Premiers across Canada have been meeting in Halifax for the past two days, petitioning Ottawa for a carbon price pause on home heating oil to be extended to other forms of energy such as natural gas.
Manitoba Premier Wab Kinew was among those adding his voice to the call, saying, “We do think that there should be a similar consideration given to the people of Manitoba to get us through this period of economic pain.”
This comes after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a three-year pause on the tax for home heating oil, which is used in nearly one-third of all households in the Atlantic provinces, prompting many premiers to call the exemption unfair to their own jurisdictions.
The Canadian Taxpayers’ Federation says they were happy to see Kinew’s support for the pause as the average family that uses natural gas will pay $300 toward the carbon tax this year.
“The vast majority of Canadians are not going to be getting any carbon tax relief from Trudeau’s recent carbon tax relief carve-out. And look, the solution is so obvious and its so fair, and that’s just to remove the carbon tax from everyone’s home heating bill this winter,” says Franco Terrazzano, the federation’s director.
Meanwhile, several other premiers have petitioned for Ottawa to scrap the tax altogether and Kinew says it’s something Manitoba should consider.
“We’ve now been living with it for about half a decade now — what has it done for emissions? And what would these other things that I’m talking about — geothermal, heat pumps, hydrogen, electrifying transportation, other investments in towards a climate-friendly future — how much would those move the needle?” he told 680 CJOB on Monday.
The issue was also debated in parliament on Monday, as Conservative Party Leader Pierre Pollievre put forth a non-binding motion to pause the tax on all home heating.
The Tories had NDP support, but the Bloc Quebecois backed the Liberals and the motion was voted down.
— with files from Global’s Katherine Dornian