Mr. Speaker, Canadians have a right to know exactly what the new Liberal carbon tax is going to cost them. In refusing to release Finance Department studies, paid by taxpayers, the Liberals Party is telling Canadians that carbon taxes will continue to increase.
Here are the facts.
At the rate the Liberal carbon tax kicked in at on April 1 of this year, the $20 a tonne carbon tax now being collected will not come anywhere near the Paris accord targets. To meet the Paris goals, the Liberal carbon tax will rise to $200 a tonne. The carbon tax is a consumption tax, just like the HST. If blended with the HST, it would have to rise another 6% to comply with the Paris accord. That means residents in Ontario will be paying a rate of 19%, which is a rate of 19% on every purchase. With the bulk of the taxes paid by the middle class, it will be average Canadians who suffer the most from the Liberal carbon tax.
The member for Ottawa Centre uses climate change as an excuse for every bad policy her government forces on Canadians. The carbon tax is the best example. The same minister, after invoking climate hysteria, claims the rebate bribe on this year's tax return will compensate for the Liberal climate change carbon tax grab.
Where is the compensation for the property owners along the Ottawa River who have lost their homes as a result of bad climate policy made by the Liberal government? The minister makes the comment, “We are all in this together.” Yes we are.
Therefore, let us talk about what is happening in the Minister of Environment's own backyard.
New rules are coming that will make flooding on the Ottawa River a regular occurrence. Bill C-68, which is now before the Senate, will render dam operators on the Ottawa River powerless to protect property owners from flooding.
Ontario Power Generation, OPG, looked at its generation portfolio in hydro power and determined that it “would take 80 per cent instantaneous passage of flow as a principle for meeting the objectives of the new definition of “fish habitat””. OPG modelled one of the outcomes of the legislative changes contained in Bill C-68.
OPG testified before Parliament that had the new rules been in place during this year's flooding “One of the outcomes was that the city of Montreal would have been under a metre more of water if we had not had the ability to store water on the watershed because of flooding in the Great Lakes.” What little authorities can do to control the Ottawa River levels will be removed by Bill C-68.
Anne-Raphaëlle Audouin, president of WaterPower Canada, and the Canadian Electricity Association add “If Bill C-68 is passed in its current form, its impact on our industry’s ability to operate its current stations and build new ones will be catastrophic.”
While the Ottawa River flooding issue is a shared issue for Ontario and Quebec as well as the federal government, Ottawa has legislative authority over “all works connected with the same, or in or on the waters of the River.” That definition is written into legislation that gives responsibility for the Ottawa River to the federal government. I am referring to an act respecting certain works on the Ottawa River, legislation, I might add, that has been on the books since 1870.
It is a given, and everyone knows the historic flood of 2019 has resulted in unprecedented financial losses and expense. Flooding victims have suffered much hardship and are angry and frustrated. Flooding victims are grateful for the help being provided by emergency response teams at all levels of government, including volunteers and soldiers from Garrison Petawawa. However, now is the time to start talking solutions or 2020 will be worse than the flood of 2019.