Business world must pay "fair" share of climate measures, Dutch PM says

Wind turbines in Amsterdam
Wind turbines in AmsterdamPhoto: Pantona / Wikimedia Commons

The business community will pay their "fair" share in the implementation of the climate agreement, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said during question hour in parliament. The Prime Minister was called to parliament by GroenLinks leader Jesse Klaver. He believes that in the negotiations on the climate agreement the government, like with the scrapping of dividend tax, listened too much to the business community, NOS reports.

According to Rutte, this is not the case. Not only did the government focus on making sure ordinary people don't have to pay too much, but also that companies share in the burdens, he said. 

In the draft agreement, which the government made with various companies and civil society organizations, they deliberately decided against a pollution tax because that would be bad for companies' competitive position, Rutte explained. Instead they opted for stimulating new techniques to reduce emissions and hefty fines for companies who refuse. But if the calculations on the draft agreement show that this will have too little result, alternatives will be sought. And that could include a tax on CO2 emissions like GroenLinks and the PvdA want, he said.

The Prime Minister emphasized that the calculations of the draft agreement will look at what measures have to be implemented to achieve the Netherlands' goal of 49 percent less CO2 emissions in 2030 compared to 1990. "And one of the touchstones will be whether or not the business community participates fairly. Businesses must not be unfairly favored", he said.