Andrew Scheer has finally released his plan to tackle climate change. Alex Boutillier and Alex Ballingall report that:
Under the Conservative plan, companies will still be forced to pay for their pollution, but consumers will not pay a fuel levy directly at the cash register or gas pump as they do under the federal carbon price.
The party would put a cap on industrial emissions, forcing companies that emit more than 40 kilotonnes per year to pay unspecified amounts into research and development initiatives that are certified by the federal government. Examples in the plan include funding divisions of private companies that develop emissions-reducing technology, and paying into green technology programs at Canadian universities.
And, like all conservatives these days, Scheer says a tax is bad policy:
“You cannot tax your way to a cleaner environment. Instead, the answer lies in technology,” Scheer said as he unveiled his environmental plan in Chelsea, Que.
But wait a minute. There are no targets. There's no way to measure if the policy is working. But, even more importantly, the policy is focused exclusively on industry. That presumably means that the rest of us don't have to do anything to save the planet.
Apparently, emissions from cars and trucks aren't a problem. Presumably Scheer will complain -- with Doug Ford -- about the cost of gas at the pumps. And there will be no cap and trade plan to help Canadians adapt to a green economy. The government will establish a fund to help them do that. Technology will provide the money and save us from oblivion. That's it.
This is a very un-conservative approach to the problem. But conservatives stopped being conservatives long ago. One can only conclude that Mr. Scheer is a fool. And his party is a fools parade.
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