A better future is not a world away, but the richest polluters must pay.

We want a world of possibility, not poverty. A more equal world where any of us vulnerable to the climate crisis have the resources to survive extreme weather, and the opportunity to build sustainable futures for generations to come.

Climate change is doing irreversible harm to people and our planet. Not only is it ruining the lives of the poorest and most marginalized people, but these same people – who have contributed least to causing this crisis – are paying the highest price for its impact.

The biggest polluters, who are raking in record profits and amassing huge fortunes, must pay for the climate crisis they created and the cost of building a fairer future.

Dear World Leaders,

People everywhere are suffering from the climate crisis, while the biggest polluters become even more wealthy. It is only fair to hold these polluters to account for the damage they are causing.

We ask you to tax the richest polluters and use that money to support those communities most impacted by the climate crisis and to cover the costs of building a fairer future.

Sincerely,

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Fossil fuel corporations are responsible for 70% of global industrial emissions and have been making record profits over the last few years. Meanwhile billionaires are generating a million times more emissions through their investments than the average person.

A wealth tax on the richest 1%, with a pollution top-up:

Governments should tax wealth to dramatically reduce the cumulative emissions of the richest and raise billions of dollars that can be used to help countries cope with the brutal impacts of climate breakdown and the losses and damages incurred.

For example, an annual wealth tax of up to 5 percent on the world’s multi-millionaires and billionaires could raise $1.7 trillion a year.

In addition, steep rates of top-up taxation should be implemented on wealth generated from polluting industries. Such a tax has been proposed by economists Thomas Piketty and Lucas Chancel, who calculate that, globally, an additional tax rate of 10% on polluting assets owned by billionaires could raise at least $100bn a year and would also help to discourage investors from putting their money into polluting industries.

Tax or outright ban the planet-wrecking luxuries of the super-rich:

Governments should heavily tax, or in some cases simply ban, the climate-wrecking purchases of the ultra- wealthy including mega yachts, private jets, and space tourism.

Taxing fossil fuel corporations:

Governments should create a permanent tax of up to 90% on the excess profits of fossil fuel companies and other polluting corporations. The tax should kick in when profits are in excess of 10% average, and also work in combination with removing any subsidies for fossil fuel production.

BRIEFING PAPER

Tightening the Net: Net zero climate targets – implications for land and food equity

BRIEFING PAPER

Footing the Bill: Fair finance for loss and damage in an era of escalating climate impacts

BRIEFING NOTE

Carbon Billionaires: The investment emissions of the world’s richest people

RESEARCH REPORT

Towards a Just Energy Transition: Implications for communities in lower- and middle-income countries

This page was produced with the financial support of the European Union. The contents of this page are the sole responsibility of Oxfam International and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.