Charging the Use of Global Commons

Special Report 2002
WBGU, Berlin, © 2002
48 p. (download as pdf, 1.1 MB), 7 tables, ISBN 3-9807589-8-2

Global common resources like international airspace and the high seas are in danger of overexploitation because the users need not bear the full social costs of their actions. The CO2-emissions of international aviation and of shipping are not subject to the quantitative reduction obligations of the Kyoto Protocol. Imposing user charges can close this regulatory gap and induce environment-related incentive effects to reduce environmental damage. Moreover, additional financial resources are generated, which should be earmarked for the protection and conservation of global common goods.
      In this special report, the Council makes recommendations for a politically viable implementation of the concept of global user charges for three specific areas of application:
—   Charges on the use of airspace by aviation,
—   Charges on the use of the oceans by shipping,
—   Payments for non utilisation obligations.
      The Council recommends to deploy the revenues of global user charges as truly additional financial resources for global sustainability policy.

Summary (= Policy Paper 2)
A summary for policymakers has been published under the same title as Policy Paper 2.

Commissioned Expert's Studies
For this Special Report, the Council has commissioned two expert's studies, which are available for download:

  • ISL: Nutzung der Hohen See als Transportweg – Möglichkeiten zur Erhebung von Entgelten. (524 KB, 96 S.)
  • RUFIS: Nutzungsentgelte als Bestandteil der Finanzierung globaler Umweltpolitik. Das Fallbesipiel Meereschutzpolitik. (376 KB, 41 S.)

Please find a selection of our most recent reports on our main page.

Order recent publications free of charge.