Earlier this week, the Conservative Member of Parliament for Dauphin-Swan River-Neepawa, Manitoba, Robert Sopuck, asked the Liberal Minister of Environment a simple question.
“How much would Canada’s emissions be reduced under $50 a ton carbon tax?”
The Honourable Minister’s response?
First, a shout out to the coal phase-out that occurred in Ontario. Seemingly forgetting that Ontario residents now get the highest bill each month in the country as a result of their poorly managed, highly regulated, and “clean” energy.
Then an awkward tangent on how their government believes in “math”, and finally a note that the largest economies with the best support in our province mystically continue to be the fastest growing areas in the country.
Seemingly forgetting that the Carbon Tax made our nation less competitive overall, and that national numbers, alongside Alberta’s growth figures, would make far more sense to look at when discussing its destructive effects.
Here we see a completely different trend, where the Canadian economy is slowing down, actually contracting in January, and investments are halting to an 8 year low as new outside investments simply fail to materialize.
Who would have guessed that in these fairly stagnant circumstances Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, and Montreal would still be a better place to invest than P.E.I?
Maybe the Minister believes that if we are all poor, we stop noticing inequality?
Who knows, but the Minister’s response continued by simply not providing any real numbers or basis to how much the Carbon tax will actually reduce the carbon footprint of Canadians.
I suspect I know why.
According to the National Post, the Carbon Tax could cost the average Canadian household $2,569 in new taxes when in full effect.
While carrying a fairly heavy cost its effects may be minimal on the global playing field.
Canadians as a whole represent a very small portion of global greenhouse gas emissions, we only create 1.6% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
The Trudeau government’s own carbon emissions target for 2030, would bring Canada’s total annual emissions down from 748 megatonnes (Mt) this year, to 524 Mt by 2030.
Assuming we can meet that target and that’s a massive assumption Canada’s total annual emissions would drop by 224 Mt.
In comparison, China’s existing policy will see annual carbon emissions rise to about 13,600 Mt in 2030 from it’s current 10,540 Mt. That means that in less than one month Canada’s entire carbon savings would be countered by gains from new Chinese carbon producers.
Obviously, the government does not want to get into the details of their program. It is likely far more costly than projected, and the actual reductions likely far less, given the track record of governments worldwide to continuously miss carbon promises.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not a climate change denier. I simply do not believe in the way we are currently combating climate change in a meaningful and non-harmful way.
At this moment you have a scenario where homes in our major cities are becoming so expensive that vast amounts of Canadians are moving to the suburbs.
Many of these individuals commute daily to Toronto or to their specific regional hubs by car as their local public transportation systems are utterly terrible. These people are by no means wealthy, and they are facing the brunt of our poorly managed carbon tax regime.
The solution is to research and develop better technology in Canada through a free market, instead of forcing unready and expensive solutions on the entire population.
Ontario did make “strides” in 2003 by removing coal plants, but it also put far more of its population into a scenario where they had to choose food or hydro, and that is simply not fair.
The former leader of the NDP perhaps broke this problem down the best:
“Those advocating a carbon tax suggest that by making the costs for certain things more expensive, people will make different choices,” Layton said.
“But Canada is a cold place and heating your home really isn’t a choice.”
Heating your house in weather dipping below -30 degrees Celsius, driving your car in cities that lack public transportation and poor housing options, and trying to compete against low-cost foreign production are not real choices when the other options is not freezing to death, not having a home, or not having jobs.
It’s time we discussed climate change and the current carbon tax openly and fairly, understanding that we do need to take action, but that the current strategy is simply wrong, misguided, and hurting Canadians.
What do you think? Let us know below!