On CTV’s Question Period, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna repeatedly failed to answer one simple question from host Evan Solomon: Just how does the Prime Minister plan on reaching his 2030 greenhouse gas emission reduction target?
McKenna responded that she had “no time” for Canadians who oppose Trudeau’s carbon pricing scheme, nor for politicians who simply play cynical games surrounding the issue of climate change.
Last week, in environment committee hearings, she failed to answer another basic question posed by Tory MP Robert Sopuck.
This time: How much will Trudeau’s $50 per tonne national carbon price reduce Canada’s emissions?
I suspect the reason the Environment Minister has continually dodged the question is that she either does not know, or she understands that it will have near to no effect on Canada’s actual carbon footprint.
As of 2013, Canada was responsible for a mere 1.6% of global greenhouse emissions, whereas the main perpetrators in China and the United States, were responsible for 25.9% and 13.6% respectively. In the case of the former, the percentage change for their national emissions, from 2005 to 2013, rose an astounding 61.5%. While for Canada, it rose incrementally at 4.2%.
Despite sharp increases in China’s carbon footprint, no attempt has been made to adopt any meaningful carbon-reductionist policies. And to that, we wonder why. Why hasn’t China adopted a proposal similar to that of McKenna and co.?
Where is their carbon tax?
You see, for the carbon tax to work it needs to be expensive enough to force the hands of its targeted audience, particularly, in changing how they act on a day-to-day basis.
The problem with this is that a lot of the goods which the Carbon Tax effects are near-necessities for large sections of the population and unsurprisingly, heavy taxes will be required to alter their choices.
So why do governments tend to lean towards more environmentally-conscious policies?
They promise a tax that they claim will decrease our carbon footprint, without making it expensive enough to anger voters, or actually influence consumer decisions.
Still a little unconvinced?
The government’s own experts have advised McKenna that to reach Trudeau’s emission target would require, in their estimate, a $100 per tonne carbon price by 2020. This is double the current price set by the Federal government.
So if it won’t really reduce our carbon footprint, what will it do?
Well, according to Kevin O’Leary and the CEO of Bank of Montreal, capital is already leaving our country at record levels due to a lack of competitive policy as our American neighbor rapidly cuts taxes.
While capital leaves and our economy contracts, the government will need to find a new source of revenue.
This is where this not so revenue-neutral carbon tax comes into play.
The Liberals will be able to use it as a tool to balance the budget, effectively a new tax on all Canadians, as the economy continues to slow down as a result of a poorly managed policy.
What do you think? let us know below!