Premier Christy Clark has promised no further increases to the carbon-tax rate for five years if the Liberals win the provincial election in May.
The B.C. Liberals announced the proposal today (April 3), saying the freeze is part of a strategy to make life more affordable and will allow other jurisdications to "catch up" with the province's progress with the tax.
“It’s important British Columbians know exactly what government is going to do and that’s the commitment we’re making today,” Clark said in a news release.
The carbon tax, introduced in 2008, adds a levy to a variety of fuels as an incentive to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. In July 2012, the tax was increased to seven cents per litre for gasoline and eight cents per litre for diesel.
Clark’s pledge was met with criticism from the Pembina Institute, a Canadian nonprofit think-tank.
“In promising to freeze British Columbia’s carbon tax rate for the next five years, Premier Clark is ignoring evidence that the policy is working for British Columbians,” Pembina spokesperson Matt Horne said in a statement.
“The carbon tax has contributed to a drop in the fossil fuels burned in B.C., while having negligible impacts on the economy.”