SaskPower bills to increase Jan. 1 as carbon tax rate rises

SaskPower bills will increase in 2020 due to a rise in the carbon tax. File Photo / Global News

Saskatchewan residents will see an estimated $22 a year increase on their power bills in 2020 due to a rise in the carbon tax.

Effective Jan. 1, the federal carbon tax that is applied to SaskPower’s fossil fuel emissions will increase from $20 to $30 per tonne.

As a result, the carbon tax rate applied to all SaskPower customer bills will increase accordingly.

SaskPower said the year-over-year cost increase for residential customers will be equal to 1.5 per cent. Farm customers can expect to pay an additional $60 in 2020.

READ MORE: Ottawa approves new carbon tax proposal from New Brunswick

The specific amount charged per customer will vary depending on consumption.

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The federal government is imposing consecutive increases annually until the carbon tax hits $50 a tonne in 2022.

SaskPower said they will have to collect $122 million in 2020, up from the annual $62 million in 2019.

Environment Minister Dustin Duncan said the carbon tax is harmful.

READ MORE: Ottawa approves Alberta’s carbon tax on big industrial emitters

“While SaskPower has not increased rates in 2019, the federal carbon tax means all SaskPower customers will pay more each month,” said Duncan, who is the minister responsible for SaskPower.

The carbon tax came into effect in January but began appearing on SaskPower bills in April.

Saskatchewan continues to challenge the carbon tax in court. If the Government of Saskatchewan is successful in their court challenge, the tax will be returned to customers.

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