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Ian W.H. Parry, Mr. Simon Black, Danielle N Minnett, Mr. Victor Mylonas, and Nate Vernon
Limiting global warming to 1.5 to 2°C above preindustrial levels requires rapid cuts in greenhouse gas emissions. This includes methane, which has an outsized impact on temperatures. To date, 125 countries have pledged to cut global methane emissions by 30 percent by 2030. This Note provides background on methane emission sources, presents practical fiscal policy options to cut emissions, and assesses impacts. Putting a price on methane, ideally through a fee, would reduce emissions efficiently, and can be administratively straightforward for extractives industries and, in some cases, agriculture. Policies could also include revenue-neutral ‘feebates’ that use fees on dirtier polluters to subsidize cleaner producers. A $70 methane fee among large economies would align 2030 emissions with 2oC. Most cuts would be in extractives and abatement costs would be equivalent to just 0.1 percent of GDP. Costs are larger in certain developing countries, implying climate finance could be a key element of a global agreement on a minimum methane price.
Mr. Bjoern Rother, Mr. Sebastian Sosa, Mr. Daehaeng Kim, Mr. Lukas P Kohler, Ms. Gaelle Pierre, Naoya Kato, Majdi Debbich, Chiara Castrovillari, Khamza Sharifzoda, Ms. Elizabeth Van Heuvelen, Fabiana Machado, Celine Thevenot, Ms. Pritha Mitra, and Dominique Fayad
Russia’s war in Ukraine has exacerbated food insecurity that had already been on the rise for half a decade. Low-income countries are affected the most. This note suggests that the food and fertilizer price shock would add $9 billion in 2022 and 2023 to the import bills of the 48 most affected countries. The budgetary cost of protecting vulnerable households in these countries amounts to $5–7 billion. Strong and timely action on a global scale is needed to support vulnerable households through international humanitarian assistance and domestic fiscal measures; to maintain open trade; to enhance food production and distribution; and to invest in climate-resilient agriculture. The IMF has been stepping up its engagement to help tackle the global food crisis, working closely with partners, by providing policy advice, capacity building and financing. IMF financing is a third line of defense in meeting external financing needs associated with the global food shock, which should ideally be covered by donor grants and concessional borrowing from MDBs. A new food shock window under the emergency financing instruments is expected to be approved soon to further strengthen its lending response to the food crisis.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

On behalf of the Estonian authorities, we would like to thank staff for the candid and constructive policy discussions during the Article IV mission held in May. The authorities appreciate staff’s analysis on economic developments and policy recommendations.

Mr. Thomas Baunsgaard and Nate Vernon
The surge in fossil fuel prices in 2022 has generated substantial windfall profits in the energy sector. Policymakers in many countries are exploring policies to tax part of these profits. Excess profits can be taxed by tax instruments targeted at economic rents that avoid discouraging investment and limit any impact on further price increases. Many fossil fuel producing countries already have an adequate rent-capturing fiscal instrument in place. Others may consider introducing a permanent tax on windfall profits from fossil fuel extraction but should be more cautious about temporary and possibly poorly designed windfall profit taxes. Given the importance of encouraging decarbonatization of energy generation, it seems counter-intuitive to introduce exceptional tax measures on renewable electricity generation.