LIFE will levy a charge on all fuels related to their carbon/GHG emmissions. The charge (a “Carbon Tax”) will be charged at source on all fuel production in the UK, and assessed on all imports (fuels and products). Activities in the UK that contribute will also be subject to the levy, such as animal farming and concrete manufacture.
This tax, and the empowerment of Community Assemblies to charge “waste taxes”, are the main LIFE Environment policies for funding climate mitigation investments.
Revenues from this tax will be paid into a Climate Mitigation Fund managed by the National Infrastructure Bank and that fund will only finance related projects. Priorities will be insulation of housing stock and a smart grid infrastructure.
The level of the Carbon Tax will be determined by a formula that is open, and can be used to predict and explain the level of the charge. The tax will be introduced in stages over a 5 year period from 2017 to 2022, replacing the carbon price floor (CPF) which is designed to level a charge of £30 per tonne by 2020 on current projections.
It will include assessing mitigation costs, such as building flood defences and other infrastructure necessary to combat the effects of adding the pollution to the air. The carbon output of each fuel type (oil, gas, coal, etc. is a known fact) and will be used to assess the level of the charge for that fuel.
The total cost will be divided by the total carbon (GHG-equivalent) released, to result in a charge per ton of carbon.
Balancing the Cost to Business
Businesses will gain a net reduction in costs with LIFE policies. WellFair will reduce basic labour rates, and that will result in a greater reduction in costs to business than the increase in input costs caused by the carbon tax.
The EU Emissions Trading System
LIFE will lobby for the EU emissions trading system to be replaced by a straight Carbon Tax, harmonised across all member States.
Protecting the poorest
LIFE will isolate most on the lowest incomes through our WellFair policies.
The fastest and cheapest way of reducing energy bills is through better insulation of the UK’s ageing and draughty housing stock, as recommended by the government’s Fuel Poverty Advisory Group. Funding the insulation of our housing stock will be a priority for Carbon Tax revenues, and will be made more affordable by reductions in basic labour rates resulting from WellFair provision.
We will evaluate the possibility of a credit voucher, funded by the carbon tax revenues, for those on incomes less than half the National Median.