Overview of Environmental Taxes in Mexico

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Pollution has become a global problem due to the overuse of natural resources, which is why governments have adopted laws to protect the environment. However, it is undeniable that it has been a huge challenge for countries to enforce their environmental laws without causing economic hardship, so much so, that so-called green taxes or green taxes were created, which are an effective way to strike a balance between protecting the environment and promoting economic growth.

These types of taxes refer to the contribution on products that have a negative impact on the environment, including fossil fuels, pesticides, and plastics. The idea behind green taxes is that manufacturers of harmful products should foot the bill for cleaning up the ravages of biodiversity, creating a financial incentive to develop greener products without harming quality of life or the economy. 

In Mexico, regulations have been implemented to preserve natural resources, such as banning the use of certain harmful pesticides within its borders. In this regard, according to the Environmental Status Report, published in 2015, our country has implemented a wide range of environmental taxes to help preserve and improve the quality of environments, including taxes on vehicle fuel, coal, and plastic materials.

It should be noted that for economic justice some governments collect revenue from corporations rather than consumers, so these green tax schemes provide high-income users with incentives to consume more responsibly without penalizing low-income consumers with fewer alternatives. Authorities also provide incentives to companies to reduce their environmental impact without losing profits.

Undoubtedly, these taxes are an effective way to promote economic growth by limiting harmful impacts on the environment. In addition, governments can invest the proceeds from these collections in green projects and programs that benefit society as a whole. In this way, in Mexico, some states of the country have managed to implement this instrument in activities that, due to their origin, cause some type of deterioration in the environment, but unfortunately neither at the federal nor state level, the revenues are labeled for a specific expense, that is, it is unknown what was, is or will be the real impact of the collection.