Green communities get carbon tax rebate 

Whistler receiving more than $25,000, Squamish more than $13,000


More than $40,000 has been funneled back into the Sea to Sky communities from the province because of their commitment to becoming carbon neutral by 2012.

"By agreeing to be carbon-neutral by 2012, these communities are building a better future for their children," said West Vancouver-Sea to Sky MLA Joan McIntyre. "And we want to reward those efforts by giving back 100 per cent of their paid carbon tax."

That means Whistler gets a rebate of more than $25,000, Squamish more than $13,000, Pemberton more than $1,200, Bowen Island $947 and Lions Bay $741.

Whistler's funding will be divided in half for both internal municipal initiatives and external initiatives. Those initiatives have yet to be decided upon.

In total the province returned $2.9 million in carbon tax dollars to green communities in B.C. The funding was provided through B.C.'s Climate Action Revenue Incentive program (CARIP).

"We are already seeing real, on-the-ground climate change action as communities work to reduce their carbon footprint," said John Yap, minister of state for climate action.

CARIP, which was announced in 2008, provides a conditional grant to communities who have signed on to the Climate Action Charter, pledging to become carbon-neutral by 2012.

Communities get grants equal to 100 per cent of their carbon tax costs to support their climate change efforts provided they publicly report both their plan and ongoing progress of meeting the goal to become carbon neutral by 2012.

The recent funding is from Jan 1, 2009 until Dec. 31, 2009.

The Climate Action Charter is part of the government's commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 33 per cent by 2020 and 80 per cent by 2050.


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