January 15th, 2021

What’s the purpose of carbon tax?

By Lethbridge Herald on October 26, 2018.

The word “politics” is a compound word that accurately describes the people in it. “Poly” means many and “tics” are blood sucking creatures. This definition is humorous but bears some resemblance to what is going on with the carbon tax discussions.
So many people are saying the carbon tax is a good thing, but I wonder who is it really “good” for? Everyone in each province pays into a fund that is to be used for what, exactly? Now, the current federal government is announcing a rebate program for those collected “taxes.”
According to the Clean Prosperity Institute, “if all the revenues from a carbon price are returned to individuals through rebates, households will actually get back more than they pay out.” How can such a possibility exist, in real life?
I pay into a fund that some government person gets paid to oversee. Someone gets paid to calculate how much we need to pay into it. Someone gets paid to calculate how much we should be paid back. Someone gets paid to print the cheques. Someone gets paid to stuff the envelopes. Someone gets paid to deliver the cheques. And after all that, we still get back more than we paid into the fund?
It was also announced by Prime Minister Trudeau that every penny of the tax collected will be rebated. So what is the purpose of the tax, if it is all going back into our wallets? Something smells here, and it’s not the fish. Either he’s lying, or he just doesn’t know what he is talking about.
I propose we cut out all the bureaucracy in the middle and scrap the tax entirely. I keep what I would have paid and my wallet does not get smaller while some bureaucrat’s wallet gets fatter. Maybe, if there was a tax on all the hot air, or CO2, coming out of Ottawa we could do something productive with those funds?
Keith Nalder

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The purpose of a carbon tax is to charge a levy on fuels that cause carbon pollution when combusted. The goal is to give people an incentive to reduce use of those fuels. As pipelines are the most efficient way to move Alberta oil, a carbon tax is the most efficient way to encourage individuals and businesses to choose cleaner options that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stimulate investments in clean innovation.
The federal and state governments worked together to plan how to best use this levy. All of it is returned to the area from which it was collected. Most provinces have planned how to use the levy in a way that suits those living in the province while meeting the goals of Canada’s climate change plan. Individuals living in provinces that do not have a plan will receive rebates in the form of Climate Action Incentive payments. Those who care and can will use the rebate to choose cleaner options.
Alberta has a plan that includes rebates to individuals to protect low and middle-income Albertans who spend a higher percentage of their income on energy costs and have fewer financial resources to invest in energy efficiency products. An estimated 60% of Alberta households will get a full or partial rebate. The remaining levy will be used for renewable energy projects and programs.
The carbon tax could have been administered the way the GST tax is. It could disappear into the federal budget, but it will not. People are responsible for carbon pollution and each individual and province is responsible for finding a way to reduce the problems we are causing.