Government set to unveil carbon reduction plans

Proposals are set to be unveiled that will aim to fully meet Canada’s target under the Kyoto protocol, a 240 million tonne reduction in greenhouse emissions from 1990 levels by 2012. The plan, which is still under debate, calls for an additional C$3 billion (euro 1.9 billion) to be allocated by 2010 for tax breaks, subsidies and emissions purchases. Combined with C$3.7 billion (euro 2.3 billion) already allocated, the proposal would bring Canada’s Kyoto investment to C$6.7 billion (euro 4.2 billion).

The single biggest new item would be a C$1 billion (euro 625 million) fund to buy 100 million tonnes of emissions reductions, though not including emissions credits which would result in money leaving Canada. Instead, the fund could be used for international emissions-cutting projects using Canadian technology or services under joint implementation schemes.

There would be tax breaks to encourage cogeneration, although the government would not pay the full cost of introducing a new technology, just the difference between the cost of conventional technology and that of the energy-efficient alternative.

The Kyoto treaty takes legal effect in a few week’s time and the government is under pressure to publish a credible compliance plan before then.