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Home Policy Articles: Regional & Sectoral: Atlantic Canada


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2002 (5)
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2007 (2)


A Profile of Rural Nova Scotia

This study provides information on rural Nova Scotia. Jean Lambert looks at seven factors to profile rural Nova Scotia: demographics, employment and income, housing, education, and health status, natural resouces and crime. Each of these factors are exmined in depth with the use of statistical data.

Atlantica: Myths and Reality

This article by Scott Sinclair and John Jacobs examines the proposed Atlantica or Atlantic International Northeast Economic Region (AINER) agreement.

Brooking No Favourites: A New Approach to Regional Development in Atlantic Canada

In this report Mintz and Smart make the case for fundamental reform in the delivery of federal development assistance to Atlantic Canada. They contend the federal government should replace existing grants and tax credits to businesses with broad-based corporate tax reduction in the region. They suggest that existing grant programs are well-intentioned, but poorly targeted.

Discovering the Cape Breton Experiment

In Discovering the Cape Breton Experiment, Constance deRoche, of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, examines the Cape Breton Community Employment and Innovation Project. According to deRoche, the Project is less innovative than it appears. Conceived and directed with the purpose of spurring the depressed Cape Breton economy, the Program funds the creation of jobs by Cape Breton organizations. Participants who receive jobs, however, must forgo their government social assistance payments. The nature of the Program, deRoche claims, makes it similar to ‘make work projects.’ For this reason, she concludes, the Program provides little long-term value to either the jobless or the regional economy.

Energy Security in Nova Scotia

Larry Hughes analyzes Nova Scotia’s energy security in the context of rising energy prices due to increased demand and tighter supply.

Having Our Gas and Selling it Too: Natural Gas Distribution in Atlantic Canada

In Having Our Gas and Selling it Too: Natural Gas Distribution in Atlantic Canada, Tom Tucker, of the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, argues for a flexible regulatory framework in Atlantic Canada’s fledgling natural gas industry. According to Tucker, natural gas presents the single largest economic opportunity for Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, but only if governments ensure the proper regulatory environment. Since the industry is in its infancy, Tucker argues, copying the framework of other regions with mature natural gas industries will not be effective. Instead, governments in Atlantic Canada must develop applicable conditions for the growth of natural gas in the region.

New Brunswick's Plastics Industry: Rhetoric versus Reality

In this report, Litvak explains that the New Brunswick government believes the plastics products industry could become an important engine of growth in the Province’s manufacturing sector. Litvak argues, however, that this will not happen.

Our Winters of Discontent: Addressing the Problem of Rising Home Heating Costs

Due to Canada’s climate, residential heating is a necessity, and is largely provided by fossil fuels. Larry Hughes examines the vulnerability of residents to increases in the cost of natural gas, fuel oil, and electricity generated from fossil fuels.

Power Trip: Stumbling Toward a Policy for NB Power

Thomas Tucker argues that New Brunswick Power has an abysmal financial track record, which should be of concern, not just to New Brunswickers who are a captive market for the company, but to everyone who must purchase energy from a single public utility.

Rags to Riches: How “the regions” can and should be leading Canada’s productivity push

Brian Lee Crowley’s paper Rags to Riches: How “the regions” can and should be leading Canada’s productivity push, argues that federal government policies hinder the economic convergence between less-developed provinces and the rest of Canada. Crowley claims Canada’s economy is defined by tools of government spending, transfers and “activist” economic development policy. Originally assuming unemployment is the primary policy problem in less-developed provinces, Crowley continues, these tools are no longer applicable in an economy where labour shortages and skill gaps are the new challenges.

Securing our Energy Future? A Review of Nova Scotia's Energy Sector in 2004

In this report Larry Hughes reviews the major events in Nova Scotia’s energy sector in 2004.

Testing and Accountability: The Keys to Educational Excellence in Atlantic Canada

Testing and Accountability: The Keys to Educational Excellence in Atlantic Canada, by Charles Cirtwill, Rod Clifton and John D'Orsay of the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, argues that Atlantic Canadian provinces must institute standardized testing to allow comparisons between their educational systems. According to the authors, students in Atlantic Canada consistently perform below national and international averages in language, math, and science skills. This means, they continue, that the region’s taxpayers are receiving less value for their education investment than they deserve. In response to these results, the authors posit that the Governments of Atlantic Canada must employ standardized testing to establish basic benchmark levels for education.

The Atlantica Power Market: A Plan for Joint Action

Gordon Weil argues that “Atlantica” – the north-eastern corner of the North American continent straddling the international border – is a natural area for the development of a competitive regional market for electricity. He suggests that such a market would enhance development opportunities, create jobs, provide more consumer choice, and promote prosperity.

What's A Degree Worth?: Who Pays and Who Benefits at Atlantic Canada's Universities?

Published by the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, John Philippe’s report What’s A Degree Worth?: Who Pays and Who Benefits at Atlantic Canada’s Universities? argues for market-based reforms to Atlantic Canada’s post-secondary education system. Philippe believes it is important to ask what value taxpayers receive from growing post-secondary commitments by governments in the region. His conclusion is that they do not receive sufficient benefits for the dollars they invest.

You CAN Get There From Here: How Ottawa Can Put Atlantic Canada on the Road to Prosperity

This report, by Brian Lee Crowley and Don McIver, was written prior to the June 2004 federal election. Crowley and McIver analyze each political party’s position regarding Atlantic Canada policies in depth, with particular emphasis on how each policy aims to bring Atlantic Canada back into the nation’s economic forefront.