Jim Dinning praises Rachel Notley's 'courage' on carbon tax

The NDP government is getting major props from former PC finance minister Jim Dinning for having the "courage" to levy a carbon tax.

Policy lets market decide how to cut emissions, better than red tape, says Jim Dinning

Unlike Alberta's right-wing parties, conservative Jim Dinning is praising the NDP government for having the "courage" to implement a carbon tax. 4:04

The NDP government's carbon tax is getting major props from a former PC finance minister.

Jim Dinning praised Premier Rachel Notley for taking a step that many governments "historically have lacked the courage" to do.

According to Dinning, an across-the-board carbon levy is "the best way" to get people to reduce their carbon emissions. 

"What I do is applaud the government, or any government across the country who is willing to have the courage to say, 'We're going to bring carbon pricing to the marketplace, and it's going to apply across the board from the big, big companies all the way to you or I, when we fill up our car with gas, or when we pay our Enmax bill at the end of the month," Dinning said.

"Any government who is willing to do that, in my view, they get a tick mark for doing just that."

Dinning said the alternative would be to create "inches and inches" of red tape.

"I still am a Conservative supporter. I believe in the Conservative Party. That's why I believe in pricing carbon, rather than the government putting these massive amounts of regulation in place," Dinning said.

"Let the market decide how it, how we, will reduce carbon."

Nothing is perfect

Dinning admitted that the legislation could use some tweaks.

"Look, name me a public policy that lacks imperfection. There isn't one," he said. "If they're going to wait around for perfection to arrive, they're going to wait forever."

In particular, he wants the government to make the tax truly revenue neutral.

"This shouldn't be a cash grab. This is meant to change behaviour."

With files from CBC News Calgary