A report released by Ontario’s financial accountability office was unable to shed any clear light on how much the province’s budget would be impacted with a cap and trade system.
David Wake, who’s temporarily subbing for FAO chief Stephen LeClair, says that cap and trade is likely to have an impact on the province’s budget, however, uncertainties around emission credits doesn’t paint a clear picture.
In a statement, Wake says “Given the uncertainty surrounding revenues and without more specific information on planned expenses, it is too early for the FAO to provide a forecast of the fiscal impact of cap and trade in any particular year.”
Wake goes on to say how the the province’s deficit will be affected depends on how credits will be sold, at what price and what the U.S. exchange will be on the auction revenues.
Meanwhile, members of the opposition parties have weighed in on the report, both Progressive Conservative finance critic Vic Fedeli and NDP environment critic Peter Tabuns suggest cap and trade could be another budget manipulation tool for the Liberals.
Fedeli said on Twitter that the FAO report “outlines scenarios the government can use to artificially balance the budget pre-election”, while Tabuns says the plan will allow the Liberals to “play games with the cap-and-trade money.”
— FAO-ON (@InfoFAO) November 23, 2016
Ontario's FAO outlines scenarios the government can use to artificially balance the budget pre-election 2/2 pic.twitter.com/pEgYA2ii6C
— Vic Fedeli (@VictorFedeli) November 23, 2016
Financial Accountability Office cap & trade report. Raises risk that funds could reduce deficit not clim change. pic.twitter.com/tuWjcNmBHn
— Peter Tabuns (@Peter_Tabuns) November 23, 2016