No tax for car­bon

Provin­cial gov­ern­ment in­tro­duces leg­is­la­tion to com­bat cli­mate emis­sions


Saskatchewan’s gov­ern­ment in­tro­duced its cli­mate change master plan Mon­day that does not in­clude a car­bon tax.

The ti­tle of the plan is Prairie Re­silience: A Made-in-Saskatchewan Cli­mate Change Strat­egy.

“Our cli­mate change strat­egy is about pro­tect­ing our peo­ple and com­mu­ni­ties as much as it is about work­ing with in­dus­try and oth­ers to re­duce emis­sions here in Saskatchewan. This plan is broader and bolder than a sin­gle pol­icy such as car­bon tax, and will achieve better and more mean­ing­ful out­comes over the long term,” said Dustin Duncan, Saskatchewan En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter.

Premier Brad Wall’s gov­ern­ment has long op­posed a fed­er­ally car­bon tax.

The gov­ern­ment will be giv­ing its largest emit­ters - oil, min­ing and gas fa­cil­i­ties – per­for­mance stan­dards with com­pli­ance op­tions that in­clude mak­ing im­prove­ments at fa­cil­i­ties to re­duce emis­sions in­ten­sity, pay­ing into a tech­nol­ogy fund and use a best-per­for­mance credit among other things.

Per­for­mance cred­its rec­og­nize sectors that have al­ready made a push to re­duce their emis­sions or ex­ceed the per­for­mance stan­dards in an ex­cep­tional manner.

“One of the things in­dus­try has been say­ing to us is that un­der a fed­eral car­bon tax plan, it doesn’t take into ac­count the work that is al­ready done by in­dus­tries to try to re­duce emis­sions,” said Duncan. “They may have in­vested, in some cases a sig­nif­i­cant amount of cap­i­tal and un­der the fed­eral ap­proach they get no recog­ni­tion for that.”

Cred­its can be used to­wards reg­u­la­tory re­quire­ments. The plan also reaf­firms SaskPower’s com­mit­ment to pro­vide a 50 per cent elec­tric­ity ca­pac­ity from re­new­able re­sources and re­duce green­house gas emis­sions by 40 per cent in 2030.

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