CCPA Policy Note

Entries Tagged as 'Environment, resources & sustainability'

Transit referendum: if no vote wins, what is Plan B?

March 20th, 2015 · · No Comments · Environment, resources & sustainability, Municipalities

I got my plebiscite ballot today and of course voted yes. Whatever you think of TransLink management, its governance, the rough and largely undefined edges of the mayor’s plan, and the politically expedient but otherwise not particularly appropriate sales tax source of revenues, the simple fact remains that I and most residents of Greater Vancouver […]

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BC Budget 2015: Missed opportunity for climate change action

February 27th, 2015 · · No Comments · Ecology, Environment, resources & sustainability, Provincial budget & finance

Global warming and the other ecological impacts of climate change threaten our health—our very survival. As the impacts of climate change unfold, society will face increasing economic costs. Even the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy,  which some have criticized as being unduly influenced by the Conservative government, estimates these costs, which include […]

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The early and fatal undermining of TransLink

February 25th, 2015 · · 5 Comments · Environment, resources & sustainability, Municipalities, Provincial budget & finance

Pete McMartin wrote an excellent column in the Vancouver Sun documenting the many ways that the provincial government has undermined TransLink. The upcoming referendum isn’t the first but rather the culmination of a two decade, tragically effective, bipartisan effort to prevent TransLink from doing what it was originally set up to do and what the region […]

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Low-carbon urban infrastructure: a view from Vancouver

February 18th, 2015 · · 2 Comments · Climate change, Energy, Environment, resources & sustainability

I have a new case study (full pdf; summary article from the publishers) out as part of the Economists for Equity and Environment‘s Future Economy Initiative. I look at the City of Vancouver’s Neighbourhood Energy Utility (NEU), a low-carbon district energy system that hits a sweet spot of clean energy, local control, and stable prices at competitive rates. […]

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11 things you need to know about BC Budget 2015

February 17th, 2015 · · 31 Comments · Climate change, Economy, Employment & labour, Environment, resources & sustainability, Health care, Poverty, inequality & welfare, Provincial budget & finance, Taxes

1. Budget 2015 ends the claw-back on child support payments for single parents on welfare. This is estimated to put $13 million in the hands of some of the poorest British Columbians. It’s a good step forward, but it is very very small. $13 million is three hundredths of one percent of the provincial budget. […]

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The case against a revenue-neutral carbon tax

January 15th, 2015 · · 2 Comments · Climate change, Energy, Environment, resources & sustainability, Taxes

I’m a fan of carbon taxes, but increasingly I see the term “revenue-neutral” attached to it. Where I live, in BC, we have perhaps the most prominent example of a revenue-neutral carbon tax, and carbon tax advocates have come to promoting the BC model to other jurisdictions, such as Ontario, who are contemplating their own carbon tax. […]

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Site C

December 18th, 2014 · · Comments Off · Economy, Energy, Environment, resources & sustainability

I was a bit surprised by Minister Bennett’s statement that I was 100% wrong when I suggested in a CBC radio interview that BC Hydro didn’t need to start on Site C right away.  He emphatically disputed the suggestion that the decision and start of construction on Site C  could be deferred three to five […]

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Time for a Different Approach

November 8th, 2014 · · 7 Comments · Economy, Environment, resources & sustainability

It may be the heat here in Baja, and certainly the tequila could be taking its toll on clear, or at least correct thinking, but it seems to me that there is a better policy answer to Kinder Morgan than outright rejection of its pipeline and terminal expansion proposal, and a far better policy approach […]

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A BC framework for LNG, part one: the carbon benchmark

October 21st, 2014 · · 4 Comments · Climate change, Energy, Environment, resources & sustainability

The BC government’s proposed carbon pollution benchmarks for LNG plants leave much to be desired. The package is an impressive display of cognitive dissonance: thanks to BC’s inconvenient law, the 2007 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act, along with its carbon tax, the BC government has cultivated a reputation for being a climate action leader; there’s even […]

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Let’s Not Go There Again

October 17th, 2014 · · 1 Comment · Energy, Environment, resources & sustainability

You would think that the fiasco of the government forcing BC Hydro in recent years to buy run-of-river and other IPP supply that it didn’t need, resulting in losses of hundreds of millions of dollars per year, would have put that unfortunate policy on the back burner for a long time. Not so. Clean Energy […]

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