Alberta’s hard-right opposition Wildrose Party vowed to fight the province’s NDP government’s efforts to contribute to stabilizing the climate, as the provincial legislature reconvened this week.
Meeting on the weekend to stake out its policy positions in advance of the legislative sitting, party members voted “overwhelmingly” to oppose the Alberta government’s climate action plan and its centerpiece carbon tax, expected to raise—and return to voters—C$3 billion a year from carbon emitters. If the party gains power, it is committed to repealing what leader Brian Jean described as “a very bad and regressive tax.”
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Alberta’s plan to reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases “would end coal-fired electricity, cap oil sands emissions, and remake Alberta’s energy grid with increased emphasis on renewables like wind, solar, and hydro power,” Maclean’s reports.
Jean characterized the measures as an attack on the province’s oil sector. “Once you dissuade investors from coming into Alberta, once you have energy companies leave Alberta, it’s very difficult to get them back.”
Analysts have suggested that Alberta energy giants such as Enbridge Inc. and TransCanada Corp. stand to gain from the province’s intended shift to more renewable generation.