The Ontario Conservatives, currently ahead in opinion polls, are promising to remove the price on carbon, the one tool that we know is effective in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. They claim that it is bad for the economy. This article from Inside Climate News says otherwise showing how the economy of the nine eastern states that make up the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) has thrived. The article quotes a paragraph from this report prepared by the Analysis Group:
“RGGI’s nine years of experience supports a conclusion that market-based CO2 emissions-control programs can produce positive economic impacts and meet emissions objectives while dovetailing smoothly into the normal operation of power systems” .
While Mr. Ford may find that it is not as easy as he thinks to withdraw from the Cap & Trade agreement with Quebec and California we still need to get this information out to as wide an audience as we can before his party begins to dismantle the good work that Ontario has done. Please write letters to the editor to spread the news.
Here is a sample letter that one of our members just sent to the Toronto Star.
The Ontario Conservatives are wrong; a price on carbon is actually good for the economy. Nine states in the US, including New York, Maine and Vermont, introduced a cap-and-trade price on carbon pollution in 2009. A report by the Analysis Group, shows that the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative has added $4 billion to the economy, not including the $1.37 billion over the past 3 years saved by buying less fossil fuel from out-of-state suppliers. Emissions from power plants have dropped 50% over the nine years. In the last three years alone, the program will create more than 14,500 new job-years. Moreover, the carbon pricing has not hurt the electrical grid’s reliability, nor caused an increase in electricity costs because much of the cap-and-trade income was spent on improving energy efficiency.
The lesson for Ontario voters is clear: this election, vote for a party that will retain Ontario’s price on carbon.
Please feel free to plagiarize from this letter and send it to your own local newspaper.