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Chris Osier
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Pt. 2- in an article in one of BC's business journals "Business Vancouver" that was directed towards this disparity in tax revenues and tax credits. These deceitful practices (because the tax was proposed as being cost neutral) cannot occur if anyone expects the populace to support such a tax. Its the abuse of this power and that makes up a portion of the conservative dissidence towards governmental regulations. In the same sense it seems that the liberal distrust of government lies within their distrust of the intentions of different bills and policies. Therefore, while generally speaking the liberal agenda coincides more congruently with a carbon tax, if the government were to abuse the tax, as has occurred in BC, then there may be little to no support for the tax from any party if it does not retain the principle of a 0 net increase in taxation. Granted this is a very general point of view from either perspective and is in no manner meaning to represent the whole of either, or discredit the position of more "central/moderate" parties/opinions. I merely mean to point out that whether or not the carbon tax is good for the environment, if the government abuses the tax and the reallocation of its revenue, then there is likely to be little support from any point of view within a democratic society and thus we will have to decide on a cap and trade system and suffer the loss in efficiency, create a hybrid of the two systems, or continue to emit inefficient levels of carbon. Again, very general options but I am referring more to a trend towards inefficiency when compared to a neutral tax based proposal.
Toggle Commented Mar 22, 2017 on Econ 255 readings - update at Jolly Green General
The problem, as proven to be substantial in BC, for people in the institution of "neutral tax" is the distrust people feel towards government. In a republican dominated government it seems to be amplified even more with a more hands off approach. Thus to implement a bill I would think a majority of people would need to trust the government in the first place, which is highly unlikely in today's society. Whether you're a conservative that supported trump and his policies or a liberal who is seemingly watching the sciences disappear down the drain, neither side really trusts the institution no matter the candidate, and to be honest they should not trust the government. We should always have a close eye on people in power, as a sort of second set of checks and balances and this disparity in the neutrality of the carbon tax in BC is a perfect example. Their government realized that all eyes were on them regarding the issue of using this method to adjust carbon emissions and still they purposefully caused a $377 million dollar loss to BC citizens while under the watchful eye of the world. If this doesn't show how little a government can care about their policy decisions and the opinions of their citizens then I don't know where else to look for information. The distrust of the people for any government's proceedings, regardless of political orientation, is very much grounded in day to day deceit that most of us don't even witness. For one, BC's tax credit to their film industry, while understandable if derived from other taxes, is completely incoherent. The Fraser Institute's (an institution in BC) director of fiscal studies stated that “This is not a carbon-intensive industry,” he said. “There’s really no economic rationale for why the government would use any of the tax offset for this industry.”
Toggle Commented Mar 22, 2017 on Econ 255 readings - update at Jolly Green General
I find it interesting that the only "sector" to regard the Buccoo Reef as being integral to their livelihood is the hotel/guesthouse owners. This seems counter intuitive at first because generally you'd expect that the further from the reef you get the less people would realize that the reef benefited them in a positive manner. However, the only sector to acknowledge the reef's value to the researchers was the one sector that is generally found in the metropolis, with little to no direct contact with the reef itself. However, when owners observe guests and their families leaving for their daily adventures I imagine that not only can the owners/employees observe the family and therefore pick up indicators on where they will go, but the family may also ask the employees for their advice on where to go to get the best "bang for their buck". I imagine that eventually the owners realize that the majority of people come there with the intention of, or at least interest in, seeing the Buccoo Reef. I also find the structure of their governing body for the reef is lop sided, do to being dominated by a few officials and not by the people who know the reef and what it needs to flourish again, or the locals who depend on it to survive. Because ou can not neglect the people just to save a piece of submerged chunk of substrate surrounded by multiple species of flora and fauna, you must have a balance of both Environmentalists and Anthropocentrists. So the line that needs to be walked, I assume, is that the reef needs to be kept healthy, but only to the point that doing so is not making people worse off in the long run, and even in the short run if the effects are drastic to the community, such as greatly restricting certain types of tourism.
I understand the value of this type of survey in attempting to value something that is a NMV. However, on a global scale is there anything along these lines that is even close to applicable for services that are not recreational? Breathing clean air and drinking clean water are two things people must do to survive, so how do we price something we can not live without? It can't be priceless, otherwise it is just a market failure. Is there any surveying method that does not take a thousand years to complete that can value this? or is this the inherent problem with NMV's that are on this large of a scale? Granted, we could subsidize the costs for personal protection from these horrible substances rather than use remediation techniques to lessen them. But then we would be at a point where remediation is not possible (point of no return). Also, in this article they use value ranges, but when you scale these numbers up for a global scale, would it not be extremely probable for over/under valuing something such as clean air? I do not understand how, on a global level, it is possible for any conservation plan can accurately assign a value to something that is inherently priceless. Thus do we value the condition? Such that the cleaner the air gets, the less likely we are to continue to use remediation techniques due to the higher costs included with "removing" the last units of pollution?
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