Clark applauds Alberta carbon tax plan

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley unveils tax on consumer fuels, cap and trade system for industry, allows oil sands to grow

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley has introduced a carbon tax with some similarities to B.C.'s which has been frozen for five years by Premier Christy Clark.

Premier Christy Clark says she is pleased to see Alberta following B.C.’s lead in imposing a carbon tax on fuels, but there major differences in the two provincial plans.

Clark spoke to reporters at a premiers’ meeting in Ottawa on Monday, where Alberta’s NDP Premier Rachel Notley described the plan to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet.

“It’s $30 a tonne, it’s very broad, and our economy is continuing to grow,” Clark said of B.C.’s seven-year-old carbon tax. “So I think Alberta following British Columbia on that really helps us make the case that Canadians do care about climate change. We do care about protecting our environment.”

Alberta’s carbon tax is to reach $30 per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by 2018, and drivers and natural gas users will feel it starting next year. But unlike in B.C., where carbon tax on gasoline, natural gas and other fuels is automatically returned through reductions in personal and business income tax, Notley’s government plans to spend much of the money.

The $3 billion a year Alberta expects to collect by 2018 goes to consumer rebates for low and middle income households, transition payments to workers and communities and “to provide incremental fiscal capacity for other government priorities including infrastructure,” the Alberta government report says.

And unlike B.C. where large industrial emitters are exempt on all but their fuel use, Alberta plans to provide “emissions rights” to operations with 100,000 tonnes or more of annual emissions, and also allowing them to buy carbon offsets and purchase rights granted to another company.

The Alberta plan calls for coal-fired power plants to be phased out by 2030, in a province where one quarter of emissions come from electricity generation, rivalling oil sands production.

A hard cap on Alberta oil sands emissions is set at 100 megatonnes per year. Current operations generate 70 megatonnes, leaving room for expansion until 2030. Suncor and other oil sands producers endorsed the new restrictions.

 

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

Just Posted

UPDATED: Eight Township firefighters exposed to COVID-19 now back at work

Online comments suggest the firefighters were not tested for COVID-19 but directed to self-isolate

Aldergrove senior gives blood for 200th time, has ‘saved’ 600 lives

There was no cutting of cake for Harvey Rempel but he’s challenging youth to start donating blood

Strong home sales in early March plunged as virus hit

Sales were trending upwards before physical isolation began

LETTER: Amid virus, Langley trail notes move reader

Expressing thanks for a kind gesture in a difficult time

Trudeau rejects mandatory stay-at-home order for now; COVID deaths up

The virus has now infected more than 10,000 Canadians and cost 130 their lives

B.C. health care workers gain access to virtual health care options

During COVID-19 many clinics have closed, leaving health care workers with nowhere to turn

Tax collectors, auditors to help field ‘historic’ numbers of benefit-seeking callers

‘If you work for CRA, people think we are just there to take money from your pockets.’

Cowichan couple won’t self-isolate after returning from overseas

New law requires 14 days of self-isolation when returning to Canada

Advocates sound alarm over COVID-19 limiting access to contraceptives, abortion

The COVID-19 outbreak has hit sexual-health services from almost every angle

Family uses social media to help truckers find places to eat during pandemic

Restaurants Serving Drivers in Western Canada seeks to provide a list of places open for drivers

Abbotsford man who tries to start gas-station fight gets sprayed with gasoline

Suspect returns with knife and throws it at victim, but is quickly arrested by police

Abbotsford family of 5 who was stuck in Vietnam is now back home

Janzen family sends ‘huge and heartfelt’ thank you to everyone who helped

Most Read