Think Tanks

Picking up the Tab: A complete accounting of federal and provincial COVID-19 measures in 2020

Picking up the Tab: A complete accounting of federal and provincial COVID-19 measures in 2020

The report tracks which level of government picked up the tab for every COVID-19 program announced through Dec. 31, 2020, and also analyzes how the provinces are spending their share of federal transfers. Overall, 92 per cent ($343 billion) of COVID-19 direct spending initiatives, excluding liquidity and unallocated funds, came from the feds––compared to eight per cent ($31 billion) from provincial governments.

Wondering about the COVID-19 recovery spending in the province where you live? Our interactive map allows users to explore how much money each province is spending per person on its COVID-19 recovery plan, what funds each province currently has access to (and may not be utilizing), and which government is paying for the recovery initiatives.

The Federal Government's Scheme to Promote P3s In Canada

The Federal Government's Scheme to Promote P3s In Canada

This past summer, the township of Mapleton, Ontario dealt a direct blow to the Canada Infrastructure Bank’s (CIB) attempt to privatize water in Canada by ending their Request for Proposals (RFP) process and choosing to finance their water and wastewater upgrades internally. For the last year, the CIB had been touting Mapleton as the pilot case of water public-private partnerships (P3s) to be replicated across the country.

Addressing Economic Racism in Canada’s Pandemic Response and Recovery

Addressing Economic Racism in Canada’s Pandemic Response and Recovery

In the beginning of the pandemic, COVID-19 was said to be “the great equalizer”, impacting people across all walks of life. Now, well-documented racial health inequities for COVID-19 have proven otherwise, and it shouldn’t have been a surprise. Racial inequities have been found for nearly every health outcome. The evidence suggests that once you strip away the protection that newly-arrived immigrants initially carry, Black, Brown, and Indigenous Canadians in particular experience worse health outcomes than White Canadians

Corporate tax cuts trickle up not down, new study confirms

Corporate tax cuts trickle up not down, new study confirms

A new study out of the U.K. has provided further proof that corporate tax cuts have been a multi-billion-dollar failure. 

Researchers found 50 years of tax cuts did not create jobs or economic growth and only benefitted the individuals who were directly affected, ultimately increasing inequality. The study should be considered by governments as they look at how to pay for the pandemic, its authors said.

Transition Plan for Workers can Prevent Unemployment as Fossil Fuels are Phased Out

Transition Plan for Workers can Prevent Unemployment as Fossil Fuels are Phased Out

New research from the Centre for Future Work demonstrates that with prudent long-term planning, the coming phase-out of fossil fuel production and use can be managed without causing unemployment for fossil fuel workers. 

Employment Transitions and the Phase-Out of Fossil Fuels, by Jim Stanford (Economist and Director of the Centre for Future Work) shows that fossil fuel industries directly account for 170,000 jobs in Canada – less than 1% of total employment. A 20-year phase-out of fossil fuels implies an annual reduction of fossil fuel employment of around 8,500 jobs annually: the number of jobs typically created by the Canadian economy every ten days.

The Golden Cushion: CEO compensation in Canada

The Golden Cushion: CEO compensation in Canada

This report looks at CEO pay among Canada’s top-paid chief executive officers in 2019, based on company proxy circulars filed in 2020, and compares this to average incomes in the rest of the population in 2019. Though this same data is not yet available for 2020, the report also estimates, based on company share performance in 2020, whether the top-100 CEOs are likely to have seen their bonus-based pay increase, decrease or stay the same compared to last year.

5 reasons why higher carbon prices require stronger green industrial policy

5 reasons why higher carbon prices require stronger green industrial policy

Canada’s enhanced climate plan (released in Dec 2019) includes a gradually rising carbon price – to $170 per tonne by 2030. That’s a high price by international standards, which gives Canada a credible shot at hitting its 2030 climate target. The new plan made commentator Andrew Coyne take the market fundamentalist position that a higher carbon price should be the single policy, and governments should do little else.

Towards a Just Recovery

Towards a Just Recovery

The Fall Economic Statement released yesterday is necessarily shaped by a high degree of uncertainty. Despite promising reports that we may have an effective vaccine against Covid-19 within months, the pandemic is very much with us and economic recovery is far from certain as quarantines and lockdowns continue.

The statement's 200 odd pages provide a detailed report on what has been done to date in terms of new program spending, announce a few new measures, and set out a medium term fiscal and economic strategy.

Reassessment of Need for the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project

Reassessment of Need for the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project

This report concludes that the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project (TMX) is not needed to meet forecasted Canadian capacity needs. The author, J. David Hughes, also demonstrates that contrary to claims that bringing heavy oil to tidewater for export to Asia will fetch a higher price, it will likely instead sell at a loss of $4-$6 per barrel. 

Arguments for TMX look even worse in the context of Canada’s commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 as TMX will exacerbate Canada’s emissions reduction problem by incentivizing additional oil production growth Hughes says, adding that as it stands Canada has no viable plan to even meet the Paris Agreement, let alone the federal government’s promise of net-zero emissions by 2050.