Thank you, Chair.
Thank you for being here today.
I'm from Saskatchewan, and my riding is very focused on agriculture and agri-foods. Obviously, this topic is really important to me on a number of different levels.
When I look at these four key themes, the one that I would like to focus on is conserving our soil, water, and air. I was able to attend an Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan, APAS, prairie agriculture summit on carbon this summer. With a number of the topics—for example, the science of carbon sequestration, nutrient management and rotations—I was able to see cover crops this summer that just amazed me with how they can quickly improve the quality of the soils.
Also, there was a topic entitled “Frontiers of Research in Carbon and Agriculture”, and for that particular section the speaker was Maurice Moloney, Ph.D., executive director and CEO of the Global Institute for Food Security. He was also an agri-sciences research professor in the department of biological sciences at the University of Calgary. These are high-quality people bringing their perspectives. He commented on the reality that, in Saskatchewan, we already have 25 years of documented research on how best to do this, and we are already doing it. We're the best carbon sequesterers in the world, actually. Many other countries are now coming to us to learn about zero tillage, how we take care of our pasture lands, and that type of thing.
Saskatchewan has been doing this already for 25 years. The incentive is there because of the love of the land and because, of course, we need to take care of it if we want it to yield the yields we want to see. He also indicated that, moving forward already with what's being innovated and done naturally here, we will within the next decade take care of any carbon sequestering related to the oil sands from what Saskatchewan does already.
When we're talking about access to affordable food and the cost of food production, do you have any comments on what imposing a carbon tax will do to the production of food in Canada and how that will impact food insecurity—I myself faced food banks at one point in my life, as a student—and that type of thing? I'd just like some comments on that, Irene, if you'd like to respond.