Canada’s steep – and increasing – carbon tax is not improving the country’s performance on climate change, according to an international watchdog.
Despite the steady stream of climate initiatives being implemented by the Canadian government, Canada has fallen to 62nd place out of 67 on the Climate Change Performance Index.
Last year, Canada placed 58th out of 63 countries for which data are available. Four new countries were added in the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI)’s 2024 edition: Nigeria, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, and the United Arab Emirates.
While Canada technically dropped in placements, as all four new countries placed above it, it was the sixth lowest-ranked country in the last two years.
“Justin Trudeau’s failed environmental policies are not only costing Canadians — but they’re also not working,” said Conservative MP Dan Mazier in a post to X (formerly Twitter).
Saskatchewan Conservative MP Michael Kram raised a similar concern in the House of Commons..
“The Climate Change Performance Index ranked Canada 62nd out of 67 countries on climate change performance despite the fact that Canada has one of the highest carbon taxes in the world,” said Kram.
The CCPI, released yearly since 2005, serves as an autonomous instrument for observing the climate protection efforts of various nations.
Four hundred national experts who assess their countries’ latest national and international policies on climate change compile the results of the CCPI.
The number of countries is slightly inflated, given that the first three places were left vacant for both years.
“No country was strong enough in all index categories to achieve an overall very high rating. Therefore, once again, the top three places remain empty,” said the report.
The report claimed that all countries’ commitments under the Paris Agreement are still insufficient to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5°C.
“The countries with high rankings also have no reason to ease up. Even greater efforts and actions by governments are needed to set the world on track to keep global warming well below a 2°C increase. Even better, 1.5°C,” reads the CCPI’s website.
Denmark was the top-rated country (in fourth place) for 2023 and 2024; however, even Denmark does not perform well enough to earn an overall ‘very high’ rating, according to the CCPI.
“The results show that, even if all countries were as committed as the current frontrunners, efforts would still be insufficient to prevent hazardous climate change,” reads the website.
The report calls for numerous taxes to reduce emissions but admits that the efforts would be inefficient to prevent hazardous climate change anyway.
In an interview with Danish climate scientist Bjørn Lomborg, Jordan Peterson discussed the falsehoods behind such a plan.
“All the data shows that if you make poor people rich as fast as possible, they stop polluting and start caring about the environment. Isn’t that something? We could make everyone rich, and the planet would be better off,” said Peterson.
Lomborg is the author of False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet.
“In a panic, world leaders have committed to wildly expensive but largely ineffective policies that hamper growth, fail to fix climate change smartly, and crowd out other pressing investments in human capital, from nutrition to immunization to education,” reads the synopsis of Lomborg’s book.
The rankings are determined by the cumulative score of each country, which is derived from their performance in four distinct categories, encompassing a total of 14 indicators. The four categories are GHG Emissions (40% of overall score), Renewable Energy, Energy Use, and Climate Policy (each 20% of overall score).
Canada is among the ‘very low’ performing countries. The report said that while Canada introduced a carbon price system in 2019, even raising the price per tonne of CO2 in 2023, most of the emissions generated by oil and gas producers are exempted.
The report claimed that Canada plans to increase its gas and oil production by 2030. It also claimed that Canada is among the 20 countries with the largest developed oil and gas reserves, which is incompatible with the 1.5 degrees Celsius target.