A new year and a new carbon tax to greet motorists at the pumps. Ontario’s Cap and Trade program came into effect today. Sarah Deeth has local reaction:
It’s called cap and trade, and it’s Ontario’s new initiative to tackle carbon emissions.
Though it seems not everyone’s familiar with the program.
“No,” one person said, shaking her head.
And while not everyone knows what cap and trade is, they are noticing it’s impact at the pumps.
“It’s hard not to see how bad it is. It’s absolutely ridiculous,” one man said.
Cap and trade targets large carbon emitters, like fuel companies.
Those companies have to buy carbon caps, the cost of which can be passed down to consumers through higher prices at the pumps, and increases in heating bills for homes that use fossil fuels.
“We just want the government to hear that this has a dramatic effect on the business community,” said Stuart Harrison, with Peterborough’s Greater Chamber of Commerce.
Peterborough’s Chamber of Commerce was one of 20 that asked the Wynne government to hold off on Cap and Trade for a year…
Arguing that the program adds more costs to a business sector struggling with soaring hydro rates….
That Ontarians need to understand exactly how the program works, and whether it’s making a difference.
“We need some transparency, including transparency on hydro bills so the typical consumer or business person can see the effects of cap and trade, and see that’s there’s some results to it,” Harrison said.
The province says cap and trade will generate about 8 billion dollars in revenue within the first three years.
And while it seems to be generating a little sticker shock, some that say it’s something Ontario needs to do if the province is going to get a little greener.
“I hope that it helps, yeah. I hope that everybody gets on board to do something about the environment, and it has to be everybody contributing, not just a few people, so,” one man said.