Expert panel report recommends ‘super tax’ to incentivize Canadians to make green investments


The four-person panel is asking the federal government to create a “super tax” incentive that gives Canadians a rebate for making investments in companies or products that reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. Among the report’s 15 recommendations, the panel is asking regulators to ensure companies comply with global standards for reporting their businesses’ impact on the climate and the climate’s impact on their bottom line; if they don’t, they need to explain why those standards aren’t relevant to their business. The federal government, which formed the panel, did not say whether it would follow the recommendations. “We look forward to working with the finance community and all Canadians to help position us as a global low-carbon leader,” said Finance Minister Bill Morneau. (The Logic)

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Talking point: The recommendations would help Canada catch up to G20 countries that have made more progress on the sustainable-finance file, particularly in the European Union, which is seeking to pass laws on environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure. While voluntary guidelines around ESG disclosure have been outwardly embraced, early reports show they aren’t always followed, even by proponents, as The Logic reported on Thursday. The Task Force on Climate Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) status update in June shows that only 25 per cent of companies that committed to the global guidelines complied with five or more of its 11 recommended disclosures. The Canadian expert panel’s recommendations, if passed, would make it mandatory to follow the TCFD and help companies navigate how to do it. That piece is essential in verifying whether the green investments Canadians make would be eligible for the super tax.