Ontario Consultation on Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions Program Design

Sustainable Prosperity welcomes the opportunity to comment on Ontario’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions Reductions Program, and commends Ontario for its commitment to public engagement and consultation on an issue of critical importance to its economic and environmental prosperity.
Climate change presents a unique challenge for policy-makers: it is the greatest and widest- ranging market failure ever seen.1 At the same time, it presents a unique opportunity: the core policy response to this market failure, carbon pricing, also generates a new stream of revenue to government and supports the shift to a low-carbon economy, critical for economic success in an increasingly carbon-constrained future.

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About the Project

The goal of this project is to shed light on the relationship between economic activity and the environment by exploring the linkages between changes in our natural capital and our measures of productivity generally, and through the construction of an environmentally adjusted measure of productivity specifically.

While it is now commonly accepted that economic activity and the state of our environment are linked, many economic measures still fail to incorporate the environment – both the things we draw from it and the pollution we release into it. By developing and calculating measures of productivity that include natural capital, Canada may be able to better understand these linkages. This, in turn, may lead to the identification of strategies that can help Canada become more efficient and innovative in the use and protection of natural capital, and thus more productive and more prosperous.

Using the forestry sector as a case study, this project aims to construct an environmentally adjusted measure of multifactor productivity. In doing so, we aim to add another layer of understanding to the environmental and economic performance of this sector. The proposed measure will have relevance to the Canadian economy as a whole.