Carbon Pricing From the Left

Event Details

  • Thursday, March 9, 2017
  • 1 pm EST
  • Free
  • Online

Carbon Pricing From the Left

Series: comparing and contrasting carbon pricing across the political spectrum

Governments across the political spectrum are exploring and implementing carbon pricing… but not always in exactly the same way.  In our second online panel discussion in a series of how carbon pricing differs on the right and left sides of the political spectrum, we explore progressives’ perspective on what a real-world carbon pricing policy package should look like. Our esteemed panel will look at the different approaches left-leaning governments are taking in Canada, including how provinces are revenue recycling to ensure household fairness and spur the transition to a low-carbon economy. For the perspective from the right, see our first panel in this series: Carbon Pricing from the Right.



Chris Ragan

Chair, Canada's Ecofiscal Commission
McGill University, Department of Economics
Christopher Ragan has been teaching economics at McGill University since 1989. He is also a Research Fellow at the C.D. Howe Institute where from 2010 through 2013 he held the Institute’s David Dodge Chair in Monetary Policy, and for many years was a member of the Institute’s Monetary Policy Council. From January 2009 through June 2010, he was the Clifford Clark Visiting Economist at the Department of Finance in Ottawa, where he served as a senior advisor to the Minister and other senior Finance officials. During 2004-05, he served as the Special Advisor to the Governor of the Bank of Canada. Ragan is the author of Economics (formerly co-authored with Richard Lipsey), which after fourteen editions is still the most widely used introductory economics textbook in Canada. Ragan also has a regular column in The Globe and Mail. During the mid-1990s he was the founding Editor-in-Chief of World Economic Affairs. Chris Ragan received his B. A. (Honours) in economics in 1984 from the University of Victoria and his Master’s degree in economics from Queen’s University in 1985. He then moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts where he completed his Ph.D. in economics at M.I.T. in 1989.

Expert Panel


Angella MacEwen

Labour and Social Policy Economist, Canadian Labour Congress
Angella MacEwen is the Senior Economist at the Canadian Labour Congress. Her primary research focus is understanding the Canadian labour market, broader economic trends, and the impacts of government policy on workers. She regularly represents the CLC at parliamentary committees and in the national media.

Angella is a Research Associate with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, and a Policy Fellow with the Broadbent Institute. She is on the steering committee of the Progressive Economics Forum, and a regular contributor to the PEF blog. Angella holds a MA in Economics (Dalhousie) and a BA in International Development Studies (Saint Mary’s).


Rick Smith

Executive Director, Broadbent Institute

A prominent Canadian author, environmentalist and non-profit leader, Rick is the Executive Director of the Broadbent Institute.

From 2003 to 2012, he served as Executive Director of Environmental Defence. He is the co-author of two bestselling books on the health effects of pollution: Slow Death by Rubber Duck: How the Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Life Affects Our Health (2009) and Toxin Toxout (2014). A Quill & Quire “Book of the Year”, Slow Death by Rubber Duck has been featured by the Washington Post (which said it “is hard-hitting in a way that turns your stomach and yet also instills hope”), Dr. Oz, Fox News, and Oprah Magazine, and translated into six languages.

Rick is a former Chief of Staff for the federal NDP, and has led many successful campaigns for important new public policies at the federal and provincial levels related to environmental and consumer protection, urban planning and green jobs creation. Originally from Montreal, he holds a Ph.D. in biology from the University of Guelph, is currently a Director of Équiterre and the Greenbelt Foundation, and a member of the Panel of Environment and Sustainable Development Advisors for the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development of Canada. When not working in an airport terminal somewhere, he lives in east end Toronto with his wife Jennifer Story and their two young boys.


Brian Topp

Fellow, Public Policy Forum


Chief of Staff, Government of Alberta
Brian Topp has just completed a two-year stint as chief of staff to Alberta Premier Rachel Notley. He has previously worked as deputy chief of staff to Saskatchewan Premier Roy Romanow. He also worked in senior roles with the New Democratic Party of Canada, as a public affairs consultant and in the labour movement. He is a graduate of McGill University and grew up in Montreal.