An editorial in the Washington Post highlights the key role that climate discussions played in the Canadian election – and particularly the carbon tax pushed by Justin Trudeau’s Liberals.
It notes past elections in places such as Australia where the discussion around carbon pricing is understood to have cost politicians dearly.
“The narrative of political suicide now has a Canada-sized hole in it,” the editorial notes.
“In this challenging political environment, the prime minister made big promises on climate change. He had already imposed a carbon tax system on Canada’s provinces and, after Monday’s results, there is little doubt it will fully phase in early next year. He pledged to plant 2 billion trees and to adopt substantially more ambitious greenhouse emissions goals — to net-zero emissions by 2050, the direction scientists say the world must go.”
It notes that while the election “was not a referendum on a single policy” – the Conservatives “relied on the conventional wisdom that carbon taxes are political poison, and they lost”.
“As other states and countries impose carbon prices of various kinds, that conventional wisdom increasingly looks due for revision,” it concludes.