The Ontario government has opened a 45-day public comment period on a discussion paper that identifies carbon pricing as “perhaps the most important economic signal” to drive a low-carbon transformation.
“Climate change is a problem with a solution,” Environment and Climate Change Minister Glen Murray states in the introduction to the paper. “Reducing our carbon emissions will produce a new innovation economy in Ontario. Building on our early leadership in sustainable technology and innovation, Ontario is well positioned to seize the opportunities of a low-carbon economy if we are prepared to take bold action.”
After releasing the paper yesterday, Murray said his ministry will need the next several months to develop a carbon pricing policy, based either on a carbon tax or on a cap-and-trade system first promised by the province’s Liberal government in 2009.
“A failure to put a price on carbon actually leads us to some real difficulties,” Murray told reporters, adding that there is no “greater threat” to humanity than climate change. While many people “immediately think the conversation around carbon pricing is about higher costs,” he added, “it is actually driving higher productivity.”