Two-thirds (66%) of Canadians support the idea of implementing cap-and-trade to combat climate change, according to research conducted by five universities.
The study, carried out by the University of Montreal, University of California Santa Barbara, Utah State University, Yale University, and University of Essex, found that a majority of residents in every province backed carbon trading, with only 27% opposing the concept.
The remainder was undecided.
Support for cap-and-trade was strongest in Quebec (71%), Prince Edward Island (70%), Nova Scotia and New Brunswick (67%), while it was weakest in Alberta and Newfoundland-Labrador at 62%.
Quebec currently operates an emissions trading scheme connected to California’s, while Ontario and Manitoba, where public supports lies at 66% and 65%, are due to link to the system from next year.
The findings were based on more than 5,000 responses to national surveys held between 2011 and 2015.
Oddly, a larger percentage of Canadians supported cap-and-trade than believed that the earth is getting warmer partly or mostly because of human activities (61%).
The research, which is also broken down by voter ridings, found that 79% of Canadians think the earth is getting warmer, and that a greater percentage (49%) favour increasing taxes on carbon-based fuels compared to those that don’t (44%).
“Of course, opinions and policy preferences are not uniform across the country. So this illustrates not only where climate policy support is concentrated, but perhaps more importantly, it depicts where enhanced outreach and engagement efforts are required to bring the public on side with what needs to happen” said University of Montreal professor Erick Lachapelle, one of the study’s authors.
By Mike Szabo – firstname.lastname@example.org