Manitoba won’t abandon carbon tax lawsuit, says Premier Brian Pallister

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The Province will continue to pursue Manitoba’s lawsuit against the federal carbon tax, despite losses by Saskatchewan and Ontario in similar cases, says the Premier.

Premier Brian Pallister said the federal tax is more about politics than preventing climate change, and reassured taxpayers that the Province will use its own lawyers to keep costs down.

Saskatchewan filed an appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada in late May, saying they will continue to pursue their fight.

READ MORE: Federal carbon tax now in effect in Yukon and Nunavut

Saskatchewan’s Court of Appeal ruled in a 3-2 decision on May 3 that the federal government has the constitutional power to implement a carbon tax on province’s that don’t meet Ottawa’s minimum price.

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Saskatchewan Chief Justice Robert Richards wrote in the 155-page decision that establishing minimum national standards for a price on greenhouse gas emissions fall under federal jurisdiction.

He wrote Ottawa has the power to impose its carbon tax under a section of the Constitution that states Parliament can pass laws in the name of peace, order and good government.

READ MORE: Ontario court rules federal government’s carbon-pricing law is constitutional

On June 28, Ontario’s top court ruled the federal government’s carbon pricing system is constitutionally sound and has the critical purpose of fighting climate change.

A panel of the Ontario Court of Appeal said in a split decision that Parliament has the jurisdiction to legislate in relation to matters of “national concern.”

The majority of the Appeal Court rejected Ontario’s contention that the carbon levy is an illegal tax.

In a dissenting opinion, Justice Grant Huscroft disagreed that climate change amounts to an “emergency case” and warned against allowing rhetoric to colour the constitutional analysis.

–With files from Dave Giles and The Canadian Press

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