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Old 10-20-2014, 09:44 AM
 
7,281 posts, read 8,835,592 times
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The means to determine how much a car sends into the atmosphere already exists. The amount s known at the time a car is manufactured and then over time with things like smog tests and so on. Yet, when one car has a higher emission rate than another, there is no peanlty to those who own such a car.

There is no incentive for lower income earners to buy "cleaner" cars like EVs because:

1. They can't afford the car the start with. (the trickle down from expensive EVs is a myth)
2. The tax credits are unavailable to them because of the above.

Tax per mile, increased fuel taxes and such things don't work to do anything but extract revenue, they do not solve any problems except lining certain pockets with money.

A pollution tax on vehicles would not impact low wage earners because the mechanisms already exist to let them avoid paying taxes. In many states, if your car fails a smog check and it can't be repaired within the financial means of the owner, the state gives them money to retire the car. Also, low wage earners can avoid paying income taxes so the way to limit that adverse effect exists.

Higher wage earners though, would be motivate to move to EVs when they otherwise might not do so. If they chose not to, the added revenue streams could be used to provide assistance to low wage earners to buy EVs. Now you are solving a problem. It is the large number of cars driven by low wage earners that contribute the most to pollution. It isn't practical to just give them a large enough tax credit so they can afford an EV and even the most optimistic projections don't show low wage earners being able to afford the so called "affordable" EVs because a $30,000 car is not something a low wage earner can afford.

The whole idea that EVs are going to trickle down is fine until you figure out what "trickle down" means. Decades, not years.

So why not a pollution tax? It helps by providing much larger credits to low wage earners so that the segment of the population contributing the most pollution via driving cars will be able to move to EVs.
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Old 10-20-2014, 10:01 AM
 
1,176 posts, read 2,031,784 times
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Why isn't there a tax credit for the BMW 328d which gets pretty impressive punch out of its diesel engine and about 45 mpg on the highway (about the same as a Prius) yet doesn't have a giant battery that will have to be done away with at the end of the vehicle's life?

Is the assumption that the taxing authorities inherently make sense?
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:03 PM
 
7,281 posts, read 8,835,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleonidas View Post
Why isn't there a tax credit for the BMW 328d which gets pretty impressive punch out of its diesel engine and about 45 mpg on the highway (about the same as a Prius) yet doesn't have a giant battery that will have to be done away with at the end of the vehicle's life?

Is the assumption that the taxing authorities inherently make sense?
Quite the contrary, rarely do the taxing authorities make sense. Sometimes the taxes make sense, it is what is done with them that often does not.

As you seem to already know, the particulates can be scrubbed from diesel exhaust making it a better fuel in many cases than gasoline.

There are hidden pollution concerns in EV vehicle operation that rarely gets any debate or if there is, dismissed as being inconsequential, it depends on the perspective even if there is only one reality.

Any time EVs are discussed and the topic of how they are charged comes up, renewable energy is often the point brought up. The EV driver has only limited choice on where the electricity that is used to charge the EV comes from. In some areas, the driver would have a choice for a home charger and be able to choose from the common public utility, hybrid renewable/fossil combo or clean electric- renewable sources. Of course, the cost of the renewable is higher than the other choices which is strange by itself since the claim is that renewable energy is as cost efficient as fossil fuels and that roof-top solar feeds into the grid for nearly nothing and resold at much higher prices than that paid to the producer (homeowner).

The pollution totals for cars are known or can be calculated from information already known. For regular crs, smog checks as are currently being done can be used to determine if the pollution levels are within anticipated thresholds and if not, the tax could be adjusted accordingly. For EVs, it is easy too going back to the first part about determining how much each car would contribute to pollution.

If there are any concerns about how complex such a system would be, I'd point out the current tax and revenue codes of the IRS and the many state tax system as an example that when it comes to money, it could be done.

Whether it should be done is the question. Right now, those buying very high prices EVs get pretty much a free ride even though they are the best able to afford some financial contribution to solving the problem. Instead, the burden falls to everyone else. That speaks more of a luxury than a contribution to making the environment a better system.

The facts regarding wealth and so on prove that trickle down doesn't really work that well if the tax system itself is part of the barrier to upward movement by lower income earners to higher incomes.

It appears and is probably true that the technologies used to make diesel a less polluting fuel source could trickle down (and has) to cars far more affordable than most Evs. In that respect, the idea that high end EVs are being used to trickle down their technologies to "affordable" EV is more a ruse than anything else. There is no reason the technology in a $100,000+ EV can't be put into one costing $20,000.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:31 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,523 posts, read 54,080,580 times
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That is already being done through the EPA's Gas Guzzler tax. I suppose the theory is that the more fuel a car uses the more it pollutes if the pollution control systems are all the same.

I don't know about your state, but here there is no inspection that measures emissions. They simply read the computer codes to look for anomolies with the emissions system. They do not measure the actual particulates. Even if the car sends out a lot of smog it will pass if there are no codes. Likewise, there could be a failure due to a code that does not actually result in more smog. The state inspection agency is trusting the OBD system because the federal government has made it standard for all cars sold in the country.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:45 PM
 
39,203 posts, read 40,587,898 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hemlock140 View Post
I don't know about your state, but here there is no inspection that measures emissions. They simply read the computer codes to look for anomolies with the emissions system. They do not measure the actual particulates. Even if the car sends out a lot of smog it will pass if there are no codes. Likewise, there could be a failure due to a code that does not actually result in more smog. The state inspection agency is trusting the OBD system because the federal government has made it standard for all cars sold in the country.
The inspection here in PA for most counties consists of checking your gas cap. About $35 per year for emissions test. If you fail you need a new gas cap which cost about $5.

Last edited by thecoalman; 10-20-2014 at 01:07 PM..
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:25 PM
 
Location: Volcano
12,971 posts, read 23,542,360 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack Knife View Post
There is no incentive for lower income earners to buy "cleaner" cars like EVs because:

1. They can't afford the car the start with. (the trickle down from expensive EVs is a myth)
2. The tax credits are unavailable to them because of the above.
Yayayyy, it's another straw man argument! The only reference to a "trickle down from expensive EVs" is here, in this post.

Although EVs have been around in small numbers throughout the last 100 years, the real action only started a couple of years ago, and so far EVs are holding their values on the used market better than ICEs, and are projected to have longer service lives, so there likely isn't going to be much "trickle down," if by that you mean cheap car prices in the EV segment, for a couple of decades.

Quote:
Tax per mile, increased fuel taxes and such things don't work to do anything but extract revenue, they do not solve any problems except lining certain pockets with money.
Taxes don't line "certain pockets". Another straw man.

Quote:
A pollution tax on vehicles would not impact low wage earners because the mechanisms already exist to let them avoid paying taxes.
Another straw man. Auto fees are tied to registration, not income tax.

Quote:
In many states, if your car fails a smog check and it can't be repaired within the financial means of the owner, the state gives them money to retire the car.
Many? As far as I can see, in most states those programs ended 5 years ago. California still offers $1,000 to retire a car that can't pass a smog test. Any others?

Quote:
It is the large number of cars driven by low wage earners that contribute the most to pollution. It isn't practical to just give them a large enough tax credit so they can afford an EV and even the most optimistic projections don't show low wage earners being able to afford the so called "affordable" EVs because a $30,000 car is not something a low wage earner can afford.
Time to update your quote file... though why you are talking about low wage earners buying new cars is beyond me... current new pricing...

Smart Fortwo Electric.... $24,000
Mitsubishi i-MiEV...... $21,000
Nissan Leaf..... $28,000 ..... current lease program at $199/mo

Quote:
The whole idea that EVs are going to trickle down is fine until you figure out what "trickle down" means. Decades, not years.
Since you made this up, why don't you explain what you mean by it?

Quote:
So why not a pollution tax? It helps by providing much larger credits to low wage earners so that the segment of the population contributing the most pollution via driving cars will be able to move to EVs.
Passing it into law would be problematic. Administration would be a nightmare. Uniform smog test rules with strict guidelines for getting cars off the road that can't pass would be simpler and easier to accomplish, and probably more effective.

I'm rather fond of the way they deal with this in Holland. If you are polluting on a failed smog test as you drive and police catch you, they can confiscate the car on the spot and crush it.
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:43 PM
 
1,937 posts, read 1,929,239 times
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We have pollution taxes over here on cars and subsidies on EVs so as a consequence we have amongst the highest percentage of EVs of all countries. Unfortunately, the pollution taxes have just become a necessary tax revenue for the government so they slowly start to tax EVs as well as cars are getting cleaner. What used to be a good idea initially: tax cars on their amount of pollution has become something like a general luxury tax on cars.
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Old 10-20-2014, 03:11 PM
 
11,780 posts, read 8,564,864 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OpenD View Post

Passing it into law would be problematic. Administration would be a nightmare. Uniform smog test rules with strict guidelines for getting cars off the road that can't pass would be simpler and easier to accomplish, and probably more effective.

I'm rather fond of the way they deal with this in Holland. If you are polluting on a failed smog test as you drive and police catch you, they can confiscate the car on the spot and crush it.
I this this is probably the most accurate answer there is Mack. The problem with a pollution tax is at least two fold. First, Americans are generally anti tax (outside of the People's Republic of California), so passing a tax on cars won't pass Congress. Second, the federal government has a limited set of powers, but I suppose they could pass a pollution tax on cars since interstate commerce is involved, but I'm not sure. Third, increasing taxes does slow down the economy and the most polluting cars tned to have industial or commercial applications. Fourth, a real pollution tax would have to be a carbon tax, but that is problematic in the design and the government is rarely effective in what they do when it comes to social problems - which is what pollution is.

Now, in theory, people should pay the true cost of pollution, but it is just inherently difficult to assess the true cost. What a few companies are doing is allowing you to pay them to offset your carbon footprint. For example, UPS allows you to offset the carbon footprint of shipping a package through them (and strangely do not charge more for that feature.

Some electric companies let you pay them to offset a certain tonnage of Co2 as well and that probably makes the most sense, but I don't know how you can really translate that into a pollution tax or how accurate/effective carbon offsets actually are. I suppose what you could do is have the dealer charge people a carbon tax or fee for carbon offset, but while the fee would be low based on 1 year's use it would become expensive if you charge them for the lifetime carbon impact. Then you run into the problem of charging people for carbon that they haven't even used yet, so a carbon tax would probably be best assessed by the local municipality, which is still inefficient because we are now dealing with the government again.

In essence, although not perfect, gas taxes do act as a form of pollution tax. If my car gets 17 miles/gallon and yours gets 45 I will be paying more gas taxes even though I won't be using or causing more damage to the road more than you.
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Old 10-20-2014, 05:13 PM
 
7,281 posts, read 8,835,592 times
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Smog checks are already a fact in some states. There is already a retirement program with money being paid to those that retire their smog cars. None of this is new and it has already been implemented, the systems exist to do it in all states.

Gas taxes only address one problem and then not every well. Gas taxes were designed to raise revenue, not care for the environment.

Paying to offset carbon footprints is a scam. That only provides the means for those that want and can afford to to avoid changing their consumption of materials and resources that create pollution. Carbon credits or whatever fancy name is used to name is all the same scam.

We can figure out a way to allow for offsetting carbon footprints but then say we can't figure out how to assess a tax on pollution? Don't look now, we just did.

If the means to calculate a carbon footprint offset exists, then either it is accurate or it isn't. It isn't accurate so then what purpose does it serve? If one person offsets their carbon footprint, the only thing that happens is that someone else has more to play with. Carbon footprint offset, carbon credits, the names are different the scam is the same.

If we can't determine how much pollution a vehicle will produce and how much was created in it's manufacture, then how can the EV makers put out claims about how little they generate in manufacturing compared to other car manufacturing? Perhaps we can agree that regardless of what they make, EV or ICE cars, they are all FOS?
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Old 10-20-2014, 05:19 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,688,108 times
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the university of Michigan did a government funded study some years ago. basically they found that 90% of pollution from vehicles were done by 10% older cars with faults. The average to fix was not that high. that is when government used this to push smog testing. Trouble was in many states low income were exempted from having to pass the test. Haven;t keep yup with it lately.
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