Tax extreme wealth to pay for the climate-related damage to the poorest, a group of more than 100 leading economists have urged.
A wealth tax on the fortunes of the world’s richest people would raise trillions of dollars that could be spent on helping poorer countries shift their economies to a low-carbon footing, and on “loss and damage”, the rescue and rehabilitation of countries stricken by climate disaster.
Mark Paul, of Rutgers University, and a signatory of the letter, which was spearheaded by the campaigning group Oil Change International, said rich countries were not facing up to their responsibilities.
“Global north leaders saying they can’t afford to address global crises is the oldest excuse in the book, and simply put, a lie. What’s truly unaffordable is the status quo. The truth is there is no shortage of public money that can be dedicated to the cause, only a lack of political will – but that must change.”
In the letter, the economists also call for an end to harmful subsidies of fossil fuels, and the forgiveness of debts for some of the poorest countries.