The Prairie Climate Centre has joined with a variety of other organizations to form the Manitoba Carbon Pricing Coalition. We stand behind the six principles the Coalition set forth regarding the necessity to create an effective and equitable carbon price:
• Urgent action needs to be taken – Human activity is changing the climate and urgent action needs to be taken in order to protect future generations and maintain our well-being and prosperity.
• Necessary part of a comprehensive approach – Putting a price on carbon pollution is a necessary part of a comprehensive approach to combating climate change.
• Must increase in a predictable way over time – In order to be effective, the price on carbon pollution must increase over time in a predictable manner.
• Applied uniformly and consistently across jurisdictions – Putting a price on carbon pollution is most effective and fair if it is applied uniformly and consistently across jurisdictions. For this reason, we feel that the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change is a reasonable pricing schedule. It is well-defined, is based on extensive consultation and buy-in from premiers and others, and has technical studies to support it.
• Economically beneficial in the longer term – We recognize that putting a price on carbon pollution may be a challenge to some sectors in the short term, but it can and should provide economic opportunities and ultimately be economically beneficial in the longer term.
• Well-informed and balanced discussion is needed – We need well-informed and balanced discussion amongst a broad spectrum of stakeholders to determine a longer-term pricing schedule, coverage, and revenue recycling mechanisms. An optimal set of such measures should (a) protect low-income and other disadvantaged people, (b) effectively and sufficiently reduce emissions, (c) promote a good life for Manitobans, including economic sufficiency or prosperity compatible with a low-emission economy. We hope for an informed public debate on these measures going forward.
We call for all jurisdictions and levels of government across Canada to take urgent, serious, and effective action on climate change, including the key economic instrument of robust and fair carbon pricing.
Steve McCullough, PhD
Research Associate, Prairie Climate Centre