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Keeping Score: Measuring Manitoba’s Environmental Performance

Manitoba already beating BC and Canada without carbon tax

By -- Todd MacKay – CTF Prairie Director —— Bio and Archives--November 20, 2017

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WINNIPEG, MB: Even without a carbon tax, Manitoba is already showing strong results on environmental “potential indicators” identified by the provincial government, according to a report released today by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. The report, entitled Keeping Score: Measuring Manitoba’s Environmental Performance, shows results already achieved by the province provide a strong case for fighting a federal carbon tax.

“Premier Brian Pallister hasn’t provided any evidence showing a carbon tax will help the environment, but we know it’ll cost Manitobans $260 million every year,” said Todd MacKay, Prairie Director for the CTF. “According to the data, Manitoba is already doing better than British Columbia and the nation overall, even without a carbon tax.”

Premier Pallister’s Climate and Green Plan proposes a carbon tax of $25 per tonne starting next year even though the federal proposal is only $10 per tonne. That translates to a 5 cent per litre tax on gasoline. Overall, it will cost Manitobans $260 million.

While the Climate and Green Plan provides no data showing how a carbon tax will reduce emissions, it does suggest four “potential indicators” to measure the impact of the tax:

  1. Reduction of reported emissions in Manitoba attributable to the carbon price, as indicated by litres of gasoline and diesel sold annually;
  2. Ratio of Manitoba’s GDP to annual total litres of gasoline and diesel consumed;
  3. Annual increase in adoption of alternatives (e.g., ratio of gasoline to electric vehicles purchased); and/or,
  4. Economic competitiveness impacts by sector such as exports.

On the first “potential indicator,” Manitoba’s overall fuel consumption increased by 3 per cent from 2011 to 2015, but Canada’s overall fuel consumption increased by 4.5 per cent and British Columbia’s fuel consumption increased by 5.34 per cent despite that province’s carbon tax on fuel.

On the second “potential indicator,” Manitoba’s fuel-consumption-to-GDP ratio fell by 12.12 per cent, while Canada’s ratio fell by 6.88 per cent and BC’s ratio fell by 8.65 per cent.

The other two measures proved only marginally useful as electric vehicle sales remain low nation wide and the final “potential indicator” is too vague to analyze.

“Presumably Premier Pallister plans to use the results from these ‘potential indicators’ to fight an increasing federal carbon tax down the road, but the results already show that Manitoba doesn’t need a carbon tax,” said MacKay. “The government’s independent legal opinion states the province could fight a federal carbon tax by arguing its results meet requirements and Manitoba already has a compelling case.”

Canadian Taxpayers Federation -- Todd MacKay – CTF Prairie Director -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Canadian Taxpayers Federation

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