Natural Capital Accounting in Action: Energy accounts inform decisions about carbon tax in South Africa
South Africa’s economy relies heavily on coal and the country is a big emitter of carbon dioxide. As part of a strategy to reduce emissions, the government considered introducing a carbon tax but needed reliable information to assess the social and economic impacts. Data from the South African energy accounts informed both the assessment of which economic sectors would be most affected and the economic modeling to establish the tax level needed to reach the emissions targets. The energy accounts helped to show that the economic impact of the tax would be relatively small. A carbon tax was outlined in the budget in 2012 and is likely to be introduced in 2016.