With the U.S. presidential election results now in, (we think), we can say and ponder (while chewing gum at the same time) that the bull has left the china shop – and then ask who is going to clean up the mess? Who is going to pay for it — and at what cost?

With the inauguration some two months away there is still plenty of time for the Trump bull to go on some kind of a seek and destroy mission in a new shop so best everyone stand back.

It matters not which side of the border you ask the above questions though, because the answer will be the same: Surprise, surprise — who will pay? The energy consumer that’s who.

There is little doubt that the new Biden/Harris Administration is bound and determined to blow the dust off the Paris Accord.

This will mean, for instance, that prices at the pump and rack for gasoline and diesel will now take up a mind not, of its own, but the minds and hands of politicians.

This is because the U.S. consumer will now be introduced to the phenomenon known as carbon taxation.

Unlike here in Canada, I doubt that the new president will rattle the chain of gas pump prices. You can easily, without the threat of a revolution, increase the price of bread or dairy products to whatever level deemed reasonable.

Aha! But the same holds not true for gas or diesel prices.

Jacking them up for whatever reason is political dynamite.

The latest trial balloon rumour is that the U.S. will, as an alternative to a domestic carbon tax, impose a tariff on those countries exporting products that don’t align with the U.S. climate doctrines.

This is hyper hypocrisy because the U.S. doesn’t have in place any form of carbon price accountability to doctrinate to.

If you want a good ‘ole Canadian illustration of the sensitivity of climate induced pump prices then the latest announcement by Shell Canada would paint a perfect picture.

Today Shell announced that to help meet this country’s moving Paris Accord target it would initiate a program to offset emissions from customers’ fuel purchases to the tune of 2 cents per litre.

Well that sure grabbed headlines!

But my excitement waned when I read further that this is an option that the customer can buy into.

So, the price at the pump as posted will not be 2 cents lower than say the Esso across the street. If that were to happen it would create a price war situation where all consumers, not just Shell Club members win.

I guess it is too much to ask of our federal government to consider following the Shell Canada leadership by giving us an option on a carbon tax or its pseudonym.

Sort of reminds me of what happens in the voting booth.

– Roger McKnight – B.Sc., Senior Petroleum Analyst

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