The Wildrose Party has unveiled a five-point plan that includes a referendum on the carbon tax.
Leader Brian Jean says he hopes the NDP will adopt the plan as a way to minimize damage to the energy sector and Alberta’s economy.
“If they believe that the carbon tax is what Albertans want, then let’s have a referendum on it and people should decide,” said leader Brian Jean on Thursday. “We’re here to work for Albertans and to make sure [they] have their say.”
Jean says most Albertans believe the carbon tax will be “very damaging” to the economy.
The Wildrose Party is also suggesting the government do away with emissions caps on oilsands extraction and upgrading.
“If you actually care about the environment, products should be produced here,” Wildrose MLA Leela Aheer said Thursday. “Carbon leakage to other jurisdictions, that do not produce the way that we do environmentally, ethically and any other way that you can imagine is an absolute detriment, not only to the global environment, but to us.”
The Wildrose Party is calling for an impact study detailing the full costs of phasing out coal-fired power in Alberta. Jean says instead of doing away with coal power, the government should focus on keeping emissions to a minimum.
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“If we come up with clean coal technology and other ideas for burning biomass and other things that we can do, as far as smoke stacks and cleaners and scrubbers, than we can export that to the rest of the world and help them … create a better environment.”
Closer look at the Wildrose Party’s five-step plan on environment, economy:
- Prioritize growth and encourage investment by abandoning the oil sands extraction and upgrading emission caps in Bill 25, the Oil Sands Emissions Limit Act
- Stop Bill 27, the Renewable Electricity Act, and release a full economic impact study detailing the full costs of shutting down coal generation to the electricity grid and forcing 30 per cent renewable generation into the system
- End litigation against ENMAX and reverse the carbon tax increase on emitters that triggered the PPA turnback
- Protect consumers and taxpayers and restore competitiveness to Alberta’s electricity market by halting the shift to a capacity-based market
- Call a referendum on the carbon tax before it is implemented.