Today's discussion:

Saskatchewan cancelled the carbon tax. Here’s how the other provinces could do the same

Saskatchewan’s most recent admission that public funds may be used to cover the cost of the carbon tax for consumers provides an example to other provinces for how to follow suit. Despite the fiscal costs and administrative and logistical challenges, it can legally be done.

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Comments (36)

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The Hub Staff

Thank you all for contributing to Hub Forum. If you are interested in reading more about Trevor Tombe’s thoughts on the carbon tax, check out his article on the stunning reversal: https://thehub.ca/2023-10-31/trevor-tombe-the-carbon-tax-is-dead/

11th January 2024 at 11:21 am
Jack

Every province in Canada should fallow Sask. The tax is only being used to fill the pockets of liberals. Money for nothing.

11th January 2024 at 7:33 am
Maiz y 1

Yes I hope all provinces defy Min. Guibeault & the Trudeau government

11th January 2024 at 9:25 am
Mark

I sincerely hope that others now follow Saskatchewan’s lead on this. Less tax means people will spend more; hence, more taxes will be collected through the GST and PST, which means that the government will have an increase in general revenue and this will allow funding of green programs to continue. The carbon tax is pointless when there are other methods of reaching these financial goals to achieve the same thing.

11th January 2024 at 7:12 am
Walter Benstead

Hooray for Scott Moe and Saskatchewan. A tax on heating your home in a Canadian winter. Definitely immoral, unjust, vindictive and jurisdictionally illegal. Come on Alberta etc stand against Trudeau’s oppression

11th January 2024 at 10:31 am
Mat

Stop the carbon and double tax. For those of us who live in Ontario, we are paying HST on carbon charge in our natural gas (Enbridge) bill. This is ridiculous and needs to stop!

11th January 2024 at 9:16 am
Kerry Rowe

Way to go Moe , Now lets see if any of the others have the balls

11th January 2024 at 8:33 am
Maize 1

RIGHT ON

11th January 2024 at 9:31 am
Michael Abramowitz

The real solution is to zero rate all home energy from the federal level and roll back the carbon taxes for everything else. The carbon taxes have caused consumer price inflation to rise alarmingly. People on fixed incomes and their family and personal budgets have been adversely affected — causing great economic pain.

11th January 2024 at 11:04 am
Paul Attics

//The carbon taxes have caused consumer price inflation to rise alarmingly.//
What is the approximate share of the inflation of the past two years or so due to the carbon tax?…or is this just a strong feeling/hunch/desire?
I believe the answer was in a previous article on The Hub.

11th January 2024 at 12:04 pm
Kim Morton

Too bad BC can not have a government that stands up for taxpayers, instead of tax spenders. When I lost count, BC had 23 new and improved taxes sine the NDP too power.

11th January 2024 at 10:39 am
Dennis

People seem to keep forgetting that the carbon tax is neutral. The tax is redistributed back to taxpayers. The advantage of the tax is that if you economize on carbon, you come out ahead on the rebate.

11th January 2024 at 9:11 am
RJKWells

There is nothing more unimaginative and uninspiring than governments that think the solution to any problem they face is to slap a tax on it. When looking at my utility bills and then the quarterly cheques that Ottawa sends out, the Feds – like Vegas – are the ones coming out ahead. The house always wins, just not mine.

Ottawa always comes out ahead – despite my having changed out every light in my home with LED bulbs, purchased a high efficiency furnace and hot water heater, added more insulation in my attic, and installed low flush toilets. And to think that they plan to tack on more than 17 cents to a liter of gas and 15 cents to each cubic meter of natural gas this April.

Even those running the show in the Soviet Union were shrewd enough to keep the cheap vodka flowing as the standard of living of those they lorded over declined under their watch. Not the Liberals.

I’d turn to drinking my carbon tax sorrows away, but that would mean handing more of what little Ottawa lets me keep back over to them with their alcohol escalator tax.

11th January 2024 at 10:38 am
Michael F

Every other major developed economy in the world other than the US has a carbon levy.

“There are currently 27 countries with a carbon tax implemented: Argentina, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, the European Union (27 countries), Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, the UK, and Ukraine. Other countries that are considering joining them include Brazil, Brunei, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey, and Vietnam.”

Are they all outliers run by minions of the WEF and Klaus Schwaub too?

11th January 2024 at 8:30 pm
BobSt

Dennis, the Parliamentary Budget Officer has assessed and stated that this ineffectual and punishing tax is not neutral. Oh, and in case you haven’t heard Carbon Tax 2 is coming in April, just what do you think that will do to neutrality and fairness of this ridiculous tax.

11th January 2024 at 9:59 am
Mike

The Govt takes money. Creates “More govt jobs” to support the taking of peoples monies then returning some of the remaining monies back to the people that they took it from in the first place and calling it a gift from the government and then through the media tell us , you peon’s, that we should be grateful for what the elites do for us to make our lives better, And why do we whine? you ungrateful masses.

11th January 2024 at 11:34 am
Lynne

Well I am not coming out ahead on the rebate,I wish I knew how I’m missing out’

11th January 2024 at 10:36 am
Michael F

Reduce your fossil fuel use. That’s the point of the whole thing.

11th January 2024 at 8:31 pm
A.Chezzi

You may disagree with the carbon and work vigorously to get rid of it but to break the law is just wrong. It is wrong to break a law for what you think is good. That is what the U S is struggling with now. No one is above the law. There are other means in our system to defeat this tax. All these must be used first and if these do not work, then there is the vote. Poilievre says the next election is about the carbon tax, then Moe and other Con premiers must wait to hear the voice of the people at the ballot box. If the premiers break the law, then the rule of law is gone and so is our democracy. We are subject to the whims of anyone in power. If the premiers break the law, it sets the stage for others to do the same, hence anarchy. This is not the way to defend democracy and Poilievre should be urging his Con premiers to hold the line but he won`t. He will use it as a wedge. That is why I am so concerned about a Poilievre government. It will be rule by fiat.

11th January 2024 at 8:57 am
Mike

If unjust laws are created by the few, eventually the masses will revolt. History has always proven that the elitist’s and government untouchables will eventually fall.

11th January 2024 at 11:36 am
RJKWells

You can keep trying to shift the spotlight away from the Prime Minister and the problems he’s created over to Pierre Poilievre, but the one responsible for putting the country in the predicament we are in is the Prime Minister himself.

The mess is all his.

11th January 2024 at 10:49 am
‘Lynne

I hear you but when a federal government is out of line and is dictating policy to the provinces and the people you must fight back hard or you will loose your democratic rights.Just look into any dictatorship and see what happened when they didn”t fight back. I’m eighty years old and have never seen Canada in the state it is in today under Trudeau’s Rule.

11th January 2024 at 10:43 am
Lynne

Do not obey in advance.most of the power in authoritarianism is freely given.In times like these, individuals think ahead about what a more repressive government will want, and then offer themselves without being asked.A citizen who adapts in this way is teaching power what it can do.”On Tyranny by Timothy Snyder”.

11th January 2024 at 1:41 pm
Raymond Polman

The provinces should unite on the killing of the carbon tax. Capital purchases are long dated making the payment of carbon taxes inelastic in the short run. Better to dedicate govt funding to tax credits to ease the replacement of carbon generating assets.

On top of this, BC doesn’t have a surplus of clean energy and needs to buy dirty energy elsewhere to power our automobiles and electric heat pumps. We are not ready for more demand on our hydro generated power.

This is just bad planning. Time for a change of governments, provincially and federally.

11th January 2024 at 11:52 am
Mike

While the carbon tax is effective, it has outlived its political welcome. In this sense, it’s time to start looking for another economic instrument designed to reduce emissions. I say this for two reasons.

First, climate change is an existential threat, and, in the name of intergenerational equity, action must be taken. The inefficacy objective – i.e., the common line that “Canada barely contributes to global emissions” – is insufficient.

Second, although technology will be a significant part of solving our current conundrum (e.g., carbon capture and storage projects), it alone will get us out of this mess. Simply put, individuals also need to change their behaviour.

While I don’t know the perfect replacement, I would suggest that any new system hide the price of the “tax” – so, aim it at producers who will then pass it on to consumers. Even though this raises concerns about transparency and cascading, it solves one of the key problems of the carbon tax: that people see it in their monthly bill. It should also remain revenue-neutral with funds split between consumer rebates and technological development.

11th January 2024 at 10:35 am
Deborah

There are democratic ways to express your displeasure but to defy the federal government is not democracy. So every time a province disagrees with something they just do what they want? This is the beginning of a breakdown in law that we’re seeing in the US and around the world. We are a federation and often have to support things we don’t like. That’s the nature of community. To each do whatever each wants means that why respect laws we don’t like, why don’t individuals not pay taxes they don’t like. That is anarchy. Live off the grid, disconnect from society…. How quickly these people call on the feds to bail them out when they’re in trouble. How quickly they want the federal government to give them funds in a disaster. You can’t have it both ways. No respect for this move at all

11th January 2024 at 9:40 am
RJKWells

You can feel free to support something you don’t like, but don’t expect me to fall in line. While pointing to current affairs in the United States, you forget that a tax revolt there a few centuries ago led to something much bigger and better than the Westminster parliamentarians had ever imagined or anticipated.

Oh, as someone who experienced two major disasters (a flood and a wildfire), I quickly learned that the last thing you should ever count on to be there for you is the federal government. They’re there for the photo op, and then they’re gone.

11th January 2024 at 12:47 pm
Lynne

I liked Trevor’s idea however Alberta is trying to build revenue and pay down debt. the Province paying our carbon tax would cause more govenment spending which we Albertans are trying to avoid.I would rather see the premiers take Trudeau to court prove what he did was wrong and have the carbon tax Axed for ever. The provinces are already reducing emissions and Trudeau.and his cronies need to but out, Trudeau is a dictator and this is a fight we need to win for all Canadians to be the democracy we once were.

11th January 2024 at 10:32 am
Harrison Lowman (the author)

Does it matter where the critique is coming from (ie: a British ambassador from a country that yes has its own unimpressive politicians, scandals…etc), or should the comments stand regardless of their source?

11th January 2024 at 10:46 am
Graham W S Scott

This underlines the constitutional nonsense that seems the hallmark of the Saskatchewan government!
They pay the tax but the objective of the tax is defeated!
Another win for populism over common sense.
That the Trudeau government’s behaviour invites this kind of reaction does not justify it.
Two wrongs still do not make a right.

11th January 2024 at 7:47 am
Ray Howarth

Ax the Tax

11th January 2024 at 3:59 pm
Richard Courtemanche

Right on. If only all provinces were collaborating on several national issues, Canadians would not have to bend over to the unstable one and be slaves to his continuous sabotage of everything he touches.

Not too late, Premiers and bureaucrats, you must save Canada from a global demise. Otherwise, you won’t be able to tell your afflicted families and supporters that you didn’t know.

As for Liberals everywhere, there’s still time for redemption.

11th January 2024 at 12:33 pm
Michael Abramowitz mabramowitz244@gmail.com

I certainly see this as a consumer friendly option, the expense could become overwhelming for provincial governments and I believe spending money on health care is very, very important as we need more health care people in the system to complement existing health care workers — doctors, nurses, registered nursing assistants and many other support workers.

11th January 2024 at 10:58 am
Peter

Moe has told the polluters to keep polluting at no cost and has told the taxpayers they are paying for it.

11th January 2024 at 4:32 pm
James Osborne

This behaviour is childish and ranks right down there with those immature adult males who disconnect their vehicle headlights.

11th January 2024 at 9:27 am
Kevin Gallagher

I agree with the author; None of this is particularly wise policy, to be absolutely clear. It’s all pretty silly. 

We all want less taxes and at the same time more government services. More doctors, nurses, teachers, real people to answer our inquiries etc. If less taxes are important what services are YOU willing to give up? That is your important services, not those important to others.

11th January 2024 at 3:23 pm