Ontario Stands United with Government of Saskatchewan
Ontario Court of Appeal Decision Still Pending on Challenge of the Federal Carbon Tax
TORONTO - Ontario continues to stand united with the government of Saskatchewan and remains committed to using all available resources to oppose the federal government's carbon tax, including through the courts. Ontario will continue to protect what matters most and stand up for the people by opposing the federal government's carbon tax, which threatens the province's jobs and makes life less affordable for families, students, seniors and communities.
"We promised to fight the federal government's job-killing carbon tax with every tool at our disposal, which includes supporting our friends in Saskatchewan in court," said Premier Doug Ford. "I'm disappointed with the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal's decision, but that will not stop us from continuing to fight the federal carbon tax in Ontario."
Ontario is part of a coalition of provinces, including Saskatchewan, Alberta, Manitoba and New Brunswick, pledged to fight the federal government's Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. Ontario intervened in Saskatchewan's reference case challenging the constitutionality of the federal carbon tax and made submissions to the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal, which was heard in February 2019.
Ontario's reference challenging the constitutionality of the federal Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act was heard by the Ontario Court of Appeal from April 15 to 18, 2019, and the court is considering its decision. Ontario argued that the provinces, not the federal government, have the primary responsibility to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and that the regulatory charges the act seeks to impose are in fact unconstitutional disguised taxation.
"Ontario doesn't need a carbon tax to fight climate change," said Rod Phillips, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. "Our Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan commits to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and addressing Ontario's environmental challenges in a way that ensures we have both a healthy environment and a healthy economy — and without a carbon tax. The federal government's carbon tax only makes life more expensive for Ontario's families, seniors and businesses, which is why we will continue to challenge this tax."
"In April, lawyers from my ministry were in Ontario's Court of Appeal to argue that the federal government has enacted an unconstitutional, disguised tax. In February, they did the same in Saskatchewan. We will not miss a chance to stand up for the people of Ontario against this unfair tax," said Attorney General Caroline Mulroney. "The federal carbon tax forces individuals, families and small business owners to pay more to heat their homes or drive to work."
The Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan considers our province's specific priorities, challenges and opportunities, and commits to reducing our emissions to 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030, a target that aligns with the federal government's Paris commitments, without imposing a carbon tax on the people of our province. Through the efforts of individuals and industry, Ontario is already most of the way to this target, with the province's emissions down 22 per cent since 2005.
- The federal carbon tax on fuels came into effect on April 1, 2019. It increases the price of gasoline in Ontario by 4.4 cents per litre. This will rise to 6.6 cents in 2020, 8.8 cents in 2021, and 11.1 cents per litre in April 2022.
- The federal carbon tax will cost a typical household $648 a year by 2022.
- The federal government’s carbon tax will impact: hospitals by increasing annual heating costs by $10.9 million in 2019 soaring to $27.2 million in 2022; nursing and seniors’ care homes by $6.7 million in 2019, rising to $16.7 million in 2022; colleges and universities by increasing their upfront annual heating costs by approximately $9.5 million in 2019, soaring to $23.9 million in 2022; correctional facilities and Ontario Provincial Police detachments by increasing annual heating costs by over $1.4 million by 2022.
- The federal government’s industrial emissions charge applies to industrial emissions that occur on or after January 1, 2019.
- Ontario has proposed an emissions performance standards regulation for large emitters that recognizes the unique circumstances of Ontario’s economy and its manufacturing sector. This approach would reduce emissions from industry, helping Ontario achieve its proposed emissions reduction target without imposing a carbon tax.
- Like other provinces, the government plans to have the standards in place by summer 2019 and will work closely with the federal government to ensure Ontario industry is not double regulated.