Talk:Fuel tax

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Untitled[edit]

Was the gasoline tax enacted to build highways or build and maintain?

William K. Tell says in "Taxation of Aircraft Motor Fuel", in the Journal of Air Law, 1931:

.control of highways, it was considered by various legislatures throughout the United States that it was only just that those who used the roads, and thereby received benefits from the improvements, should be required to pay for them. The result of this was the general automobile license tax. But, as the number of people owing automobiles increased, so in direct ratio the demands upon the legislatures increased for more and better roads. The revenue which the states were receiving from the licensing of these automobiles being inadequate to meet the increased costs of highways, it was logical that the legislatures in looking for another source of revenue should turn to the gasoline consumed by these vehicles and tax it. (Tell, 1931, pg. 342)

--DaniëlMeijers 10:42, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Article name[edit]

I propose that this article be moved to Fuel tax. It covers more fuels than just petrol/gasoline, like heating oil, diesel and kerosene. -- Yama Wed Jul 21 09:35:41 UTC 2004

The article may also cover non-petroleum based fuels, making the current title even more inaccurate. - Yama 11:24, 12 May 2005 (UTC)

Regressive[edit]

I removed "however, it will also be more regressive" since this depends on income rather than price elasticity, and that varies from country to country. Fuel duty is one of the less regressive indirect taxes in the UK. --Henrygb 00:43, 14 May 2005 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

Gasoline taxFuel tax – I propose that this article be moved to Fuel tax. It covers more fuels than just petrol/gasoline, like heating oil, diesel and kerosene. It may even cover non-petroleum based fuels. - Yama 11:25, 12 May 2005 (UTC)


This article has been renamed as the result of a move request. violet/riga (t) 19:28, 18 May 2005 (UTC)

China[edit]

Given that the State Council has responsibility for issues such as taxes, and the Communist Party does not, I've deleted the inaccurate reference. DOR (HK) (talk) 04:28, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

Dollar and Cents[edit]

There are a lot of entries on this page that have figures listed with $ and cents. It is not made clear anywhere what dollar currencies these are in. For example the Canada section contains details that doesn't make clear if it is in US dollars (as the rest seem to be on the page). I think these should all be clarified. By all means translate figures into US dollars in other country sections as long as they have the native figures listed primarily (as this is after all a global encyclopaedia. Wait, what am I talking about? Everyone knows that every other country is worthless. Let the bastards figure out the currency conversion on their own.) Ben W Bell 11:02, 10 September 2005 (UTC)

Tax rate[edit]

Is it better to quote the rates of tax as percentages? It means more to say: fuel duty in the UK is x% rather than just say it's 47.1 pence per litre. I would like to see the figure I heard on BBC news the other week, that 66 pence of every pound you spend on fuel is tax. This means the rate of fuel tax in the UK is around 200% - a much more revealing figure! [[User:Simontrumpet|simon--CorvetteZ51 15:14, 18 February 2006 (UTC)]]

How can it possibly be 200% The most you can pay in any % based tax is the total amount which is 100%! If you take current UK fuel pricing, unleaded is about 90p a litre, so the duty would be 50.53p, and the VAT would be 17.5% of 90p which is 15.75p, so the total is 66.1p. (66.1/90) x 100 = 73.44%. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 217.198.33.252 (talk) 11:51, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

While it's not a percentage, percentage taxes can totally be more than 100%, and they could also be negative numbers (but then they would be called subsidies). Tax as a percentage is calculated as 'price times percent tax' which is paid atop the original amount. 99.104.126.16 (talk) 03:47, 14 October 2011 (UTC)

I agree, also, in my many countries, the tax is actually a percentage anyway, so the if you quote in cents or pence or lira or whatever it would change almost daily. Paullb 01:03, 6 October 2005 (UTC)

But UK tax is a fixed amount, not a percentage. Quoting it as a percentage would mean someone would have to change the percentage every time the price of fuel change. Smackfu 04:22, 9 September 2006 (UTC)

Eficiency & Alternative Fuels?[edit]

More recently, particular post 9/11, fuel taxes have been proposed as a way of decreasing foreign oil consumption not just by encouraging conservation and efficiency due to higher prices, but by redirecting the income to efficiency efforts & alternative fuels. A potential of tens of billions of dollars per year going into hybrid vehicles, ethanol & biodiesel subsidies is not inconsequential and surely warrants a mention in this article.

UK, VAT on the fuel plus duty, how much?[edit]

How much VAT does the UK impose on petrol, is it 17.5 percent, or some other rate? Tax on international jet fuel is zero, by the Chicago 1944 treaty.

--CorvetteZ51 15:14, 18 February 2006 (UTC)

Yes, the UK adds 17.5% VAT to petrol. This is added after the fuel duty, so you pay a tax on a tax. NFH 18:16, 18 February 2006 (UTC)

According to HM Revenue & Customes UK fuel VAT is included in the cut down to 15% from 17.5% until 1 Jan 2010. Shouldn't the United Kingdom section mention this? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Saint sim (talkcontribs) 19:29, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

The article fails to mention the UK's additional fuel tax via the vehicle duty (taxation) scheme by which the annual rate of duty on a vehicle depends on the quantity of CO2 emitted, and therefore on the total fuel consumption. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 82.45.83.254 (talk) 13:43, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

The duty you mention (known as Vehicle Excise Duty) isn't a fuel tax, it's a motor vehicle road tax. It is based on a theoretical CO2 emission rate - not related to actual use - so applies even if no fuel is used at all for the period of cover. -- de Facto (talk). 14:19, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

Dead Link[edit]

Link number 1 for Canada [1] is dead. Kyle J Moore 02:49, 5 May 2006 (UTC) The article fails to mention UK V.A.T. is 20% on fuel. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 130.246.132.177 (talk) 12:05, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

More countries[edit]

It would be interesting to see listings for a larger number of countries here, including those that have a negative tax rate - i.e. a subsidy. -- Beland 01:47, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

I just added a section about Australia - includes a subsidy for you :D --58.104.223.30 13:12, 23 June 2006 (UTC)

To what extent do fuel taxes pay for city streets[edit]

What is the percentage breakdowns on the source of funds to pay for the building, repairing, salting, cleaning and policing of city streets? Of county roads? Of state highways?

Some people think that the gasoline taxes cover all of these obligations but I've read that fuel taxes in some states cover approximately a third of the bill, with revenues from sales taxes, income taxes, property taxes, and registration fees covering most of the rest.

I'm sure that the answers vary by state. I would love to find an up-to-date source for the breakdown by state.

See Road Finance Alternatives: An Analysis of Metro-area Road Taxes Authors: Barry Ryan and Thomas F. Stinson Research Project: Transportation Financing Alternatives Published: 2002 dml 00:38, 27 June 2006 (UTC)
Also see these two Brookings articles [2] and [3]Pgduffyjr (talk)

New Jersey/New York[edit]

The article's figure of gas being 20% cheaper in New Jersey than in New York seems very flawed to me. At current prices (approx. US$3 per gallon in June 2007) the difference would then be about US$0.60 per gallon. As a New Jersey resident, I know that gas is about US$0.20 (20 cents) cheaper per gallon in New Jersey than in Pennsylvania, and it seems odd to me that New York's prices would be that much higher. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 209.94.128.106 (talk) 02:08, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

Sounds believable to me: NY is expensive. However, I agree that such comparison statements should be sourced. I modified the statement it to remove the specific numerical claim (which can vary considerably over time), but this may still be disputed as the figure may not account for the cost for travel between the two states. --Bossi (talkgallerycontrib) 03:17, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

How is this tax money spent?[edit]

"How is this tax money spent? The head of the U.S. Dept. of Transportation stated on 15 Aug. 2007 that only about 60% of our federal gas taxes are used for highway and bridge construction. The remaining 40% goes to other, unrelated uses."

This was added by an anonymous user, and isn't cited at all. After a cursory search for the citation, I haven't found it. I say we delete it unless it's cited.

MKultra 00:47, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

It's from here: "only about 60 percent of the gas tax money that they pay today actually goes into highway and bridge construction. Much of it goes in many, many other areas." The original claim is of dubious value (as road projects are also funded by general revenue) and clarity (many, many ... tunnels?). The word "unrelated" is an invention of the anonymous contributor. Unless someone has a source for Mary Peters's claim (made while in post bridge collapse damage control) I agree that the whole should be dropped. Nathan 23:58, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

Biofuel section is poorly written[edit]

Can somebody revise the Biofuel section who knows more about it? It is very difficult to understand what in the world the author is trying to say. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 159.48.248.95 (talk) 16:33, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Rewritten. -- Beland (talk) 22:25, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Citations for Australian[edit]

The 2006 bill mentioned in the article was passed. However the numbers listed here (38.1c +10% gst) is still correct.

http://www.ato.gov.au/budget/2007-08/bp1/html/bp1_bst5-10.htm mentions the 38.1c, but the link to the ATO in the citations section is broken

"Liability for fuel tax currently arises under the Excise Act 1901, the Excise Tariff Act 1921, the Customs Act 1901 and the Customs Tariff Act 1995." (from 2006 fuel act - http://law.ato.gov.au/atolaw/view.htm?docid=PAC/20060072/2-1 ), i haven't been able to find the correct link to replace the broken one —Preceding unsigned comment added by 130.102.71.38 (talk) 05:46, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

Red or green dye diesel Norway[edit]

The Fuel dyes page on wikipedia says fuel dye added to diesel in Norway, that is specifically used for agricultural machines, is any shade of green whereas in this article it says it is a red dye that is added. I looked on the internet for clarification but some sites say red and some say green, which wasn't much help. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 93.96.122.175 (talk) 17:47, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

Argument for raising the fuel tax in the U.S. needs rewrite[edit]

This section is largely just a one sided debate for raising the fuel tax in the U.S. There are numerous examples of primary research, pure conjecture, uncited facts, and neutrality violations. The section should be cleaned up and rewritten in an encyclopaedic tone or removed so the article can come into compliance with Wikipedia policy. Thatoneguy89 (talk) 15:07, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Seeing how someone has now removed this section, this discussion has become moot. Thatoneguy89 (talk) 17:08, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Traffic Congestion[edit]

One central argument for raising gas taxes is decreasing traffic congestion, since alternatives that use less fuel also use less road space per traveler. Should this be its own section, or be integrated into Role in Energy Policy. It's not so much about energy policy, but about transportation policy.--Zachbe (talk) 11:34, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

Many dead links in references[edit]

Just informing those who originally posted references that the majority of your links are 404's. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.98.34.217 (talk) 18:39, 17 April 2010 (UTC)


Historical information[edit]

The most current info is appreciated, but having historical data would be more helpful; such as when the tax was enacted and changed to what level when. I keep trying to google it but it keeps trying to give me this page :P 99.104.126.16 (talk) 03:49, 14 October 2011 (UTC)

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Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:Fuel tax/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

==WP Tax Class==

Start class because it needs more references, but this should become at least a B class article.EECavazos 03:01, 11 November 2007 (UTC)

==WP Tax Priority==

High priority because this is a basic tax that is imposed worldwide.EECavazos 03:02, 11 November 2007 (UTC)

Last edited at 03:02, 11 November 2007 (UTC). Substituted at 15:41, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

Lead Section[edit]

Editor Snooganssnoogans is insistent upon adding the following to the lead section of the article: According to a Nature study, "From 2003 to 2015, gasoline taxes rose in 83 states but fell in 46 states. During the same period, the global mean gasoline tax fell by 13.3% due to faster consumption growth in countries with lower taxes... many governments are failing to exploit one of the most cost-effective policy tools for limiting greenhouse gas emissions."[1]

I oppose this for two reasons. First, The lead is supposed to be an introduction to an article and shouldn't need to cite statistics and quote studies. Second, this comes to the conclusion that lower fuel taxes are bad policy. Not everyone agree with that. While it may be appropriate to discuss the potential effects of lower fuel taxes on the environment later in the article, this most certainly should not be done in the opening paragraphs. See Wikipedia:How to create and manage a good lead section--Rusf10 (talk) 17:03, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

(1) It is perfectly reasonable to summarize global trends in fuel taxes in the lede given that the bulk of the article is about the state of fuel taxes in different countries. (2) It is also perfectly reasonable to summarize the wide belief (e.g. the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the International Energy Agency, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank) that gas taxes are one of the most cost-effective means to limit greenhouse gas emissions. (3) You are furthermore not only removing the text that I added to the lede, but any and all text that I added to this article. The only reason you are here (a page of no previous interest to you) is because you're following me around as you're upset that I wouldn't let your incorrect and poorly sourced edits on a different article stand. So you're now here reverting my edits wholesale. (4) If you had a genuine concern for inferences that fuel taxes are good or bad, you would also delete "Fuel taxes are often considered regressive taxes" from the lede (a sentence that I think is perfectly reasonable - just like mine, it's reliably sourced and accurate). You didn't, because your self-professed rationale for deleting content is not genuine. Snooganssnoogans (talk) 17:17, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
1. Stats like this belong in some other part of the article. 2. The sentence "Sometimes, the fuel tax is used as an ecotax, to promote ecological sustainability" is already there, making this point redundant. 3. Wrong! You're obviously the one who's upset. 4. See #2--Rusf10 (talk) 00:12, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
(1) Stats like those summarize the state of fuel taxes in the world, and perfectly reflect the content of the article (though I highly doubt you've even read anything in this article beyond mass-reverting whatever I wrote). (2) Not redundant at all. There's a difference between the intention behind the tax and the wide belief by multiple credible int orgs that this is one of the most cost-effective policies to limit greenhouse gases. (3) Do you deny that you followed me to this page? (4) Your self-professed rationale for deleting the content was "this comes to the conclusion that lower fuel taxes are bad policy", yet you were perfectly fine with keeping a sentence stating [accurately and reliably sourced] that gas taxes are regressive, which suggests that gas taxes are bad as much as the [accurately and reliably source] statement that gas taxes are a cost-effective way to battle climate change suggests that it's good policy. Do you no longer believe that the lede shouldn't make accurate and reliably sourced implications as to the pros and cons of policies? Snooganssnoogans (talk) 00:25, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
I'm not going to keep repeating myself like a broken record as you're doing right now. Gas taxes are regressive is a fact, not an opinion. You should read the regressive tax article because you obviously don't know what that means. A regressive tax (such as the fuel tax) is one that disproportionately effects lower-income individuals as opposed a progressive tax (ie. federal income tax) which puts a larger burden on high-income individuals.--Rusf10 (talk) 01:17, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
Your reading comprehension is awful. I clearly say that the statement "Fuel taxes are often considered regressive taxes" is accurate and reliably sourced. I'm not contesting the statement. In the exact same way, fuel taxes are widely considered one of the most cost-effective ways of limiting greenhouse gas emissions. Your claim that one is a fact and the other is not is also wrong. There are plenty of academics who contest that fuel taxes are regressive (see Poterba: http://www.nber.org/chapters/c11271.pdf). Snooganssnoogans (talk) 01:57, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
This is really poor argument. This guy is looking at gas as a percentage of total expenditures when excluding housing and automotive costs. That's not a fair comparison, everyone knows that rich people spend more on these things, they live in nicer houses and drive more expensive cars (and in some cases more than one car). When gas goes up a dollar a gallon, its not that big of a deal for the rich guy, but for the guy that can barely make his rent and car payments it is.--Rusf10 (talk) 16:34, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
We use reliable sources on Wikipedia. Studies published in peer-reviewed publications cited +300 times > whatever ideas you and me have about the subject. Snooganssnoogans (talk) 16:44, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
Just because some professor at a university wrote something doesn't make it the word of god. This elitist attitude makes me sick. And just because someone works at a university and calls themselves an academic does not mean they are more intelligent and should be trusted more than everyone else. And peer-reviewed means nothing to me because there is absolutely no diversity in thought at American colleges these days. Over 90% of professors are liberal and I believe the other 10% are communists. But seriously though, don't take my word for it, you can read this Washington Post (one of your reliable sources) article The dramatic shift among college professors that’s hurting students’ education. Bottom line, I don't care that this guy is an MIT professor, he's manipulating statistics to support his preconceived conclusion.--Rusf10 (talk) 08:43, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
Your anti-intellectualism is cute, but completely inconsistent with Wikipedia's policy for inclusion. By the way, nothing says open-minded more than baselessly claiming that any and all research that conflicts with your preconceived views with must be because "he's manipulating statistics to support his preconceived conclusion". Snooganssnoogans (talk) 11:21, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
I already tore this guy's argument apart, he's comparing apples to oranges. And you can't defend it with anything other than it's a "peer-reviewed publication" so the guy who wrote it must be smarter than everyone else. That's really pathetic.--Rusf10 (talk) 16:34, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
I'm not going to debate research with you. This is not a forum.[4] Snooganssnoogans (talk) 17:24, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
I believe that the lead should summarise the body of the article, and not contain information not developed elsewhere in the article (see WP:LEAD). As a summary therefore, the lead would generally not require many, if any, references to be cited - as they would be in the main body, supporting the data there. Fact can be asserted in Wikipedia's voice (e.g. "fuel tax is a regressive tax"), whereas opinion needs to be attributed (whose opinion is it) (e.g. "xxx believes that fuel tax is an efficient way to...") and balanced in an NPOV way with any counter opinions (e.g. "yyy argue that fuel tax adversely affects..."). So in this article we probably need this information delegated to a section of its own, where the points can be developed, attributed and referenced and a short NPOV summary of that section can then be added to the lead. -- de Facto (talk). 07:34, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
My point exactly. Remove this from the lead and find an appropriate place to put it elsewhere.--Rusf10 (talk) 08:43, 14 January 2017 (UTC)

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  1. ^ Ross, Michael L.; Hazlett, Chad; Mahdavi, Paasha. "Global progress and backsliding on gasoline taxes and subsidies". Nature Energy. 2 (1). doi:10.1038/nenergy.2016.201.