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Jason Kenney's victory means we'll all pay the price for fossil fuel emissions

(MENAFN - The Conversation) Jason Kenney has led the United Conservative Party to victory in Alberta. There were many objectionable components to the UCP campaign. One of the most ominous was Kenney's promise to fight for the continued subsidization of Alberta's dying fossil fuel industry. Of course, Kenney didn't phrase it that way. He promised to eliminate the carbon price tax implemented by Rachel Notley's NDP government . In fact, he pledged to Alberta voters it would be gone before the start of this summer's Calgary Stampede .When Kenney eliminates the Notley government's carbon tax, Alberta will then be subject to the federal carbon pricing plan.Conservatives unite Kenney's promise to fight the federal carbon tax aligns him with fellow premiers Doug Ford of Ontario, Blaine Higgs of New Brunswick and Scott Moe of Saskatchewan , as well as federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.Screenshot of a mass text message from federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and the author's message in return. Scheer never responded. Scheer and his provincial counterparts, the most vocal opponents of Canada's putting a price on carbon, are self-professed lovers of the free market. The Wall Street Journal recently cited Kenney's expected victory as evidence of Albertans' support for free markets . Scheer, Kenney, Ford, Higgs and Moe are individualists who believe the market properly rewards hard work. They claim to want minimal government, especially in all things economic. According to free market ideology, government action prevents markets from functioning optimally. Among the biggest targets of the ideology are subsidies. According to free market supporters, subsidies distort prices, sending buyers and sellers the wrong signals, producing inefficiencies. And yet, in the denunciation of carbon taxes, opponents are really demanding the maintenance of a subsidy.Although the federal government is imposing a cost on emissions through a tax, it is properly thought of as a price. Currently, we freely dispose of carbon and other emissions when we burn fossil fuels.A carbon tax puts a price on those emissions. In theory, it makes us cover the costs associated with emissions and alters our behaviour toward consumption with lower emissions. Markets are implicated in the climate crisis For millennia, humans have burned fossil fuels for energy. However, over the last tw ...Read more

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