July 18, 2018 4:20 pm
Updated: July 18, 2018 4:22 pm

Saint John MP warns of incoming carbon tax

Saint John Liberal MP Wayne Long says despite all the posturing, carbon taxes are coming. Todd Veinotte explains.

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The recent election of a PC government in Ontario has the feds at odds with a number of premiers over its carbon pricing plan. But Saint John Liberal MP Wayne Long says despite all the posturing, carbon taxes are coming.

Newly-elected Ontario Premier Doug Ford, along with Saskatchewan’s Scott Moe are unified in opposition to a carbon tax. Prince Edward Island’s government recently expressed concerns, as well.

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New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant says he may have to revisit his carbon-tax plan based on the fact some province’s are vowing not to take part. Gallant added that although action is needed on climate change, a plan needs to be fair to all provinces.

But Long says measures are in place which would force an unwilling jurisdiction to adopt the federal government’s plan.

“The intent is for the provinces to come up with with a made-in-New Brunswick solution, a made-in-Ontario solution, what have you, that is best for industries in their riding and their province,” Long says. “The federal back-stop exists, it’s not intended to be used, but if a province throws up their hands, the back-stop is there.”

READ MORE: Carbon tax won’t harm economy, but climate change will: study

Long admits a forced carbon-tax plan on province’s would not be ideal.

“It’s certainly the worst scenario that could happen, but I have no doubt that our premier, our province is going to work with the federal government. I know there’s a lot of discussions going on and we’ll come up with a solution.”

WATCH: Doug Ford says his first act as Premier will be to scrap the carbon tax

A carbon tax could cost motorists an additional 12 cents per litre, an annual average hike of $1,200 per household.

New Brunswick opposition leader Blaine Higgs says that is unacceptable.

“We don’t need more taxes, we don’t need more money for government to waste from what we’ve seen over the last four years,” Higgs states. “I’ve been fighting this from the beginning. I don’t want to see anymore taxes coming to our province because government is just throwing it away and that’s got to stop.”

READ MORE: Is a carbon tax Canada’s best option to help the environment?

Premier Gallant’s plan includes the re-allocation of existing fuel taxes to fund programs to fight climate change.

Neither Gallant or the finance minister were available for comment.

The federal government has asked provinces to submit their carbon-tax plan no later than Sept. 1.

 

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