FRE-COMMUNICATE! - Communicating and realising the benefits and potential of Environmental Fiscal Reform in Europe
Green Budget Europe and our partners the Danish Ecological Council, the Copenhagen-based think tank Concito, and University College London’s Energy Institute have been awarded funding to run a three-year Europe-wide project on improving perceptions and understanding of EFR in Europe by improving communication of EFR issues.
Experience has shown that one of the most fundamental barriers to the implementation of EFR is a general lack of understanding of EFR amongst policy-makers, the business sector, the media and the general public. Survey responses often reveal misunderstandings of what EFR is about – for example, while the polluter pays principle is supported by the majority, EFR is all too rarely perceived as a means of implementing it. The project sets out to enhance the prospects for the implementation of Environmental Fiscal Reform in Europe by improving the communication of its benefits and advantages in comparison to other policy instruments.
In response to this, the project will develop targeted tools and strategies for key stakeholders to communicate what EFR is about in an accessible way. During the project, a number of communication strategies will be developed to reach diverse target audiences.
1. Draw together research on the effects of well-designed EFR measures on the economy, environment, public health, employment, equality, etc.
2. Raise awareness and improve understanding of EFR amongst different target groups with the aim of engendering more positive responses to EFR
3. Enhance knowledge and improve the communication of the advantages and benefits of EFR and lay misunderstandings to rest
4. Develop a better appreciation amongst the general public and others of the underlying logic of EFR – the realisation of the polluter pays principle, emphasising e.g. the potential for joint solutions to tackle multiple aspects of environmental and economic crises
5. Influence policy discourses and concrete EFR implementation by effectively communicating the advantages and benefits, as well as the disadvantages of EFR, to a broad and diverse audience in target countries as well as at EU level
6. Create new coalitions and alliances lobbying in favour of EFR, including getting business on side
7. Increase the proportion of total tax revenues from environmental taxation and to bring about the phase-out of environmentally harmful subsidies (EHS)
8. Promote EFR within the EU's cycle of economic policy coordination, the 'European Semester'
9. Lobby for increased reference to EFR in the European Council's and Commission's strategic and policy advice, as well as in national budget strategies
"Environmental Fiscal Reform: Windows of opportunity." Published in the International Tax Review. (2014)
Memo on Employment and EFR (2014)
Paper on Implementing EFRs without Harming Competitiveness (2014)
Memo on Social Inequality (2014)
Poster on Exploring ways to boost public acceptance and support of green taxes (2014)
The VILLUM FOUNDATION is a non-profit foundation created by Villum Kann Rasmussen in 1971. The Foundation is the principal shareholder of VKR Holding – the parent company of the VELUX Group and other business enterprises whose mission is to bring daylight, fresh air and a better environment into people’s everyday lives.
In recent years, the Foundation has chiefly supported research activities in the natural and technical sciences. Grants are made for pioneering research, but the Foundation also supports the dissemination of scientific and technical research.
The VILLUM FOUNDATION also makes grants for major social initiatives, cultural projects and projects on the environment and sustainability in Denmark and other European countries.