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Get measured on your commute mode, on foot, bike, car, train, .... and get back tax incentives (or not) depending on GHG emission!



With ubiquitous sensors and IoT interconnectivity, your transportation will be measurable in real-time, especially on what mode you are actually using. 

Depending on that you'll get taxed or get tax incentives. 

In order to scale the use of GHG-friendly transportation modes (like walking, bike riding, using electric-powered transportation) companies will be "punished" as they pay these taxes of their employees (meaning a commute by car over 100 km one-way will directly fall back on the employer as an expenditure in form of tax). 

Companies and urban planners will be by this incentivized to production at a more local level, and at the same time increase the demand for GHG-friendly transportation use. 

Is this proposal for a practice or a project?


What actions do you propose?

As this proposal has come to mind close to the deadline of the contest the complete process has not been laid out in detail. 

Action will involve state regulators as well as federal tax ministries and EU government in first proposals.

Possible collaborating cities or regions could be Kopenhagen (Denmark), Amsterdam (Netherlands), Freiburg (Germany).

With COP23 taking place in Bonn (Germany) later this year there is also an opportunity window to bring out the proposal into this policy makers rounds and raise awareness. 

Who will take these actions?

  • Research institutes that are doing action research in the field of tackling climate change/ reducing GHG-emissions (especially CO2), exponential technologies and social/cultural behavior of citizens at scale
  • Companies working on sensors for IoT use cases eager to expand into new market segments (e.g. mobility)
  • Cities, regions, and countries that are seeking new innovative forms to promote GHG-neutral mobility 
  • Ministries of Environmental Affairs (state and provincial level)

Where will these actions be taken?

  1. Activities will start as research projects, largely in an open-innovation and collective collaboration approach
  2. Once cities or regions are open to join in the projects will extend into real-life innovation lab environments with citizens who are willing to be testers of the approach and technology
  3. The proposal can also be embedded in already running projects (e.g. Deutsche Bahn AG railway station Berlin-Südkreuz)
  4. As progress of the proposal can be constantly monitored, and adjusted in real-time a "smooth" scaling up and implementation is doable in a rather short time frame

In addition, specify the country or countries where these actions will be taken.


Country 2


Country 3


Country 4

No country selected

Country 5

No country selected


What impact will these actions have on greenhouse gas emissions and/or adapting to climate change?

There have been done no calculation on this part at this moment. 

The decrease of GHG-gas shall be significant, not to mention the additional impact on other activities led by business and policy makers that will eventually emerge out of this incentive system proposal.

What are other key benefits?

  1. the increase of health (as people walk and bike
  2. the effect of 1. will be higher as companies will place future facilities and offices closer to where people live (so commuting by bike or public transport becomes more convenient)
  3.  the policy will have a direct impact on the creation of decentralized coworking places which will house also office space of established companies
  4. the incentivized use of "green" transportation use will enable people to easier meet and get in contact (rather than being stuck in their cars)
  5. implementation in gamification processes ("Who is producing the lesser CO2, and what is the secret?")
  6. a "smooth shift" away from internal combustion engine powered commuting mode will be facilitated by a "pulling" incentive


What are the proposal’s projected costs?

As laid out earlier, further action research shall be undertaken and small model projects shall go for public funding grants within the cleantech field. 


Not applicable at the moment 

About the author(s)

Ralf Lippold - economist and lean thinker, making solutions to challenging complex problems reality through rethinking the current status-quo, using existing resources in new innovative ways. 

Related Proposals


  • Elon Musk's talk at "Wirtschaft für Morgen" (from min 9:20 onwards) (Economy for Tomorrow) in 2015, where he mentioned the idea of putting up a "carbon tax" is a main driver behind the proposal idea