Environment Minister George Heyman (Hansard TV)

B.C. backing Ottawa in Canadian carbon pricing court battle

Saskatchewan, Ontario argue fuel taxes are up to provinces

The B.C. government is intervening in two court cases to back the Justin Trudeau government’s plan to impose carbon tax on provinces that are refusing to impose carbon pricing themselves.

Ontario and Saskatchewan have cases in their appeal courts arguing the federal government doesn’t have jurisdiction to impose fuel taxes on provinces. B.C. already has a carbon tax higher than that required by Ottawa for 2020 and is is concerned about being put at a competitive disadvantage with provinces that don’t, said B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman.

“Greenhouse gases do not respect provincial boundaries or international boundaries for that matter,” Heyman said Tuesday. “We will argue that there will be harm to our competitiveness if other provinces do not put a price on carbon.”

Attorney General David Eby said B.C. will argue that both the provinces and the federal government have a role to play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“Our position is supported by repeated decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada,” Eby said.

Premier Doug Ford cancelled Ontario’s cap-and-trade system for carbon pricing earlier this year, and fuel prices have dipped below a dollar a litre in recent days. Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says his province is using carbon capture and storage, and the federal plan makes Saskatchewan’s oil and gas industry uncompetitive.

Ottawa’s legislation requires all provinces to have a price of $10 per tonne of greenhouse gas emissions in place this year, rising by $10 each year until it reaches $50 in 2022. Trudeau has said Ottawa will impose a tax on provinces that don’t implement one, and return the money to each province.

B.C.’s carbon tax is charged on the amount of emission, whatever the price of fuels. This year’s increase, imposed a year earlier than the NDP proposed as a condition of the B.C. Green Party supporting their minority government, brings the carbon tax to $35 a tonne of carbon dioxide or equivalent emissions.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislature

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COLUMNS: School reopening plan receives a failing grade

MLA Donna Barnett said the official opposition is demanding clarity

Williams Lake and District 4-H live auction takes place Monday, Aug. 10

District 4-H vice-president said he’s hopeful the community will show its support

Williams Lake RCMP investigating break and enter in Miocene

A large amount of items were stolen from a family home

Wheels in motion for mountain biking trail project near Clinton

Project to provide immediate employment while resulting in new trail on Jesmond Mountain

Williams Lake RCMP investigating break-in, crash, stolen vehicle

A single vehicle crash that knocked out hydro overnight being investigated as impaired driving

B.C. records 30-50 new COVID-19 cases a day over weekend, no new deaths

Many of those testing positive were identified by contact tracing for being linked to other confirmed infections

Five B.C. First Nations call out Canada for ‘discriminatory’ food fish practices

West Coast nations say government ignoring court-won right to chinook and coho

Salmon arrive in larger numbers at Big Bar landslide

Arrival follows historic high-water levels that halted migration runs

B.C. marine ecologist wants Canada to sink its teeth into shark protection

Gulf Islands scientist says top predator under shocking threat from human behaviour

Rent-relief program becomes new front in fight between Liberals, opposition

Opposition trying to draw parallels between decision to have Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. run program and the WE controversy

Ottawa sets minimum unemployment rate at 13.1% for EI calculation

Statistics Canada says the unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July

$45K in donations received after couple’s sudden death in Tulameen

Sarah MacDermid, 31, and Casey Bussiere, 37, died August long weekend

Famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer brings movements of joy to Long Beach

Internet-famous dancer is exploring Vancouver Island, visiting the B.C. Legislature and more

Most Read