposals obviously progressed; the water tax proposals did not (see
para. 21.9 below).
77 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
78 A private sector specialist economics consultancy (see www.londecon.co.uk).
79 See Phase Two, para. 1.1.
80 That is, The Environmental Costs and Benefits of the Supply of Aggregates, above.
81 That is, mainly the town and country planning legislation (see para. 6.6 above).
Design and Implementation 245
a fairly novel methodology, had been carried out in a relatively short time.82 The
DETR therefore asked David Pearce83 and Susana Mourato, of University College,
London, to review the work (which became &Phase One* of the research) and to
identify possible improvements to it. Although they did suggest a number of ways
of improving the methodology, in June 1998 Pearce and Mourato concluded that,
given Phase One*s objectives, the methodology was appropriate.84 The government
then commissioned further research from London Economics, the nature and scope
of which has been discussed in an earlier chapter.85 The results of this research,
referred to above as &Phase Two*, were accordingly published, again by the DETR,
on 9 March 1999.86 The work undertaken consisted of a combination of:
1 an assessment of local impacts through a survey of just under 10,000 people
within five miles of &representative* sites, interpreted as involving an average
environmental cost of 70p per tonne; and
2 a separate national survey of public attitudes to measure the cost of quarrying in
areas designated for special protection from development, for example, National
Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, interpreted as involving external
costs of £6 per tonne.
The DETR concluded that &the costs of quarrying Britain*s construction aggregates
每 in terms of local and national environment 每 are significant*, putting the annual
cost at £250m.
This considerable amount of work was designed to establish the long-term goal
of a prospective tax and, as mentioned in the 2002 paper, was part of the process of
evidence collection.
Meanwhile, in June 1998, Customs had issued a consultation paper on a potential
aggregates tax, proposing a conceptually similar tax to landfill tax, which would be
charged on a volume basis and applied at the point of first sale, use or transfer of the
material away from the site of extraction.87 This was the beginning of a consultation
period that was eventually to last for the best part of two years, no doubt justifying
the 2002 paper in its claim that there was an extensive consultation with the industry
from 1998 onwards.88 Five months later, the Quarry Products Association (&the
QPA*)89 offered an alternative to a tax in the form of a set of voluntary measures. The
82 That is, something over seven months.
83 According to Helm, op. cit., p. 346n, David Pearce had been a significant influence on This
Common Inheritance (see para. 11.3.1n above) and especially its advocacy of economic
instruments.
84 See Environmental Costs and Benefits of the Supply of Aggregates: A Review of the
London Economics Report (see para. 5.5n above).
85 Ibid.
86 The DETR said that this research was &one factor* to be taken into account by the
Chancellor of the Exchequer.
87 See HM Customs and Excise, Consultation on a Proposed Aggregates Tax, 15 June
1998.
88 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
89 See para. 2.5 above.
246 Environmental Taxation Law
Chancellor referred both to the offer of voluntary measures and to the consultation
process in his Pre-Budget Report of 3 November 1998, reiterating that, in the light of
the responses to the consultation and of the proposals made by the aggregates industry,
the government was still considering the imposition of a tax.90 At this stage, however,
the Pre-Budget Report simply confirmed that Ministers had offered to consider the
industry*s proposals for some alternative to the imposition of a tax. Whatever these
proposals were, they would, however, &have to amount to a deliverable package of
measures which would permanently secure equivalent or greater benefits than a
tax*.91 Nonetheless, the Pre-Budget Report referred with approval to the fact that the
industry had latterly taken certain steps to curtail its activities in the National Parks,
and indicated that there might be scope to build on that positive approach in dealing
with the remaining environmental impacts of the industry*s activities.92
This somewhat conciliatory approach was still in evidence on Budget Day 199993
when, referring to the publication of the Phase Two report,94 the Economic Secretary
to the Treasury,95 said:
# [B]efore coming to a final decision on whether to proceed with a tax, the Government
would first like to pursue the possibility of an enhanced voluntary package of environmental
improvements with the industry. Should the industry not be able to commit to an acceptably
improved offer, or fail to deliver an agreed package of voluntary measures, the Government
would [sic] introduce a tax.96
The Economic Secretary accordingly announced that Ministers would be meeting
representatives of the quarrying industry to begin these negotiations. In the
atmosphere of all this co-operation, it was therefore somewhat surprising when, in
April 1999, Customs issued a summary of the responses to its June 1998 consultation,
together with a set of draft legislative provisions.97 Undeterred, the QPA submitted
a revised package of voluntary measures in July 1999, but these again proved to be
unacceptable to the government. In the Pre-Budget Report of November 1999, the
Chancellor looked for more:
The Quarry Products Association submitted a revised package of voluntary environmental
measures to the Government in July. The Government welcomed this package, which
shows some improvement on their original package, notably in the areas of aggregates
transport and air quality. In particular there is an extra £20 million a year from seven major
companies to promote and develop recycling. But this continues to fall short of what is
necessary to match the overall environmental and economic effects of a tax on primary
90 See Pre-Budget Report 1998, para. 1.33.
91 Ibid., para. 5.63.
92 Ibid.
93 That is, 9 March 1999.
94 See above in this para.
95 See para. 4.2.1.2(2) above.
96 See HM Treasury News Release HMT 8, Reducing the Environmental Impact of
Quarrying, 9 March 1999.
97 Customs and Excise News Release, 30 April 1999, reproduced in [1999] SWTI 859,
881.
Design and Implementation 247
aggregates. So the Government is minded to introduce a tax in the next Budget unless the
industry can further improve on this package.98
For one reason or another, the QPA failed subsequently to improve on their July 1999
package. The relevant part of the 2000 Budget Report reads as follows:
Since the [1999] Pre-Budget Report, there have been further discussions about the content
of the industry*s voluntary package. But the industry has made delivery of the voluntary
package conditional on undertakings from the Government on procurement policy which
were unacceptable. The Government has therefore decided to introduce an aggregates
levy99 which will come into effect from April 2002.100
The 2,002 paper is adamant that the consultation process that had ended so
unsuccessfully for the industry is evidence of the government*s willingness to
consider a voluntary approach to the problem of environmental damage caused by
aggregates extraction.101 The postponement of the commencement of the levy for
another two years from the date on which its introduction was announced constituted,
according to the 2002 paper, an early signal of the choice of economic instrument,
comparable to the way in which climate change levy had been announced in the 1999
Budget, for implementation in 2001.102
The outline of the tax offered in the 2000 Budget Report shows how much
importance the government attached to the ideas of recycling revenue,103 of making
a commitment to supporting new technology to ease adjustment and of compensating
the groups who would be hardest hit by the tax:104
To further the Government*s aim of shifting the burden of taxation from &goods* to &bads*
the revenues from the levy will be fully recycled to the business community through a
0.1 percentage point reduction in employers* NICs and a new Sustainability Fund. The
Government will be consulting shortly on how this fund can best be used to deliver local
environmental improvements.105
Accordingly, in June 2000, Customs issued draft clauses for comment, and, in August
2000, the government consulted on the best uses for the sustainability fund which it
was proposing to sent up with the benefit of receipts from the tax. In the Pre-Budget
98 See Stability and Steady Growth For Britain, 1999 (Cm 4479, 1999), para. 6.95. Despite
the ominous tone of the Pre-Budget Report, the quarrying industry remained confident
that an aggregates tax would not be introduced, after all (see, for example, Daniel Lyons
and Richard Mackender, &The Environment and the Pre-Budget Report*, TJ, 29 November
1999, pp. 11每12).
99 Note the change of name (see para. 13.1 below).
100 HM Treasury, Budget Report 2000, 21 March 2000, para. 6.90.
101 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
102 Ibid., Table 7.1, p. 42.
103 A point which is reflected in the relevant statutory provisions also (see Finance Act 2001,
s.44).
104 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
105 HM Treasury, Budget Report 2000, 21 March 2000, para. 6.94.
248 Environmental Taxation Law
Report of November 2000, the Chancellor announced that the government would
allocate £35 million to the aggregates levy sustainability fund (&ALSF*), and that it
would be introduced in April 2002, along with the levy itself.
In July 2000, the QPA, having failed to stop the levy, had submitted a proposal for
reductions in tax rates if the industry reached defined environmental standards. In
the 2001 Budget, the Chancellor announced that he was interested in principle in the
idea of a differentiated rate of tax,106 a point which might be taken to substantiate the
claim made in the 2002 paper that rates of tax would be reviewed annually, as part
of the Budget process.
The levy duly began operation on 1 April 2002, pursuant to the Treasury power
contained in Finance Act 2001107 to provide for its commencement date by statutory
instrument.108 An application by the British Aggregates Association109 for judicial
review of the legislation, based, among other things, on alleged breaches of
Community law and of the European Convention on Human Rights, was dismissed
by Moses, J. on 19 April 2002.110
11.4 Review of landfill tax
When the present government came to power in May 1997, landfill tax had already
been in operation for seven months.111 The goals of the tax, as originally articulated,
were:
每 [t]o ensure that landfill waste disposal is properly priced, which will promote greater
efficiency in the waste-management market and in the economy as a whole; and
每 To apply the &polluter-pays* principle and promote a more sustainable approach to waste
management in which we produce less waste, and reuse or recover value from more
waste.112
As reformulated in the 2002 paper, the tax*s goals are &to internalise the environmental
costs of landfill*, exemplified by methane emissions, nuisance and groundwater
106 HM Treasury, Budget 2001: Investing for the Long Term 每 Building Opportunity and
Prosperity for All, 7 March 2001 (see [2001] SWTI 475, 479).
107 See Finance Act 2001, s.16(6).
108 Finance Act 2001, Section 16, (Appointed Day) Order 2002, S.I. 2002 No. 809.
109 See para. 2.5 above.
110 See R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and Others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51. See paras 12.1, 12.3.3.1 and 12.3.5
below.
111 See Jane Powell and Amelia Craighill, &The UK Landfill Tax*, in O*Riordan, op. cit.,
pp. 304每18; Bob Davies and Michael Doble, &The Development and Implementation of
a Landfill Tax in the UK*, in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development,
Addressing the Economics of Waste (Paris: OECD, 2004), pp. 63每80; and Inger Brisson, &The
UK Landfill Tax*, in Environmental Policy: Objectives, Instruments, and Implementation,
ed. by Dieter Helm (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp. 260每80.
112 See HM Customs and Excise, &Landfill Tax*, A Consultation Paper, 1995, quoted in
Powell and Craighill, op. cit., p. 307.
Design and Implementation 249
pollution; to give better price signals for alternatives to landfill; and to assist meeting
waste targets in the most efficient way.113 The last of these marks a significant shift
in policy, since, in order to &steer* behaviour, the level of the tax will be vastly in
excess of the externalities which it was originally introduced to address.114 The tax
was originally, and continues to be, chargeable on taxable disposals of material as
waste, by way of landfill, at landfill sites.115
The 2002 Treasury paper places some emphasis on the fact that, despite116 landfill
tax*s origins as a creation of the previous administration, the government continues
to review, gather evidence and consult117 on the operation of the tax.118 The paper
also stresses that, not only is revenue from the tax recycled, via the landfill tax credit
scheme (that is, the LTCS),119 but that the rates of the tax are reviewed annually as
part of the Budget process and, specifically, as part of the Prime Minister*s Strategy
Unit120 report on waste policy.121 In relation to the former, it draws attention to the
consultation launched in April 2002 on changes to the LTCS, especially on its funding
priorities and on the way in which it is itself funded.122 The consultation resulted in the
changes to the LTCS made in April 2003, although these were of course subsequent
to the publication of the Treasury paper itself.123 The Chancellor*s announcement
in the 1999 Budget Report of the escalator in the rates of tax with effect from April
2000124 is taken in the Treasury paper as an example of an early signal of the choice
of an economic instrument, in this case to deal with the obligations imposed by
the Landfill Directive.125 A similar point might also be made of the second stage
of the escalator, that is, the announcement in the 2002 Pre-Budget Report of the
increase (&revenue neutral to business as a whole*) in the rate of landfill tax to £35,
by instalments of at least £3 per annum, starting in 2005.126 Davies and Doble have
the following comment:
From a starting point of seeking to internalise externalities and incentivize sustainable waste
management, policy considerations have changed the focus # [the increases in the rate of
113 See para. 5.3 above.
114 See Davies and Doble, op. cit., p. 78.
115 See para. 1.4.2.1(1) above and para. 15.2 below.
116 Or perhaps &because of*.
117 The first consultation on the tax instituted by the government began as early as January
1998 (see 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42).
118 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 42.
119 See para. 4.2.1.2(2)n above.
120 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
121 See 2002 paper, Table 7.1, p. 43.
122 See HM Treasury News Release 35/02, Consultation on Landfill Tax Credit Scheme
Published, 17 April 2002.
123 See the Landfill Tax (Amendment) Regulations 2003, S.I. 2003 No. 605. See also para.
21.3.2 below.
124 The 2002 paper misattributes this to the 1999 Pre-Budget Report (see Table 7.1, p. 42),
whereas it was actually announced eight months earlier in the 1999 Budget itself (see Pre-
Budget Report 1999, para. 6.86). See also para. 15.1 below.
125 See para. 6.3.2.4 above and para. 12.2.5.1(2)(b) below.
126 See Pre-Budget Report 2002, para. 7.51 (see [2002] SWTI 1562, 1577).
250 Environmental Taxation Law
tax] # have been driven by an acceptance that landfill tax must be increased to achieve
behavioural change, through closing the cost gap on methods of diversion from landfill and
ultimately to contribute to the incentive to achieve diversion to meet EU Landfill Directive
targets on municipal waste.127
It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that landfill tax rates are such as to suggest
that the tax is, or will be, more in the nature of an environmental penalty than an
environmental tax. Such is the extent of the policy change that has resulted from the
ongoing review referred to above.
11.5 Concluding comments
It will be appreciated from the discussion in this chapter that, whilst certainly taxes as
traditionally understood,128 the UK*s three main environmental taxes have features
which set them apart from most other taxes.
The key unusual feature which is common to all of them is their potential for
steering behaviour129 but there is also the hypothecation or, in the case of landfill
tax, quasi-hypothecation, of the revenue raised by them.
What is striking about the application of the RIA approach to designing and
implementing aggregates levy and climate change levy is that has introduced an
element of bargaining into the decision as to whether to introduce new environmental
taxes. The relative bargaining strengths of the governmental and industrial actors may,
however, mean that taxes are more likely to be imposed on some sectors of industry
than on others. The quarrymen*s trade association was, after all, conspicuously less
successful in negotiating the imposition of aggregates levy than were the energyintensive
sectors of industry in negotiating the introduction of climate change levy.
Finally, the soon-to-be penal levels of landfill tax raise the question of whether
the tax stands to be transformed from a tax to a penalty. It is certainly no longer a
Pigouvian tax,130 properly so-called. This may conceivably be important, since taxes
are usually deductible in the calculation of profits for the purposes of income tax and
corporation tax, whereas fines are not.131 In any event, there has certainly been a
considerable shift in the policy which landfill tax is being used to advance since its
introduction in 1996.
127 Davies and Doble, op. cit., p. 77.
128 See Chapter 7 above.
129 Which, since they are consciously designed so to do, means that they do not, apparently,
infringe the neutrality principle (see John Tiley, Revenue Law, 4th edn (Oxford: Hart
Publishing, 2000), p. 11. See para. 1.2.1.5(2) above.
130 See para. 5.4n above.
131 See McKnight v. Sheppard, [1999] STC 669.
Chapter 12
Community Law Aspects
12.1 Introduction
This chapter seeks to examine how the design of the UK*s environmental levies and
subsidies is shaped by its status as a Member State of the EU. In practice, this may be
the single most significant constraint on the design and implementation of the UK*s
environmental taxes and other economic instruments.
Throughout the study, and whatever the particular context in which we have
sought to locate the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic instruments, the
rules and institutions of Community law have never been far away. In Chapter 4,
we indicated how the ECJ has a role to play in determining the compatibility of
UK tax law with the European Treaty.1 In Chapter 4 also, as part of our analysis of
the institutional framework of the UK*s environmental taxes and other economic
instruments, we described those Community institutions with some responsibility
or other for environmental law and policy and for tax law and policy.2 The UK*s
obligations as an EU Member State underlay the technical justifications for the green
levies and subsidies discussed in Chapter 5. The overview of UK environmental and
market regulation offered in Chapter 6 stressed the Community origins of much of
the material, whilst reserving discussion of its detail until now.3 In Chapter 7, we
reviewed the insights provided by the jurisprudence of the ECJ into the concept of a
tax, as distinct from related concepts.4 Finally, in Chapter 8, we considered the impact
of international environmental law and international trade law on the environmental
taxation law of the UK as an EU Member State. The arrangement of the material in
the present chapter reflects the principal concerns of these earlier chapters.
The current chapter is divided into two main parts. Of these, the more extensive
is paragraph 12.2, which begins by examining those aspects of Community
environmental law that have shaped the domestic environmental regulation discussed
in Chapter 6 above. These are the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (&IPPC*)
regime; the Community*s Environmental Action Programmes; and Community
procedures for evaluating the likely environmental impacts of certain construction
projects. The first of these provides a convenient basis for much UK domestic
legislation (including climate change levy), while the second, in setting out the main
environmental priorities of the Community, supplies the technical justification for
both Community and domestic legislation in specific areas.5 Subsequent parts of
12.2 are devoted, respectively, to Community waste management regulation and to
1 See para. 4.3.7 above.
2 See para. 4.3 above.
3 See Chapter 6 above, generally, esp. paras 6.2.1, 6.3.1 and 6.4.1.
4 See para. 7.2.2.3 above.
5 See paras 12.2.1每12.2.3 below.
252 Environmental Taxation Law
Community regulation of air and atmospheric pollution.6 An important element of
the former is the definition of &waste*, as used in the Waste Framework Directive
(&the WFD*).7 That definition had formerly been seen as being entirely separate from
the one applicable for landfill tax; a discussion of the WFD definition has, however,
been included, following a recent decision of the Court of Appeal which seems to
recognise the possibility of a link between the definition of &waste* for landfill tax
purposes and the objectives of the WFD.8 The discussion of air and atmospheric
pollution control includes an overview both of Community energy law and of
Community transport law.9 Each of these overviews is necessary, not only for the
environmental aspects of energy and transport law, but also for the implications of
the structures thereby created for both the design of UK environmental taxes and
environmental instruments and the prospects for their ultimate success or failure.10
Since both environmental and energy policy usually involve the outlay of state
resources, paragraph 12.2 ends with a brief discussion of the significance of state
aids, both in combating air and atmospheric pollution and in the energy and transport
sectors more generally.11
The latter part of the present chapter12 mainly concerns the impact of Community
tax law rules on the development of the UK*s environmental taxes and economic
instruments. The discussion unfolds, of course, against the background of the fiscal
veto13 and the essentially &national* character of the instruments covered in the present
study. After an overview of the relevant issues, the discussion examines the division
of taxing powers between the Community and the Member States;14 the ban on fiscal
barriers to trade, including the prohibition on discriminatory internal taxation15 and the
prohibition on customs duties and, more importantly here, charges having equivalent
effect.16 Woven into the discussion in paragraph 12.3 are discussions of the cases
in which various national attempts at creating green levies have received judicial
attention. Most often, the relevant tribunal has been the ECJ but, as has already been
mentioned,17 the validity of the UK*s aggregates levy in terms of Community law
has been tested and upheld before a UK national court18 and the relevant aspects of
this decision are incorporated into the discussion as appropriate. Paragraph 12.3 ends
6 See P.G.G. Davies, European Union Environmental Law (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2004), chs
7 and 8.
7 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, (1975) OJ L194 39.
8 See Parkwood Landfill Ltd v. Customs and Excise Commissioners, [2002] STC 1536. See
also paras. 6.3.2.1 above and 15.3 below.
9 See paras. 12.2.6.3 and 12.2.6.4 below. This mirrors the discussion of UK energy and
transport law and policy in paras. 6.4 and 6.5 above.
10 See Chapter 21 below.
11 See para. 12.2.7 below.
12 See para. 12.3 below.
13 See para. 4.3.1 (point 1) above.
14 See para. 12.3.2 below.
15 See para. 12.3.3.1 below.
16 See para. 12.3.3.2 below.
17 See para. 8.4.5.1 above.
18 In R (on the application of British Aggregates Associates and Others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51. See para. 12.3.3.1 below.
Community Law Aspects 253
with a discussion of recent measures to harmonise excise duties on fuel products19
and a review of the application of the law on state aids, as introduced earlier in the
chapter, to the specific context of environmental levies and subsidies.20
The final part of the chapter briefly discusses a hypothetical issue for environmental
levies, in the context of the Community rules on free movement of goods in Arts 28每
31, European Treaty (ex 30, 34, 36 and 37).21 Partly in view of the relative familiarity
of those rules, partly also because of the hypothetical nature of the issue there
discussed and partly because of the overall length of the chapter, the explanation of
the relevant Treaty Arts and case law in that part has been kept to the bare minimum
necessary to elucidate the issue concerned.
Evidently, the inclusion of such a wide range of material has not made for a concise
chapter. The writers are firmly of the view, however, that, it is not possible to assess the
true significance of the levies and subsidies that form the subject matter of the present
study without an appreciation of their European regulatory and taxation context.
12.2 Regulatory aspects
12.2.1 General
Community environmental law constitutes a regional regime of international
environmental law which, since 1 May 2004, has applied directly to 25 European
countries.22 By Art. 2 of the European Treaty, the Community is tasked, among other
things, with promoting &# a harmonious, balanced and sustainable development of
economic activities # [as well as] # a high level of protection and improvement
of the quality of the environment*, Art. 3(1)(l) stipulating that the activities of the
Community are to include &a policy in the sphere of the environment*.23
The listing of a high level of protection and improvement of the quality of the
environment as an independent goal in Art. 2, rather than as an incidental requirement
of economic growth, was an achievement of the Treaty of Amsterdam which,
although it was signed in 1997, only came into effect on 1 May 1999.24 Provisions on
environmental protection had first appeared in the European Treaty as a result of the
amendments made to it by the 1986 Single European Act (&the SEA 1986*) but this
had not deterred the Community from adopting environmental legislation under the
Treaty powers conferred on the Council for the harmonisation of laws affecting the
establishment or functioning of the common market,25 and under the powers, also
19 See para. 12.3.4 below.
20 See para. 12.3.5 below.
21 See para. 12.4 below.
22 See Philippe Sands, Principles of International Environmental Law, 2nd edn (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2003), p. 733; Joanne Scott, EC Environmental Law
(London: Longman, 1998); and European Environmental Law, ed. by Ludwig Kramer
(Aldershot: Ashgate/Dartmouth, 2003).
23 The expression &the environment* is not, however, defined. See para. 1.2.1.5(1) above.
24 See Paul Craig and Gr芍inne de B迆rca, EU Law: Text, Cases and Materials, 3rd edn
(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003), pp. 29每42, esp. pp. 30 and 32.
25 That is, Art. 94, European Treaty (ex 100).
254 Environmental Taxation Law
conferred by the Treaty on the Council, for adopting measures necessary for attaining
one of the Treaty objectives but for which the Treaty had not provided the necessary
powers.26 Amsterdam also saw the inclusion of a new article, now Art. 6, European
Treaty (ex 3c), of a requirement that &[e]nvironmental protection requirements #
be integrated into the definition and implementation of # Community policies and
activities #, in particular with a view to promoting sustainable development*. Thus,
as we shall see, Community policy on both energy and transport has a strongly
&environmental* dimension.
In its current form, Art. 174(1), European Treaty (ex 130r) states that the Community
policy on the environment must contribute to the pursuit of four objectives:
每 preserving, protecting and improving the quality of the environment;
每 protecting human health;
每 prudent and rational utilisation of natural resources; [and]
每 promoting measures at international level to deal with regional or worldwide
environmental problems.27
Article 174(2) elaborates these four objectives by stating that Community policy
on the environment is to &# aim at a high level of protection taking into account
the diversity of situations in the various regions of the Community*. Accordingly,
continues Art. 174(2), Community environmental policy is to be based on the
precautionary principle, the preventive principle, the proximity principle and the
polluter pays principle.28 The application of the precautionary principle to Community
policy on the environment was yet another achievement of the Amsterdam Treaty,29
although the inclusion of the other three principles dated back to the SEA 1986.30
Article 174(3) provides that Community action on the environment must take account
of available scientific and technical data, environmental conditions in the various
regions of the Community, the potential benefits and costs of action or lack of action
and the economic and social development of the Community as a whole and the
balanced development of its regions.
By Art. 175, European Treaty (ex 130s), decisions on any action to be taken by
the Council to achieve the four objectives in Art. 174(1) are usually to be taken
by qualified majority voting.31 One of the exceptions to this, of course, is where
the decision relates to a provision primarily of a fiscal nature, in which case the
decision must be unanimous.32 Art. 176, European Treaty (ex 130t) specifically
allows Member States to maintain or introduce more stringent protective measures,
provided they are compatible with the Treaty and notified to the Commission.
26 That is, ibid., Art. 308 (ex 235).
27 See the commentary on the four objectives in Maurice Sunkin, David Ong and
Robert Wight, Sourcebook on Environmental Law, 2nd edn (London: Cavendish, 2002),
pp. 18每27.
28 See para. 8.2.6 above. The proximity principle is also known as &the rectification-at-source
principle*.
29 See Sands, op. cit., p. 271.
30 Ibid., p.743.
31 Ibid., Art. 175(1).
32 Ibid., Art. 175(2). See para. 4.3.1 (point 1) above.
Community Law Aspects 255
Unlike the common commercial policy,33 the common agricultural and fisheries
policy34 and the common transport policy,35 environmental policy as provided for
by Arts 174每176 is not the exclusive policy of the Community. Thus, the Community
and the Member States enjoy a shared competence in relation to environmental
regulation. However, it should be noted that, under Art. 95, European Treaty (ex 100a),
the Council may, by qualified majority,36 adopt measures for the approximation of
provisions relating to the establishment and functioning of the internal market. Such
proposals may, of course, concern environmental protection.37
12.2.2 Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (&IPPC*)
The Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive (&the IPPC Directive*)38
was adopted in 1996, on the basis of what is now Art. 175, European Treaty (ex
130s). Member States were given a period of three years in which to implement
its provisions, its transcription into the law of England and Wales being effected
by the Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999 and the Pollution Prevention and
Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000.39 Both of these measures have been
discussed in detail in Chapter 6 and our concern here is only with the IPPC Directive
itself,40 although it is perhaps worth remembering the point made there that, inter
alia, the IPPC regime has been taken to form the regulatory basis both of climate
change levy and the EU ETS.
Article 1 of the IPPC Directive states the Directive*s purpose as being to reduce
emissions from industrial activities into the air, water and land, including waste,
in order to achieve a high level of protection of the environment taken as a whole.
By Art. 3 of the IPPC Directive, Member States are required to take the necessary
measures to make sure that the competent authorities ensure that installations41 are
operated in such a way that:
1 all appropriate preventive measures against pollution are taken, especially
through the application of best available techniques (&BATs*);
2 no significant pollution is caused;
3 waste production is avoided or, where waste is produced, it is recovered or
disposed of in such a way as to avoid or reduce environmental impact where
recovery is not possible;
33 Ibid., Art. 3(1)(b).
34 Ibid., Art. 3(1)(e).
35 Ibid., Art. 3(1)(f). See para. 12.2.6.4 below.
36 That is, under Art. 251, European Treaty (ex 189b).
37 Art. 95(3), European Treaty (ex 100a).
38 Council Directive 96/61/EC, (1996) OJ L257 26.
39 S.I. 2000 No. 1973.
40 See para. 6.2.3 above.
41 Defined as &a stationary technical unit where one or more activities [covered by the IPPC
Directive] # are carried out, and any other directly associated activities which have a
technical connection with the activities carried out on that site and which could have an
effect on emissions and pollution* (see the IPPC Directive, Art. 2(3)).
256 Environmental Taxation Law
4 energy is used efficiently;
5 necessary measures are taken to avoid accidents and limit their consequences;
and
6 on definitive cessation of activities, necessary measures are taken to avoid any
pollution risk and to return the site of operation to a satisfactory state.
The installations that fall within the IPPC regime are listed in Annex I to the Directive.
They include installations in the energy industries,42 industries involved in the
production and processing of metals, the mineral industry,43 the chemical industry
and the waste management industry.44 The purpose of the Directive is to be achieved
by the competent authorities in Member States issuing permits to the operators of
installations carrying out the targeted activities.45 Permits must contain conditions
guaranteeing that the installation complies with the requirements of the Directive and
must otherwise be refused.46
The BAT concept is specifically defined in Art. 2(11) of the IPPC Directive.
&Best* means &most effective in achieving a high general level of protection of the
environment as a whole*; &available* refers to techniques:
# developed on a scale which allows implementation in the relevant industrial sector,
under economically and technically viable conditions, taking into consideration the costs
and advantages, whether or not the techniques are used or produced inside the Member
State in question, as long as they are reasonably accessible to the operator #47
Finally, &techniques* includes &both the technology used and the way in which the
installation is designed, built, maintained, operated and decommissioned*.48
As originally conceived by the EC Commission, the IPPC Directive had been
intended to ensure &integrated permitting* for industrial processes but, following
objections from certain Member States, the emphasis shifted to the preventative
nature of the control mechanism and away from integrating the permitting system.49
It is to be amended following the passage of the EU Emissions Trading Directive
(&the EU ETS Directive*).50
42 That is, certain combustion installations; mineral oil and gas refineries; coke ovens; and
coal gasification and liquefaction plants.
43 That is, installations for producing cement clinker.
44 That is, installations for the disposal or recovery of hazardous waste; for the incineration
of municipal waste; and for the disposal of non-hazardous waste.
45 See Arts 4 and 5, IPPC Directive.
46 See Art. 8, IPPC Directive.
47 Ibid., Art. 2(11).
48 Ibid.
49 See Stuart Bell and Donald McGillivray, Environmental Law, 5th edn (London:
Blackstone, 2000), p. 380.
50 See Sands, op. cit., p. 754n and Chapter 28 below.
Community Law Aspects 257
12.2.3 Environmental Action Programmes
A phenomenon of no less importance to the EU aspects of environmental regulation
than the primary and secondary European legislation discussed in this chapter are
the six EU Environmental Action Programmes launched to date.51 Proposed by
the Commission52 and approved by the Council,53 they chart the development of
Community policy on the environment over a 30-year period since 1973. The policy
initiatives contained in the Programmes, together with the tools for their realisation
(such as the increased use of economic instruments) have not only shaped Community
environmental policy but have proved influential on the wider international stage.54
The current Sixth Environmental Action Programme, with its central themes of
sustainable development and the integration of environmental policies, had a long
gestation period, finally being adopted by the European Parliament55 and Council in
July 2002.56 The Programme pays special attention to four priority areas for action:
1 tackling climate change by stabilising &the atmospheric concentrations of
greenhouse gases at a level that will not cause unnatural variations of the earth*s
climate*. The key priority for the sixth Programme is thus the ratification and
implementation of the Kyoto Protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8
per cent from 1990 levels by 2008每2012;57
2 protecting nature and biodiversity, with a view to protecting and restoring the
functioning of natural systems and halting the loss of biodiversity by 2010;
3 achieving a quality of environment where the levels of man-made contaminants
do not give rise to significant impacts on or risks to human health; and
4 ensuring sustainable use of natural resources and management of wastes by
ensuring that &the consumption of renewable and non-renewable resources does
not exceed the carrying capacity of the environment*.
The Programme considers the EU*s 8 per cent commitment to the reduction of
greenhouse gases as being a first step to a 70 per cent cut (see 1 above). Objective
3 includes a commitment to ensuring by 2020 that chemicals are produced only in
ways that do not have a significant negative impact on health and the environment.
The objective of ensuring sustainable use of natural resources, etc. (see 4 above)
includes the objective of producing 22 per cent of electricity from renewable sources
by 2010.
51 The first Programme was for the period 1973每1976; the second was for the period 1977每
1981; the third was for the period 1982每1986; the fourth was for the period 1987每1993;
and the fifth was for the period 1993每1997, subsequently extended (see Sunkin, Ong and
Wight, op. cit., p. 28). Details of the Sixth Programme are given in the text.
52 See para. 4.3.2 above.
53 See para. 4.3.1 above.
54 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 753每4.
55 See para. 4.3.3 above.
56 Decision 1600/02/EC, (2002) OJ L242 1.
57 See paras 8.2.2n and 8.3.1.4 above.
258 Environmental Taxation Law
The Programme also identifies a number of international priorities (for example,
achieving mutual supportiveness between trade and environmental needs, including
the sustainability impact assessment of multilateral trade agreements)58 and the
implementation of Community environmental law and policy in the ten new Member
States.
12.2.4 Environmental Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental
Assessment
Areas in which EU law and policies continue to prove influential on the wider
international stage are those of Environmental Impact Assessment (&EIA*) and
Strategic Environmental Assessment (&SEA*).59 These concern the necessity of
evaluating the likely environmental impacts of projects for the construction of,
for example, thermal and nuclear power stations, waste disposal installations and,
crucially, projects for the construction of renewables generators.60 For the purposes
of the present study, it is only necessary to sketch the broad outlines of each one.
The Directive on the Assessment of the Effects of Certain Public and Private Projects
on the Environment (&the EIA Directive*)61 &was [says Sands] the first international
instrument to provide details on the nature and scope of environmental assessment,
its use, and participation rights in the process*.62 The Directive on the Assessment
of Certain Plans and Programmes on the Environment (&the SEA Directive*)63 is,
also, again according to Sands, &the first international instrument to impose binding
obligations, requiring member states to ensure that ※an environmental assessment
is carried out of certain plans and programmes which are likely to have significant
effects on the environment§*.64 The EIA Directive was to be transcribed into the laws
of Member States by 3 July 198865 and the SEA Directive was so transcribed into
UK by the deadline of 21 July 2004.66
Under the EIA Directive, where public and private projects are likely to have
significant environmental effects, an Environmental Impact Assessment (&EIA*)
is required,67 as part of the process of which the developer must supply specified
information, consult with the relevant authorities, provide information to, and
58 The environmental aspects of world trade regulation are, of course, among the most
pressing of contemporary issues (see para. 8.2.1 above).
59 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 807每813 and Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 777每82. Dealt
with in the UK context in para. 6.2.4 above.
60 See para. 21.5 below.
61 Council Directive 85/337/EEC, (1985) OJ L175 40, subsequently heavily amended.
62 See Sands, op. cit., p. 807. Sands also says, however, that EIAs emerged internationally
after the 1972 Stockholm Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human
Environment (see para. 8.2.3n above) and that they were first established in the domestic
law of the US under the National Environmental Protection Act of 1972 (see Sands, op.
cit., p. 800).
63 Council Directive 01/42/EC, (2001) OJ L197 30.
64 See Sands, op. cit., p. 812.
65 Council Directive 85/337/EEC, Art. 13.
66 Council Directive 01/42/EC, Art. 1.
67 Council Directive 85/337/EEC, Arts 1(1) and 2(1).
Community Law Aspects 259
consult with, the public, and provide information to other Member States likely to be
affected.68 The projects covered are divided into 12 categories, which include ones
in the extractive industry, the energy industry and the mineral industry.69 There are
certain exceptions for, for example, projects serving national defence purposes.70
The SEA Directive is aimed at the plans and programmes producing the projects
covered by the EIA Directive. It applies to plans and programmes prepared for
10 specific sectors, including energy, transport, waste management and town and
country planning or land use.71 In essence, Member States must assess any plans or
programmes72 that contain a framework for future development consents and which
are likely to have significant environmental effects.73 The idea of the SEA Directive
is that, as required by Art. 6, European Treaty (ex 3c)74 and, as envisaged by the
Sixth Environmental Action Programme,75 environmental considerations will be
integrated ever more firmly into the policy-making of the Member States.
The EIA Directive was implemented in England and Wales by the Town and Country
Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and Wales) Regulations
1999,76 as well as by the other measures already discussed in Chapter 6 above.77
The implementation of the SEA Directive was effected by secondary legislation on
which the ODPM78 consulted in spring 2004.79 As discussed in Chapter 6 above, the
absence of an SEA has already been controversial in relation to the deployment of
arrays of wave power devices off the coast of South West England.80
12.2.5 Waste management
12.2.5.1 General
Community law and policy on waste management is contained in a 1990 Community
Strategy for Waste Management81 and in legislation of four kinds: (1) a framework
68 Ibid., Arts 5每10.
69 Council Directive 85/337/EEC, Annex II.
70 Ibid., Art. 1(4).
71 Council Directive 01/42/EC, Art. 3.
72 Defined to mean all plans and programmes subject to preparation and/or adoption by an
authority at national, regional or local level or which are prepared by an authority for
adoption, through a legislative procedure by Parliament or government and which are
required by legislative, regulatory or administrative provisions (see Art. 2(a), Directive
01/42/EC).
73 See Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 781.
74 See para. 12.2.1 above.
75 See para. 12.2.3 above.
76 S.I. 1999 No. 293.
77 See para. 6.2.4 above.
78 See para. 4.2.1.2(1) above.
79 See the Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes Regulations 2004, S.I. 2004
No. 1633 (see &Strategic assessment guidance to planners at odds with EC views*, 346
ENDS Report (2003)).
80 See para. 6.2.4 above.
81 Council Resolution of 7 May 1990 on Waste Policy, (1990) OJ C122 2.
260 Environmental Taxation Law
directive on waste management regulation within the Community; (2) various
directives on the disposal of specific wastes; (3) a specific directive on the management
of hazardous waste; and (4) a regulation on the shipment of waste.82 There are also
Community measures prohibiting the disposal of certain wastes into the marine
environment83 and measures limiting the emission into the atmosphere of particular
waste gases.84
The Community Strategy for Waste Management was reviewed by the Commission
in 1996, who, in a Communication of July that year,85 formulated a hierarchy of
preferred ways of dealing with waste, first preference being given to waste prevention,
increased recovery being next favoured and safe disposal being the least-favoured
option. In addition to promoting reuse and recycling of waste, the Communication
promotes the increased use of economic instruments, along with rules for restricting
the use of dangerous substances in products, lifecycle analyses and eco-audits and
means of increasing consumer awareness, such as eco-labelling. Although the Council
greeted the Communication favourably, the Parliament expressed its dissatisfaction
with the progress of Community waste policy and called (unsuccessfully) on the
then Environment Commissioner to produce a new Action Programme on waste
management.86
Before discussing the four kinds of legislation referred to above, it is necessary to
refer briefly to the fact that waste management is specifically within the scope of
the IPPC Directive, already discussed.87 Without prejudice to specific provisions
of other directives on waste management,88 the installations in respect of which
Member States are enjoined to introduce an IPPC permit system include the waste
management installations listed in para. 5 of Annex 1 to the IPPC Directive. These
are installations for the disposal or recovery of hazardous waste89 with a capacity
exceeding 10 tonnes per day;90 installations for the incineration of municipal waste,
provided their capacity exceeds three tonnes per hour;91 installations for the disposal
of non-hazardous waste, with a capacity exceeding 50 tonnes per day;92 and landfills
receiving more than 10 tonnes per day or with a total capacity exceeding 25,000
82 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 786每92, from which the fourfold classification is taken; see also
Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 380每418.
83 As to which the reader is referred, for example, to Sands, op. cit., pp. 768每83.
84 See para. 12.2.6 below.
85 COM (1996) 399 final.
86 See the account in Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., p. 389.
87 See para. 12.2.2 above.
88 That is, Council Directive 75/442/EEC (the Waste Framework Directive), Art. 11, and
Council Directive 91/689/EEC (the Directive on Hazardous Waste), Art. 3. See below in
this para. for further details of these Directives, including OJ references thereto.
89 As defined, not only in Council Directive 75/442/EEC, but also in Council Directive
91/689/EEC (see above) and in Council Directive 75/439/EEC, (1975) OJ L194 23.
90 See Council Directive 96/61/EC, (1996) OJ L257 26, Annex I, para. 5.1.
91 Ibid., Annex I, para. 5.2.
92 That is, as defined in Council Directive 75/442/EEC (that is, the Waste Framework
Directive). See Council Directive 96/61/EC, (1996) OJ L257 26, Annex I, para. 5.3.
Community Law Aspects 261
tonnes, excluding landfills of inert waste.93 The transcription of these requirements
into UK law has already been discussed in Chapter 6 above.94
The Directive has been transcribed into UK law by Part I of the Waste and Emissions
Trading Act 2003 and by the Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002, each of
which have been discussed in Chapter 6 above.95
(1) Framework of waste management regulation
The Waste Framework Directive (&the WFD*)96 directs Member States to take
appropriate measures to encourage &the prevention or reduction of waste production
and its harmfulness*;97 to encourage &the recovery of waste by recycling, re-use,
reclamation, etc.;98 and to encourage the use of waste as energy.99 The definition of
the concept of waste which is used in the WFD, that is, that of specified substances
that the owner discards, or intends to discard or is required to discard, is potentially
of some importance in the context of the present study and is considered further
below.100
The objectives of preventing and reducing waste production and its harmfulness
are to be attained by three means in particular, namely: the development of clean
technologies, which are &more sparing in their use of natural resources* than older
ones; the development of products whose manufacture, use and disposal are such
as to minimise waste; and &the development of appropriate techniques for the final
disposal of dangerous substances contained in waste*.101
Article 4 of the WFD enjoins Member States to take measures necessary to ensure
that waste is disposed of or recovered without endangering human health and without
harming the environment and to prohibit the abandonment, dumping or uncontrolled
disposal of waste. Subsequently, in Art. 5(1), they are required to take appropriate
measures (taking account of BATNEEC) to create &an integrated and adequate
network of disposal installations*, to enable the Community to become self-sufficient
in waste disposal. Article 5(2) provides that such waste disposal networks must
enable waste to be disposed of in one of the nearest appropriate installations and by
means of the most appropriate methods, so as to ensure &a high level of protection
for the environment and public health*.102 By Art. 7, the competent authorities in the
Member States are required to draw up waste management plans and are permitted
93 See Council Directive 96/61/EC, (1996) OJ L257 26, Annex I, para. 5.4.
94 See paras 6.2.3 and 6.3.2.3 above.
95 See para. 6.3.2(4) above. See also para. 20.7 below (the LATS).
96 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, (1975) OJ L194 39. See Sands, op. cit., pp. 787每9; also
Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 383每4.
97 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Art. 3(1)(a).
98 Ibid., Art. 3(1)(b).
99 Ibid.
100 See para. 12.2.5.2 below.
101 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Art. 3(1)(a).
102 But see Chemische Afvalstoffen Dusseldorp BV and Others v. Minister van Volkshuisvesting,
Ruimtelijke Ordening en Milieubeheer, C每203/96, [1998] 3 CMLR 873, 912 (para 30),
where the ECJ held that the principles of self sufficiency and proximity did not apply to
waste for recovery.
262 Environmental Taxation Law
to take such measures as are necessary to prevent the movement of waste except in
accordance with those plans. The current national waste strategy for England and
Wales appears in Waste Strategy 2000: England and Wales.103
The WFD also contains provisions requiring undertakings carrying out disposal
or recovery operations104 to obtain a permit from the competent authority;105
requiring collectors, transporters and those arranging for the disposal of waste to be
registered;106 and providing that the polluter pays principle107 means that the holder
of the waste (that is, its producer or the person in possession of it)108 must bear the
cost of disposing of it.109
(2) Disposal of specific wastes
As mentioned above, special disposal rules apply to specific categories of waste.110
Thus, legislation has been adopted relating, for example, to the disposal of waste
oils;111 to the disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (&PCBs*) and polychlorinated
terphenyls (&PCTs*);112 to waste from the titanium dioxide industry;113 to sewage
sludge;114 and to the recovery and controlled disposal of spent batteries and
accumulators, which contain quantities of mercury, cadmium or lead.115 The UK
measures implementing the directives on these matters have already been referred to
in Chapter 6 above.116 Two directives in specific areas are of particular importance in
the context of the present study, however, that is, the Packaging and Packaging Waste
Directive;117 and the Landfill Directive.118
(a) Packaging and packaging waste
The Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, which was adopted in response to the
ECJ*s decision in the Danish Bottles case,119 has two main objectives: (a) to provide
103 See para. 6.3.2 above.
104 See para. 12.2.5.2 below, the disposal and recovery operations in question being specified
in Annexes IIA and IIB to the Directive.
105 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Arts 9 and 10.
106 Ibid., Art. 12.
107 See para. 8.2.3 above.
108 Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Art. 1(c).
109 Ibid., Art. 15.
110 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 791每2; also Sunkin, Ong and Wight, pp. 384每8.
111 Directive on the Disposal of Waste Oils, Council Directive 75/439/EEC, (1975) OJ L194
23.
112 Directive on the Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls and Polychlorinated Terphenyls,
Council Directive 96/59/EC, (1996) OJ L243 31.
113 Directive on Waste from the Titanium Dioxide Industry, Council Directive 92/112/EEC,
(1992) OJ L409 11.
114 Directive on Sewage Sludge, Council Directive 86/278/EEC, (1986) OJ L181 6.
115 Directive on Batteries and Accumulators, Council Directive 91/157/EEC, (1991) OJ L78
38.
116 See paras 6.3.2.5每6.3.2.6 above.
117 European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC, (1994) OJ L365 10.
118 Council Directive 99/31/EC (1999) OJ L182 1.
119 Commission v. Denmark, C每302/86, [1989] 1 CMLR 619 (see para. 12.4 below).
Community Law Aspects 263
a high level of environmental protection by harmonising national measures on the
management of packaging and packaging waste; and (b) to ensure the functioning
of the internal market by avoiding obstacles to trade.120 Since June 1996, Member
States have been obliged to take measures to ensure that systems are set up to provide
for:
a. the return and/or collection of used packaging and/or packaging waste from the
consumer, other final user, or from the ,waste stream in order to channel it to the most
appropriate waste management alternatives;
b. the reuse or recovery including re-cycling of the packaging and/or packaging waste
collected #121
In addition, there are obligations on Member States to take preventative measures,122
including the imposition of a requirement that packaging may be marketed only if it
complies with requirements set out in the Directive,123 as well as set specific recovery
and recycling targets which must be reached within time periods laid down in the
Directive.124 By Art. 4(1) of the Directive, preventative measures may include the
creation of national programmes to prevent the formation of packaging waste.125
The Directive covers primary, secondary and tertiary packaging, applying (as it
does) to packaging usually acquired by the purchaser (primary); packaging removed
by the retailer near the point of sale (secondary); and packaging designed to enable
transportation and handling (tertiary).126
The Directive was transcribed into UK law by the Producer Responsibility
Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 1997,127 introduced in Chapter 6
above128 and examined in detail in Chapter 19 below.
(b) Waste sent to landfill
Article 1 of the Landfill Directive states that its aim is to provide for, &by way of
stringent operational and technical requirements*, the prevention or, so far as possible,
for the reduction of the negative environmental effects of the &landfilling of waste,
during the whole lifecycle of the landfill*. A landfill is defined in Art. 2(g) as a &waste
disposal site for the deposit of waste onto land or underground* but the definition
excludes certain unloading and storage facilities. Landfill sites already in operation
at the time of transposition of the Directive must comply with its terms by 2009.129
120 European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC, Art. 1(1). For the implementation
of the Directive in UK law, see Chapter 19 below, passim.
121 European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC, Art. 7(1)(a).
122 Ibid., Art. 4.
123 Ibid., Art. 9(1).
124 Ibid., Art. 5.
125 In the UK, the programme appears in Waste Strategy 2000: England and Wales (see para.
6.3.2 above).
126 European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC, Art. 3(1).
127 S.I. 1997 No. 648.
128 See para. 6.3.3.2 above.
129 See Council Directive 1999/31/EC (1999) OJ L182 1, Art. 14, from which this date is
derived.
264 Environmental Taxation Law
Member States must apply the Directive to landfill as defined in Art. 2(g).130 Article
4 requires each landfill to be classified as to whether it is for hazardous waste, for
non-hazardous waste or for inert waste. By Art. 5(1), Member States must set up
national strategies for the reduction of biodegradable waste going to landfills. Article
5(2) fixes the targets, based on 1995 arisings, as: a reduction of 25 per cent by 2006;
of 50 per cent by 2009; and of 65 per cent by 2016.
Biodegradable waste is defined in Art. 2(m) as &any waste that is capable of
undergoing anaerobic or aerobic decomposition, such as food and garden waste, and
paper and paperboard*. Such national strategies should include recycling, composting,
biogas production and materials or energy recovery131 and, by Arts 7每9, competent
authorities are to issue permits for operating landfill sites, the conditions of issue
of which are to ensure compliance with the Directive. The costs involved in setting
up, operating, closing and caring for landfill sites thereafter must, as far as possible,
be covered by the price charged by the site operator for the disposal of waste in the
site132 and Member States must not only control and monitor site operations133 but
also provide for site closure and after-care procedures.134 As to the last of these, by
Art. 13(c), &after a landfill has been definitely closed, the operator shall be responsible
for its maintenance, monitoring and control in the after-care phase for as long as may
be required by the competent authority, taking into account the time during which the
landfill could present hazards*.
The Directive has been transcribed into UK law by Part I of the Waste and Emissions
Trading Act 2003, which has been discussed in Chapter 6 above.135
(3) Disposal of hazardous waste
The Directive on Hazardous Waste,136 which repealed Council Directive 78/319/
EEC on toxic and dangerous wastes,137 applies to the wastes featuring on a list to be
drawn up by the Commission and which is subject to periodic review as well as to
any other waste considered by a Member State to possess certain properties.138
The definition of hazardous waste is thus a complex one and recognises that
some waste only becomes hazardous in certain circumstances.139 The objective of
the Directive is &to approximate the laws of the Member States on the controlled
management of hazardous waste*140 but it does not apply to domestic waste.141 The
competent authorities in each of the Member States are enjoined to draw up, &either
130 Council Directive 1999/31/EC.
131 Ibid., Art. 5(1).
132 Ibid., Art. 10.
133 Ibid., Art. 12.
134 Ibid., Art. 13.
135 See para. 6.3.2 above and para. 20.7 below (the LATS).
136 Council Directive 91/689/EEC, (1991) OJ L377 20.
137 (1978) OJ L84 43. Certain of the provisions of the 1978 directive are incorporated into the
1991 Directive by reference (see Sands, op. cit., pp. 789每91).
138 As to which, see Council Directive 91/689/EEC, Annex III.
139 See Sunkin, Ong and Wight, p. 385.
140 Council Directive 91/689/EEC, Art. 1(1).
141 Ibid., Art. 1(5).
Community Law Aspects 265
separately or in the framework of their general waste management plans, plans for
the management of hazardous waste and shall make these plans public #*.142
By incorporating references to Council Directive 78/319/EEC, Art. 4 of the
Directive143 requires those who produce and transport hazardous waste to maintain
detailed records, to be retained for at least three years, as to the nature of the waste.
Furthermore, under Art. 2, Member States are required to take &the necessary measures
to require that on every site where tipping (discharge) of hazardous waste takes place
the waste is recorded and identified*;144 to take the necessary measures to ensure
that, except in prescribed circumstances,145 different categories of hazardous waste
are not mixed with each other nor with non-hazardous waste;146 and Member States
must supply to the Commission details of establishments and undertakings carrying
out the disposal or recovery of hazardous waste on behalf of third parties.147 By Art.
5, Member States are required to take &the necessary measures to ensure that, in the
course of collection, transport and temporary storage, waste is properly packaged and
labelled in accordance with the international and Community standards in force*.
The implementation of the Directive into UK law has been effected by the Special
Waste Regulations 1996,148 discussed in Chapter 6 above.149
(4) Shipment of waste
Council Regulation on the Shipment of Waste (&the Waste Shipment Regulation*)150
covers shipments of waste between Member States, shipments of waste within
Member States and waste exports to, and waste imports from, third countries.151
Generally speaking, waste may be shipped between Member States for disposal
or recovery, subject to prior notification, authorisation and possible conditions,
although the rules and procedures differ according to whether disposal or recovery
is involved.152
So far as shipments within Member States are concerned, Member States are
simply required to establish an appropriate system for the supervision and control of
waste shipments which takes account of the need for coherence with the Community
system.153
142 Ibid., Art. 6(1). See Commission v. United Kingdom, C每35/00, [2002] ECR I每953, and
Commission v. Italy, C每466/99, [2002] ECR I每851. The UK*s plan is contained in Waste
Strategy 2000: England and Wales (see para. 6.3.2 above).
143 That is, Council Directive 91/689/EEC.
144 Ibid., Art. 2(1).
145 Ibid., Art. 2(3).
146 Ibid., Art. 2(2).
147 Ibid., Art. 8(3).
148 S.I. 1996 No. 972 (as amended).
149 See para. 6.3.2(6) above.
150 Council Regulation 259/93/EEC, (1993) OJ L30 1.
151 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 699每703 and Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 386每7. See also
the Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations 1994, S.I. 1994 No. 1137. As to the legal
effects of Regulations, see Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., pp. 189每93.
152 Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Arts 3每8.
153 Ibid., Art. 13.
266 Environmental Taxation Law
With regard to exports to third countries,154 exports to ACP countries are simply
banned.155 As regards non-ACP third countries, exports of waste for disposal are
prohibited, except where the country of destination is an EFTA country which is
also party to the 1989 Basel Convention.156 In this case, although both the EFTA
country and the Member State of origin has the option of imposing a ban,157 exports
are generally permitted, subject to notification and authorisation.158 As to exports for
recovery, these are prohibited, except where the country of destination falls into one
of three categories: (a) it is a country to which the OECD Council Decision on the
control of the transfrontier movements of wastes for recovery operations applies;159
(b) it is a party to the 1989 Basel Convention or an agreement thereunder; or (c) it
is another country, which is a party to a compatible pre-existing bilateral agreement
with the Member State in question.160
Finally, waste imports from third countries are again divided between those for
disposal and those for recovery. Imports of waste for disposal are banned except
when they are: (a) from EFTA countries which are also parties to the 1989 Basel
Convention (b) from other countries which are parties to the Convention; or (c)
from countries with which certain bilateral agreements have been concluded
between the EC/its Member States.161 In each of these three situations, there is
a system of notification and authorisation.162 As regards imports of waste for
recovery, these are again prohibited, except where they are from countries to which
the OECD Council Decision applies163 or from other countries which fall into
one or other of two other categories: (a) countries which are also parties to the
1989 Basel Convention or agreements thereunder;164 or (b) countries with which
certain bilateral agreements have been concluded between the EU/its Member
States.165 Somewhat differing control procedures are applicable to each of these
non-prohibited categories.166
12.2.5.2 The concept of waste
Characteristic of Community law on waste are the problems that have arisen from
the way in which waste is defined in the WFD. For obvious reasons, these problems,
154 See para. 8.3.2 above.
155 Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 18(1). But note that a Member State may return to
an ACP country processed waste which that country has chosen to have processed in the
EC (see Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 18(2)).
156 Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 14(1).
157 Ibid., Art. 14(2).
158 Ibid., Art. 15.
159 See para. 8.3.2 above.
160 See (as to all three possibilities) Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 16.
161 Ibid., Art. 19(1).
162 Ibid., Art. 20.
163 Ibid., Art. 21(1)(a).
164 Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 21(1)(b).
165 Ibid.
166 Ibid., Art. 22.
Community Law Aspects 267
which have generated a considerable academic literature,167 also underlie the very
similar questions arising both from the transcription of the WFD into domestic law,
as discussed in Chapter 6 above,168 and from the interpretative problems arising in
relation to landfill tax, especially as to the situations in which material is disposed of
as waste, to be discussed in Chapter 15 below.169 Having been slow to accept it, the
Court of Appeal has now acknowledged the existence of a possible link between the
objectives of the WFD and the definition of waste for landfill tax purposes.170 The
Directives referred to above adopt the same definition of waste as that used in the
WFD itself.171
The definition of &waste* in Art. 1 of the WFD consists of two elements.172 The first
is &any substance or object # which the holder discards or intends or is required to
discard*.173 The second is that the substance or object in question must fall into the
categories contained in Annex I to the WFD.174 Annex I lists 16 categories of substances
and objects (including residues,175 off-specification products,176 date-expired
products,177 unusable parts,178 adulterated materials,179 etc.) and concludes, rather
unhelpfully, with a sweeping-up clause which refers to &[a]ny materials, substances or
products which are not contained in the [preceding] # categories*.180 The definition
in Art. 1 is then supplemented by a provision requiring the Commission to draw up a
list, to be reviewed periodically, of wastes belonging to the categories listed in Annex
I to the WFD.181 The list is known as the European Waste Catalogue (&the EWC*)182
and, whilst it is useful for fleshing-out the definition, the ECJ has stressed in Criminal
proceedings against Euro Tombesi and Others,183 that &the fact that a substance is
mentioned in # [the EWC] does not mean that it is waste in all circumstances. An
entry is only relevant when the definition of waste has been satisfied*.184
167 See, for example, Stephen Tromans, &EC Waste Law 每 A Complete Mess?* (2001) 13 JEL
133每56 and Ilona Cheyne, &The Definition of Waste in EC law* (2002) 14 JEL 61每73. The
latter contains a survey of the relevant literature at n2 thereto.
168 See para. 6.3.2.1 above.
169 See para. 15.2 below.
170 See David Pocklington, &Industry Soundings*, (2003) 15(3) ELM 207每9, 208. See also
para. 6.3.2(1) above.
171 See, for example, Council Directive 91/689/EEC, Art. 1(3) (Directive on Hazardous
Waste); Council Regulation EEC/259/93, Art. 2(a) (the Waste Shipment Regulation); and
Council Directive 99/31/EC, Art. 2(a) (the Landfill Directive).
172 See the analysis by Cheyne, op. cit., p. 64.
173 See Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Art. 1(a).
174 Ibid., Art. 1(a).
175 Ibid., Annex I, paras Q1, Q8, Q9, Q10 and Q11.
176 Ibid., Annex I, para. Q2.
177 Ibid., Annex I, para. Q3.
178 Ibid., Annex I, para. Q6.
179 Ibid., Annex I, para. Q12.
180 See Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Annex I, para. Q16.
181 Ibid., Art. 1(a).
182 See Commission Decision 00/532/EC, (2000) OJ L226 3.
183 See Joined Cases C每304/94, C每330/94, C每342/94 and C每224/95, [1997] ECR I每3561.
184 [1997] ECR I每3561, I每3589.
268 Environmental Taxation Law
What is not clear from the WFD is whether the disposal operations listed in Annex
IIA thereto or the &operations which may lead to recovery* listed in Annex IIB to
the WFD are also situations in which substances and objects are &discarded*. The
disposal operations listed in Annex IIA include tipping above or under ground (for
example, landfill),185 release of solid waste into a water body other than the sea186
and incineration, whether on land or at sea.187 The operations which may lead to
recovery listed in Annex IIB include solvent reclamation or regeneration,188 recycling
or reclamation,189 oil re-refining or other re-uses of oil190 and use principally as a fuel
or other means to generate energy.191 Cheyne argues that the essential characteristic
of all of the 16 categories in Annex I to the WFD is that the objects and substances
within them are not identified according to the amount of environmental damage that
they might inflict, but with regard to the likelihood of their holders wishing to get
rid of them.192 The common implication in all of the 16 categories in Annex I is the
idea of discarding of the substance or object in question, which makes it all the more
surprising that there is no specific definition of the word &discard*, even though it is
expressly used in Art. 1(a) of the WFD.
The ECJ has now considered these questions in a series of important decisions.193
1 In the co-joined cases Criminal proceedings against Euro Tombesi and Others,194
the ECJ held that the concept of waste &is not to be understood as excluding
substances and objects that are capable of economic reutilisation, even if the
relevant materials may be the subject of a transaction or quoted on public or
private commercial lists*.195
The joined cases involved six defendants who had been charged with various
offences under Italian law, concerning the unauthorised transportation of waste
scrap metal, the unauthorised discharge of marble rubble, the unauthorised
burning of toxic waste, etc. In each case, the national courts essentially sought
to ascertain, under Art. 234, European Treaty (ex 177), whether the concept of
waste referred to in the WFD, and thus the Waste Shipment Regulation196 and
185 See Council Directive 75/442/EEC, Annex IIA, para. D1.
186 Ibid., Annex IIA, para. D6.
187 Ibid., Annex IIA, paras D10 and D11.
188 Ibid., Annex IIB, para. R1.
189 Ibid., Annex IIB, paras R2每R4.
190 Ibid., Annex IIB, para. R8.
191 Ibid., Annex IIB, para. R9.
192 See Cheyne, op. cit., p. 64.
193 Other important cases, not discussed below, are as follows: Criminal proceedings against
Vessoso and Zanetti, C每206每207/88, [1990] ECR I每1461; Zanetti and Others, C每359/88,
[1990] ECR I每1509; Commission v. Germany, C每422/92, [1995] ECR I每1097; Lirussi
and Bizzaro, C每175,177/98, [2001] ECR I每6881. See also the UK cases discussed at para.
6.3.2.1 above.
194 Joined Cases C每304/94, C每330/94, C每342/94 and C每224/95, [1997] ECR I每3561.
Judgment was actually given in the cases on 25 June 1997.
195 See Sands, op. cit., p. 788n; [1997] ECR I每3561, 3602 (paras 54 and 55).
196 That is, Council Regulation 259/93/EEC. See para. 12.2.5.1(4) above.
Community Law Aspects 269
the Directive on Hazardous Waste,197 must be taken to exclude substances or
objects capable of economic re-use.198 In answering the question in the negative,
the ECJ further particularised matters as follows:
In particular, a deactivation process intended merely to render waste harmless, landfill
tipping in hollows or embankments and waste incineration constitute disposal or recovery
operations falling within the scope of the # Community rules. The fact that a substance
is classified as a re-usable residue without its characteristics or purpose being defined is
irrelevant in that regard. The same applies to the grinding of a waste substance.199
2 In Inter-Environnement Wallonie ASBL v. Region Wallonne,200 the ECJ underlined
the approach that it had taken in Euro Tombesi.201
The ECJ held that the scope of the term &waste* turned on the meaning of the term
&discard*;202 that &discard* included both disposal and recovery of a substance
or object;203 that the concept of waste did not in principle exclude &any kind
of residue, industrial by-product or other substance* arising from a production
process;204 that, besides applying to the disposal and recovery of waste by
specialist undertakings, the WFD also applied &to disposal and recovery of waste
by the undertaking which produced them, at the place of production*;205 and
that, even though substances directly or indirectly forming part of an industrial
process might constitute waste, there was nonetheless a distinction between waste
recovery and the normal industrial treatment of non-waste products, however
difficult to draw that distinction might be.206
The foregoing issues had arisen in the context of a reference to the ECJ by the
Belgian Conseil d*Etat under Art. 234, European Treaty (ex 177), in which Inter-
Environnement Wallonie had asked the Belgian court to annul a decree of the
Walloon Regional Council purporting to exempt from a permit system for waste
installations those installations which formed an integral part of an industrial
production process, on the basis that the decree conflicted with the Community
law on waste.
3 In the joined cases ARCO and EPON,207 the ECJ confirmed that the definition
of waste turned on the meaning of &discard*,208 a term which was not to be
197 That is, Council Directive 91/689/EEC. See para. 12.2.5.1(3) above.
198 See [1997] ECR I每3561, 3599 (para 41).
199 See [1997] ECR I每3561, 3602每3603 (paras 54 and 55).
200 Case C每129/96, [1998] 1 CMLR 1057.
201 See para. 12.2.5.2 (point 1) above.
202 [1998] 1 CMLR 1057, 1082 (para 26).
203 Ibid. (para 27).
204 Ibid. (para 28).
205 Ibid. (para 29).
206 [1998] 1 CMLR 1057, 1083 (paras 32每34).
207 ARCO Chemie Nederland Ltd and Others v. Minister van Volkshuisvesting, Ruimtelijke
Ordening en Milieubeheer, Vereniging Dorpsbelang Hees and Others v. Directeur van
de Dienst Milieu en Water Van de Provincie Gelderland, C每418每419/97, [2002] QB 646.
Judgment was actually given on 15 June 2000 (see [2002] QB 646, 671).
208 [2002] QB 646, 677 (paras 36 and 46).
270 Environmental Taxation Law
interpreted restrictively;209 that &discard* included in particular the disposal
and recovery of a substance or object;210 and that the question of whether a
particular substance or object was waste had to be decided in the light of all
the circumstances, regard being had to the aim of the WFD and the need not to
undermine its effectiveness.211
In ARCO, a Dutch company planned to ship &LUWA-bottoms*, a by-product of
one of its manufacturing processes, to Belgium, for use in cement manufacture.
The relevant authority had granted permission on the basis that the substance
was &waste* within the terms of the Waste Shipment Regulation.212 In EPON,
the competent Dutch authority had granted an application by EPON, a Dutch
electricity generating company, for authorisation to use pulverised wood chips
from the construction industry as fuel in one of its power stations. The national
court doubted whether each of the LUWA-bottoms and the wood chips were
raw materials or waste and referred two questions for a preliminary ruling
to the ECJ. In reaching the decision summarised above, the ECJ set out the
circumstances that have to be considered in deciding whether an object or
substance which undergoes the operations set out in Annexes IIA and IIB is
waste:
a. it may, but does not necessarily, follow from the fact that disposal or recovery
methods are described in Annexes IIA and IIB that any substance treated by
one of those methods is to be regarded as waste;213 and
b. other factors that may constitute evidence that a substance has been discarded
but which are not conclusive on the point are the facts that:
i. the substance in question is &commonly regarded as waste;*214
ii. use as fuel is &a common method of recovering waste*;215
iii. the substance is a production residue, that is, &a product not in itself
sought for use as fuel*;216
iv. the substance is a residue &for which no use other than disposal can be
envisaged*;217 and
v. the substance is a residue &whose composition is not suitable for the use
made of it or where special precautions must be taken when it is used
owing to the environmentally hazardous nature of its composition*.218
c. However, the fact that a substance is the result of a complete recovery
operation for the purpose of Annex IIB to the WFD does not necessarily
exclude that substance from classification as waste.219
209 Ibid., 676 (para 40).
210 Ibid., 677 (para 47).
211 Ibid., 680 (para 73).
212 That is, Council Regulation 259/93/EEC. See para. 12.2.5.1(4) above.
213 That is, because it has been discarded. See [2002] QB 646, 677 (para 49).
214 [2002] QB 646, 680 (para 73).
215 Ibid.
216 Ibid., 681 (para 84).
217 Ibid. (para 86).
218 Ibid. (para 87).
219 Ibid., 682 (paras 94每95).
Community Law Aspects 271
d. Finally, the concept of waste &is not to be understood as excluding substances
and objects which are capable of being recovered as fuel in an environmentally
responsible manner and without substantial treatment*.220
4 The recent decision of the ECJ in Criminal proceedings against Paul van de
Walle and others221 has again reiterated the point that the term &discard* should
not be interpreted restrictively. In emphasising the point, the Court drew attention
to the fact that category Q4 in Annex I to the WFD refers to &materials spilled,
lost or having undergone other mishap, including any materials, equipment, etc.,
contaminated as result of the mishap*.222
What had happened was that, because of defects in a petrol station*s storage
tanks, hydrocarbon oil had leaked into the ground. Despite the accidental nature
of the spillage, the ECJ held that the defendant had &discarded* the oil, since,
although the leakage was involuntary:
It is clear that accidentally spilled hydrocarbons which cause soil and groundwater
contamination are not a product which can be re-used without processing. Their marketing
is very uncertain and, even if it were possible, implies preliminary operations would be
uneconomical for their holder. Those hydrocarbons are therefore substances which the
holder did not intend to produce and which he discards, albeit involuntarily, at the time of
the production or distribution operations which relate to them.223
On the basis that the oil had been discarded, it was next a question of whether the
contaminated earth was &waste* within the provisions of the WFD. Disregarding
distinctions based, for example, on whether the earth had been excavated, the
ECJ held that, since the oil could not be separated from the soil, the soil itself had
become waste:
That is the only interpretation which ensures compliance with the aims of protecting the
natural environment and prohibiting the abandonment of waste pursued by the Directive.
It is fully in accord with the aim of the Directive and heading Q4 of Annex I thereto,
which, as pointed out, mentions any materials, equipment, etc., contaminated as a result of
[materials spilled, lost or having undergone other mishap] among the substances or objects
which may be regarded as waste.224
Under the WFD, and in the circumstances of the case, the independent manager
of the station was the &holder* of the waste, since he had stocked the oil when
it had become waste and had therefore to be treated as having produced it.225
However, if the leakage been attributable to some contractual breach by Texaco,
the lessee of the station, then Texaco might instead be regarded as the holder.226
220 Ibid., 679 (para 65).
221 Case C每1/03 (7 September 2004).
222 Ibid. (para 43).
223 Ibid. (para 47).
224 Ibid. (para 52).
225 Ibid. (para 59).
226 Ibid. (para 60).
272 Environmental Taxation Law
It has been pointed out by Macrory that a consequence of the decision in Van de
Walle might be to render the UK*s contaminated land rules otiose.227
12.2.6 Control of air and atmospheric pollution
12.2.6.1 General
The discussion in paragraph 12.2.5 completes our survey of Community waste
management regulation. Despite the intractable problems surrounding the definition
of &waste*, a feature of Community law and policy on waste management is that it
forms an identifiable body of law, gathered mainly around the WFD. With Community
law and policies relating to air and atmospheric pollution, the position is somewhat
different. Easy appreciation of the corpus of Community regulation relating to air
and atmospheric pollution is hampered partly by the piecemeal nature of regulatory
development in the area and partly by its relationship with Community regulation of
the energy and transport sectors. The following discussion begins with an overview
of Community regulation on air and atmospheric pollution.228 Thereafter, it focuses
on those aspects of Community energy law and policy that have implications for the
control of atmospheric pollution.
12.2.6.2 Pollution of air and atmosphere
Introduced in 1996, the Air Quality Framework Directive (&the AQFD*)229 lays down
the basis for common objectives on ambient air quality in order to prevent harmful
effects on the environment and on human health. In due course, the AQFD will be
supplemented by a dozen &daughter* directives, at least three of which have already
been adopted.230 On 8 March 1999, the Commission published its European Climate
Change Programme (&the ECCP*),231 which was intended to initiate a new community
approach to the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. In addition, Directive 2001/81/
EC, on National Emissions Ceilings for Certain Atmospheric Pollutants, which aims
to lay down a strategy for combating acidification, eutrophication and photochemical
air pollutants, has been adopted.232
227 See 356 ENDS Report (2004) 44 (see also para. 6.7 above).
228 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 336每9, 755每8; Sunkin, Ong and Wight, op. cit., pp. 142每71; and
Susan Wolf and Neil Stanley, Wolf and Stanley on Environmental Law, 4th edn (London:
Cavendish, 2003), pp. 344每6.
229 Council Directive 92/62/EC, (1996) OJ L296 55. See para. 21.5 below. This is singled
out by HM Treasury in Tax and the Environment: Using Economic Instruments (London:
HMSO, 2002), p. 33, as an example of good regulation.
230 That is, Directive 1999/30/EC, (1999) OJ L163 41 (limitation of values for sulphur
dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, oxides of nitrogen and particulates and lead in the ambient air)
(see para. 22.4 below); Directive 00/69/EC, (2000) OJ L313 12 (limitation of values for
benzene and carbon monoxide in the ambient air); and Directive 02/3/EC (2002) OJ L67
14 (limitation of values for ozone in the ambient air).
231 COM(00) 88 final, available from www.europa.eu.int. See also 322 ENDS Report
(2001).
232 Council Directive 92/62/EC, (2001) OJ L309 22. See para. 22.4 below.
Community Law Aspects 273
Aside from attempts to create a unified approach to controlling air and atmospheric
pollution, there a number of other initiatives, in origin somewhat older, which are
directed either at controlling emissions from specific pollution sources or setting air
quality standards generally (that is, irrespective of the pollution source). Examples
of the former are the 2001 Large Combustion Plant Directive,233 which replaces the
Large Combustion Plant Directive of 1988,234 and the vehicle emissions standards
discussed below;235 an example of the latter is the current Regulation banning the
sale and use of most ozone depleting substances, including CFCs and HCFCs.236
The latter is designed to enable the Community to meet its obligations under the
1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and its 1987 Montreal
Protocol.237
The Large Combustion Plant Directive should now, of course, be read in conjunction
with the IPPC Directive.238 The measures implementing the provisions just discussed
in UK law are discussed in Chapter 6 above.239
12.2.6.3 Energy law and policy
(1) Introduction
There is only brief mention of energy in the European Treaty itself.240 However, two
directives, each adopted under the co-decision procedure,241 contain common rules
for the electricity and gas industries:242
a. European Parliament and Council Directive 2003/54/EC Concerning Common
Rules for the Internal Market in Electricity (&the Electricity Acceleration
Directive* or &EAD*);243 and
b. European Parliament and Council Directive 2003/55/EC Concerning Common
Rules for the Internal Market in Natural Gas (&the Gas Acceleration Directive* or
&GAD*).244
In addition, a new regulation, again adopted under the co-decision procedure, is
concerned with increasing cross-border trade in electricity. This is Regulation
EC/1228/2003 on Conditions for Access to the Network for Cross-Border Exchanges
233 Directive 01/80/EC, (2001) OJ L309 1. See Sands, op. cit., pp. 336每9.
234 Council Directive 88/609/EEC, (1988) OJ L336 1. See para. 22.4 below.
235 See para. 12.2.6.4(2) below.
236 Council Regulation 2037/2000/EC, (2000) OJ L244 1.
237 See para. 8.3.1.5 above.
238 See para. 12.2.2 above.
239 See para. 6.4 above.
240 That is, Arts 3(1)(u) and 154 (ex 129b), European Treaty.
241 See para. 4.3.3 above.
242 See Peter Cameron, Competition in Energy Markets (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
2002); Carlos Ocana et al., Competition in Energy Markets (OECD/IEA, 2001); and
Completing the Internal Energy Market, COM (01) 125 final.
243 03/54/EC, (2003) OJ L176 37.
244 (2003) OJ L176 57.
274 Environmental Taxation Law
in Electricity.245 Finally, the production of electricity from renewable energy
sources is promoted by European Parliament and Council Directive 2001/77/EC
(&the Renewables Directive*),246 with electricity production from combined heat
and power being covered by European Parliament and Council Directive 2004/8/EC
(&the Cogeneration Directive*).247
The EAD and GAD have comparable market-opening objectives. The overall
objective of the EAD is to provide for common rules for the generation, transmission
and distribution of electricity, whilst that of the GAD is to provide for common
rules for the transmission, distribution, supply and storage of natural gas. The
Directives repeal248 the 1996 Electricity Directive249 and the 1998 Gas Directive250
respectively, although they retain the most important features of their predecessors.
The background to the policy development process culminating in the adoption of
the Acceleration Directives is the opening up of energy markets to competition, a
process which has already been discussed above.251 Specifically, the Acceleration
Directives were designed to improve on the provisions of the 1996 and 1998
Directives with regard to the pace and level of market-opening and guarantees as
to fair and non-discriminatory network access. Although most Member States had
in fact opened their markets further than required by the 1996 and 1998 Directives,
market distortions remained because of those that had not done so; moreover, there
continue to be wide variations between Member States as to standards for third party
access (&TPA*).252 Whilst market opening is one of the main objectives of each of the
EAD and the GAD, both Directives also imposes public service obligations (&PSOs*)
and measures for consumer protection.253 These include the obligation to impose
adequate safeguards to protect vulnerable customers;254 the obligation to ensure
that electricity supplies disclose details of energy sources in bills and promotional
materials;255 and the implementation of appropriate measures, including economic
incentives, to achieve environmental protection.256
Prior to considering the four instruments in more detail, it is useful to refer briefly
to Community law and policy on the most controversial of means of electricitygeneration:
nuclear power.257 Whilst nuclear generation is not in itself a central
245 (2003) OJ L176 1.
246 (2001) OJ L283 33.
247 (2004) OJ L52 50.
248 In relation to the EAD, with effect from 1 July 2004 (see Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 29).
In relation to the GAD, also with effect from 1 July 2004 (see Directive 03/55/EC,
Art. 32(2)).
249 European Parliament and Council Directive 96/92/EC, (1996) OJ L27 20.
250 European Parliament and Council Directive 98/30/EC, (1998) OJ L204 2.
251 See para. 2.4 above.
252 See Cameron, op. cit., para. 8.11.
253 See Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 3 and Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 3.
254 See Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 3(5) and Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 3(3).
255 Ibid., Art. 3(6). This provides for cross-border transfers at &cost*. See also www.
electricitylabels.com.
256 Ibid., Art. 3(7) and 03/55/EC, Art. 3(4).
257 See Cameron, op. cit., paras 2.13每2.16.
Community Law Aspects 275
concern of the present study, and although it does not count as a renewable energy
source,258 factors such as the operating costs of nuclear reactors, as well as the costs
of their decommissioning, explain many of the policy choices which governments
have made in relation to nuclear power and the environment.259 The creation of a
common market in nuclear ores and fuels was a prime aim of the 1957 Euratom
Treaty260 and, to this end, Art. 2 thereof committed the Community, among other
things, to the promotion of research and the dissemination of technical information;
to the establishment of uniform safety standards; to the facilitation of investment; to
ensuring a regular and equitable supply of ores and nuclear fuels; and, internationally,
to fostering progress in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.261 Additionally, by Art.
30, Euratom Treaty, basic standards were to be laid down for the protection of workers*
health and that of the general public against dangers arising from ionising radiations.
With nuclear power accounting for about a third of the EU*s electricity-generating
capacity, there is currently much concern about ensuring security of supply and the
EC Commission has recently launched a package of measures on the protection of
the environment from radioactive waste.262
Apart from electricity and gas, some consideration is given in what follows to coal
and hydrocarbons and hydrocarbon-based fuels. The emphasis throughout is on
explaining market structures. Except as regards state aids, which receive relatively
detailed discussion,263 Community competition law is not separately discussed. The
reader should note, however, that, generally speaking,264 Community energy markets
are subject to general Community competition law rules.265 In relation to both gas
and electricity, the thrust of the Commission*s competition policy has been &to
prevent private arrangements or practices that restrict the emergence of competition
or that foreclose national markets against new entrants*.266
258 See Directive 01/77/EC, Art. 2(a).
259 See paras 21.4.4, 21.5 and 21.6 below.
260 See para. 4.3 above.
261 The Euratom Treaty was designed to reduce the dependence of European Countries
on energy imports from the regions affected by the 1956 Suez crisis, at the same time
countering the dominance at that time of the USSR and the US in nuclear power (see
Cameron, op. cit., para. 2.14).
262 See Christiane Tr邦e, &Legislative Competences of Euratom and the European Community
in the Energy Sector: the Nuclear Package of the Commission*, (2003) 28 EL Rev 664每
85.
263 See para. 12.2.7 below.
264 There is, however, Council Directive 90/377/EEC, (1990) OJ L185 16 concerning a
community procedure to improve the transparency of gas and electricity prices charged
to industrial end-users. This has survived the EAD and GAD (unlike the Transit Directive
(Council Directive 90/547/EEC, (1990) OJ L313 30), which has been repealed with effect
from 1 July 2004 (see Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 29)).
265 As to which, see, for example, Stephen Weatherill and Paul Beaumont, EU Law, 3rd edn
(London: Penguin), chs 22每25; and Craig and de B迆rca, op. cit., chs 21每25.
266 Cameron, op. cit., para. 7.67.
276 Environmental Taxation Law
(2) Electricity
The EAD envisages a fully open internal electricity market, with customers free to
choose their suppliers and all suppliers free to deliver to their customers.267 It lays
down common rules in three areas of the electricity industry: generation, transmission
and distribution.
The generation, or production,268 of electricity is covered by Art. 6, EAD, which
provides that an authorisation, as opposed to a tendering, procedure is to be the norm
for the construction of new generating capacity. The authorisation procedure, which
must be &conducted in accordance with objective, transparent and non discriminatory
criteria*, may, among other things, lay down criteria relating to the protection of the
environment.269
Transmission, which is defined as &the transport of electricity on the extra highvoltage
and high-voltage interconnected system with a view to its delivery to final
customers or to distributors, but not including supply*,270 is dealt with in Arts 8每12,
EAD. Article 8 provides for the designation and supervision of Transmission System
Operators (&TSOs*), who are responsible for operating, ensuring the maintenance
of and, if necessary, for developing a Member State*s transmission system and its
interconnections with other systems. By Art. 11(3), EAD, a Member State may
require the TSO, &# when dispatching generating installations, to give priority to
generating installations using renewable energy sources271 or waste or producing
combined heat and power*. Dispatching is not relevant to the UK, as has been
discussed in Chapters 2 and 6272 above.
The operation of the distribution system is dealt with in Arts 13每17, EAD.
&Distribution* is defined as &# the transport of electricity on high-voltage, medium
voltage and low voltage distribution systems with a view to its delivery to customers,
but not including supply*.273 Member States generally have a single TSO and several
distribution system operators (&DSOs*).274 The designation and supervision of DSOs
is required by Art. 13.
Each of the activities referred to above is regulated in the UK by the Electricity
Act 1989, as amended.275 Although further liberalisation measures are currently
proposed,276 the UK electricity market was already the most liberalised in Europe,
even before the EAD*s adoption.277
267 Directive 03/54/EC, recital 4.
268 Ibid., Art. 2(1).
269 Ibid., Art. 6(2)(c).
270 Ibid., Art. 2(3).
271 Defined as &renewable non-fossil energy sources (wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal,
hydropower, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogases) #* (see
Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 2(30)).
272 See para. 6.4 above.
273 See Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 2(5).
274 See Cameron, op. cit., para. 4.17.
275 See para. 6.4 above.
276 That is, through the introduction of BETTA in Part 3 of the Energy Act 2004 (see para. 6.4
above).
277 See, for example, Cameron, op. cit., paras 1.19, 4.116 and 5.86; IEA, op. cit., pp. 37每43.
Community Law Aspects 277
The crucial central provision of the EAD is the removal of two of the three types of
TPA to the transmission and distribution networks as contained in the now repealed
1996 Directive. Access to the transmission and distribution networks is now to be
based simply on published tariffs, applicable to all eligible customers objectively and
without discrimination between users of the systems.278 This is regulated TPA,279
which allows producers, on the one hand, and eligible customers, on the other, to
contract with each other direct for electricity supply on the basis of the published
tariffs. This should encourage access to the market by new entrants on the basis that
non-discriminatory access is possible.280 Eligible customers are:281
a. before 1 July 2004, customers falling within specified market-opening percentages
and permitted by Member States as being eligible to participate in the opening of
the market;282
b. from 1 July 2004, at the latest, all non-household customers;283 and
c. from 1 July 2007, all customers.284
Customers are defined to mean both wholesale and final customers of electricity,285
the former referring to those who purchase electricity for resale,286 the latter
referring to those who purchase it for their own use.287 The basis on which the UK
has interpreted the concept of eligible customers has already been discussed in an
earlier chapter.288 Regulated TPA is already the basis for network access in the UK.
The expressed purpose of the Renewables Directive289 is the promotion of
an increase in the contribution of renewable energy sources to the production of
electricity in the internal market.290 By Art. 3 of the Renewables Directive, each
Member State is to set national indicative targets for consumption of electricity
produced from renewable energy sources, taking into account the reference values
set out in the Directive and ensuring compatibility with obligations under the Kyoto
Protocol.291
&Renewable energy sources* are defined as &renewable non-fossil energy sources
(wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydropower, biomass, landfill gas, sewage
treatment plant gas and biogases)*.292 The definition thereby excludes nuclear
278 Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 20(1).
279 See Cameron, op. cit., paras 4.24 and 8.12.
280 Ibid., para. 8.11.
281 See Directive 03/54/EC, Arts 2(12) and 21(1).
282 Ibid., Art. 21(1)(a).
283 Ibid., Art. 21(1)(b), that is, purchasers of electricity other than for their own household
use, including producers and wholesale customers (see Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 2(11)).
284 Directive 03/54/EC, Art. 21(1)(c).
285 Ibid., Art. 2(7).
286 Ibid., Art. 2(8).
287 Ibid., Art. 2(9).
288 See para. 12.2.6.3(1) above.
289 Ibid.
290 Directive 01/77/EC, Art. 1.
291 Directive 01/77/EC, Art. 3(2).
292 Ibid., Art. 2(a).
278 Environmental Taxation Law
power from the definition of renewables. Since Member States are obliged only to
take &appropriate steps* to meet the indicative targets, failure to meet those targets
is not by itself a breach of the terms of the Directive. However, Art. 3(4) of the
Directive reserves to the Commission the right to set mandatory targets. Article 5 of
the Directive requires Member States to ensure that the origin of electricity produced
from renewable energy sources can be guaranteed as such by creating systems for
granting guarantees of origin. Article 6(1) of the Directive then requires Member
States to review their existing rules on the construction and operation of renewable
power plants with a view to reducing the regulatory and non-regulatory barriers to
renewables production.
The remaining provisions of the Renewables Directive concern transmission and
distribution issues (that is, &grid* issues). For instance, Art. 7(1) of the Directive
requires Member States to take the necessary measures to ensure that TSOs and
DSOs in their territory &guarantee* the transmission and distribution of electricity
produced from renewable energy sources. This same provision also allows Member
States to afford renewables generators priority access to the transmission and
distribution systems.
In the UK, the government has decided that 10 per cent of electricity supplies
should come from renewable sources by 2010.293 However, there has been until
recently no system for guaranteeing the &renewable* origin of electricity supplies and
the UK transmission and distribution system is not structured in such a way as to
enable renewables generators to be accorded priority.294
If the purpose of the Renewables Directive is the promotion of renewable source
electricity in the internal market, the professed objective of the Cogeneration
Directive is &to increase energy efficiency and improve security of supply by creating
a framework for promotion and development of high efficiency cogeneration of heat
and power based on useful heat demand and primary energy savings in the internal
energy market*.295 &Cogeneration* is defined in Art. 3(a) of the Cogeneration Directive
as &the simultaneous generation in one process of thermal energy and electrical
and/or mechanical energy*, a definition which covers the following cogeneration
technologies:
(a) combined cycle gas turbine with heat recovery;
(b) steam backpressure turbine;
(c) steam condensing extraction turbine;
(d) gas turbine with heat recovery;
(e) internal combustion engine;
(f) microturbines;
(g) stirling engines;
(h) fuel cells;
(i) steam engines;
(j) organic Rankine cycles;
293 See para. 6.4 above.
294 See paras 2.4 and 6.4.3.1(2)(b) above and paras 21.5.4每21.5.6 below.
295 Directive 04/8/EC, Art. 1.
Community Law Aspects 279
(k) any other type of technology or combination thereof falling under the definition laid
down in Article 3(a).296
Article 6 of the Cogeneration Directive requires Member States both to analyse
national potential for high-efficiency cogeneration and to monitor periodically
their progress towards increasing the proportion of their electricity produced from
this source,297 while Art. 5 requires Member States to institute, as for renewable
source electricity, a system of guarantees of origin, for the purpose of ensuring
that electricity generated from high-efficiency cogeneration can be guaranteed as
such.298 Such a system of guarantees mu,st be instituted within six months following
the Commission*s establishment of &harmonised efficiency reference values for
separate production of electricity and heat*.299 Additionally, obligations on both the
Commission and on Member States to report on the progress of the matters covered
by the Directive are imposed by Arts 10 and 11, while Art. 8 requires Member States
both to ensure that TSOs and DSOs in their territory &guarantee* the transmission
and distribution of electricity produced from high-efficiency cogeneration,300 and,
until the cogeneration producer becomes an eligible customer under Art. 21(1) of
the EAD,301 to ensure the due publication of tariffs for the purchase of electricity &to
back-up or top-up electricity generation*.302
Regulation EC/1228/2003 on Conditions for Access to the Network for Cross-Border
Exchanges in Electricity is directed towards the further development of cross-border
trade in electricity, whose level is currently rather modest. To this end, the Regulation
establishes a compensation mechanism for cross-border flows of electricity; for the
setting of harmonised principles on cross-border transmission charges; and for the
allocation of available capacities of interconnections between national transmission
systems.303 Article 7 of the Regulation permits new electricity interconnectors to be
exempt from TPA and from the regulatory control of tariffs.
In general terms, the UK presently complies with the three measures discussed
above. Such legislative changes as are necessary, in relation to a regulatory and
exemption regime for new interconnectors, have been made through the Energy Act
2004.304
(3) Gas
The Gas Acceleration Directive is rather similar to the EAD. Like the EAD, the
GAD looks forward to a fully open internal market.305 Reflecting the differences
296 Ibid., Annex I.
297 Ibid., Art. 6(1).
298 Ibid., Art. 5(1).
299 Ibid., Art. 4(1).
300 Ibid., Art. 8(1).
301 See above.
302 Ibid., Art. 8(2).
303 Regulation EC/1228/2003, Art. 1. See Cameron, op. cit., paras 8.17每8.21; IEA, op. cit.,
p. 43.
304 See para. 6.4.3.1(4) above.
305 Directive 03/55/EC, recital 4.
280 Environmental Taxation Law
between the structures of the gas and electricity industries,306 however, it establishes
common rules in four areas: transmission, distribution, supply and storage.307
Within the scope of natural gas, for the purposes of the GAD, is liquefied natural
gas (&LNG*), biogas308 and gas from biomass,309 plus any other type of gas that
can technically and safely be injected into, and transported through, the natural gas
system.310
Gas transmission, storage and LNG is dealt with in Arts 7每10, GAD. Transmission
is itself defined as &the transport of natural gas through a high pressure pipeline
network # with a view to its delivery to customers, but not including supply*.311
As with electricity, there is provision for the designation of TSOs,312 who are tasked
with various duties including the operation, maintenance and development, under
economic conditions, of secure, reliable and efficient transmission, storage and/or
LNG facilities,313 due regard being paid to the environment.314
The distribution and supply of gas forms the subject matter of Arts 11每15, GAD.
&Distribution* is itself defined as &the transport of natural gas through local or
regional pipeline networks with a view to its delivery to customers, but not including
supply*.315 The provisions on distribution and supply are in substance very similar
to those covering transmission, storage and LNG. As with the EAD, the designation
and supervision of DSOs is required.316
As in the case of the EAD, the central provisions of the GAD are those that relate
to market access. Access to transmission, distribution and LNG facilities is again to
be based simply on published tariffs, applicable to all eligible customers objectively
and without discrimination between users of the systems.317 Again, the model is
306 See para. 2.4 above.
307 Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 1(1). Unlike the EAD, the GAD does not provide for common
rules for operations relating to gas production although, like the EAD, it does contain
rules for the granting of licences for the construction of natural gas facilities, including
facilities for production, transmission, distribution and storage (see Directive 03/55/EC,
Art. 4). Production itself is dealt with separately in the Hydrocarbons Licensing Directive
(see para. 12.2.6.3(5) below).
308 That is, &gas formed by anaerobic digestion of organic materials, for example, whey or
sewage sludge* (Porteous).
309 That is, &the mass of living organisms forming a prescribed population in a given area of
the earth*s surface* (Porteous).
310 Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 1(2).
311 Ibid., Art. 2(3). &Supply* is defined as the sale, including resale, of natural gas, including
LNG, to customers (see Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 2(7)).
312 Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 7.
313 LNG facilities are defined in Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 2(11), as terminals used for the
liquefaction of natural gas, or the importation, offloading and re-gasification of LNG,
including ancillary services and temporary storage necessary for the re-gasification
process and subsequent delivery to the transmission system but not including those parts
of LNG terminals used for storage.
314 Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 8(1).
315 Ibid., Art. 2(5).
316 That is, by Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 11.
317 Ibid., Art. 18(1).
Community Law Aspects 281
regulated TPA,318 which allows producers, on the one hand, and eligible customers,
on the other, to contract with each other direct for electricity supply on the basis of
the published tariffs. Eligible customers are defined in exactly the same way as for
purposes of the EAD, that is:319
a. before 1 July 2004, customers falling within specified market-opening percentages
and permitted by Member States as being eligible to participate in the opening of
the market;320
b. from 1 July 2004, at the latest, all non-household customers;321 and
c. from 1 July 2007, all customers.322
Parallel with the EAD, in the GAD, customers are defined to mean both wholesale
and final customers of natural gas and natural gas undertakings that purchase
natural gas,323 the former referring to those who purchase natural gas for resale
(other than TSOs and DSOs),324 final customers being those who purchase it for
their own use.325 The basis on which the UK has interpreted the concept of eligible
customers for the purpose of the gas markets has already been discussed in an earlier
chapter.326 Regulated TPA is already the basis for network access in the UK and the
DTI considers that, whilst the UK is in broad compliance with the provisions of the
GAD, certain further measures needed to be taken.327
(4) Coal
The European coal industry was formerly subject to the system of regulated
competition provided for by the 1951 European Coal and Steel Community Treaty
(&the ECSC Treaty*).328 Since July 2002, however, the industry has been brought
within the provisions of the European Treaty, although it has the benefit of a special
set of rules on state aid.329 At the time of the expiration of the ECSC Treaty, on 23
July 2002, the Commission reported that, within the countries which formed the
then 15 Member States, coal output was down to 83 million tons, as against 485
million tons in 1953.330 However, as the Commission also reported, the ten accession
countries also have big, and not yet fully restructured, coal industries.
318 See Cameron, op. cit., paras 4.88 and 8.13.
319 See Directive 03/55/EC, Arts 2(28) and 23(1).
320 Ibid., Art. 23(1)(a).
321 Ibid., Art. 23(1)(b), that is, purchasers of natural gas other than for their own household
use (see Directive 03/55/EC, Art. 2(26)).
322 Ibid., Art. 23(1)(c).
323 Ibid., Art. 2(24).
324 Ibid., Art. 2(29).
325 Ibid., Art. 2(27).
326 See para. 6.4 above.
327 See para. 6.4.3.2 above.
328 See Cameron, op. cit., paras 2.11每2.12.
329 See para. 12.2.7.3 below.
330 Press Release IP/02/898, Fifty Years at the Service of Peace and Prosperity: The European
Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) Treaty Expires, Brussels, 19 June 2002.
282 Environmental Taxation Law
(5) Oil
The sourcing, composition, storage and distribution of both hydrocarbon oils and
hydrocarbon-based motor fuels is highly regulated within the Community.331
European Parliament and Council Directive 94/22/EC (&the Hydrocarbons Licensing
Directive*)332 contains the rules relating to authorisations for exploring for and
extracting both oil and natural gas.333 The three main objectives of the Hydrocarbons
Licensing Directive are to ensure that all entities possessing the necessary capabilities
can gain access to authorisations; to ensure that &authorisations are granted according
to objective published criteria*; and to ensure that all entities taking part in the
authorisation procedure know in advance the conditions under which authorisations
are to be granted.334
Standards for the composition, storage and distribution of motor fuel are contained
in various directives. Both the lead content and the sulphur content of fuels is
regulated. Lead content is subject to the Fuel Quality Directive335 and sulphur
content to the Sulphur Content Directive.336 Subject to derogations, the Fuel Quality
Directive banned leaded petrol from the market from 1 January 2000337 and made
provision for progressive improvements in the environmental quality of unleaded
petrol and diesel fuel. The Sulphur Content Directive, which amended Council
Directive 93/12/EEC on the Sulphur Content of Certain Liquid Fuels,338 provides
for a gradual reduction in the sulphur content of liquid fuels &to reduce the harmful
effects of [sulphur dioxide] # emissions on man and the environment*.339
Directive 94/63/EC340 contains standards for the storage of petrol and its distribution
from terminals to service stations. Such standards are concerned with controlling
volatile organic compound emissions. The transposition of the Directives referred to
above into UK law has been referred to in Chapter 6 above.341
12.2.6.4 Transport law and policy
(1) Introduction
The legislative basis of the Community*s common transport policy (&the CTP*) is
contained in Arts 70每80, European Treaty (ex 74每84).342 Article 70 states only that
331 Only the briefest indication of the scope of this regulation is given here. See, further,
Patricia D. Park, Energy Law and the Environment (London: Taylor and Francis, 2002),
ch. 5.
332 (1994) OJ L164 3.
333 See para. 12.2.6.3(3)n above.
334 See Cameron, op. cit., para. 3.38.
335 European Parliament and Council Directive 98/70/EC, as amended, (1998) OJ L350 58.
336 Council Directive 1999/32/EC, as amended, (1999) OJ L121 13.
337 Directive 98/70/EC, Art. 3(1).
338 (1993) OJ L74 81.
339 Council Directive 1999/32/EC, Art. 1(1).
340 (1994) OJ L365 24.
341 See para. 6.4 above.
342 Although &a common policy in the sphere of transport* is referred to in Art. 3(1)(f),
European Treaty.
Community Law Aspects 283
the objectives of the Treaty are to be pursued by the Member States &within the
framework of a common transport policy*, however.343
Without stating the goals of the CTP, Art. 71 nonetheless provides that measures
taken for the purpose of implementing Art. 70 are to be enacted under the co-decision
procedure.344 Article 72 then prevents the introduction of, or any increase in,
discriminatory measures without the unanimous approval of the Council. Article 73,
to be discussed below,345 deals with state aids in relation to transport, while Art. 74,
which relates to the method and extent to which Member States may intervene in the
commercial activities of carriers, requires account to be taken of carriers* economic
circumstances where measures are taken in relation to transport rates and conditions.
Article 78 specifically allows state aid in the transport sphere in respect of parts of
Germany to reflect the economic disadvantages caused by the division of Germany
after the Second World War.
Article 75, which reflects the principles of Arts 23每31, European Treaty (ex 9, 10,
12, 28, 29, 30, 34, 36 and 37),346 provides for the abolition of discrimination in rates
and conditions for the transportation of goods. Article 76 continues this theme by
reflecting the anti-discrimination provision of Art. 12, European Treaty (ex 6) and
banning Member States from imposing transport rates and conditions that favour
particular undertakings or industries, except in accordance with authorisation from
the Commission.
In an echo of Art. 25, European Treaty (ex 12),347 Art. 77 is designed to ensure that
charges or dues in addition to the transport rates in respect of the crossing of frontiers
do not exceed a reasonable level after taking into account the costs thereby actually
incurred.
Finally, while Art. 79 provides for the setting-up of an advisory Committee on
transport to be attached to the Commission, Art. 80(1) expressly states that the
provisions of Arts 70每80 are to apply to transport by rail, road and inland waterway.
Article 80(2) provides that it is for the Council, acting by qualified majority, to decide
whether, to what extent and by what procedure, appropriate provisions may be laid
down for sea and air transport. It should be noted, however, that Art. 80(2) does not
prevent the application of the general rules of the European Treaty to transport by
sea and by air.348
In subsequent chapters of the present study, road and air transport are of the greatest
relevance and it is to those areas that we now turn. In each area, there is a wealth of
secondary legislation, in the form of regulations and directives. Moreover, the reader
should be aware that, in 2001, the Commission published a White Paper making some
60 specific proposals of measures to be taken at Community level under the CTP.349
343 Notably, in a relatively under-explored area, see Rosa Greaves, EC Transport Law
(Harlow: Pearson Education, 2000).
344 See para. 4.3.3 above.
345 See para. 12.2.7.4 below.
346 See para. 12.4 below.
347 See para. 12.3.3.2 below.
348 See Greaves, op. cit., p. 22.
349 Commission of the European Communities, European Transport Policy for 2010: Time
to Decide (Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities,
2001).
284 Environmental Taxation Law
Policy preoccupations of the Commission revealed by the White Paper include
the promotion of clean urban transport;350 intermodal transport (that is, integrated
transport chains);351 and transport infrastructure charging policy.352 We shall return
to the last of these in paragraph (2) below.
It is important to stress the same point here, in relation to competition, as was made
in relation to energy above. The Community*s competition rules apply to transport,
just as to other economic sectors; the only aspect of those rules that there will be an
opportunity to refer to in what follows is that of state aid.353
(2) Road freight transport
Secondary legislation on road transport may be grouped into six areas:354
a. market access and pricing relating to goods;
b. market access and pricing in relation to passengers;
c. fiscal harmonisation;
d. social legislation;
e. technology, safety and environment; and
f. transport of dangerous goods.
Whilst noting the broad contours of legislation in each of categories a., b., d. and f.,
we are concerned most closely here, of course, with categories c. and e. As to market
access and pricing, (see a. and b. above), Community law and policy has chiefly
been concerned with three areas: with removing restrictions (that is, quotas) on the
provision of transport services between Member States; with the right of a nonresident
undertaking to provide transport services within a Member State; and with
access to the occupation of a transport service operator.355 The main items of social
legislation on road transport (see d. above) are Council Regulation 3820/85/EEC on
the Harmonisation of Certain Social Legislation relating to Road Transport356 and
European Parliament and Council Directive 2002/15/EC on the Organisation of the
Working Time of Persons Performing Mobile Road Transport Activities.357 As to f.
(that is, the transport of dangerous goods), the main provision is Council Directive
94/55/EC,358 which transposes international law on the transport of dangerous goods
into Community law.
350 See www.europa.eu.int/comm/energy. Also, White Paper, pp. 81每4.
351 See www.europa.eu.int/comm/transport. Also, White Paper, pp. 41每7 and Greaves, op.
cit., p. 125.
352 See www.europa.eu.int/comm/transport. Also, White Paper, pp. 88ff., and Greaves, op.
cit., pp. 125每30.
353 The reader is referred to the materials cited in para. 12.2.6.4(1)n above; also, in this
context, to Greaves, op. cit., ch 7.
354 These are the six divisions used in the ABC of the Road Transport Acquis, available from
www.europa.eu.int/comm/transport.
355 See Greaves, op. cit., ch 3.
356 (1985) OJ L370 1.
357 (2002) OJ L80 35.
358 (1994) OJ L319 7.
Community Law Aspects 285
Secondary legislation on technology and safety in relation to road transport (see
e. above) covers matters such as information on road accident statistics;359 driver
training,360 driving licences;361 vehicle speed limitation devices;362 and vehicle
recording equipment (that is, tachographs).363
Meanwhile, certain environmental aspects of road transport have been covered in
a series of measures relating to sound and air pollution from vehicles.364 Prominent
among these measures is a 1970 directive, which continues to be amended
regularly,365 and which establishes mandatory technical standards for emissions of
carbon monoxide, unburnt hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides and particulates from both
petrol- and diesel-engined cars.366 The Council, which is committed to implementing
a research and development programme for the marketing of clean vehicles and
fuels,367 has been authorised to adopt legislation for the stabilisation and reduction
of emissions of carbon dioxide and other GHGs from motor cars and to introduce
tax incentives for certain types of vehicle.368 Additionally, the Commission*s Auto/
Oil II Programme is aiming for considerable improvements by 2010 in urban air
quality,369 the Commission also having entered into environmental agreements with
associations such as the Korean Automobile Manufacturers Association (&KAMA*),
the Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association (&JAMA*) and the European
Automobile Manufacturers Association (&ACEA*)370 for the reduction of carbon
dioxide emissions from cars.371 Emissions from diesel engines propelling road
vehicles are dealt with in Council Directives 72/306/EEC372 and 88/77/EEC,373
while polluting emissions from engines powered by NG and LPG are covered by
Directive 99/96/EC.374 Directive 99/96/EC introduces the concept of Enhanced
Environmentally Friendly Vehicles, while Directive 96/1/EC375 permits Member
States to introduce tax incentives for vehicles that satisfy certain conditions. Finally,
Council Directive 70/157/EEC,376 as amended, approximates the legislation of
359 Council Decision 93/704/EC, (1993) OJ L329 63.
360 Council Directive 76/914/EEC, (1976) OJ L357 36.
361 Council Directive 91/439/EEC, (1991) OJ L237 1.
362 Council Directive 92/6/EEC, (1992) OJ L57 27.
363 Council Regulation EEC/3821/85, (1985) OJ L370 8, amended by Council Regulation
EC/2135/98, (1998) OJ L274 1.
364 See Sands, op. cit., pp. 758每9.
365 See the list of amending measures in Sands, op. cit., p. 758n. It includes Council Directive
91/441/EC, (1991) OJ L242 1; Council Directive 93/59/EC, (1993) OJ L186 21; Council
Directive 94/12/EC, (1994) OJ L100 42; and Directive 01/1/EC, (2001) OJ L35 34.
366 Council Directive 70/220/EEC, (1970) OJ L76 1.
367 Council Directive 91/441/EEC, amending Council Directive 70/220/EEC.
368 Council Directive 89/458/EEC, (1989) OJ L226 3, amending Council Directive 70/220/
EEC.
369 COM (00) 626 final (see Prelex link in Documents section of www.europa.eu.int).
370 See COM (1996) 561 and COM (1998) 495.
371 See Sands, op. cit., p. 759.
372 (1972) OJ L190 20.
373 (1988) OJ L36 33.
374 (2000) OJ L44 1.
375 (1996) OJ L40 1.
376 (1970) OJ L42 16.
286 Environmental Taxation Law
Member States covering noise levels from motor vehicles. The implementation of
these measures in UK law has already been discussed in Chapter 6 above.377
In addition to certain measures discussed below, which relate to the harmonisation
of excise duties on fuel,378 at least one significant measure has been enacted in
relation to the fiscal harmonisation of road transport (see c. above). This is European
Parliament and Council Directive 1999/62/EC on the Charging of Heavy Goods
Vehicles for Use of Certain Infrastructure.379 The Directive seeks to reduce the
differences between systems of road taxes and charges applicable within Member
States; to take better account of the principles of fair and efficient road pricing; and
to move further towards the principle of territoriality in charging for road use. It
therefore covers, not only vehicle excise duties, but also tolls and user charges.380
By Art. 2(d), the scope of the Directive is restricted to goods vehicles having a
maximum permissible gross laden weight of at least 12 tonnes. Although Art. 4 of
the Directive allows each Member State to fix its own procedures for levying and
collecting the vehicle excise duties381 to which it applies, Art. 5 provides that, as
regards vehicles registered in the Member States, such duties are to be charged
only by the Member State of registration. Annex I to the Directive fixes, subject
to the derogations, reduced rates and exemptions in Art. 6, the minimum rates of
vehicle excise duty to be applied by Member States. Tolls and user charges may
be imposed only on users of motorways and similar multi-lane roads, on users of
bridges, on users of tunnels and on users of mountain passes.382 Art. 7(4) prohibits
tolls and user charges from discriminating, whether directly or indirectly, on the
basis of the haulier*s nationality or the origin or the destination of the vehicle.
By Art. 7(5), Member States are enjoined to ensure that tolls and user charges
are collected in such a way as to cause as little hindrance as possible to &the free
flow of traffic* and to avoid any mandatory checks at the internal borders of the
Community. Under Art. 7(7) of the Directive, Member States are to fix user charges
at a level not exceeding the maximum rates laid down in Annex II thereto, while
user-charge rates are to be in proportion to the duration of the use made of the
infrastructure.383 Articles 7(9) and 7(10) of the Directive set out the rules for
determining user charges and for relating weighted average tolls to the costs of
constructing, operating and developing the relevant infrastructure, etc.384 Finally,
Art. 9(2) permits the earmarking of tolls and user charges, allowing Member States
to attribute to environmental protection and the balanced development of transport
networks a percentage of the amount of the user charge or toll, provide that the
amount in either case is calculated in accordance with Arts 7(7) and 7(9) of the
Directive.
377 See para. 6.4 above.
378 See para. 12.3.4 below.
379 (1999) OJ L187 42.
380 See para. 7.2.3 above.
381 The duties falling within the scope of the RCD are listed for each Member State in Art. 3,
Directive 99/62/EC.
382 Directive 99/62/EC, Art. 7(2). &Tolls* are defined, ibid., Art. 20.
383 Ibid., Art. 7(8).
384 See para. 7.2.3 above.
Community Law Aspects 287
The UK*s vehicle excise duty regime is discussed in Chapter 22 below; the UK
Government currently intends to introduce road-user charging for lorries by 2006;385
and the Commission has signalled its intention to amend Directive 1999/62/EC so as
to align national systems of tolls and user charges for infrastructure use.386
(3) Air passenger transport
The secondary Community legislation on air transport may be divided into
10 categories,387 six of which are not relevant in the present context, that is, the
procurement of air traffic-management equipment and systems; air safety; air security;
the protection of passengers; working conditions of employees; and a &sweep-up*
category of (mainly administrative) measures.388 The remaining four are as follows:
a. market access and pricing;
b. state aids;
c. competition rules; and
d. the environment.
For present purposes, the most relevant categories are a. and d. above, although
at least a brief indication of the relevant aspects of Community state aid and
competition law is necessary to enable the significance of a. and d. fully to be
appreciated. State aid issues, which are part of Community competition law, are
discussed below;389 the competition rules referred to at c. above seek to apply the
general rules of Community competition law to the specifics of the air transport
sector. Thus, although since 1 May 2004, infringement proceedings under Arts 81
and 82, European Treaty (ex Arts 85 and 86) have been subject to new procedures of
general application,390 there is an exemption from the scope of Art. 81(1) in relation
to certain agreements, decisions and concerted practices in the transport sphere, in
so far as their sole object and effect is to achieve technical improvements or cooperation.
391 Furthermore, by Council Regulation EEC/3976/87,392 among the types
of agreements, decisions and concerted practices to which the Commission has the
power to apply Art. 81(3), European Treaty (block exemptions), are those having as
their object the planning and co-ordinating of airline schedules and joint operations
on new less busy scheduled air services.393
385 See para. 27.3 below.
386 See COM(03) 488 (see Prelex link in Documents section of www.europa.eu.int).
387 These are the ten divisions used in the &Legislation* section of the &Air Transport* part of
the Energy and Transport Directorate-General*s website (see www.europa.eu.int/comm/
transport).
388 See Greaves, op. cit., passim.
389 See para. 12.2.7.4 below.
390 See Council Regulation EC/1/2003, (2003) OJ L1 1, Arts 39 and 41, repealing Council
Regulation EEC/3975/87, Arts 3每19 and Council Regulation EEC/3976/87, Art. 6.
391 See Council Regulation EEC/3975/87, (1987) OJ L374 1, Art. 2(1).
392 (1987) OJ L374 9.
393 See Council Regulation EEC/3976/87, as amended by Council Regulation EEC/2411/92,
Art. 1(2) (1992) OJ L240 19.
288 Environmental Taxation Law
In relation to a. above, air transport raises problems which, although different
from those raised by road transport, are no less intractable. As noted in an earlier
chapter,394 the international regulatory background to Community policy in the
area is a complex of national law, the 1944 Chicago Convention and a network of
bilateral conventions on routes, tariffs, etc. At least since 1987, Community policy
has been to work towards the establishment of a genuine internal market in civil
aviation, one in which such bilateral agreements are abolished and which is subject
to general EU competition law rules.395 Thus, Council Regulation EEC/2408/92 on
Access for Community Air Carriers to Intra-Community Air Routes,396 has afforded
full market access to intra-Community air services by Community air carriers.
This market-opening process has been facilitated by Council Regulation EC/95/93,
on Common Rules for the Allocation of Slots at Community Airports,397 and by
Council Regulation EEC/2409/92 on Fares and Rates for Air Services.398 Regulation
EEC/2408/92 allows Community undertakings to operate as air carriers anywhere
in the Community, regardless of nationality; Regulation EC/95/93 requires Member
States to decide on the need for allocating slots399 according to capacity analyses
(but not, significantly, by auction);400 and Regulation EEC/2409/92, in conjunction
with Community competition law generally, regulates fares and rates for air transport
services.
The environmental effects of air transport have been a pressing concern of
the Commission in recent years (see d. above). In its 1999 Communication, Air
Transport and the Environment: Towards Meeting the Challenges of Sustainable
Development,401 the Commission set out the four main &pillars* for integrating
environmental concerns into air transport policy, that is: improving technical
environmental standards on noise and gaseous emissions; strengthening economic
and market incentives; assisting airports in their environmental endeavours and
advancing long-term technology improvements. Although the contribution of aircraft
both to air and atmospheric pollution and to climate change is considerable, to date
Community measures have concentrated on aircraft noise. Thus, Council Directive
80/51/EEC placed restrictions on noise emissions from subsonic aircraft;402 Council
Directive 89/629/EEC403 banned the registration of so-called &Chapter 2 aircraft*;404
and Council Directive 92/14/EEC405 provided for the gradual withdrawal of such
394 See para. 8.5 above.
395 Greaves, op. cit., p. 67.
396 (1992) OJ L240 8.
397 (1993) OJ L14 1.
398 (1992) OJ L240 15.
399 A &slot* is defined as &the scheduled time of arrival or departure available or allocated
to an aircraft movement on a specific date at an airport coordinated under the terms of
Regulation EEC/2408/92* (see Art. 2(a) thereof).
400 See para. 27.5 below.
401 COM (99) 640.
402 (1980) OJ L18 26.
403 (1989) OJ L363 27.
404 That is, Chapter 2 of Annex 16 to the 1944 Chicago Convention (see para. 8.5 above).
405 (1992) OJ L76 21.
Community Law Aspects 289
aircraft from operation in the EU by April 2002. Furthermore, European Parliament
and Council Directive 2002/30/EC406 has embodied in Community law the
International Civil Aviation Organisation (&ICAO*)*s407 Resolution A33每7 on the
use of a &balanced approach* to the management of noise around airports.408 Finally,
this last Directive takes effect against the background of a more general framework
for limiting noise contained in European Parliament and Council Directive 2002/49/
EC,409 which has the aim of defining a common approach that is intended to
avoid, prevent or reduce, on a prioritised basis, the harmful effects of exposure to
environmental noise. For the UK provisions, see para. 6.5 above.
12.2.7 State aids
12.2.7.1 General
State subsidy, whether or not on professedly environmental grounds, has long been
used to manage economies.410 Subsidy, that is, a cost or loss of revenue to the public
authority and a benefit to recipients, is the essence of state aids.411 Although state
aids are not forbidden under Community law, they are subject to its discipline, which
means that they must not be applied so as to discriminate on grounds of nationality
or so as to lead to unlawful barriers to trade. Community state aid rules form part of
the competition law of the Community. Writing in 2000, Ehlermann and Atanasiu
summed up the significance of Community state aid law thus:
The control of state aids is a unique feature of EU competition policy. No similar control
system exists in any of the Member States or in any federal state outside the EU. This model
has, nonetheless, an increasing influence beyond the borders of the Community: its rules
have been &exported* to the European Economic Area, and, more recently, to the Central
and Eastern European countries (CEECs) which are candidates for EU membership.412
EU state aid rules and oversight practice have also influenced the evolution of the subsidy
discipline imposed at the level of the GATT and the WTO.413
Articles 88 and 89, European Treaty (ex 93 and 94) create a procedure whereby
Member States must keep the Commission informed of state aids, so that the
406 (2002) OJ L85 40.
407 See para. 8.5 above.
408 Directive 02/30/EC also repeals the so-called &Hushkit* Regulation (that is, Regulation
EC/925/99, (1999) OJ L 115 1), as to which, see Greaves, op. cit., p. 117.
409 (2002) OJ L189 12.
410 See Weatherill and Beaumont, op. cit., pp. 1018每29; A. Leigh Hancher, Tom Ottervanger
and Piet Jan Slot, EC State Aids, 2nd edn (London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1999); and Andrew
Evans, European Community Law of State Aid (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997).
411 See Evans, op. cit., p. 27.
412 The passage was obviously written prior to the accessions of May 2004.
413 See the Introduction to the European Competition Law Annual 1999: Selected Issues in
the Field of State Aid, ed. by Claus-Dieter Ehlermann and Michelle Everson (Oxford:
Hart Publishing, 2001), p. xxi.
290 Environmental Taxation Law
Commission can assess whether they are consistent with Community law.414 Art.
88(3) imposes a positive duty on Member States to notify the Commission of any
plans to grant or alter state aid and Art. 88(1) obliges the Commission to keep all
state aid existing in member States under constant review. The Commission is
charged with proposing to Member States any appropriate measures required by the
development or functioning of the common market. In appropriate circumstances
and, having followed the procedure in Art. 88(2), the Commission can require the
Member State in question to alter or abolish the aid within a specified time, as well as
to recover the aid in question (for example, where aid has been implemented without
notification).415
Article 87(1), European Treaty (ex 92(1)) contains the basic substantive rule of
state aid law and provides that:
Save as otherwise provided in this Treaty, any aid granted by a Member State or through
State resources in any form whatsoever which distorts or threatens to distort competition
by favouring certain undertakings or the production of certain goods shall, insofar as it
affects trade between Member States, be incompatible with the common market.
Article 87(2) then lists three categories of state aid that are compatible with the
common market, while Art. 87(3) lists five categories of aid that may be compatible
with it. The former (obligatory) categories, subject to certain conditions, are; aid with
a social character; aid to combat natural disasters; and aid to compensate certain areas
of Germany for the economic disadvantages caused by the division of the country.
The latter (permissive) categories include the following:
a. aid to promote the economic development of areas where the standard of living is
abnormally low or where there is serious underemployment;
b. aid to promote the execution of an important project of common European interest or to
remedy a serious disturbance in the economy of a Member State;
c. aid to facilitate the development of certain economic activities or of certain economic
areas, where such aid does not adversely affect trading conditions to an extent contrary
to the common interest;
d. aid to promote culture and heritage conservation where such aid does not affect trading
conditions and competition in the Community to an extent that is contrary to the common
interest; and
e. such other categories of aid as may be specified by decision of the Council acting by a
qualified majority on a proposal from the Commission.
State aid is conventionally divided into sectoral and horizontal aid; the former relates
to particular industries, the latter cuts across individual sectors. Of the permissive
categories listed above, the most relevant in the present context are b. and c., since
414 The detailed rules for the application of Art. 88, European Treaty (ex 93) are contained in
Council Regulation EC/659/99, (1999) OJ L83 1 (see Hancher, Ottervanger and Slot, op.
cit., ch 19).
415 Only unlawful state aid may be recovered, as to which, see Hancher, Ottervanger and Slot,
op. cit., paras 20每003每20每008.
Community Law Aspects 291
these will usually be the Treaty Articles under which the Commission will consider
a state aid clearance application on the grounds discussed in one or other of the next
three paras.
12.2.7.2 State aid for environmental protection
In a case where the proffered justification for granting state aid is an environmental
one, the Commission will follow its published Guidelines in exercising its
discretion.416 The basis of the discretion is generally Art. 87(3)(c) but the discretion
may instead be exercised under Art. 87(3)(b) in an appropriate case.417 The
Guidelines demonstrate the Commission*s adherence to the injunction in Art. 6,
European Treaty (ex 3c), to integrate environmental protection requirements into
the implementation of Community policies.418 The Commission*s approach in the
Guidelines consists in determining whether, and under what conditions, state aid
might be regarded as necessary to ensure environmental protection and sustainable
development, without having disproportionate effects on competition and economic
growth.419
The UK*s environmental taxes, including the exemptions and reliefs which they
embody, together with its economic instruments for environmental protection, are
the subject of a number of Commission decisions on state aid. Most of these have
concerned climate change levy420 and its associated economic instruments, the UK
ETS421 and the RO,422 but the special Northern Ireland aggregates levy provisions
have also been the subject of Commission scrutiny.423
12.2.7.3 State aid in the energy industries
Following the initial liberalisation of the electricity market by the 1996 Electricity
416 Community Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection, (2001) OJ C37 1.
See Hancher, Ottervanger and Slot, op. cit., paras 17每011每17每020 and Evans, op. cit.,
pp. 357每74.
417 Guidelines, paras 72 and 73.
418 See para. 12.2.1 above.
419 Guidelines, para. 5.
420 See Decision N 123/2000, Climate Change Levy (28 March 2001); Decision N 660/
A/2000, Exemption from Climate Change Levy for Natural Gas in Northern Ireland (18
July 2001); Decision C 18 and C19/2001, Climate Change Levy (EC and ECSC) (3 April
2002); Decision N 539/2002, Climate Change Levy Exemption for Electricity Exports of
Good Quality CHP (5 March 2003); and Decision C 12/2003 (ex N 778/2002), Climate
Change Levy Exemption for Coal Mine Methane (17 September 2003). Aspects of the
levy were also the subject of state aid decisions under the ECSC (not listed).
421 See Decision N 416/2001, Emission Trading Scheme (November 28, 2001); and Decision
N 104/B/2002, Emission Trading Scheme 每 Modification to Commission Decision State
Aid N 416/2001 of 28 November 2001 (12 March 2002).
422 See Decision N 504/2000, Renewables Obligation and Capital Grants for Renewable
Technologies (28 November 2001).
423 See Decision N 863/2001, Aggregates Levy (24 April 2002); and Decision N 2/2004,
Aggregates Levy 每 Northern Ireland Exemption (7 May 2004). See para. 13.3 below.
292 Environmental Taxation Law
Directive,424 the main area in which state aid issues arise is that of stranded costs.425
Schemes for the recovery of such costs through compensatory levies are capable of
qualifying as state aid426 and the Commission deals with such schemes under Art.
87(3)(c), European Treaty, in accordance with a 2001 Communication.427 However,
this methodology is not applicable to state aid granted to support renewables
generation; there remains considerable scope for tension between the development of
a new competitive framework for the granting of state aids to renewables generators
and the environmental provisions of the European Treaty.428
The question of state aid to the coal industry is dealt with under its own regime,429
which is designed to ensure security of supply.430
State aids to support the environmental objective of energy conservation are
dealt with in the environmental Guidelines discussed in para. 12.2.7.2 above. The
Commission specifically acknowledges that the use of green taxes may offset
the adverse economic effects of state aid in the form of tax reliefs and
exemptions.431
12.2.7.4 State aid in the air passenger and road freight transport sectors432
Pursuant to a Council Decision of 1965,433 Regulation 1191/69/EEC434 provided
that Member States could require road transport operators, to continue to operate
424 See para. 12.2.6.3(1) above.
425 That is, costs incurred by electricity utilities prior to market liberalisation, in order to
meet customer or governmental needs, and which liberalisation has made uncommercial.
Synonymous with the term &stranded assets* (see Cameron, op. cit., p. lvii).
426 See Cameron, op. cit., paras 7.99每7.115. The Commission approved the fossil fuel levy
and non-fossil fuel levy under what is now Art. 87(3)(b) (see Hancher, Ottervanger and
Slot, op. cit., paras 3每020 and paras 21.4.4 and 21.5 below).
427 See Commission Communication Relating to the Methodology for Analysing State Aid
Linked to Stranded Costs (not referenced), July 2001, available from www.europa.eu.int.
See also Commission Decision 99/791/EC, (1999) OJ L319 1 (Northern Ireland Electricity
plc and Premier Power, discussed at Cameron, op. cit., para. 7.103).
428 See Cameron, op. cit., para. 7.116, which includes a discussion of an ECJ decision
revealing something of the tension referred to in the text, that is, PreussenElektra AG v.
Schleswag AG (Windpark Reussenköge III GmbH and Another, Intervening), C每379/98,
[2001] 2 CMLR 36. See van Calster, op. cit., para. 8.4n above.
429 See Council Regulation EC/1407/02, (2002) OJ L205 1.
430 See Decision N 4/2002, State aid to coal production for the period 1 January 2002 to 23
July 2002 (21 January 2003).
431 See Community Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection, (2001) OJ C37 1.
See also para. 12.3.5 below.
432 See Greaves, op. cit., pp. 144每5; Hancher, Ottervanger and Slot, op. cit., ch 14; and Evans,
op. cit., para. 5.7.
433 This was Council Decision 65/271, (1965) 88 JO 1500 (no longer in force), which
provided for a legislative programme to harmonise national rules affecting competition in
the inland transport sector.
434 (1969) OJ L156 1.
Community Law Aspects 293
unprofitable services, by way of a PSO,435 provided that they compensated the
undertakings in question for the financial burden thus incurred. Such aids are
expressly declared by Art. 73, European Treaty (ex 77), to be compatible with the
Treaty.436
In considering state aid applications in relation to the air transport sector, under Art.
87(3), European Treaty, the Commission follows its 1994 Guidelines,437 introduced
in the wake of four major grants in favour of national airlines, that is, Aer Lingus,
TAP, Air France and Olympic.438 The two main concerns of the Guidelines are
stated to be the completion of the internal market for air transport and the increase of
transparency in the notification and decision-making processes.439
12.3 Taxation aspects
12.3.1 General
The Commission has long advocated the use of economic instruments (including
environmental levies) in environmental protection. This is shown not only, for
example, by the advocacy of such instruments in the Community Strategy for Waste
Management, already discussed,440 but in the Commission*s 1997 Communication
on the use of environmental taxes and charges (&the 1997 Commission
Communication*).441 Whether the ECJ shares this enthusiasm is perhaps to be
doubted.442 For instance, in 2001, the ECJ struck down a Belgian flat rate municipal
435 Regulation 1191/69, Art. 2(1).
436 Council Regulation EEC/1107/70, (1970) L130 1, much amended, contains the procedures
applicable to such aid.
437 Application of Articles 92 and 93 [now 87 and 88] of the European Treaty and Article 61
of the EEA Agreement to State Aids in the Aviation Sector, (1994) OJ 350 7.
438 See Hancher, Ottervanger and Slot, op. cit., paras 14每044每14每068.
439 See 1994 Guidelines, paras 7 and 8. See also Rosa Greaves, &Judicial Review of
Commission State Aid Decisions in Air Transport*, in Judicial Review in European Union
Law (The Hague: Kluwer, 2000), ch. 39.
440 See paras 12.2.5.1 above.
441 See Commission Communication, Environmental Taxes and Charges in the Single
Market, COM (97) 9 final, (1997) OJ C224 6 (see para. 1.2.1.5(2) above) and, generally,
Paul Farmer and Richard Lyal, EC Tax Law (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994); David
Williams, EC Tax Law (London: Longman, 1998); Alexander Easson, Taxation in the
European Community (London: Athlone Press, 1993); B. Terra and P. Wattel, European
Tax Law (Amsterdam: Kluwer, 1993); and D. Berlin, Droit Fiscal Communautaire (Paris:
Presse Universitaire Francaise, 1988).
442 A point cogently argued by Amparo Grau Ruiz and Pedro Herrera in an as yet
unpublished paper, entitled &The Polluting Side of Economic Freedoms: is the ECJ
against Environmental Taxes?*, given at the International Seminar on Energy Taxation
and Sustainable Development held in Madrid on 2 and 3 October 2003. The authors are
most grateful to Drs Grau Ruiz and Herrera for making available to them the slides from
that paper.
294 Environmental Taxation Law
tax on all satellite dishes in a particular municipality, on the ground that it infringed
Art. 49, European Treaty (ex Art. 59) by restricting the freedom to receive satellite
television broadcasts and by conferring an unfair advantage on the internal Belgian
broadcasting market.443
12.3.2 Attribution of taxation powers
Like environmental policy, taxation policy is not within the exclusive competence
of the Community.444 This means that, again as with environmental law, Member
States remain competent in the taxation field.445
By Art. 93, European Treaty (ex 99), the Council,446 acting unanimously on a
proposal from the Commission447 and after consulting the European Parliament448
and ECOSOC,449 is mandated to &adopt provisions for the harmonisation of legislation
concerning turnover taxes, excise duties and other forms of indirect taxation to the
extent that such harmonisation is necessary to ensure the establishment and the
functioning of the internal market*. Whilst this might at first seem to give the green
light, among other things, to the creation of Community-wide environmental taxes,
the fact that the Council*s duty is specifically related to the establishment of the
internal market by 31 December 1992,450 means that it is at least arguable that it is
now spent.451 More importantly, however, Art. 93 embodies the general principle of
the fiscal veto,452 which is reflected in Art. 175(2)(a), European Treaty (ex 130s),
relating to environmental provisions primarily of a fiscal nature.453
Article 93 relates specifically to the harmonisation of indirect taxation and
environmental taxes, generally speaking, are indirect taxes.454 To the extent that
there is a basis for the harmonisation of direct taxation,455 however, this is to be
discerned in Art. 94, European Treaty (ex 100) which again tasks the Council, acting
unanimously on a proposal from the Commission and after consulting the European
Parliament and ECOSOC, with issuing directives for the &approximation of such
laws, regulations or administrative provisions of the Member States as directly
443 See De Coster v. College des Bourgmestre et Echevins de Watermael-Boitsfort , C每17/00,
[2002] 1 CMLR 12.
444 See para. 12.2.1 above.
445 See Kirsten Borgsmidt, &Ecotaxes in the Framework of Community Law* [1999] EELR
270每281. The writers would like to acknowledge a particular debt of gratitude to this
work in the preparation of para. 12.3.
446 See para. 4.3.1 above.
447 See para. 4.3.2 above.
448 See para. 4.3.3 above.
449 See para. 4.3.4 above.
450 See Art. 14, European Treaty (ex 7a).
451 See Williams, op. cit., p. 34n.
452 See Art. 95(2), European Treaty (ex 100a).
453 See para. 4.3.1 (point 1) above.
454 See para. 1.2.1.2 above. An exception to this is, of course, the differential against
environmentally-unfriendly cars in the income tax provisions for the taxation of the
provision of company cars (see para. 23.2 below).
455 See para. 1.2.1.2 above.
Community Law Aspects 295
affect the establishment or functioning of the common market*.456 The requirement
,of unanimity which is present here, as in Art. 93, means that Art. 94 is again of
somewhat limited significance and, in the absence of unanimity, in no way detracts
from the competence of Member States to legislate in the taxation field.
The overall effect of Arts 93 and 94, are, of course, twofold, that is: (1) that any
Community-wide environmental tax would require the unanimous support of Member
States; and (2) that Member States are free to create their own environmental taxes,
provided that they do not conflict with other provisions of the Treaty.457 It is now
necessary to turn to these other Treaty provisions.
12.3.3 Fiscal barriers to trade
12.3.3.1 Discriminatory internal taxation
(1) Generally
Barriers to trade of a fiscal, as distinct from a general, nature are covered by Art. 90,
European Treaty (ex 95).458 Art. 90 reads as follows:
No Member State shall impose, directly or indirectly, on the products of other Member
States any internal taxation of any kind in excess of that imposed directly or indirectly on
similar domestic products.
Furthermore, no Member State shall impose on the products of other Member States any
internal taxation of such a nature as to afford indirect protection to other products.
The Article is, of course, a national treatment obligation, and, as such, it is the close
equivalent, in relation to intra-EU trade, of Art. III(2), GATT 1994,459 which is
applicable to trade between EU Member States and third countries. Like Art. III(2),
Art. 90 applies to internal taxation, rather than to customs duties.460 It will be noted
also that, unlike in relation to non-fiscal barriers to trade,461 the national treatment
obligation in Art. 90 admits of no exceptions, not even (or, perhaps, not surprisingly!)
environmental ones.
456 See Asscher v. Staatsecretaris van Financien, C每107/64, [1996] STC 1025, 1033 (para. 53),
&[Article 93] of the Treaty explicitly gives the Council powers of harmonisation in the field
of indirect taxation alone. Laws relating to direct taxation may be harmonised # under [Art
94] # of the Treaty by the Member States acting unanimously, where they directly affect
the establishment or functioning of the Common Market # * (Advocate General Leger).
457 For example, the regionally-imposed levy of one euro per day between 2002 and 2003 on
holiday makers in the Balearic Islands (see B. Arino, &Sustainable Tourism and Taxes: an
Insight into the Balearic Eco-Tax* (2002) 11 EELR 114每19).
458 For a detailed consideration, see Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., pp. 46每77.
459 See para. 8.4.3 above.
460 In R (on the application of British Aggregates Association and others) v. C & E Commrs,
[2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51, aggregates levy was held to be part of
a system of internal taxation and, as such, fell to be considered under Art. 90, European
Treaty, rather than as a charge equivalent to a customs duty under Art. 25 thereof (see
para. 12.3.3.2 below).
461 See para. 12.4 below.
296 Environmental Taxation Law
(2) The two rules of Article 90, European Treaty (ex 95)
Article 90 contains two rules: a ban on tax discrimination against &similar [nondomestic]
products* (first paragraph) and, in the second paragraph, a ban on tax
discrimination that results in indirect protection.462
In the context of the first rule,463 the ECJ has held that the mere fact that two
products contain the same raw materials (in the particular case, alcohol) is not
enough to make them &similar products* for the purposes of the first rule. Similar
products are those that &# at the same stage of production or marketing, have similar
characteristics and meet the same needs from the point of view of consumers*.464 As
Borgsmidt points out, this is a very broad reading of the first rule, since it means that
&similar products* are not those which are identical but those which have a similar
and comparable use, due regard being had to consumer habits in the Community as a
whole and not merely in the Member State under consideration.465
As to the second rule,466 this may apply where, even though the &other products* are
not similar in the sense of the first rule, they have sufficient characteristics in common
that they are an alternative choice for consumers in some circumstances.467
(3) Graduated schemes of taxation
Particular problems may arise in relation to Art. 90 where a Member State uses a
graduated scheme of taxation, either for goods in general or for a specific product.468
The ECJ has mapped out the circumstances in which differentiation between products
is permitted in a line of cases,469 two of which are as follows:
a. In Chemial Farmaceutici v. DAF SpA,470 Italy had imposed a higher tax on
synthetic ethyl alcohol than on ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin, even though
the two products could be used interchangeably. The purpose of the differential
was to favour the agricultural manufacture of ethyl alcohol and to restrain its
synthetic production (that is, the processing of ethylene471 into alcohol), since
ethylene could be used for economically more important purposes. The result
462 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 278.
463 See Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., pp. 57每65.
464 See Rewe v. Hauptzollamt Landau/Pfalz, C每45/75, [1976] ECR 181, 194 (para 12).
465 See Cogis v. Amministrazione delle Finanze dello Stato, C每216/81, [1982] ECR 2701;
Commission v. Denmark, C每206/84, [1986] ECR 833; and Commission v. Italy, C每184/85,
[1987] ECR 2013. There is a rough parallel between this test and the test used for product
substitutability in the competition rules of Arts 81 and 82, European Treaty (ex 85 and 86)
(see Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., p. 59).
466 See Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., pp. 65每76.
467 See Commission v. UK, C每170/78, [1980] ECR 417 (wine and beer).
468 See Farmer and Lyal, op. cit., pp. 69每76.
469 See Amministrazione delle Finanze dello Stato v. Essevi and Salengo, C每142每143/80,
[1981] ECR 1413; Commission v. Italy, C每200/85, [1986] ECR 3953; Commission v.
France, C每196/85, [1987] ECR 1597; and Bergandi v. Directeur G谷n谷ral des Impôts,
C每252/86, [1988] ECR 1343.
470 C每140/79, [1981] ECR 1; see also Vinal SpA v. Orbat SpA, C每46/80, [1981] ECR 77.
471 That is, a petroleum derivative.
Community Law Aspects 297
was that only imported synthetic alcohol was subject to the tax, since domestic
production of synthetic alcohol was uneconomic. The ECJ held that the tax was
not discriminatory since, although imports were hampered by it, so too was
domestic production. In the course of its judgment, the Court said:
# As the Court has stated on many occasions # in its present stage of development
Community law does not restrict the freedom of each Member State to lay down tax
arrangements which differentiate between certain products on the basis of objective criteria,
such as the nature of the raw materials used or the production process employed. Such
differentiation is compatible with Community law if it pursues economic policy objectives
which are themselves compatible with the requirements of the Treaty and its secondary law
and if the detailed rules are such as to avoid any form of discrimination, direct or indirect,
in regard to imports from other Member States or any form of protection of competing
domestic products.472
On this basis, it seems that, given that environmental protection is a legitimate
objective,473 a differential in tax rates for environmental reasons should be lawful
for the purposes of Art. 90.
b. In Outokumpu Oy,474 the Finnish government had imposed an excise duty on
electricity, the rate of which depended on the method of production. Other
features of the duty were as follows:
i. the duty applied only to electricity of domestic origin, not to imported
electricity;
ii. the rate of duty was less on electricity produced by water power than on
electricity produced by nuclear power;
iii. no duty was charged on electricity produced by certain other methods;
iv. although the duty charged on imported electricity was lower than the highest
duty on electricity produced in Finland, it was higher than the lowest rate of
duty charged on electricity produced in Finland; and
v. duty was charged on imported electricity without regard to the method of its
production.
The ECJ held that the duty was incompatible with Community law, although it
stressed that, provided that a duty differential was based on objective criteria, it was
lawful for Member States to tax the same or similar products differentially. Art.
90 did not prevent differential tax rates based on environmental considerations,
provided that the tax in question did not discriminate against imports. However,
in the instant case:
# [t]he first paragraph of Article [90] of the EC Treaty precludes an excise duty which
forms part of a national system of taxation on sources of energy from being levied on
electricity of domestic origin at rates which vary according to its method of production
472 See [1981] 3 CMLR 350, 361 (para 14).
473 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 278.
474 Case C每213/96, [1998] ECR I每1777.
298 Environmental Taxation Law
while being levied on imported electricity, whatever its method of production, at a flat rate
which, although lower than the highest rate applicable to electricity of domestic origin,
leads, if only in certain cases, to higher taxation being imposed on imported electricity.475
In the light of the wording of Arts 93 and 94, the effect of Art. 90 is therefore that any
national environmental tax must not discriminate against goods from other Member
States whether on environmental or any other grounds.476 Equally, however, provided
that such a tax is non-discriminatory, it is not prohibited by Art. 90.
(4) Parafiscal charges477
A second set of problems may arise in relation to Art. 90 when the application of
revenues raised by levies has a discriminatory effect.478 These problems, which arise
in relation to certain types of earmarking, are obviously important to environmental
levies because of the strong arguments, already discussed, for the hypothecation or
earmarking of the proceeds of such levies.479
Where all or part of the revenue of a Member State from a particular levy is used
to resource one of that state*s own industries, then, depending on the circumstances,
there may be a breach either of Art. 90 or of Art. 25, European Treaty (ex 12).480 In
Compagnie Commerciale de l*Ouest and Others v. Receveur Principal des Douanes
de la Pallice Port,481 a reference under Article 234, European Treaty (ex 177),
the ECJ held that Art. 90 applies to the situation where the revenue raised from a
particular tax is used for the benefit of domestic products only, in circumstances
such that the advantages accruing to the domestic product offset the charge borne by
domestic products in part only. Where such advantages fully offset the charge borne
by the domestic product, then Art. 25 applies.482 In the cases under consideration,
importers and distributors of petroleum products had challenged the legality of a
parafiscal charge levied in France on the putting into circulation of certain petroleum
products, irrespective of whether those products were domestic or imported. The
charge had been introduced to fund an Energy Savings Agency, which had then
applied the money to finance measures purportedly to encourage and achieve energysavings
as well as the use of under-utilised energy resources.
(5) Article 90, European Treaty (ex 95) and environmental taxes
From the point of view of new green taxes, the danger with the first rule in Art.
90 is, of course, that the current interpretation of the term &similar products* will
mean that products are considered to be similar, even where they raise quite different
environmental issues. This issue is specifically addressed in the 1997 Commission
Communication, where it is stated that those involved in the design of green levies
475 [1998] ECR I每1777 (para 41). See van Calster, op. cit., para. 8.4n above.
476 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 274.
477 Broadly, species of &hypothecated* levies. See para. 11.2.2 above.
478 See Weatherill and Beaumont, op. cit., pp. 475每6, and Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 280.
479 See para. 11.2.2 above.
480 Ibid.
481 C每78每83/90, [1994] 2 CMLR 425.
482 See para. 12.4 below.
Community Law Aspects 299
should consider:
# whether goods with the same function but with different environmental properties due
to the content or differences in production methods could be regarded as being different
goods.483
Although the cases in which national taxes* compatibility with Art. 90 has been
considered leave open the possibility of a differentiated tax for environmental
reasons, it is clear that imported products must not be subject to higher rates of tax
than domestic ones.484 In this connection, as Borgsmidt points out, &[n]ew production
methods and control thereof may not be available in the country of origin.485 In R (on
the application of British Aggregates Association and others) v. C & E Commrs,486
the applicants, the quarry operators* trade association,487 applied for permission to
move for judicial review of the aggregates levy legislation.488 Moses, J. held that
there was no breach of Art. 90 merely because the levy had some protective effect, in
the sense that, had it not been imposed on imports, it might have encouraged them;489
its purpose was environmental rather than protectionist. Moreover, the fact that the
revenue raised by the levy benefited people living in the UK and provided no benefit
to importers conferred no specific benefit at all on domestic products or producers;
the mere existence of the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (&ALSF*)490 and the
NIC reduction491 did not partially offset the levy borne by the domestic production
of aggregate.492
The possibility that the earmarking of the proceeds from a tax might fall foul of
Art. 90 in situations where the liability to tax of those benefited is reduced, although
not eliminated, has obvious resonances for environmental taxes.493 The avowed
environmental purpose of such levies is clearly not sufficient, however, to prevent
Art. 90 from applying in an appropriate case.494
(6) Article 92, European Treaty (ex 98)
Finally, a little-noted provision appears in Art. 92, European Treaty (ex 98).495 This
allows the Council to take limited action where export or import distortions arise
from levies that are not indirect taxes. In R (on the application of British Aggregates
483 COM (97) 9 final, para. 21.
484 See, for example, Schöttle & Söhne OHG v. Finanzamt Freudenstadt, C每20/76, [1977] 2
CMLR 98.
485 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 279.
486 [2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51.
487 See para. 2.5 above.
488 See paras 4.2.1.5 above and 13.1 below.
489 [2002] 2 CMLR 51, para. 56. See also para. 8.4.5.1 above.
490 See para. 4.2.1.2(1)n above and 21.3.1(b) below.
491 See para. 21.2 below.
492 [2002] 2 CMLR 51, paras 57 and 58.
493 See para. 11.2.2 above.
494 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., pp. 280每81.
495 See Farmer and Lyall, op. cit., pp. 81每2; Williams, op. cit., p. 33.
300 Environmental Taxation Law
Association and others) v. Customs and Excise Commissioners,496 the applicants
argued that the aggregates levy breached Art. 92, on the basis that it was a direct,
rather than an indirect tax. Moses, J. rejected this submission: &# the mechanism for
achieving the purpose of the levy, namely by passing the levy on to a consumer of the
aggregate, does, as it seems to me, provide a powerful indication that the levy is an
indirect tax. The fact that in some cases the levy will not be passed on does not turn
it into a direct tax any more than in the case of an excise duty on wine*.497
12.3.3.2 Prohibition on customs duties and on charges having equivalent effect
(&CEEs*)
If the national treatment obligation of Art. III(2), GATT 1994 is mirrored in Art. 90,
European Treaty (ex 95) so also, subject to one vital qualification, is Art. II(2), GATT
1994 mirrored in Art. 25, European Treaty (ex 12).498 The vital qualification, of
course, is that customs duties are prohibited between Member States, the Community
being based on a customs union.499 Article 25 provides that:
Customs duties on imports and exports and charges having equivalent effect shall be
prohibited between Member States. This prohibition shall also apply to customs duties of
a fiscal nature.
The definition of a charge having equivalent effect (a &CEE*) has already been
considered in Chapter 7 above.500
The key point, from the point of view of environmental taxes, is that, in order for
a CEE to escape the scope of Art. 25 on the basis that it is consideration for services
supplied by the importing state,501 it is necessary for it to be shown that the service
in question is of benefit to the importer and not to the general public.502 As Lyons
points out, the ECJ &has consistently denied that something which is done by a public
authority for the benefit of the general public as well as the trader concerned, is a service
to the trader for which a charge may be made*.503 This means that, in the case of an
environmental levy on imports which was not part of a general system of taxation,504
it would be necessary to rely on the only other exception to the concept of CEEs and to
show that it was an administrative charge,505 that is, that it was imposed to cover the
costs of services required by Community law or by international agreement.506
496 [2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR 51.
497 [2002] 2 CMLR 51, para. 75.
498 Generally, see Timothy Lyons, EC Customs Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001),
pp. 60每72 and ch 13.
499 See Art. 23, European Treaty (ex 9).
500 See para. 7.2.2.3 above.
501 Ibid.
502 See, for example, Cadsky v. Instituto Nazionale per il Commercio Estero, C每63/74, [1975]
ECR 281, although more recent cases are reviewed at Lyons, op.cit., pp. 70每71.
503 See Lyons, op. cit., p. 70.
504 See para. 7.2.2.3 above.
505 Ibid.
506 See Borgsmidt, op. cit., p. 278.
Community Law Aspects 301
In Compagnie Commerciale de l*Ouest and Others v. Receveur Principal des Douanes
de la Pallice Port, discussed above,507 the ECJ considered the particular problem of
the circumstances in which a parafiscal charge508 would fall foul of Art. 25:
A parafiscal charge applied under the same conditions as regards its collection to both
domestic and imported products, the revenue from which is used for the benefit of domestic
products only, so that the advantages accruing from it fully offsets [sic] the charge borne
by those products, constitutes a charge having an effect equivalent to customs duties
prohibited by Article [25] #
In so defining the scope of Art. 25 in relation to such charges, the Court was
distinguishing the scope of the Art. from that of Art. 90, the latter applying where the
offset is only a partial one.509
12.3.4 Harmonisation of excise duties on fuels
Differentiated rates of excise duty were introduced for leaded and unleaded petrol by
Council Directive 92/81/EEC510 on the Harmonisation of the Structures of Excise
Duties on Mineral Oils and Council Directive 92/82/EEC511 on the Approximation
of Excise Duty Rates on Mineral Oils. The former was designed to harmonise the
structures, exemptions and rate reductions applicable to excise duties on mineral
oils; the latter was designed to specify minimum rates or rate bands for each category
of oil. Controversially, Directive 92/81/EC exempted from duty oils that are used
as fuels for the purpose of air navigation, as well as navigation within Community
waters, other than for private pleasure-flying and sailing. Both Directives have now
been repealed by the 2003 Energy Products Directive.
The Energy Products Directive (&the EPD*)512 repeals the two 1992 Directives as
from 31 December 2003.513 Unlike that of its predecessors, its scope is not limited
to mineral oils but covers most energy products, including electricity, natural gas
and coal. The recitals of the EPD specifically refer to the taxation of energy products
including, where appropriate, electricity, as an instrument for achieving the Kyoto
Protocol objectives.514 They also acknowledge the possibility that CHP generation
and renewables might qualify for preferential taxation treatment.515 The main
substantive provision is Art. 4(1), which provides that Member States must not apply
levels of taxation below the prescribed minimum levels to the products covered by the
EPD. Article 14 provides that Member States must exempt: (1) &energy products and
electricity used to produce electricity and electricity used to maintain the ability to
507 See para. 12.3.3.1(4) above.
508 Ibid., n above.
509 See para. 12.3.3.1 above.
510 (1992) OJ L316 12 (repealed).
511 Ibid.
512 Council Directive 03/96/EC, (2003) OJ L283 51.
513 Ibid., Art. 30.
514 Ibid., recitals 7, 12 and 13.
515 Ibid., recital 25.
302 Environmental Taxation Law
produce electricity*;516 (2) &energy products supplied for use as fuel for the purpose of
air navigation other than in private pleasure-flying*;517 and (3) &energy products supplied
for use as fuel for the purposes of navigation within Community Waters*, other than
private pleasure craft and electricity produced on board.518 Of these three mandatory
exemptions, (1) does not, however, prevent Member States from subjecting products
to taxation for reasons of environmental policy without having to respect the specified
minimum levels.519 The other two preserve the exemptions in the 1992 Directives.
By Article 15, EPD, Member States may exempt, either wholly or partially, inter alia,
electricity from renewables; electricity produced from &environmentally-friendly* CHP
generation;520 and energy products and electricity used for CHP generation.521 The
implementation of the EPD in UK law has been discussed in Chapter 6,522 together
with the derogations therefrom which the UK has succeeded in negotiating.
The Biofuels Directive,523 a second major development in 2003, aims to promote
the use of biofuels and other renewable fuels524 to replace diesel or petrol for
transport purposes in each Member State. Climate change, environmentally-friendly
security of supply and the promotion of renewables are given as express justifications
for the measure.525 &Biofuels* are defined as liquid or gaseous fuel for transport
produced from biomass.526 The heart of the Directive is Art. 3(1)(a), which provides
that Member States should ensure that a minimum proportion of biofuels and other
renewable fuels is placed on their markets and, to that end, must set national targets
therefore. This is backed up by the specific monitoring and reporting requirements
in Arts 3(3) and 4(1) of the Directive respectively. Again, implementation of the
Biofuels Directive in the UK was discussed in Chapter 6 above.527
12.3.5 State aids and taxation
Where revenue is paid into Member States* national treasuries and producers are
then supported out of general funds, the support may constitute state aid under Art.
87, European Treaty.528 However, reliefs and exemptions within particular tax codes
may also, in certain circumstances, count as state aid.529 State aid in the form of
516 Ibid., Art. 14(1)(a).
517 Ibid., Art. 14(1)(b).
518 Ibid., Art. 14(1)(c).
519 Ibid., Art. 14(1)(a).
520 Council Directive 03/96/EC, Art. 15(1)(d).
521 Ibid., Art. 15(1)(c).
522 See para. 6.4 above.
523 Directive 03/30/EC, (2003) OJ L123 42.
524 Defined, ibid., Art. 2(1)(c).
525 Directive 03/30/EC, Art. 1.
526 Ibid., Art. 2(1)(a). Biomass is defined, ibid., Art. 2(1)(b).
527 See para. 6.4 above.
528 See para. 12.2.7.1 above. Where the arrangement is also discriminatory, then it may be
caught by Art. 90, European Treaty (ex 95) as well as by Art. 87.
529 See the (unsuccessful) attempt to argue that certain exemptions within the aggregates
levy code constituted unlawful state aid (in R (on the application of British Aggregates
Associates and Others) v. C & E Commrs, [2002] EWHC 926 (Admin), [2002] 2 CMLR
51, paras 79每115).
Community Law Aspects 303
such exemptions and reliefs is referred to as &fiscal aid* or &fiscal state aid*.530 In
considering an application for state aid clearance under Art. 87(3), the Commission
follows its 2001 Guidelines,531 as well as, where appropriate, its 1998 guidelines
on the application of the state aid rules to measures relating to direct business
taxation.532
In 2001, the Commission decided not raise any objections to the introduction of
enhanced capital allowances for energy efficient investments, on the basis that the
measure did not constitute aid.533
In 2003, the Commission decided to close down the Art. 88(2) procedure, with a
conditional decision, in relation to the Finance Act 2001, ss.92A and 92B exemption
from stamp duty for non-residential properties in disadvantaged areas.534 For details
of the Commission consents granted in relation to the UK*s environmental taxes and
other economic instruments, the reader is referred to para. 12.2.7.2 above.
In 2004, the Commission decided not to raise any objections to the introduction of
a reduced rate of excise duty on bioethanol used for road transport, on the basis that
the aid was compatible with the European Treaty.535
12.4 Rules on free movement of goods
Part Three, Title I, Ch. 2, European Treaty, as is well-known, prohibits quantitative
restrictions between Member States. Article 28, European Treaty (ex 30) deals
with imports, while Art. 29, European Treaty (ex 34), deals with exports. By Art.
28, quantitative restrictions on imports and all measures having equivalent effect,
are prohibited between Member States. Art. 29 lays down the same rule, mutatis
mutandis, for exports. To each rule, there are the exceptions in Art. 30, European
Treaty (ex Art. 36), including prohibitions or restrictions justified on grounds of the
protection of health and life of humans, animals or plants. Any such prohibition or
restriction must not, however, constitute a means of arbitrary discrimination or a
disguised restriction on trade between Member States.
The question of what constitutes a measure having equivalent effect has for long
been governed by the first rule articulated in Procureur du Roi v. Dassonville,536
which reads as follows:
530 See Raymond Luja, &WTO Agreements versus the EC Fiscal Aid Regime: Impact on
Direct Taxation* (1999) 27 Intertax 207每25, esp. pp. 216每23.
531 See para. 12.2.7.2 above.
532 See Commission Notice on the Application of the State Aid Rules to Measures Relating to
Direct Business Taxation, (1998) OJ C384 3.
533 See Decision N 797/2000, Enhanced Capital Allowances for energy efficient investments
(13 March 2001). See para. 21.3.1 below.
534 See para. 24.5.3 below.
535 See Decision N 407/2003, Reduced Rate of Excise Duty on Bioethanol used for Road
Transport (3 February 2004). See para. 22.2.2 below.
536 C每8/74, [1974] ECR 837.
304 Environmental Taxation Law
537 Rewe-Zentrale AG v. Bundesmonopolverwaltung f邦r Branntwein, C每120/78, [1979] ECR
649.
538 The case therefore embodies a mutual recognition principle.
539 [1979] ECR 649, para. 8.
540 See the discussio