Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Don't Mention the Carbon Tax

Today has been a very hot day in my part of Canada - in fact, the Ontario energy system has hit record usage levels. There is a very interesting web site that provides information on what is going on at all times.
Earlier this afternoon, this organization documented that the wholesale price of electricity in the (pretty much open market) system was over 22 cents (Canadian) per kWh. At the same time I know (go investigate that page) I will be charged, at the retail level, at most 6.7 Canadian cents per kWh!
This is yet another gigantic subsidy to the middle class, which has the even worse effect of inviting us to overspend on electricity (much generated by burning fuels and releasing carbon).
The current government faces re-election soon, and so will not fix this. The previous one, ideologically eager to try to do so, started to fix it, and then retreated. The power of us politically capable middle class people to rent-seek remains largely unchallenged. And we'll all talk a good game of how we care about the environment, and then make sure that nobody who tries to address the problem seriously can be elected.


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