2012-2013 BUDGET - Press release no. 6 of 17 - A $2.7-Billion, Self-Financing Action Plan to Continue Fighting Climate Change
QUÉBEC, March 20, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - "We want a greener Québec. Government efforts have enabled Québec to become a true leader in the fight against climate change. Once again, we are demonstrating our long-term commitment to this cause through the soon-to-be tabled 2013-2020 Climate Change Action Plan, which calls for investments of $2.7 billion," the Minister of Finance, Raymond Bachand, said today in tabling the Québec government's Budget 2012-2013.
A carbon market to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG)
"With the establishment of this system, businesses will have to possess GHG emission allowances that will be distributed in the form of free allotments, through auctions, or a combination of both. The most efficient businesses that reduce their emissions below their allowances may sell the surplus on the carbon market. Conversely, businesses whose GHG emissions exceed the allowances allocated to them must invest to reduce their emissions. Otherwise, they will have to purchase rights at government auctions or on the carbon market. Revenue from this market will finance various initiatives aimed at developing public transit and encouraging industry and Quebecers to adopt greener behaviour," the Minister explained.
In addition, he specified that the duty on fuel and fossil fuels will be extended until December 31, 2014. The $220 million in revenue generated by the duty which will be allocated to the action plan.
"Two-thirds of the $2.7 billion in planned investments will go to funding measures that reduce GHG emissions in the transportation sector, including $1.5 billion for mass transit and alternative transportation. The remaining one-third will be used to fund other projects, in particular for the emergence of green buildings and the development of bioenergy," he said.
Enhancement of the Rénoclimat program
The best results among the Canadian provinces
He reaffirmed that the GHG emissions reduction target of 20% below 1990 levels that Québec adopted in November 2009 is one of the most ambitious targets in North America. "Attaining it will depend on the mobilization of all Quebecers. Our new action plan will help us attain our target," the Minister concluded.