…environmental economics and the implications of environmental policy

Archive for February, 2010

Absolutely counter-productive and utterly pointless

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Minister Prentice went after Quebec here about their climate policy.

Quebec’s new environmental regulations targeting vehicles are an “absolutely counter-productive and utterly pointless” way to cut greenhouse-gas emissions that will ultimately put Canada at a competitive disadvantage in the North American marketplace, the federal Environment Minister said Monday.

When you have the track record that “Canada’s New Democracy” has on climate policy you might want to be careful what you say. Living in Glass Houses and all that. And at least PQ is taking some action. And fining the auto sector is the way to go. I did some feebate work for the NRTEE a few years ago, where fees and subsidies are combined to incent lower emitting vehicles, and all the research said that people would respond and it would work. Trouble was the Big Three got hit the most because they have done the least to improve fuel economy. And then they lobbied and the proposal was dropped by the Federal Department of Finance. But more importantly the automakers would not improve fuel economy unless you put a start motor to their head. Look at all the whining about fuel economy even when they were given billions in bail-outs. So, regulating them and applying penalties is likely required.

But back to the hysterics. In moving forward we need a balanced view on climate action. Some reductions driven with cost-effective policy. What we don’t need is this continual pandering to industrial special interests. That will increase costs and make our long-term job all the harder.

Written by Dave Sawyer

February 2nd, 2010 at 7:22 am

Posted in Uncategorized