Carbon tax shift working in Canada, Barry Rabe tells ClimateWire, but hasn't spread elsewhere

July 30, 2013

An upcoming issue of Canadian Public Policy includes a study by the environmental think tank Sustainable Prosperity that shows British Columbia's carbon tax shift, now five years old, has contributed to an overall decline in fossil fuel use and lower personal and corporate tax rates.

From 2008-2012, British Columbia's fuel consumption declined by more than 17 percent per capita and 18.8 percent when compared to the rest of Canada.

"What was supposed to be the kiss of death has withstood elections," said Barry Rabe at ClimateWire. "Polling suggests that revenue neutrality and the reallocation projects has worked pretty successfully, that this has contributed to a decline in emissions, but it hasn't spread elsewhere."

The carbon tax shift was initially set at 10 Canadian dollars per metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent and was intended to rise by C$5 each year until it reached C$30 per ton in 2012. C$1 equals roughly US$1.