Would You “Bury” $2 billion – or Spend It?

Press Release, Climate, Frontier Centre

The Frontier Centre asks Albertans how they would spend public money now designated for burying carbon emissions

Calgary: The Frontier Centre today released an online calculator to help Albertans choose alternative uses for the $2 billion now budgeted by the province for burying carbon emissions.

“Two billion dollars can fund more doctors and nurses, expand provincial highways, create more urban and rural parks, or be used to increase rental subsidies,” said Mark Milke, the think tank’s Senior Fellow in Alberta. “Or it could be used for new ‘Ralph bucks’ which would amount to $2,280 for a family of four.”

The interactive calculator now available online at www.fcpp.org allows Albertans and others to choose their own priorities for the $2 billion.

For example, Albertans might choose to tell the calculator to hire 500 more physicians at an average cost to the treasury of $200,000 each ($100 million in total), create six new urban parks at a cost of $25 million each ($150 million), and hire 2,000 more nurses at a per-nurse cost of $100,000 each ($200 million).

Milke noted that even with those three expenditures, the province would still have $1.55 billion to use elsewhere. It could invest the remaining amount in the Alberta Heritage and Savings Trust Fund, cut a tax, or increase winter heating rebates to consumers.

“The Frontier Centre’s interactive calculator allows Albertans to choose from a wide array of spending and tax options; they can quite literally design their own $2 billion budget, and see what other uses are available for the billions now set aside for burying carbon.”

To access the Frontier Centre’s “$2 billion interactive calculator,” go to www.fcpp.org.

For more information:

Mark Milke
Alberta Senior Fellow Frontier Centre for Public Policy
403 230 2435

Gary Slywchuk