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The Mirrlees Review, Volume 1: Dimensions of Tax Design. (Chapter 5. Environmental Taxes)


The Mirrlees Review was an extremely comprehensive review of the design of a good tax system. This chapter provides an overview of key economic issues in the use of taxation as environmental policy. Sections 5.2–5.4 discuss the economic principles of environmental taxation, reviewing the arguments for using taxes and other market mechanisms in environmental policy, the efficient design of environmental taxes, and the fiscal value of the revenue contribution from environmental taxes. Sections 5.5–5.8 apply these principles to four specific environmental tax areas—energy, road transport, aviation, and household waste.

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