On Wednesday, Ottawa imposes its carbon tax, forcing Albertans to pay more to fill their tanks and heat their homes.
Alberta Minister of Justice Doug Schweitzer said Tuesday since so much of what Albertans use in modern day life is delivered by diesel-powered trucks and trains, the cost of essential items such as groceries and clothing will rise as well.
At the same time, the cost of doing business will increase at one of the worst possible times for the province. Economic analysis of the former Alberta government’s carbon tax showed that upwards of 16,000 fewer jobs would be created every year due to the carbon tax, the minister added.
“And Ottawa is only going to increase its carbon tax on Albertans, starting with an immediate 50 per cent hike on April 1. Troublingly, the federal government has recently mused about further carbon tax hikes beyond its stated goals, with some allied groups demanding carbon taxes of over $200 per tonne. While Alberta’s former government supported the federal government’s carbon tax plans at federal-provincial meetings, we will not do the same.
In 2019, Albertans overwhelmingly rejected carbon taxes at the ballot box – twice, the minister confirmed.
“We kept our commitment to scrap Alberta’s carbon tax. And while some pundits and politicians at home would prefer that we simply roll over and accept Ottawa’s unconstitutional imposition of carbon taxes on Albertans, we are steadfast in our commitment to stand up for our province – including with our current challenge at the Alberta Court of Appeal and supporting Saskatchewan and Ontario in their legal efforts as well.
“At the same time, we are pursuing innovation to combat emissions with our made-in-Alberta Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) plan.”
Emissions per barrel of oil in Alberta are already down 30 per cent since 2000 and are on track to fall another 20 per cent by 2030. TIER will further this important work, Schweitzer added. Albertans rightly recognize that the global challenge of climate change will not be addressed through taxes on getting to work and heating their homes, but instead through technological advancement.
“Alberta has a strong and proud history of advancing our province’s rights and our government will continue that legacy of standing up for Albertans. We will never apologize for defending our province’s interests. We will never stop working for jobs. And we will never hesitate to do what is best for our economy.”