In an effort to reduce automobile usage and greenhouse gas emissions, the Dutch cabinet has approved a driving tax that would charge motorists seven cents a mile. The plan, which must still be approved by parliament, would use GPS systems installed in each car to keep track of mileage and automatically bill drivers. The mileage charges would be higher at rush hour, for large cars, and for commercial vehicles. Dutch officials said the driving tax, which would replace existing road taxes and duties on new car purchases, is designed to cut traffic by 15 percent and reduce emissions from transport by 10 percent. Other European nations are considering similar driving taxes, and a driving tax experiment was recently tried in Oregon in the United States. The chances of a tax comparable to the Dutch tax being levied in the U.S. are slim, however, as that would more than triple the $260 a year that the average U.S. driver now pays in state and federal gasoline taxes.
This piece originally appeared on Yale Environment 360.
Photo Credit: Ytse Jam Photography via Flickr, Creative Commons License.
Instead of imposing an expensive to collect tax system which road pricing is, why not either up the petrol tax or perhaps if the Dutch Government really wants to show they have brains, encourage less travel through job swaps (i.e. changing jobs with other who work nearer home), home working, a lot of people don't really need to work in their office every day and could work at home instead, or the varying of office hours so that people travel at different times, moving trunk frieght onto rail for longer distances.
None of these things seem to feature, why not?