After the hottest year on record, here's to 2015 being a year of radical climate action.

Happy New Year!



It’s now official – 2014 was the hottest year on record for this blue planet of ours.




This is the year that science and good climate policy will trump denial and fossil fool intransigence. I’m lucky to live in the largest Canadian province, Ontario, where last summer the newly-re-elected Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne appointed this nation’s first ever Minister of the Environment and Climate Change. Glen Murray demonstrates a full grasp of the urgency and importance of the climate crisis, and the province is currently working with Quebec and California to create a sub-national climate response with real teeth. Together, those three jurisdictions make up the world’s 5th largest economy, so whatever moves they make will have a large ripple effect across the globe.

Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) volunteers across the globe are focused on creating the political will for a livable climate. We are laser-focused on lobbying politicians and educating the public about the economic and emission-reduction benefits of a revenue-neutral price on carbon pollution. This year, many of us CCLers in Ontario will be focused on creating the political and public will to put a price on carbon at the provincial level, and return the monies collected to Canadians.  As part of that campaign, I’m working on a postcard campaign that will encourage Ontarians to send Mr Murray and Ms Wynne postcards asking for their climate bonus:

postcard front. Dec 2014*

If you are in Ontario and want to participate in this campaign, email me at


An upcoming forum discussing the differences between a carbon tax and cap and trade is being held in Toronto on January 27th. Moderated by Stephen Lewis, the event is sponsored by For Our Grandchildren, Citizens’ Climate Lobby, and School of the Environment – University of Toronto.

Putting a Price on Carbon

Tuesday, January 27, 2015 – 7:30pm to 9:30pm
Isabel Bader Auditorium,
93 Charles Street West,
Victoria College University of Toronto
What’s the best way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while stimulating the economy? Join Stephen Lewis and an expert panel on how to effectively put a price on carbon in Canada.
Two methods are frequently proposed – Cap and Trade and a Carbon Tax.
Our Forum Panelists will present the case for each of these methods.
Stephen Lewis, Distinguished Visiting Professor, Ryerson University
Nicholas Rivers, Chairholder, Canada Research Chair in Climate and Energy, University of Ottawa
David Robinson, Associate Professor of Economics, Laurentian University
Katie Sullivan, Director, North America and Climate Finance, IETA
Gray Taylor, a leading climate change lawyer working in Toronto
Kristyn Annis, President, Canadians for Clean Prosperity
Lynn McDonald, former Federal Member of Parliament and co-founder of JustEarth
Individual tickets (less than 5) $20 per ticket. Group tickets (5 or more) $10 per ticket.
Let’s get out there and kick butt this year – for our grandchildren and for this lovely blue planet!
keep calm and price carbon

Climate-Concerned Canadians Travel to Ottawa To Talk Solutions

Author and her husband, Dr Mark Polle, meet with Senator Marie-P Charette-Poulin of northern Ontario (on right)
Author and her husband, Dr Mark Polle, meet with Senator Marie-P Charette-Poulin of northern Ontario

Keep calm and price carbon.

Is it possible to solve the climate crisis without hurting the economy? That is the question that five members of Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) Red Lake were in Ottawa recently to address. They joined Canadians from Vancouver Island to Quebec who traveled to our nation’s capitol last week to learn more about the economic benefits of a carbon dividend that places a price on carbon pollution and returns the money to Canadian households.

Attendees at CCL’s Carbon Fee Prosperity conference November 22 and 23 heard a blue-ribbon economic panel dispel the idea that a healthy environment and a prosperous economy can’t co-exist. Success for one doesn’t have to mean failure for the other, agreed the five members of the panel, which included Professor Christopher Ragan from McGill University. Ragan is a CD Howe Institute Research Fellow and Chair of the newly launched cross-party Eco-Fiscal Commission. Ragan underscored how our current tax system taxes (thereby discouraging) good things that Canadians want more of – income, employment, innovation and better jobs – and doesn’t tax bad things that we all want less of, such as pollution.

“I’ve never met a Canadian who likes pollution and wants more of it, yet we make it free. We have a tax system that by not taxing pollution effectively encourages it,” Ragan told the attentive audience, “We can do better in this country.”

Based on the experience of the B.C. carbon tax, panelist Dr. Stewart Elgie from the University of Ottawa explained that a $30 fee per tonne of carbon (the same as B.C.’s) would generate $20 billion annually. That would mean, assuming there are about 20 million adults in our country, that every Canadian over the age of 18 would get a $1,000 carbon bonus cheque annually in the mail if the federal government adopted a revenue-neutral carbon dividend policy.

After learning more about the benefits of carbon fee and dividend at the weekend conference, 65 CCL volunteers from all walks of life spent Monday and Tuesday on Parliament Hill. They met with MPs and Senators from every political party to encourage them to put a price on carbon pollution and return the money to Canadian households.

Dr. Mark Polle, who met with 12 MPs and Senators while he was in Ottawa, found that the politicians he encountered were pleased to hear from climate-concerned Canadians.

“With a few exceptions, the politicians I spoke with understood the seriousness of climate change and welcomed a conversation about solutions,” Polle said.

Cathy Orlando, CCL Canada’s National Manager, underscored the nonpartisan nature of the organization, stating “Canadians deserve carbon fee prosperity. Carbon fee and dividend is the best carbon-pricing model for Canadians. It has something for everyone. It is a market solution that will not grow government size and not burden the poor or middleclass.”

While not all Canadians understand the urgency of the climate crisis, all Canadians agree on the value of economic growth that doesn’t sacrifice our clean water, clean air, or our stable climate. What the five CCLers from northwestern Ontario discovered in Ottawa last week is that pricing pollution is the right solution for both Canada’s economic prosperity in the 21st century and the threat of climate change.

MP Murray Rankin from Victoria (second from right) met with a constituent and two other Citizens' Climate Lobbyists
MP Murray Rankin from Victoria met with a constituent and two other Citizens’ Climate Lobbyists

Other links:

CBC Thunder Bay interviews Christine Penner Polle, climate activist, about climate solutions

Keep calm and price carbon, Canada

Climate conference lobbies for fee and dividend

Citizens’ Climate Lobby – Canada 2014 Conference: Flickr photos

Check out Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada’s YouTube channel for video from the Ottawa conference, including Dr Katherine Hayhoe

CCL Toronto leader Cheryl McNamara models the T-shirt with CCL’s message
CCL Toronto leader Cheryl McNamara models the T-shirt with CCL’s message

Canadians Gather for "Carbon Fee Prosperity" Event in Ottawa

keep calm and price carbon

Climate-concerned Canadians from across the country are gathered in Ottawa today for the first day of the second annual Citizens’ Climate Lobby national conference and lobbying days.  If you are in or around Ottawa and want to learn more about a dynamic, grassroots organization that is working to create the political will for a livable climate, come down to Ottawa City Hall today to meet us.

Or if you wait until tomorrow, you can drop in on our Sunday-only component for $10. It would be great to see you there!




Carbon Fee Prosperity

carbon fee prosperity

We at CCL Canada have been working hard to set up a live webcasting of the Sunday lineup at our second annual conference and lobbying days in Ottawa this weekend, November 22 and 23rd.

Keynote speakers at include Michael MacMillan, of Samara Canada and co-author of Tragedy in the Commons, and venture capitalist Tom Rand, author and Managing Partner of ArcTern Ventures. Canadian Climate Scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, named by TIME magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, will join via videoconference from Texas.

Sunday afternoon’s economic panel will feature a wide-ranging discussion on pricing carbon. The five panelists are Celine Bak (Analytica Advisors), Stewart Elgie (University of Ottawa), Tom Rand (Arctern Ventures), David Robinson (Laurentian University) and Christopher Ragan (McGill University). Dr. Ragan is the chair of the newly formed Ecofiscal Commission, of which Dr. Elgie is also a member.

To view the conference live via webstream on Sunday November 23, link to these sites:

YouTube channel:

Facebook event page for updates:

To join via Google+, add yourself to the CCL Canada Google Circle:  and then go to the Google + Event:

Or click on this link starting Sunday November 22 at 9:30 a.m. EST to watch it live:


carbon fee prosperity

Carbon Fee Prosperity

CCL Dispatch header*

Are you ready for carbon fee prosperity?  Then join us at our 3 day conference and lobbying days in Canada’s Capital City, Ottawa, November 22-24. The conference line-up is phenomenal with too many impeccable speakers to highlight just one person. DEADLINES:  Hotel accommodations  at the Courtyard Marriott in the Byward Market are suggested, although the deadline for the conference room rate has passed. To be assured a lobbying schedule, register by November 7. All details can be found on the registration page.

carbon fee prosperity*

A BRIEF HISTORY OF CCL IN CANADA:  For four years now we have been quietly building the political will for carbon fee and dividend in Canada in true partnership with CCL in the USA. Our national grassroots organization has some of the most dedicated volunteers on the planet. We are that small group of citizens Margaret Mead famously spoke about. Please check out our brief timeline about the Canadian Division of CCL here.


THE LITTLE ENGINE THAT COULD – DID WIN! CCL’s carbon fee and dividend proposal won the “Popular Choice” category for how to implement a price on carbon in the U.S. in MIT’s Climate CoLab contest. CCL will now have the opportunity to present at Climate CoLab’s conference on November 6-7 and engage with experts and attendees to explore how the proposals can effectively move forward. Thank you to everyone who voted and helped us harness the power of social media.

like us on Facebook

PLEASE HELP US HARNESS THE POWER OF SOCIAL MEDIA AGAIN: 19 million Canadians have a Facebook account. Thus, our presence in Facebook is a metric we should not ignore. We have more than doubled our Facebook friend likes in 2014 (1500) compared to 2013  (700). We know firsthand that MPs notice Facebook presence. Thus, just minutes of your time will help us when we are in Ottawa. Instructions are here on how to invite your friends to like our Facebook page.

Canada's CCL emissions

*THIS IS WHY WE MUST GO TO OTTAWA: On October 7, 2014, Canada’s Environment Commissioner, Julie Gelfand, expressed her disappointment that Canada is only 7% of the way to meeting our Copenhagen objectives. Our oil and gas sector has the fasting rising emissions. The Harper government has not fullfilled its 2008 promise of regulation of GHG emissions in the oil and gas sector and plans to regulate emissions have been kept secret.  Read our October 9, 2014 media release.

How To Save The Climate In One Simple Step

There’s one simple step that will start to turn around around the climate crisis. Price carbon, get industry to pay the cost of their own pollution, and return the money collected to citizens. It can be done – British Columbia has introduced a carbon tax that includes a 15% reduction in the finance minister’s pay if all the money isn’t returned to citizens. And in the five year since the price on carbon was introduced B.C.’s economy has grown more than the rest of Canada and their emissions have decreased.




Citizens’ Climate Lobby is laser-focused on creating the political will for a livable climate, and to empower its volunteers to have breakthroughs in claiming their personal and political power.

“Most impressive is the work of Citizens’ Climate Lobby. If you want to join the fight to save the planet, save creation for your grandchildren, there is no more effective step you could take than becoming an active member of this group.”

Dr. James Hansen, climate scientist, grandfather, and retired head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies

Click here to learn more about Citizens Climate Lobby or email me,

If you want to join the fight to save the plane

Most impressive is the work of Citizens’ Climate Lobby…
If you want to join the fight to save the planet, to save
cration for your grandchildren, there is no more
effective step you could take than becoming an active
member of this group.

t, to save

creation for your grandchildren, there is no more
effective step you could take than becoming an active
Most impressive is the work of Citizens’ Climate Lobby…
If you want to join the fight to save the planet, to save
creation for your grandchildren, there is no more
effective step you could take than becoming an active

member of this group

Building Momentum For A Price On Carbon

Citizens’ Climate Lobby held its 5th Annual Conference in Washington DC June 22 – 24th.  It was my second international CCL conference; at last year’s meeting there were 365 CCLers from across the United States, with a few Canadians thrown in for good measure. This year the number of climate-concerned citizens nearly doubled, with 600 people attending the conference and lobbying days. visited About 500 congressional offices were visited throughout the week following the conference by  CCLers pressing for senators and congressmen and women to enact a carbon tax.

“Global warming is a problem that will change the American way of life and I don’t have the right to both acknowledge that and ignore it,” says CCL volunteer Brian Reynolds of Lincroft, New Jersey. “I came to Washington because voting and rallies aren’t enough. If you really understand this threat then you have a moral obligation to participate in that last, most important, bit of citizenship. This much and no less is required from those of us who care enough to want our way of life to continue.”


Get Ready To Dial In For Climate Action

If you live in the United States, and you are concerned about climate change, circle Monday June 23rd on your calendar.  From the comfort of your own home, you can support action on climate change and the over 600 climate-concerned citizens who will be on Capitol Hill that day meeting with every congressional office to discuss putting a price on carbon pollution.

Congressional call-in

New US Economic Study Shows Carbon Tax Refunded to Households Would Create Jobs

CCL banner

As recent reports on the impact of climate change underscore the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, a new study finds that a tax on carbon can reduce those emissions while also adding jobs to the economy.

The study, conducted by Regional Economic Models, Inc., examined a tax on the carbon-dioxide content of fossil fuels. The tax would start at $10 per ton, increasing at $10 per ton each year. Revenue from the tax would be returned to households in equal shares as direct payments. Under this approach, the REMI study found that recycling the revenue back into the economy would add 2.1 million jobs over ten years. Improvements in air quality would save 13,000 lives a year. Emissions would decline by 33 percent.

“Detractors have said that a carbon tax will kill jobs,” said Mark Reynolds, executive director of Citizens Climate Lobby, which commissioned the study. “The REMI study turns that assumption on its head.”

Last month, the National Climate Assessment reported that the impact of climate change is already being felt across the nation in the form of severe drought, rising sea levels, extreme weather, wildfires and heat waves. To reduce future risk from climate change, the Obama administration last week unveiled new regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency limiting carbon emissions from power plants.

“If Republicans don’t want more EPA regulations, their best recourse is to deliver a revenue-neutral carbon tax, which is supported by conservatives from George Shultz to Greg Mankiw,” said Reynolds. “With the REMI study showing a carbon tax that returns revenue to households will add millions of jobs, this is the option everyone can embrace.”

NAFTA provisions keep the American and Canadian energy economies closely intertwined.  The National Manager of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby in Canada remarked, “It just takes one country to take the lead on carbon pricing and we can turn the page.”

MP Bruce Hyer (Thunder Bay – Superior North) is championing a revenue neutral carbon tax that refunds households, called carbon fee and dividend. On May 26, in the House of Commons, MP Hyer said this, “Carbon fee and dividend almost does it all. It prices carbon fairly and scientifically, uses only free market forces to foster CO2 reductions, costs virtually nothing to administer, benefits lower income Canadians and, what should appeal to that side, no money goes to the government at all.”

Since 1980, Regional Economic Models, Inc. (REMI) has provided economic impact studies for governmental and private-sector clients including the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), consulting firms Booz Allen Hamilton and Ernst & Young, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

Click here for a copy of the REMI study.

Click here for a 3-page summary of report from CCL Legislative Director Danny Richter

CCL  banner


Surprise! Putting Price On Carbon Is A Job-Creating Bonanza



SAN DIEGO, MARCH 3, 2014 – An aggressively-priced carbon tax in California, with revenue returned to the public, would actually grow the state’s economy and increase jobs, according to a new study released by Citizens Climate Lobby.

The study, prepared for CCL by Regional Economic Models, Inc. (REMI), looked at the economic impact of revenue-neutral taxes that start low and level off at $50-, $100- and $200-per-ton on carbon-dioxide emissions. In each case, the study examined two methods of revenue return – across the board cuts to income, sales and corporate taxes (ATB) and direct payments to households through a fee and dividend (FAD) system.

Under the most aggressive scenario – a carbon tax steadily rising to $200 per ton of carbon-dioxide by 2035 – the study found that the “tax swap” could add 300,000 jobs in California, increase annual GDP in 2035 by $18 billion, increase annual income by $16 billion by 2035, and reduce carbon emissions to less than 75% of 1990 levels.

“Detractors have said over and over that a carbon tax will tank the economy and kill jobs,” said Mark Reynolds, Executive Director of Citizens Climate Lobby. “This study blows that assumption out of the water. It shows that a carbon tax will actually create jobs and be good for the economy, provided the revenue from that tax is recycled back into the economy.”

Under the Fee and Dividend scenario – revenue returned directly to households – the $200-per-ton tax would see a net gain of 236,000 jobs in California by 2035 with GDP up by $2.5 billion annually.

The REMI study does not suggest that a carbon tax should replace California’s cap-and-trade system set up under AB 32. In fact, the study says “it is perfectly possible for the two to coexist and reinforce the same objectives of reducing carbon emissions (both policies).”

Last summer, REMI prepared a similar report about the effect of revenue-neutral carbon taxes in Massachusetts – the highest scenario $45 per ton of CO2 – which found that, like the California study, the state would see an increase in jobs and GDP. Since then, three of the five Democratic candidates for governor in Massachusetts have announced their support for a carbon tax.

“Economists from both ends of the political spectrum have argued that a carbon tax, with revenue returned to the public, is the most efficient and effective way to reduce emissions that are changing our climate,” said Reynolds. “We now have the studies to back up those assertions, and there will be more to come.”

Citizens Climate Lobby, a non-partisan advocacy organization with more than 150 chapters in North America, advocates for a national revenue-neutral carbon tax and will hold its 5th international conference in Washington D.C. June 22-24 2014. CCL plans to have volunteers meet with every congressional office on Capitol Hill.

More links:

Think Progress: Surprise! Even a Crazy-High Price On Carbon Would Help California Businesses