Kenney to respond to Supreme Court ruling Canada's carbon tax is constitutional

Kenney to respond to Supreme Court ruling Canada's carbon tax is constitutional”

In 2019, Morgan was asked if Saskatchewan would change its stance on the carbon tax if the province lost in the Supreme Court. The court finally heard arguments in September, but reserved judgment.

The carbon tax, known legally as the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, was passed by the federal government in 2018.

Premier Scott Moe released a statement following the decision, maintaining that he feels the federal carbon tax is bad for the environment and economy.

Three provincial governments had pushed back on the plan, arguing Ottawa overstepped its role with the scheme. The federal law is focused on the specific objective of minimum national standards on emissions pricing while still giving provinces the flexibility to create their own scheme, it says. Alberta's Court of Appeal ruled it unconstitutional.

Last May, Moe's government challenged the constitutionality of the tax in the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal.

Ontario's appeals court also upheld the law as a matter of national concern, but Alberta's top court struck it down in 2020 for interfering with a province's constitutional right to develop its natural resources.

"It also sets the terms of some rules of how federalism works".

The onus was on the federal government to prove to the court this is an issue of national concern that would allow it to take control of the matter rather than leaving it to the provinces.

Nathalie Chalifour is a professor at the University of Ottawa's faculty of law at the and co-director of the Centre for Environmental Law and Global Sustainability.

The country needs to cut emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030 to fulfil its worldwide climate commitments, which would involve slashing annual emissions to 511 megatons, compared with 729 megatons in 2018.

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Wilkinson says he hopes the hold-out provinces will create their own carbon pricing systems, and notes he'll be reaching out to them.

"The federal government must press pause on its plans to dramatically increase the carbon tax, especially while so many families across the country - not just in Saskatchewan - are struggling coming through the pandemic", Meili wrote.

He said the federal government should now focus on increasing their emission reduction targets. The court dismissed the challenge in a 3-2 ruling.

The decision means Ottawa can ensure every province and territory puts a price tag on carbon emissions to dissuade individuals and businesses from contributing to environmentally damaging activities.

The Supreme Court decision could be a landmark decision on the division between federal and provincial powers in areas that were not on the radar when Canada became a country more than 150 years ago.

He said he applauds the federal government for taking action on climate change but doesn't agree with its "unwillingness" to support other plans that are also fighting climate change such as what Manitoba has proposed.

"I expect the federal government would find another way to follow through on its commitments to the world and to Canadians to address the very serious threat of climate change".

In a statement, Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili said the carbon tax will continue to have a significant impact on people in the province's rural and remote areas.

Ontario, along with Alberta and Saskatchewan, has been staunchly opposed to the idea of national carbon pricing since the beginning.

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