This could be the dominant discussion in Canada. Do you think it will have even a slight change on the earth's climate, or do you believe it's symbolism. Perhaps some people think it's a revenue policy and not an environmental one.
Canada's carbon tax is just plain stupid. It costs too much and does too little.
Carbon taxation was originally based on a right-wing, free-market theory. The simple idea, to paraphrase Milton Friedman, is that if you tax something, you get less of it. It could elegantly allow the markets to find the most efficient ways to reduce carbon without the need for government regulations. Many respectable conservative-minded people bought into this theory. Let’s look at the reality in practice.
Theoretically, carbon prices are supposed to reduce regulation. However, in every jurisdiction where carbon pricing has been implemented, it doesn’t reduce regulation — it increases it. Carbon-pricing schemes in Europe, California and Canada are all very complicated. The Canadian government just recently introduced 500 new pages of legislation and regulation.
Another problem is carbon leakage, which occurs when production and investment simply move to jurisdictions without a carbon tax. In this case, emissions are simply displaced in whole or in part.
Carbon leakage is worse than you think, as it can actually increase global emissions. Take the case of Canadian aluminum, which produces only two tonnes of carbon per tonne, versus American aluminum at 11 tonnes of carbon per tonne. In practice, no one should have to explain to an aluminum worker that they lost their job because “after all, we all need to do our part,” only to have global emissions increase 550 per cent as a result. (To generalize this example, Canada’s economy is 70 per cent reliant on trade, and 80 per cent of our trade is with the United States, which has not imposed a carbon tax.)
The other problem we find in practice: Demand for hydrocarbons is very inelastic. People will pay what it takes to heat their homes and get to work. The Conference Board of Canada found that even a $200/tonne carbon tax would only reduce 12 megatonnes of Canadian emissions before carbon leakage. Global carbon would likely only be reduced by 70 per cent of this amount. Meanwhile, just one large LNG plant could achieve more than that by replacing coal in China with natural gas.
Canada has a global comparative advantage in carbon in many industries because of our high environmental standards. A global approach to capitalizing on Canada’s environmental advantage would yield a double dividend of a stronger economy and a cleaner global environment. Carbon pricing, on the other hand, may create a green paradox — policies meant to reduce emissions that not only eliminate some people’s jobs, but increase global emissions. https://business.financialpost.com/opin ... re-idiotic
Trudeau's carbon tax is the worst of all worlds: kills jobs, artificially raises the cost of living, lowers investment and does nothing to reduce emissions.