Sarkozy demands EU-wide carbon tax
French President Nicolas Sarkozy called Wednesday for a carbon tax across Europe and punitive tariffs on products that fail to meet climate standards.
"We will not accept goods that fail to conform to our environmental standards," Sarkozy told business leaders at a New Year's reception in the western town of Cholet, DPA reported.
"In future we will levy a 'climate tax' at Europe's borders," said the president, adding that he wanted to see an end to so-called eco- dumping.
Sarkozy's own plans for a carbon tax were dealt a blow last week when France's Constitutional Council ruled that it cannot come into force, as it includes too many exemptions.
The president said he expected to see a revised version ready in June.
The tax, which was planned to enter into effect on January 1, was a centrepiece to Sarkozy's climate initiative.
In its ruling, the council criticized the fact that industrial- origin carbon dioxide emissions would be almost totally exempt, letting some of the worst polluters, such as refineries, off the hook. Also it contained relief for farmers and other groups.
The council said the exemptions included in the carbon tax ran counter to the aim of fighting climate change and created taxation inequalities.