Carbon Pricing | Ecology Action Centre

Carbon Pricing



In November, 2016, the Nova Scotia Government announced that they would implement a cap-and-trade system in Nova Scotia by 2018 to comply with the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. In March 2016, Nova Scotia Environment released a discussion paper titled Nova Scotia Cap and Trade Program Design Options, which was open for written comment between March 8 and March 31, 2017. In October 2016, Nova Scotia passed enabling legislation to amend the Environmnent Act to include references to the cap-and-trade program.  


EAC, although encouraged by the movement toward a carbon pricing framework in Nova Scotia, was concerned by the direction outlined in the discussion paper. At this time, we are not confident that the system as-proposed will be effective in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, or equitable for low- and middle-income Nova Scotians. We released an official position statement detailing these concerns in March 2017 and released a policy brief before we appeared before the Law Amendments Committee at Province House in October 2017.  

On November 14, 2018, the Nova Scotia Government released final regulations and further details about the system design, emissions caps, auctioning and long-term goals of the Cap and Trade system, to take effect January 1, 2019.  


Key EAC Documents on Cap and Trade in Nova Scotia: 



For the last several years, EAC has been an active voice in the dialogue leading up to Nova Scotia’s commitment to implement a cap-and-trade system. We worked with stakeholders and allies to identify shared principles for equitable carbon pricing. We also hosted two multi-stakeholder Carbon Pricing Forums to explore principles and design features for carbon pricing in Nova Scotia. We continued to engage with a diversity of stakeholders in Nova Scotia through our Capping Carbon | Trading Talk six-part panel series, and online discussions using #Capping Carbon. We also released research detailing the potential of linking Nova Scotia and New Brunswick's carbon pricing systems to the Western Climate Initiative.



Principles for Equitable Carbon Pricing 


April 2016 Open Letter: Groups Agree on Core Principles for NS Carbon Pricing 


In advance of Nova Scotia’s 2016/17 Budget, a diversity of thirteen groups have come together to urge provincial government to develop a carbon pricing system for Nova Scotia based on five key principles: effective; fair; transparent; efficient; and economically sustainable. The groups represented labour, anti-poverty, environmental, and social justice communities across the province. 


"Done right, a made-in-Nova Scotia approach to carbon pricing can help us target the sources of pollution our current laws are missing, while also giving us new financial resources we can use to help vulnerable people and invest in our communities." 




Open Letter 


Carbon Pricing Forums 


May 2016 Carbon Pricing Forum 


The first Forum on Carbon Pricing Options for Nova Scotia was held in Halifax, Nova Scotia on Monday, May 9th. It brought together close to forty leaders from business, civil society, First Nations, and academia to discuss what a “made in Nova Scotia” approach to carbon pricing might look like. 


Participants sought to reach agreement about what a carbon price might accomplish and how resulting revenues might be used. The intent of the Forum was not to discuss the specific details and mechanisms of how the system would operate, but to highlight shared priorities and identify key opportunities for carbon pricing in the province. 


Participants agreed that carbon pricing should be: effective at reducing carbon emissions; fair, both socially and economically; supportive of the transition to the green economy; transparent and efficient; and politically viable.