RE: Emissions, Nov. 1
I mostly agree with Mr. Lee, particularly our urgency to act if we want a livable planet. The latest IPCC report states we only have 12 years, at most, to effect significant changes! Every tool at our disposal is needed to reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, and according to economists, and Nobel laureates, the most efficient and least costly tool is the carbon tax.
Mr. Lee is also correct, that a tax of $20 per ton of CO2 won’t do much, but it’s not politically possible to start at $100/ton. Instead, the price has to be predictably ramped up to give people and industry time to adapt. If everyone knows the price is increasing, they will look at buying more fuel efficient cars, or improving their home insulation, or using more public transportation. Industries will also plan for more efficient equipment and processes.
A steadily increasing carbon tax levels the playing field for renewable energy by encouraging new development and more jobs in that field – as happened in BC. It encourages entrepreneurs to develop small modular thorium nuclear reactors, hydrogen powered vehicles and cheaper, longer range electric vehicles.
When governments return the money collected to taxpayers, lower income families will receive a rebate greater than what they paid, making it socially just. Returning the tax also allows the market place to decide winners and losers, as governments are notoriously bad at that.
It was the perfect Conservative policy – but the Liberals stole the ball and are running with it!