The US press has made a lot out of Sarkozy's announcement of a carbon tax. As one blogger put it,
By applying a carbon tax to home heating fuels and transportation fuels, France can do what virtually no one else has done: price carbon comprehensively across the economy.
"Virtually" meaning that Germany already did it by implementing an annually increasing tax on fossil fuels from 2000-2003, which directly affected prices at the pump, the price of retail electricity, heating oil prices, etc. I interviewed the man behind the nonprofit, of which I was a member, for Alternet back in 2003.
So happy birthday, Federal Republic! May France not be the only country to copy your good ideas.