B.C. carbon tax gets international attention

Premier Christy Clark invited to World Bank meeting where finance ministers seek strategies for Paris climate talks

Premier Christy Clark

Premier Christy Clark met Friday with the finance ministers of China, India, the U.S. and other G20 countries to tell them about the success of B.C.’s carbon tax on fuels.

Clark said in a phone interview from Washington D.C. she was invited there by the World Bank, whose president Jim Yong Kim co-chaired the meeting along with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Countries around the world are looking for greenhouse gas reduction strategies before the next UN climate conference in Paris next December, and Clark said there was keen interest in B.C.’s experience.

B.C.’s carbon tax was introduced in 2008, and is currently set at $30 per tonne of carbon dioxide emissions. That translates to about seven cents a litre on gasoline and similar taxes on coal, natural gas and other fuels.

“We’ve created one of the broadest-based carbon taxes in the world and used 100 per cent of the tax to reduce corporate, small business, and individual income taxes, and that’s resulted in robust economic growth compared to the rest of the country,” Clark said.

Clark put a five-year freeze on the carbon tax after winning the B.C. Liberal leadership, and the government has wound up its carbon offset purchasing office and withdrawn from a group of U.S. states working on a regional carbon trading plan.

Clark said B.C. will soon appoint a panel of “thought leaders” to see where the province can make further gains in greenhouse gas reduction. One of those leaders who is unlikely to be included is Green Party MLA Andrew Weaver, who has criticized Clark for reversing climate policy progress made under former premier Gordon Campbell.

Weaver and NDP leader John Horgan say the province’s decision to ease emissions rules for liquefied natural gas production is a big step backward.

The Green Party has campaigned to increase the carbon tax to $50 a tonne immediately, and keep raising it to promote alternatives to carbon fuels. The NDP has called for carbon tax revenues to be directed to transit and building improvements instead of returning it as tax cuts.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Oak Bay chief puts an end to dad jokes on police Twitter

No more jokes on Oak Bay Police Twitter account

HMCS Victoria popping up as training sessions underway

MARPAC says plume of smoke normal for recharging submarine

Thieves harvest from 11 unlocked cars in Oak bay

Looting unlocked cars called ‘farming,’ says deputy chief

Sidney part of a region that suffers ‘chronic shortage’ of daycare spaces

Consultants find that Sidney needs 233 new spaces to meet the current demand for daycare

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

Majority of Canadians support wearing masks during COVID-19, oppose protests: poll

Nearly 90 per cent felt wearing a mask was a civic duty because it protects others from COVID-19

Paper towel in short supply as people stay home, clean more, industry leader says

While toilet paper consumption has returned to normal levels, paper towel sales continue to outpace pre-COVID levels

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

COVID-19 liquor, music rules extended with fines

‘Nightclubs must cease operating as nightclubs’

Carole James heads ‘caretaker’ B.C. government

James is among 15 MLAs retiring at the end of their current term

Reader’s Lens

Readers share their photos

Most Read