The modelling analysed what would happen if Canada adopted on a national level one of two carbon pricing models—either a straight carbon tax similar to British Columbia’s or a hybrid carbon pricing model similar to the proposed new Alberta system.
According to the modelling, both models would significantly reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions (to between 16 per cent and 17 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030), and the hybrid carbon price model actually boosts economic performance both Canada-wide and in most regions compared to the status quo.
For energy producing provinces, an Alberta-style hybrid carbon price model at the national level—which provides some emissions allowances to industry based on their emissions intensity—would boost GDP by 1.43 per cent in Alberta and 4.23 per cent in Saskatchewan, compared to the results under the current set of federal and provincial policies.
The study also compared two options for recycling carbon tax revenues: recycling all revenues as tax reductions, as is done in British Columbia, and allocating the revenues to increased spending on emissions reductions programs. These results showed that cutting taxes would lead to slightly better GDP performance while increased environmental spending would lead to slightly increased emissions reductions, but that neither option was as significant for the environmental or economic outcomes as the type of carbon pricing system adopted.
Clean Prosperity’s Executive Director, Mark Cameron said, “With the provincial and federal governments expected to announce a national climate change plan this fall, Canadians should be asking how we can we meet our targets at the lowest possible cost to the economy. Our research lays out two clear options for reaching our targets—each with different costs and benefits—and that a hybrid model will lead to major progress on meeting reduction targets, while limiting regional impacts and boosting economic growth.”
“Canadians for Clean Prosperity believes that adopting an Alberta-style hybrid carbon pricing policy, and British Columbia-style revenue recycling by reducing personal and corporate income taxes, represents the best way forward for Canada’s environment and our economy.”
Canadians for Clean Prosperity is a donor-funded, not-for-profit advocacy that pushes for a “strong economy and sustainable environment.”
The Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) is global think tank, describing itself as “a collaboration of energy research teams charting practical pathways to deeply reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”