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Business Council urges BC Liberals to abandon Campbell's climate policies

The Business Council of B.C. is calling on BC Liberal cabinet ministers to walk away from Premier Gordon Campbell’s climate change legacy.

“Last week, the Business Council of B.C. privately delivered a request to the two cabinet ministers responsible for the climate file that the government "pause and reset" its policies,” reports Vancouver Sun columnist Craig McInnes in his Feeling the Heat blog.

McInnes writes:

B.C.'s goals for reducing the production of greenhouse gases were aggressive and controversial when they were introduced by Campbell three years ago. So too are some of the methods for achieving them, including the only real carbon tax in North America, and the promise of a cap-and-trade system for ratcheting down industrial emissions. As the economy took over centre-stage, and other jurisdictions, notably Washington, D.C., with Ottawa in tow, starting dragging their feet on following suit, B.C.'s plan has left the province increasingly out of step.

That worries the business community, which has long been concerned that increasing environmental costs here will make many provincial industries less competitive.

What's changed is that with Campbell's departure, business leaders sense, rightly I think, that no one looking to replace him has his zeal or the courage of his convictions on climate change.

McInnes concludes: “Campbell got away with introducing the carbon tax at a time when such levies were considered politically toxic in most other jurisdictions. They're still considered toxic, and with the prospect of rising gas prices as the economy recovers, they could easily become an issue again here.”

Monte Paulsen reports on green building and carbon reduction for the non-profit Tyee Solutions Society.

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