BC government increases carbon tax rate

British Columbians will continue to participate in the most environmentally and economically friendly tax policy in North America as the phase-in of the carbon tax continues with its annual increase July 1, Finance Minister Colin Hansen announced today.

“The revenue from the carbon tax is being returned to British Columbians through tax cuts and income credits ensuring more is returned to taxpayers than government collects,” said Hansen. “The carbon tax is being phased in to give individuals and businesses time to adapt and innovate in order to reduce emissions and offset the impact of the tax.”

The carbon tax puts a price on emissions to encourage British Columbians to make more environmentally responsible choices by reducing their use of fossils fuels. On July 1, 2010, the carbon tax rate on a litre of gasoline will increase by 1.12 cents to 4.45 cents per litre and by 1.27 cents to 5.11 cents per litre of light fuel oil.

The B.C. Low Income Climate Action Tax Credit is paid quarterly and provides $105 per adult and $31.50 per child annually to compensate for the carbon taxes they pay. The credit is set to increase by a further 10 per cent in 2011, and is reviewed annually to ensure it continues to help offset the cost of the carbon tax for those with low incomes.

“Each of us has the opportunity to help the environment and create a better future for our children by making climate-smart choices in our daily lives,” said John Yap, Minister of State for Climate Action. “By putting a price on carbon and returning every dollar raised to individuals and businesses, our approach is a win for both the environment and the economy.”

During the first two years of the carbon tax, some $848 million has been collected. The corresponding personal and business tax cuts have returned over $1 billion to British Columbians. That is $232 million more returned to British Columbians through tax cuts than was collected from the carbon tax.

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