Andrew Scheer started 2019 with a warning to Canadians ahead of this year’s federal election. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance)

Federal government’s carbon pricing could determine election

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer welcomed 2019 with a warning to Canadians during a campaign stop in Saskatchewan

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer welcomed 2019 with a warning that if Canadians re-elect Justin Trudeau this year, the federal carbon tax that’s going to take effect will only climb.

“Canadians know what Justin Trudeau is going to do. Now that his carbon tax is here, it’s only going to go up. And if he gets re-elected in 10 months, it will go up even more,” Scheer said during a New Year’s Day news conference in a Giant Tiger store in Regina.

“This time next year I plan on being able to tell Canadians that Justin Trudeau’s carbon tax is a thing of the past.”

The federal government’s new carbon pricing system comes into effect in 2019 in provinces that don’t have carbon pricing mechanisms of their own. The carbon price outlined by Ottawa starts at a minimum of $20 a tonne and rises $10 annually until 2022.

But Scheer told reporters that government officials are saying the tax would need to rise to $100 per tonne for it to be effective at reducing carbon emissions, and he says the federal environment department is planning for a carbon tax of $300 per tonne.

“So we know Justin Trudeau will raise the carbon tax higher. His experts are telling him to. His own government departments are telling him to,” Scheer said.

“At that price home heating bills will rise by more than $1,000 a year and gas prices would go up by more than 60 cents a litre.”

When asked by a reporter about his own plan to fight climate change, Scheer responded that the Conservatives’ plan will help reduce global emissions by capitalizing on Canada’s clean technology and cleaner energy, which he said will also keep manufacturing jobs in Canada instead of moving to countries without those things.

Canada’s former parliamentary budget officer predicted in a report in April that the federal government’s carbon tax will cut economic growth by 0.5 per cent or $10 billion dollars when it’s fully implemented in 2022, and would generate significant revenues.

However, Jean-Denis Frechette’s report noted the impact on the economy will depend on how those revenues are used.

Trudeau says Ottawa will return 90 per cent of the money it collects from a carbon tax to Canadians.

Saskatchewan is asking its Court of Appeal to rule on whether the carbon tax is unconstitutional and has argued its climate change plan is enough to reduce emissions and a carbon tax would hurt the Saskatchewan economy.

Scheer, who represents Regina—Qu’Appelle in Parliament, said Saskatchewan’s fight against the tax gets easier as more provinces elect governments that also oppose it, like Ontario and New Brunswick did in 2018.

“Premier (Scott) Moe and Premier (Brad) Wall before him had a bit of a lonely battle but now they’ve got reinforcements. And my message to Canadians is come 2019, the battle will be won,” Scheer said.

(Canadian Press)

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

North Island College hosting nursing info session

Info sessions will take place Monday, Jan. 27 at Port Alberni and Campbell River campuses

Photographer captures Port Alberni personalities in black and white portraits

Meet John Douglas, Courtney Naesgaard in double exhibit Jan. 18 at Rollin Art Centre

Alberni Valley Community Foundation opens grant application process for 2020

Nearly $30K available for Port Alberni-based charities

Stray cat with ‘serious burns’ recovering at Alberni SPCA

The BC SPCA’s Alberni-Clayoquot branch is asking members of the public for help with medical costs

B.C. government puts kibosh on drag racing at Alberni Valley Regional Airport

AVDRA was hopeful for a three-year temporary contract to race at the airport

After cashing in on QB gambles, Chiefs and 49ers to clash in Super Bowl

KC beats Tennessee, San Francisco dispatches Green Bay to reach NFL title game

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

Victoria family focuses on ‘letting go, enjoying time together’ after dad gets dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Most Read