February 26th, 2017

Climate plan will produce benefits


By Lethbridge Herald Opinon on January 10, 2017.

Result will be stronger, more diversified Alberta economy

Shannon Phillips

ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT MINISTER

Albertans often ask me how the Climate Leadership Plan will affect them and their families

It’s a good question. And with all the fear-mongering out there about the plan, it can be hard to get to the truth.

Three benefits stand out:

First, the Climate Leadership Plan paved the way for the approval of the Trans Mountain Pipeline, an historic decision that will open up new markets for our energy products, creating tens of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity.

Second, the Climate Leadership Plan protects Albertans’ pocketbooks. Sixty per cent of Alberta families will get full carbon levy rebates. Those rebate cheques start arriving this month. And every penny raised by the levy will be invested back to diversify Alberta’s economy.

And third, all Albertans will benefit from energy efficiency programs that will save families money on their home heating bills.

These benefits from climate action are possible because the Climate Leadership Plan is made right here in Alberta – not Ottawa. It’s designed by Albertans, for Albertans. And that means our economy and our communities will see the most benefits from the actions we take.

New Markets for Our Energy Products

For far too long Albertans have had to sell our oil to one customer (the United States) at a discounted price. That means we’ve been short-changed on every barrel of oil we produce. It’s not fair.

Former conservative governments tried to address this, but all they did was create more conflict and mistrust, and nothing was accomplished.

With the Climate Leadership Plan, that’s changing. Last November, the federal government approved the Trans Mountain Pipeline to Canada’s west coast.

Why did Ottawa finally take this step?

Simple: because Alberta is now a leader on climate change. Here’s what the Prime Minister said:

The federal government “could not have approved this project without the leadership of Premier Notley, and Alberta’s Climate Leadership Plan – a plan that commits to pricing carbon and capping oilsands emissions at 100 megatonnes per year.”

Rebates for Families

A key part of the Climate Leadership Plan is the carbon levy. It went into effect on New Year’s Day. To protect family budgets, households will receive cash rebates to offset costs.

Here’s how it works:

Sixty per cent of households will get a full rebate of $200 for an adult, $100 for a spouse, and $30 dollars for each child under 18 (up to four children). Those cheques start arriving this month.

Full rebates will be provided to single Albertans who earn $47,500 or less, and couples and families who earn $95,000 or less. An additional six per cent of households will receive a partial rebate.

In addition, the small business tax is being cut by 33 per cent, saving small business owners about $185 million a year. With this cut, Alberta now has the second lowest small business tax rate in the country. And with no provincial sales tax, health premiums or payroll tax, Alberta maintains a big tax advantage over our competitors.

Energy Efficiency

Alberta has long been the only province in Canada without an energy efficiency program. As an energy leader, that just doesn’t make sense.

So starting early this year, Albertans will get help to make our homes and businesses more energy efficient. Programs will include free installation and rebates to improve energy efficiency and save money on our heating bills. There will also be incentives for businesses, non-profits and other institutions to install high-efficiency lighting, heating, cooling and hot water systems.

And for our farmers, there’s even more. Farm operations will be able to access separate funds to reduce their emissions and save on energy bills through efficiency upgrades.

These are just a few examples of how Albertans will benefit from putting a price on carbon. There’s much more, including investments in green energy, better infrastructure for our cities and towns, help for our coal workers and their communities, and an economy that’s ready for the future.

So don’t believe the fear-mongering about the carbon levy.

With the made-in-Alberta Climate Leadership Plan, Alberta is moving forward, taking our place as a global energy leader with new pipelines and new jobs in a stronger, more diversified economy.

7 Responses to “Climate plan will produce benefits”

  1. Strange that Minister Phillips did not mention the coal phase-out and renewable energy initiatives which are financially linked to the carbon “levy”. Maybe it is because she is concerned that Albertan’s anticipate those “benefits” will cost tens of billions of dollars and will have little tangible benefit. The massive propaganda barrage through advertisements we are paying millions for to promote “Climate Leadership” is surely an indication our government is unsure Albertan’s want to go that way.

    http://lethbridgeherald.com/commentary/letters-to-the-editor/2016/12/31/confusion-over-energy-plans/

  2. alberta1 says:

    The lady doth protest too much! Miss Phillips seems to think the more taxpayers money she wastes by way of her constant media blitz , the more she will convince us of the NDP way. No thank you. Not interested in poison orange NDP koolaid.

  3. phlushie says:

    Money would have been better spent on a referendum than an advertising compaign to try and convince the population that you are right. Also, it might have been more palatable if you spent the $6.9m by returning it to Albertans instead of the $1.0m in rebates that are being sent out. Just a return of our own money and a bribe out of our won pockets.

  4. biff says:

    i am hoping those angry about money wasted on gov’t advertising – count me in – were also equally affronted by conservative ad spending. this waste of our money to condition the little peoples has to stop.
    and here is another rub: we get to be ripped off by the carbon tax, which paved the way for the approval of the filthy pipelines? nice: we lose standard of living in order to lose quality of life. this is not the ndp i would have supported a few decades ago.

  5. wheatking5 says:

    So the people living in the apartment down the hall leave their windows open all winter to ventilate their pot smoke. The heat is likely turned way up as they could care less because they don’t pay for heat. The landlord doesn’t want to evict anybody because of a high vacancy rate. These people don’t work and likely will get a full carbon levy rebate. Who knows, maybe they even get their pot subsidized. This is what pisses me off. I work, pay taxes, conserve energy where I can, but others do absolutely nothing, and get rewarded for it. That’s the NDP way.

  6. biff says:

    wheat – while i understand your frustration around loser and self serving behaviour, i do not at all see how that is because of the ndp. the type of behaviour you are annoyed by is exactly symbolic of the behaviour of the most gifted supporters of the libs and cons and repubs and dems, who fill their greedy pockets off the hard and honest work of tax payers. their selfish and nasty behaviour is underwritten by scam tax laws, and those gov’ts’ failure to tax greed and prosecute corruption.

  7. biff says:

    ms phillips – if you want to make some really useful changes, put an end to feedlots and intensive livestock operations. the subsidized or not feed is unnatural to the poor beasts and critters; and it is not good for us, either. please ensure that our creatures are fed their natural diets, which is healthier for them and for us. please also ensure the animals are treated with dignity from start to end – the current transport and slaughter approaches approved by gov’t are nasty and cruel, worse, even, than the fetid and disgusting feedlots. further, please ensure that hogs are not permitted to be penned into tight quarters, and are instead provided adequate outdoor spaces where they can move.


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