By Aaron Wudrick
and Franco Terrazzano
Canadian Taxpayers Federation
Happy New Year taxpayers! Well, maybe not so happy after all.
Courtesy of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, you can now expect higher home heating bills and gas prices.
The Trudeau government recently rolled out new plans to massively increase the carbon tax while layering on top a second carbon tax. This new costly Christmas present from our federal government comes shortly after Ottawa promised it wouldn’t be increasing taxes.
In the lead up to the 2019 federal election, then-environment minister Catherine McKenna told Canadians that the Trudeau government had “no intention” of increasing the carbon tax beyond the $50 per tonne tax that was scheduled for 2022.
Trudeau also blatantly lied to us. Only a few months ago, Trudeau dismissed the notion of increasing taxes.
“The last thing Canadians need is to see a rise in taxes right now … we are not going to be saddling Canadians with extra costs,” Trudeau said this past August.
It’s hard to square Trudeau’s promise of no tax hikes with his recent announcement of increasing the carbon tax to $170 per tonne by 2030, which represents a 467 percent hike from today’s carbon tax.
By 2030, every time you go to the pumps, you’ll have to fork over nearly 40 cents more per litre in carbon taxes. Then there’s the sales taxes you’ll have to pay on top of the carbon tax, which could cost taxpayers about $5 billion in 2030.
Clean Energy Canada heralded Trudeau’s climate plan as “brave” and “honest,” but nothing could be further from the truth. Trudeau’s party misled millions of Canadians about its true intentions: to impose a massive tax hike that will soak families for about $30 every time they fill up their minivans.
Federal Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson is trying to sell the carbon tax hike as having “almost zero” impact on our economy and insists that rebates of collected revenues will actually leave Canadians better off. He should forgive taxpayers for being highly skeptical of both claims after Trudeau and McKenna already lied to us about the carbon tax.
The numbers the Alberta government crunched show that Trudeau’s carbon tax hike could cost the province up to 100,000 jobs. What address should those who lose their jobs send their carbon tax rebate thank you letters to?
Brian Allison, a farmer in Alberta, knows Trudeau’s carbon tax hike will have much more than “almost zero” impact.
“It is death by a thousand cuts,” said Allison. “I don’t like being put out of business by government regulation and taxation.”
It’s bad enough that the feds are increasing the carbon tax during the middle of a severe economic downturn, but Trudeau is adding insult to injury by introducing a second carbon tax.
Trudeau’s second carbon tax was released on a Friday one week before Christmas and buried in so-called clean fuel regulations. The regulations will require producers to reduce the carbon content of their fossil fuels. But here’s the kicker: if companies can’t meet Trudeau’s requirements, they’ll have to pay his second carbon tax.
Economists have already warned that these costs won’t just hurt the big guys. The costs will be passed down to families and consumers.
Trudeau’s second carbon tax will “hit lower-income Canadians” and “means many poor Canadians will face rising food prices,” according to University of Calgary economist Jack Mintz.
The think tank Canadians for Affordable Energy estimates that Trudeau’s second carbon tax will increase the cost of gasoline by 10 to 19 percent, all on top of the costs of Trudeau’s current carbon tax.
Trudeau told us he wouldn’t be increasing taxes or costs. He lied, and Canadians will pay the price.