Canadians Split on Carbon Tax Opinions


Canadians are overwhelmingly split on climate change and carbon taxes, a study from Advanis finds.

Over the past year, Advanis asked in excess of 33,000 Canadians about climate change and their level of support for a carbon tax, contributing to the database of opinions to support evidence-based decision making.

Opinions on climate change and a carbon tax vary significantly by several socio-demographic factors, most notably province/territory, but also gender, age, income, and rural/urban residence. Advanis found that a strong majority of Canadians believe humans are the dominant factor in climate change (73%) and Canada should be a leader in reducing global warming (72%), though agreement ranges from 83% of those in Quebec to just over 50% of those in Saskatchewan and Alberta. 

Other key findings: 

  • Despite thinking Canada should be a leader against global warming, Canadians are split as to whether a carbon tax is the answer.

    • Nationally, almost the same percentage of Canadians are in favour of as opposed to a tax (46% vs. 44%). The remaining 1-in-10 aren't sure.

    • Canadians who think humans are the key reason for global warming show far higher support for a carbon tax (61%) than those who don't (3%).

    • There are stark regional differences:

      • Only those in Quebec, Ontario, and Nova Scotia have more citizens in favour of a carbon tax than opposed.

      • Those in BC, PEI, Northwest Territories, and Newfoundland and Labrador are moderately opposed.

      • Those in New Brunswick, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta are strongly opposed.

  • The majority of Canadians do not believe a carbon tax will be used by governments to reduce carbon pollution (55% say it won't; 36% say it will; 9% aren't sure).

    • Not surprisingly, those who believe the tax revenue will be used to curb pollution are much more in favour of a carbon tax (89% vs. 14%).

  • Only 36% of Canadians think a carbon tax will change their personal behaviour (36% say it will; 49% say it won't).

  • Half say a carbon tax won't change their behaviour, but 44% of these people say they would change their behaviour (reduce their carbon footprint) to save $250/year.

  • Opinions on climate change and a carbon tax vary significantly by several socio-demographic factors, most notably province/territory, but also gender, age, income, and rural/urban residence.

Note: There are two main types of carbon pricing: carbon taxes and emissions trading systems (also known as cap and trade). In this research, we asked only about level of support for a carbon tax. Canada has both carbon taxes and cap and trade systems in place.

Data collection consisted of a random sample of over 33,000 Canadians; overall results accurate to within +/- 0.5%, 19 times out of 20; margin of error is wider among subsets of the population.

Want to know more details?

Read the full report here:  http://www.tellcityhall.ca/surveys.html (See Carbon Tax, Selected Results)

 

Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay