A new report from the University of Regina’s Institute for Energy and Environment is indicating the federal carbon tax would have a devastating impact on Saskatchewan’s economy.
The $50 per tonne tax would reduce GDP growth by 2.43%, or $1.8 Billion annually.
Environment Minister Dustin Duncan says it was important to get Saskatchewan-based numbers.
“All of the information that we have to this point has been very generic (from) across the country, but we were trying to make the argument that Saskatchewan’s economy is not like other provincial economies.”
Duncan says the report proves Saskatchewan’s carbon plan is a much better solution for the province.
“(The carbon tax) may work in other jurisdictions, but we don’t believe, and the modelling suggests that it doesn’t work for Saskatchewan, it will only be a negative to the economy, particularly at a time where a number of those industries, like the oil industry, there’s enough head-winds already in those industries.”
However, provincial NDP leader Ryan Meili says he’s not so sure the report proves what it says.
“It’s such an extreme outlier from every other prediction of that impact, and I think that’s something that you do have to say we really need to make sure that we have the experts dig into this report and see how it compares.”
The report was funded by the provincial government, and costed about $109,000 to produce. It is in the process of being peer-reviewed.