Federal Council wants to continue promoting biofuels

21 August 2019

The National Council's Environment Committee wants to extend the tax relief on natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas and biogenic fuels until the end of 2021. The Federal Council is in favour of this. However, it would like to press ahead with the total revision of the CO2 Act more quickly.

A timely entry into force on 1 January 2021 is clearly preferable to the proposed interim solution, writes the government in its statement on a parliamentary initiative published on Wednesday. The current draft should not lead to further delays in the parliamentary debate on the total revision of the CO2 Act.

The draft decree of the National Council's Committee for the Environment, Spatial Planning and Energy (UREK-N) provides for the tax concessions for environmentally friendly fuels, which have been in force since 1 July 2008 and are limited until the end of 2020, to continue to be granted.

It is true that the measures will one day take effect in a different form with the completely revised CO2 Act. However, the reform project is unlikely to come into force in time. Urek therefore wants to extend the tax relief until the revised law comes into force, at the latest until the end of December 2021.

Effective measures
Minorities of the committee want to ensure that measures to reduce CO2 emissions are continued and tightened beyond 2021 if there is no total revision of the CO2 Act. A minority requested that the proposal not be adopted.

The work is the result of a parliamentary initiative by Aargau FDP National Councillor Thierry Burkart, which was approved by the environment committees of both chambers. Burkart argued that thanks to the tax breaks, the consumption of alternative fuels had risen sharply and that these produced less CO2 than petrol and diesel.

Under current law, the mineral oil tax on natural and liquid gas used as fuel is 40 centimes lower per litre than that on petrol and diesel. For biogenic fuels, tax relief is granted on application if certain requirements are met. For example, biogenic fuels must produce significantly fewer greenhouse gas emissions than fossil petrol, from the cultivation of the raw materials to consumption.

Source: cash, 21.08.2019


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