Andy McKay

Apr 10, 2012

The greenhouse carrot


As B.C. residents know the Liberal Government introduced a carbon tax in July of 2008 which is applied to virtually all fossil fuels, most notably gas. The goal was to:

find a way that we can work towards improving our environment

Carole Taylor

Personally I don't have a problem with a carbon tax as long as it's used to support transit or support non-fossil fuel solutions through tax credits. Weaning our economy off of fossil fuels makes sense for our economy and environment.

Or, instead, just to buy votes. There's an upcoming by-election in Chilliwack-Hope, an area with a large agricultural base. One in which the Liberals have no hope of winning. So what did they do for:

the most innovative, technically advanced and sustainably managed producers in the world
Don McRae

They announced:

new tax relief will in effect eliminate for one year the cost of the carbon tax for greenhouse growers on propane and natural gas
Globe and Mail

Because:

Greenhouse growers said the tax relief will enable them to be more competitive with producers in the United States and Mexico
Globe and Mail

Which seems to defeat the point of the carbon tax. Of course, if the greenhouse growers were so innovative, couldn't they work around the carbon tax which has been in place for 4 years?

It's just an excuse to redirect our tax money to buy votes. And now they have announced that they:

the tax will then be frozen while the government conducts a review to determine its impact on B.C.'s economy
CBC

With a focus on:

how the carbon tax is increasing our economic competitiveness both on the positive side and the negative side
CBC

So here we've got a simple review structure in place that will allow them to phrase a result that makes the carbon tax an inefficient drag on businesses. But of course you can't remove the tax quickly, it will be a carrot for voting in the Liberals at the next general election. Vote us in, gas prices go down.

Will be interesting to see how the NDP play this.