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Suzuki attacks NDP plan to axe carbon tax: Globe

David Suzuki has joined the chorus of prominent environmentalists calling on B.C. New Democrats to drop their "Axe the Tax" campaign, according to a front-page report in the B.C. edition of today's The Globe and Mail:

“If [Liberal Leader Gordon Campbell] goes down because of axe the tax, the repercussions are the carbon tax will be toxic for future politicians,” David Suzuki said Friday.

"No politician will raise it. That's why environmentalists are so upset."

British Columbia's first-in-North-America carbon tax, which was passed by Premier Gordon Campbell's government early last year, dominated media reports during the first week of this election.

NDP leader Carole James has repeatedly said she will "agree to disagree" with environmentalists who decry her party's opposition to the carbon tax.

The Globe and Mail reports:

Mr. Suzuki said he supports both a cap-and-trade program and a carbon tax. Of the tax, he said, "it's clean, simple and if there are inequities in the way it's applied, then change it."

He called on Ms. James to show the flexibility that Mr. Campbell showed in shifting to accommodate native concerns and shift her position.

He suggested the NDP could neutralize the debate at little political cost by backing off their opposition, but acknowledged that things are probably too far gone now for that to happen.

Suzuki did not address concerns about ties between James Hoggan and the B.C. Liberals. Hoggan is chairman and communications advisor for the David Suzuki Foundation; he is also a donor to the B.C. Liberals as well as a recipient of several large contracts from the Campbell government. Earlier this week, Hoggan told Vancouver's 24 hours: I don’t think it’s any secret that I'm a Liberal supporter."

Suzuki did tell the Globe that he was not endorsing the B.C. Liberals, and said he regards the Green Party as a "credible" alternative. B.C. voters go to the polls on May 12.

Monte Paulsen edits The Hook.

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