Friday, June 06, 2008

Carbon tax - unintended consequences

Premier Gordon Campbell's overly-hyped claim that his government's carbon tax is revenue neutral might be true for the provincial treasury, but it is certainly not neutral for individuals or businesses. It will drain family income directly with higher gasoline and home heating costs, and indirectly as municipalities and businesses pass on their energy cost increases. Equally devastating is the economic hit to some of the province's biggest industries when the carbon tax leaves them less competitive in the world marketplace. The government's own estimates show the carbon tax will do little to help it reach its greenhouse gas reduction goal. Carbon taxes will have unintended consequences for families and the economy in B.C.

Those include:

  • higher property taxes as municipalities pass the carbon tax cost increase onto ratepayers;
  • higher costs for everything we buy as businesses past the carbon tax cost increase onto consumers;
  • fewer jobs in energy intensive industries such as mining, as they leave the province for carbon-tax free provinces.

  • The carbon tax will do little to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, will hurt B.C. families and businesses, and won't go away when the wheels of the global warming bandwagon fall off. Canadian taxpayers should hope - and ensure at the ballot box - that Ottawa and other provinces do not follow Premier Campbell's agenda. His quest for a political legacy has put him out of touch with the realities of B.C. families.

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