>It is mainstream economics now to recognize the importance – and effectiveness – of funding science and alternative energy/energy efficiency (green). All developed countries do it – and Obama is going there in spades. The high-paying jobs, venture capital, intellectual capital, and big bucks in economic growth will go to those who understand this. Green tech is now where the silicon chip was in 1960 (and it was government-backed basic science that brought that possibility to light).
No Science, No Green: A Philistine Budget
This Federal budget tore apart Canada’s premiere science fund, will see the only federal environmental stimulus of any note (ecoEnergy) get de-funded, and even the home renos it backs has NOTHING to do with energy efficiency. You can buy a new rug from China and get the credit.
The Clean Energy Fund – the only ‘green’ initiative in the Budget – has $1 billion over five years. Sounds good, except that most of the money is headed for Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) and is really a bone thrown to the oil-sands producers. How is that clean or green? Why we need to pay oil companies to develop the means to bury carbon is beyond me. Shouldn’t we just set a price on carbon and let them get on with it?
Short-term stuff? Tons of that could be green. Just make the renovation tax credit related to energy-efficiency. That would immediately provide cash flow and jobs to made-in-Canada industries. Our geoexchange, solar thermal, electrical, renovation and general contracting industries would all thrive (or at least survive!).
To totally ignore those economic themes was a conscious choice.The Tories behind this budget are philistines, and they are telling us they are proud of it. We will lose an important race in green technology to the Americans if we don’t smarten up, and fast.