Posted on Jan 24, 2018

Climate Leadership Plan is working for Albertans

By Danielle Larivee, MLA for Lesser Slave Lake

Many people in Lesser Slave Lake have been asking me about Alberta‘s Climate Leadership Plan, how it will protect our environment while supporting industry, and what it means for their families. Albertans want to be leaders in the fight against climate change, and they want to know that their government will have their back. That’s what our Climate Leadership Plan is all about. It’s a made-in-Alberta plan, designed to support Alberta‘s economy.

What I appreciate most about our plan is that it re-invests revenue right back into our economy. That means that while we reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, we are building renewable energy and green infrastructure projects and supporting research and innovation for Alberta‘s future.

Our plan also invests in everyday working families, with two thirds of Alberta households receiving full or partial carbon levy rebates.

In many cases, this will completely eliminate the cost of the levy, ensuring that families are supported while we take action on climate change. Our plan is expected to put $310 million back into the pockets of hard-working Albertans this year. I know that rebates of $500 or more for working families will make a huge difference in the lives of many families in Lesser Slave Lake.

As we saw from the warm reception Premier Rachel Notley received on her cross-country pipeline tour in the fall, our plan is already helping to bolster our case for getting pipelines built, and is supported by several major players in Alberta‘s energy sector.

Our government knows that energy and resource industries are the lifeblood of Alberta‘s economy. That’s why we are working closely with industry to tackle climate change, and supporting solutions that support jobs.

Our energy industry has seen major benefits in the form of $1.4 billion in funding for innovation projects, and there are also major benefits that we’ll see right here in Lesser Slave Lake. Funding from the carbon levy has supported grants for Indigenous communities, installing LED lights in provincial facilities like hospitals to save energy and money, and supporting solar installations on community buildings. I know many of our small businesses have appreciated that we have been able to cut the small business tax rate by a third.

Last year, when we introduced our Climate Leadership Plan, conservatives predicted that the sky would fall. Jason Kenney and the UCP are repeating the same script about how our economy will tank and thousands of jobs will be lost - but they were wrong then and they are wrong now. Alberta‘s economy is the fastest growing in the country. Tens of thousands of new jobs have been created across the province, and we are making progress on getting pipelines built.

The carbon levy is one part of our Climate Leadership Plan that is supporting our energy industry as well as everyday families.

The plan is providing funding for much-needed infrastructure that will put Albertans to work and help us to further reduce our carbon emissions. Together with our work to create jobs, make life more affordable, and diversify our economy, Alberta‘s Climate Leadership Plan is making life better for Alberta families.

First published Jan. 24, 2018, in the Slave Lake Lakeside Leader