Municipalities, utilities on the front lines of extreme weather

Smart Energy Communities are not only more resilient, they also create new opportunities for local economic development, lower energy costs and a cleaner environment

Municipalities, utilities on the front lines of extreme weatherBy Aida Nciri and Eddie Oldfield QUEST Canadian municipalities and energy utilities are on the front lines of the impacts of climate change. A recent report by the Insurance Bureau of Canada highlights the financial costs of climate change, with insured damage for severe weather events reaching $1.3 billion in 2019. Of the top 10…

Consumer trust in agriculture is waning

Organized, well-funded groups condemning farming practices on social media are winning the consumer trust battle

Consumer trust in agriculture is waningThe public uses social media every day to express concerns about farming practices. And it’s getting worse. Farmers are criticized for a variety of reasons – for example their environmental stewardship and their ethical behaviour in how they treat livestock. In survey after survey, Canadians generally say they trust farmers, regardless of headlines, social media…

Municipalities must take the lead in getting the lead out

The astonishing levels of lead in Canada’s drinking water requires action. That means taking simple measures at the local level, aided by federal incentives

Municipalities must take the lead in getting the lead outBy Paz Gómez Research Associate Frontier Centre for Public Policy Canadians have been exposed to a silent health hazard for more than 40 years: high levels of lead in tap water. Although a clear case of municipal mismanagement, Toronto shows the issue can be handled at the local level with minimal federal oversight – given…

Rethink restrictions on private health insurance

Rethink restrictions on private health insuranceIn its sole reliance on government providing first-dollar coverage of medically necessary services, Canada’s health-care system is unique among high-income countries with universal health care. It also offers inferior service as a result. Virtually all high-income countries – including Australia, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands – allow residents to use private insurance to pay for…

Trudeau tax relief plan will do little for economic growth

Trudeau tax relief plan will do little for economic growthBy Jake Fuss and Finn Poschmann The Fraser Institute According to a Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) report released this week, the federal government’s plan to increase the basic personal income tax deduction will cost nearly $7 billion annually when fully implemented. This is not only higher than what the Liberals anticipated during last fall’s election…

McCain’s Twitter rant bizarre, ill-advised

McCain’s Twitter rant bizarre, ill-advisedThe daily news cycle often contains items of interest. In 2020, this would include the Senate impeachment trial involving U.S. President Donald Trump, the signing of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, the tragic death of National Basketball Association legend Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna in a helicopter crash, and the passing of inspirational London,…

Third of Canadians face some degree of financial stage fright

Households with an average income of $50,000 worry twice as much (2.25 hours) a day than households with an average income of more than $100,000

Third of Canadians face some degree of financial stage frightThere’s no question that Canadians these days are worrying a lot more about their personal finances, according to new surveys from Scotiabank. The surveys indicate 65 per cent of Canadians with debt struggle to save or invest money while paying down debt and 67 per cent said they find the amount of information about investing overwhelming.…

Wexit would solve the country’s malaise

It's time to break apart this dysfunctional nation so the various parts can repair their generations-long problems

Wexit would solve the country’s malaiseBy Colin Alexander Research associate Frontier Centre for Public Policy Canada’s recent federal election result exposes intractable challenges dating from Confederation in 1867. Wexit could allow Alberta to escape from a burden somewhat resembling the maladministration that afflicted Argentina, once one of the world’s richest countries. For the past half century, Canada has not been…

Republic of Ireland offers valuable social, economic lessons

Looking for – and finding – solutions to hot-button issues from education to economic vibrancy to population growth

Republic of Ireland offers valuable social, economic lessonsNew Brunswick has much to learn from the Republic of Ireland. My recent selection as a Dobbin Scholar by the Ireland Canada University Foundation allowed me to conduct an academic visit to Maynooth University and the Republic of Ireland in June. The purpose of my visit was to explore the lessons that the Celtic Tiger…

Moncton builds it and they come

Yes, a downtown can be revitalized. But how to do it successfully – as Moncton has – remains a bit of a mystery

Moncton builds it and they comeIf there’s anything special about the much-ballyhooed Moncton Miracle, it’s that this New Brunswick city manages to thrive despite itself. That could be said about almost all successful municipalities, of course. But one look at this community’s downtown core five years ago and you would not have detected anything remotely resembling gritty determination. Look anywhere…

Jenica Atwin is a nobody, and that’s fantastic

Jenica Atwin is a nobody, and that’s fantasticWho is Jenica Atwin and why should election-afflicted Atlantic Canadians – indeed, any Canadian in the morning after – care? The answer to the first part of that question is straightforward: She’s the political candidate who defeated her more seasoned Liberal and Conservative rivals to become the first Green Party of Canada member of Parliament…

A political matchup made in heaven

What if voters had to choose between candidates with proven track records, like McKenna and Stanfield, rather than Trudeau and Scheer?

A political matchup made in heavenLet us, for a moment, imagine an alternate universe in which the leading candidates for the office of prime minister enjoy unalloyed respect across Canada. Here, on the centre-left, is Frank McKenna – a Liberal. Over there, on the centre-right, is Robert Stanfield – a Progressive Conservative. Yes, I hear you. The former, who spent…

Tolls the fairest way to fund P.E.I.’s Confederation Bridge

The bridge is a prime example of a private-public partnership gone right. Shifting the burden to taxpayers and non-users is simply unfair

Tolls the fairest way to fund P.E.I.’s Confederation BridgeThe recent campaign to remove tolls on the Confederation Bridge is a popular policy topic where rhetoric has become misguided. Prince Edward Island Sen. Percy Downe has pushed to remove the toll from the bridge, while P.E.I. Premier Dennis King has pledged to work on lowering the toll on the island’s primary connection to the…

Gigging it in the free world

The gig economy is gaining traction, for better or worse. Who needs benefits or job security when you can work on a high wire?

Gigging it in the free worldAre you weary of your reliable job? Do your paid vacation, company pension plan and full medical coverage leave you cold? Are you pining for the sort of precarious work that only self-employment can promise? Well, friend, you’ve come to the right place. Here, at GigsRUs, we won’t bore you with bromides about workplace security,…

Tear down Canada’s interprovincial trade walls

The annual national price tag for maintaining internal barriers may top $130 billion

Tear down Canada’s interprovincial trade wallsInterprovincial free trade, the lowest hanging fruit on the tree of Canadian economic policy, never fails to raise the federal government’s thirst for marvellously empty rhetoric, especially during the toastmaster circuit of every election cycle. So it was earlier this year when New Brunswick’s very own Dominic LeBlanc – minister of Intergovernmental and Northern Affairs…