…environmental economics and the implications of environmental policy

Finally, some clarity in an otherwise muddled national climate debate….

with 12 comments

After about a year of beavering away, the NRTEE released its final advice note today to the Minister of Environment, and more importantly all Canadians (see “>Here). This piece of work sets down some fundamental principles that Canada should follow if longer-term and deeper GHG reductions are to be pursued. While there is some great stuff in the report (and the background paper prepared by Chris Bataille and Nic Rivers and others at MKJA – contact NRTEE for a copy, it is worth it), importantly, I think the report’s greatest contribution is to bring some “street cred” to two concepts:

First, the interim report released in June introduced the concept of an emission price to the media and hence Canadians. Before the June report, the use of this term was not so widespread, but now it is more widely used by the media;

Second, with this report, the carbon tax debate is effectively launched. There is now no hiding from an economy wide carbon tax as a realistic policy choice. I suspect we will now see more discussion at the political level on this. See here for some early evidence.

I think the next important step, as I have said in the past, is to make carbon tax synonymous with “carbon tax shift”, where revenue recycling and tax shifting further other goals. But for now I am just happy the report was (finally) released and is getting such favorable press. The report has legs, and NRTEE deserves credit for having the forsight to call a spade a carbon tax.

Written by Dave Sawyer

January 7th, 2008 at 9:53 pm

12 Responses to 'Finally, some clarity in an otherwise muddled national climate debate….'

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  1. I was just reminded by Chris B that the report’s other majour contribution to the climate debate is levity — how else could terms like “slow and deep” and fast and shallow” be explained?

    Seems we, and NRTEE value some humour in an otherwise humorless policy world.

    Dave Sawyer

    7 Jan 08 at 10:08 pm

  2. Agreed…the NRTEE report does bring a lot of clarity and “cred” if you like to the debate. What was interesting to me was the emphasis (at least as I read it) on a price versus a quantity. While I know these two are intrinsically linked, you have to look at Europe to see what happens when people are used to thinking in terms of prices, and then you move to a market-based mechanism. Suddenly, people get upset with “the price isn’t right,” as we saw with the collapse of carbon permit prices. People need to get over the free lunch idea for sure, but the question is whether they will be happier knowing how many people will be joining them in the long lunch line, or how much more expensive their lunches will be…policy certainty for sure, but on what dimension?


    9 Jan 08 at 5:15 pm

  3. Thanks for the great comment Andrew. I guess the point is that folks will get hot under the collar with carbon pricing regardless of its form — prices vs. quantities. The degree of that irritation, if I get you correctly, depends on their particular bent (and of course stringency).

    Dave Sawyer

    10 Jan 08 at 3:26 am

  4. .

    tnx for info!!…


    30 Jul 14 at 5:02 am

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    18 Nov 14 at 4:07 am

  6. .

    good info….


    26 Nov 14 at 2:51 am

  7. .

    tnx for info!!…


    27 Nov 14 at 2:52 am

  8. .

    good info….


    30 Nov 14 at 5:20 am

  9. .

    ñïñ çà èíôó….


    4 Dec 14 at 11:40 am

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    6 Dec 14 at 4:02 pm

  11. .

    tnx for info!!…


    9 Dec 14 at 12:23 pm

  12. .

    tnx for info!!…


    13 Dec 14 at 1:11 pm

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