Carbon Taxation in British Columbia

Vermont Journal of International Law, Vol. 10, pp. 87-107, 2008

22 Pages Posted: 20 Aug 2009 Last revised: 15 Jul 2017

See all articles by David G. Duff

David G. Duff

Peter A. Allard School of Law, University of British Columbia

Date Written: 2008

Abstract

Among alternative public policies to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs), environmental taxation represents a promising but often under-utilized approach-particularly in North America where the introduction of any new tax involves enormous political challenges. In Canada, however, British Columbia became the first North American jurisdiction to implement a consumption-based environmental tax specifically designed to reduce GHG emissions when BC's provincial government enacted a carbon tax effective July 1, 2008.

This paper provides a general overview and initial evaluation of British Columbia's carbon tax, explaining the background to the announcement of the tax in the Provincial Government's 2008 Budget, the structure of the legislation and its relation to other provincial initiatives to address climate change, and the possible implications of the tax for climate change policy in Canada. Part I provides a short background to the tax, summarizing the evolution of Canadian climate change policies up to the announcement of the tax in February 2008. Part II explains the structure of the carbon tax and its relation to other provincial climate change policies, reviewing the Provincial Budget and the specific tax implementing legislation. Part III discusses the implications of the tax for climate change policy in Canada, considering public reaction to the tax in British Columbia and subsequent developments at the federal level.

Keywords: Canada, British Columbia, Carbon Tax, Climate Change legislation

Suggested Citation

Duff, David G., Carbon Taxation in British Columbia (2008). Vermont Journal of International Law, Vol. 10, pp. 87-107, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1457456 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1457456

David G. Duff (Contact Author)

Peter A. Allard School of Law, University of British Columbia ( email )

1822 East Mall
Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z1
Canada
1-604-827-3586 (Phone)
604-833-8108 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.allard.ubc.ca/faculty-staff/david-g-duff

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