Greening taxes and subsidies in the Pacific

On 5 September, IEEP will participate in the forum event ‘Towards greener taxes and subsidies in Pacific Island Countries and Territories and beyond’, during the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Hawaii. The event will explore opportunities to use environmental taxation and reform subsidies in pursuit of Aichi Biodiversity Target 3 – to reform incentives harmful to biodiversity and to develop appropriate positive incentives for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, both by 2020.

Emma Watkins of IEEP will present the initial findings of a scoping exercise to identify existing harmful taxes and subsidies, as well as greener instruments and reform efforts, in the Pacific islands. The scoping is covering sectors as diverse as fisheries, waste management, energy and tourism, and has a particular focus on Fiji, Vanuatu and French Polynesia. Other speakers at the workshop will include Raphaël Billé (Secretariat of the Pacific Community and coordinator of the RESCCUE project which is funding the IEEP-led work), Kristina Bowers (Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity) and Candice Stevens (BirdLife South Africa).

Participants at the workshop will be invited to share their insights and experiences on environmental taxation and harmful subsidies in the Pacific islands and beyond. The workshop will be held in the Business and Biodiversity Pavilion from 8.30-10.30am on Monday 5 September.

The IEEP-led work (in association with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australian National University and the Global Change Institute of the University of Queensland) will feed into the development of a roadmap for the Pacific region to green taxation and reform harmful subsidies, which will be prepared by autumn 2017.