House of Commons Hansard #436 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was plan.

Topics

The House resumed consideration of the motion.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

4:50 p.m.

NDP

Alistair MacGregor NDP Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House in this final week of the 42nd Parliament on behalf of the constituents in Cowichan—Malahat—Langford to speak to the Conservatives' final opposition day motion which reads as follows:

That, given that the carbon tax will not reduce emissions at its current rate and it is already making life more expensive for Canadians, the House call on the government to repeal the carbon tax and replace it with a real environment plan.

I have some problems with the way the motion is worded and I will go over them. Number one, the motion asks us to basically take a major step of repealing a carbon tax and then putting our faith in a so-called real environment plan. With respect to my Conservative colleagues, if they had wanted us to put more substantive thought into the motion, perhaps they could have timed the release of their environment plan for today so that instead of waiting until tomorrow when debate on the motion will be well and truly finished, we would actually have something substantive to compare a carbon tax to and to see if it is actually going to achieve our goal of reducing Canada's emissions.

That is my first main criticism. If we are going to make the House debate a motion where something is going to be repealed that is already in existence and replace it with something else, it would be nice to know what that something else is.

A large amount of debate on the carbon tax has to do with the price and there are a few things I would like to say to address that. First of all, with respect to my Conservative colleagues, I think they are having a fairly visceral reaction to a carbon tax because it seems to be a policy that was introduced by a Liberal government and that is a problem. There seems to be sometimes a knee-jerk reaction from the official opposition to anything that the Liberals do. We want to examine these policies for the merits to see if they are actually going to do things. I think the basic premise of the argument over the costs of the carbon tax is based on an assumption that we can fight climate change without incurring costs.

Any politician who tells us that they can address this problem without costs to ourselves, to the government, to society as a whole, I am sorry, but they are simply not being truthful. This is going to require a major effort on all fronts. Furthermore, when we look at the proposed costs of a carbon tax, we know at $20 per tonne it is going to equal 4¢ per litre. By the time it goes up to $50 per tonne, which I believe is in three years, it would cost up to 11¢ per litre, so to put that in perspective, that means in three years we will be adding about $7 in cost to fill up of our gas tank. That is what we are arguing over and that is not even in effect now. That is in three years' time.

The reason why I want to underline the cost part of it is this. While we are quibbling about the cost of a carbon tax now, which most experts around the world acknowledge is far too low to have any meaningful action, I want to put that in the context of just what the costs of unmitigated climate change are going to be and how those are going to affect future tax revenues.

If we think that the climate change now is costly, just look what the costs will be when we hit 2°C, 3°C or 4°C of warming and we are already seeing the effects. In my home province of British Columbia, our budget for forest fire fighting is going to be completely blown out of the water. That is the long-term trend.

In my community of Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, I live in a rainforest and in March we had 30% of our normal rainfall. The lakes and rivers were at 30% of where they should have been. In future years that is going to require is a hefty dose of infrastructure money to build a new weir so we can hold more lake supply back to make sure that the river flows at an adequate rate. These have very real costs.

This is not even speaking about the extension of the droughts we are going to have in many different parts of Canada, the flooding, the mitigation and adaptation measures we are going to have to employ.

Some of the most expensive real estate in the country is located in Vancouver, which is a flood plain.

Before I continue, I am splitting my time with the hon. member for Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke.

The Vancouver International Airport is located on the flood plain of the Fraser River. What happens in future years when we have a flooding Fraser River meeting increased sea levels and we have to suddenly build all of that dike infrastructure to keep the waters at bay?

This is going to be a pattern that repeats itself again and again and again. I just really want to underline that fact that while we are quibbling about the costs in the present day, we are actually not doing justice to the issue for future generations and future Parliaments and the costs that those governments are going to have to deal with.

Furthermore, this effort that we are going to have to mount to properly address climate change is going to have to be on a scale of what our country did to fight the Great Depression and World War II. Let us use World War II as an example, because I keep on hearing the argument that Canada's efforts are not really going to amount to much. It has to be sort of a worldwide solution. There is some truth to that.

The fact of the matter is that in World War II, our relative contributions to the wartime effort were quite small vis-à-vis other countries, but did Canada shirk its duties? Did we say that by ourselves we are not going to win the war so we may as well pull back our effort? No, we did not. We mobilized a wartime economy. We put people to work. We got our factories up and running. We increased our armed forces and we sent people off to make sure that the effort was won. We did not shirk our duties. That is precisely the type of mobilization that we as a country are going to need to employ to properly address this problem. I want to use that as a historical context. We as a country have been able to punch above our weight and we have the ability to do so again.

The other thing is that I want to touch on Trans Mountain and the climate emergency motion that was debated yesterday. We just received news that the Liberal government has approved the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and that absolutely undercuts anything they said yesterday with regard to their support for a climate emergency because climate leaders do not build pipelines. The expansion of that pipeline means that the proponents, namely the Government of Canada because it owns the pipeline, are planning for it to be in operation for another 10, 20 or 30 years. Does that mean by the year 2050, with all of the evidence of climate change, we still want to be exporting diluted bitumen at three times the amount we currently are? Is that where we really want to invest our billions of dollars? No, we do not want to do that.

Think of what we could be kick-starting in the renewable energy economy in the future with that kind of money, if we made those kinds of investments and got rid of the oil and gas subsidies that we shamefully still continue to pay out year after year. The government can say all the right words but, looking at the details, it is sadly lacking.

I am very proud of the work that my party has done over the years. Going back to 2006 when Jack Layton brought in his Climate Change Accountability Act , we had Megan Leslie in 2009 talking about a green new deal and, of course the member for Edmonton Strathcona, who has been an environmental lawyer for decades, has brought in a bill to enshrine environmental rights into law. This is the legacy of our party.

We are a party that has proposed an oil and gas ombudsman to look at the price of gas at the pump so that consumers can actually know when oil and gas companies are gouging them. These price fluctuations are not the result of a carbon tax. They are the result of oil companies controlling the supply from the refinery to the pump and they are making billions of dollars of profit off our backs. If we had an ombudsman, we could have Canadian consumers looking up those prices and getting the certainty that they deserve.

Finally, I will just end on this. I am extremely proud of the proposal that we have put forward in our “Power to Change” document because we are not going to tackle this problem with a carbon tax alone. It is going to make a multi-faceted effort where we retrofit homes, and where we help that transition for people who are employed in oil and gas to get those skills so they can so they can transfer to the new renewable energy economy of the future.

It is going to take a Herculean effort, where everyone works together, puts aside partisanship and realizes that this problem is far above us all. We all need to work together to properly address it.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Conservative

Garnett Genuis Conservative Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, AB

Mr. Speaker, I will work to make more frequent interventions in the future. There is no doubt there.

I want to ask my colleague about questions of social justice, in particular for low-income people, in the context of a climate plan. When we have a carbon tax that imposes particular costs on those who do not have a choice, who do not have the capital necessary to adapt, they end up paying the cost without being able to adapt their lifestyles in any way. Meanwhile, there are large emitters that get a break from this.

Of course, there are a range of different programs to provide direct government support to people in these situations, but it remains the case that the way the carbon tax applies, it imposes a particular burden on those who do not have the capital or the ability or the circumstances that would allow them to adapt.

Would the member agree, in principle at least, that a better alternative, a more just alternative, is one that provides the support and the mechanisms for people who want to do things like retrofits to ensure that they have the capital and resources, rather than punishing them for what may be their inability to make the kinds of changes that ostensibly this is supposed to incentivize?

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

NDP

Alistair MacGregor NDP Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, BC

Mr. Speaker, the first thing I would say to the member's question is that I think his argument is based on a premise that people are not going to change, that we are going to be reliant on gas and oil for heating our homes and driving our vehicles well into the foreseeable future.

If we help people make a transition to lower carbon forms of energy, we are going to help them reduce costs. Absolutely, there are some people who are struggling to make ends meet. However, if we look at the last 20 and 30 years of successive Conservative and Liberal governments, they have not exactly helped the issue, when we have waited all this time to put in place programs like a national pharmacare program and helping families with child care. These are real, tangible benefits that would save people money in their day-to-day costs.

If we want to talk about effective mechanisms to help the least fortunate in our society, we have had many opportunities to do that over the previous decades. I am sad to say it, but we are probably going to have to wait for our New Democratic government to do that, because relying on the Conservatives and the Liberals has not produced those results yet.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

June 18th, 2019 / 5:05 p.m.

Liberal

Linda Lapointe Liberal Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I listened very closely to my colleague. There are parts of my speech yesterday on the climate emergency motion that address his concerns about adapting to climate change.

As I said then, “we are also investing $22 billion in green and resilient infrastructure to both boost economic growth”. I would like to know how his riding in British Columbia will use this investment, which includes funding for agreements with the provinces, as well as $2 billion for a disaster mitigation and adaptation fund for large-scale infrastructure projects.

I would like to know how useful this investment could be for preventing natural disasters in his riding.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:05 p.m.

NDP

Alistair MacGregor NDP Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have identified that fund to successive ministers of fisheries and oceans over the last three years. I am still waiting.

Absolutely, I would love it if that money started flowing to my riding, because we have an actual real and tangible need for it. I raised it with the former minister of fisheries and oceans and with the current Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard. Their departmental officials and everyone on the ground agrees that this money is needed.

However, three years later, my community is still waiting. I hope I can employ the hon. member's assistance in maybe speaking with the current minister to get that money flowing, because my community has a dire need for it.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:05 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to speak against this Conservative motion. I will give Conservatives credit for one thing, though: they have made their position on climate change clear. We know with this motion that they are going to oppose one of the most effective ways of dealing with climate change, and that is by putting a price on carbon.

We also know, because we saw them do it, that they voted twice against motions to declare a climate emergency. That makes their position even clearer. They voted against the NDP motion and the government motion on climate change. They simply do not accept the urgency of the situation we are in. The fact that they have yet to announce any climate plans of their own really illustrates their failure to grasp the urgency of our situation.

This is surprising, as well as disappointing, because even business groups are now acknowledging that the costs of failing to act on climate change will be enormous. Earlier this year, the Insurance Bureau of Canada cited climate change as the primary factor in increasing insurance costs and noted that in 2018, severe weather caused $1.9 billion in insured damages in Canada.

Today a working group, chaired by the Insurance Bureau of Canada and Public Safety Canada, put out a report on how we might deal with the financial risks of the more frequent and severe flooding we are now seeing. It is not about how we can avoid those costs; it is about who is going to pay those costs. How are we going to take the risks off ordinary Canadians for things that are far out of their control?

For me personally, climate change is an issue that I have been engaged in for more than 30 years. In 1989, I was working for a small indigenous-led NGO based in Victoria, at that time called the South Pacific Peoples' Foundation and now called Pacific Peoples' Partnership. At the urging of our Pacific Island partners, we organized a public education program, including a tour of B.C. high schools, warning of the threat of global warming to coral reefs and the habitability of the Pacific Islands. Unfortunately, that warning is now becoming a reality with the sad news that in just two years, between 2016 and 2018, one-half of the coral that makes up Australia's Great Barrier Reef died. Coral reefs are dying all across the Pacific Ocean.

It is not the stereotype that Pacific Islanders will have to learn how to swim. What is happening is that the coral reefs, which are a main source of food supply, the main protection of the coasts against storm surges and a main protector of the freshwater lenses that human habitation depends on in the islands, are being destroyed by climate change here and now.

A second warning on climate change came from Australia this week with the release of a policy paper from an independent think tank called Breakthrough National Centre for Climate Restoration, in Melbourne. This report is entitled “Existential Climate-Related Security Risk”. The report concludes that “Climate change now represents a near to mid-term existential threat to human civilization.” The authors note that current Paris Agreement targets are insufficient, and as they stand, would lock in global warming of at least 3°C if we achieve the Paris targets. The authors cite the conclusions of numerous reports that at a 3°C increase in temperatures around the world, governments will be overwhelmed by the scale of the changes and challenges they will have to face. These include the spread of new pandemic diseases, heat beyond human survivability in many regions, massive disruption of agriculture and food systems, flooding of coastal areas, where literally hundreds of millions of people live, and the disappearance of freshwater resources, all resulting in enormous human migrations.

There is a danger that focusing on these doomsday scenarios will cause many to reject them as far-fetched, despite the fact that these are no longer probabilities. They represent the real risk of the catastrophe we are facing. There is also the danger that the sheer scope of the challenge will cause many to despair of any action at all. To me, this motion in front of us today actually falls into one, if not both, of those categories.

Therefore, I will be voting against this motion, because it is really a head-in-the-sand reaction to the very real challenges we face and because focusing on the costs of carbon pricing ignores the far larger costs of failing to act. Those costs are here, and those costs are now.

New Democrats are voting against this motion because we do support putting a price on carbon. We say yes to a carbon tax, not one paid by individuals alone, as the Liberals have designed, but a carbon price that also applies to the big polluters. We would like to see an end to the Liberal carbon tax exemptions for their corporate friends.

Putting a price on carbon is of course an important tool in the fight against climate change, but it is only one tool in what needs to be a comprehensive package of measures. There is no question that no single measure will be sufficient to meet the scale of the challenges of this climate emergency. That is why New Democrats put forward our plan, a plan called Power to Change—A New Deal for Climate Action and Good Jobs.

The Liberals and their policy depend almost exclusively on one tool, just the carbon tax. This will not get us anywhere near where we need to be. The NDP has a comprehensive plan that recognizes that we are all in this together and that success in meeting the challenge of climate change will only be achieved if we leave no one behind. If we ignore the question of workers and their jobs, if we ignore the circumstances of seniors, we will not get the buy-in we need to succeed.

The goal of our plan is clear: to do what we must to keep global temperature rise below 1.5°. In other words, we will have science-based targets, not just arbitrary percentages of reductions. This is the same approach I put forward when Esquimalt council adopted my motion for science-based targets in 2010: measure our progress and adjust our target reductions as necessary to achieve the results we need.

We know now that this means a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to 38% below 2005 levels by 2030. We know it means a reduction of at least 50% by 2050 if we are to reach a net-zero carbon economy, the one that is necessary to halt further rises in temperature.

Some have criticized our plan for being vague on targets for 2050, but I would say that the key to our plan is that our targets for 2050 are at least 40% to 50%. We are committed to whatever reductions science decrees are necessary to avoid catastrophe.

The NDP plan also calls for an independent climate accountability office, much like an auditor general in terms of our finance matters. This office would measure our progress and advise on the targets we need to meet to avoid the catastrophe that we really do face.

Unfortunately, the Liberals have kept the greenhouse gas reduction targets set by Harper, calling for a 30% reduction by 2030, targets that are clearly now inadequate. Even worse, the measures put in place by the Liberals will miss the reduction target for 2030 by 79 million tonnes, and if not adjusted, would only get us to the goal of a 30% reduction in another 100 years, yet the Liberals voted against our climate emergency motion, which called for a legislated requirement to act and a series of specific measures to adopt. Instead, yesterday we voted on their motion, which mandates little but hand-wringing. It says that we have an emergency; it mandates no action.

We have choices before us. We can put our heads in the sand. We can wait for someone else to act, arguing that Canada's share of emissions is too small for our efforts to make a difference, ignoring that we are among the world's highest per capita emitters of greenhouse gases, or we can make different choices.

We can end subsidies to fossil fuel industries right now, amounting to about $3 billion annually. We can avoid wasting money on buying and building projects like the Trans Mountain pipeline, which the Liberal government announced, just before I started speaking, it has approved once again.

The NDP has a real plan to create jobs in all communities across the country, jobs in renewable energy, in home retrofits and in restoration of what we would call the great environmental negative legacies left behind by the oil industry. Many of those jobs will use the same skills that workers in the oil industry already use. They will be good jobs, good family-supporting jobs, in every community.

It is time for the Conservatives to get on board and present their plan. It is time to stop pretending that climate change does not already come with a large price tag, which will only increase as time goes on. It is time to tell us what choices they would make about how we meet the challenge of mitigating climate change and avoiding climate disaster.

The Liberal action is both feeble and contradictory. Only New Democrats have put forward a clear plan to move forward together to meet the challenge of climate change.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:15 p.m.

Conservative

Arnold Viersen Conservative Peace River—Westlock, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am surrounded by skeptics here. The Prime Minister just announced that TMX is going to be built this summer, or at least shovels will be in the ground. That is what he is saying, and none of my colleagues seem to believe that.

What does my hon. colleague think about the approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline?

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:15 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke, BC

Mr. Speaker, I was the first elected official anywhere in the country to move a motion against what was then the Kinder Morgan pipeline. I remain firmly opposed to it. There is no economic argument for this project, it has no consent from indigenous people and it puts under threat most of the local economy in my riding, which is based on ecotourism, fishing and the very clean shores we have that are a mecca for tourism.

This project would be nothing but a disaster were it to be built. However, the Prime Minister, in the short time I was able to see of his statement, said nothing other than a vague promise that there would be shovels in the ground. I do not know how he is going to build this pipeline with massive local opposition and without the consent of first nations.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:15 p.m.

Winnipeg North Manitoba

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I would like to challenge the member to make those sorts of statements to the steelworkers, the trades, the general individual contractors and to the indigenous groups that are behind the project.

The NDP needs to be a whole lot more transparent and honest with Canadians with respect to what its true intentions are. LNG is one of the largest, if not the largest, investment by both the private sector and the government jointly. Even the NDP government in B.C. is behind it 100%. The leader of the New Democratic Party used to be in favour and now he is waffling.

First, can the member give clear indication as to what the NDP position is on LNG? Second, the NDP consistently says that it does not support any form of subsidy for fossil fuel. That has a very significant impact on many rural communities and indigenous communities in the north. Is the NDP policy tough luck to those indigenous communities in regard to subsidy for fuel?

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:20 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke, BC

Mr. Speaker, once again the member for Winnipeg North has proven himself the king of specious arguments. When we said no subsidies to the fossil fuel industries, that is not about cutting off northern communities. It is about helping them make the transition to renewable energy, which will cut down their costs, make life affordable for them and take a major polluter out of their local economy. It is a totally specious argument.

He asks if I would say these things to unions. I will tell the House what steelworkers said about our climate plan. They said it is the only plan that puts workers at the heart of the struggle against climate change. That is what the steelworkers said.

He asks me about LNG. I will tell him what we said. The B.C. government has approved a project. There is nothing federal about that project at this point. What we have said is that it is not the future. We will not support future projects. We will not support building a future on fossil fuels. If that is too complicated for the member, I am sorry.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:20 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, in 1934, a fellow by the name of Simon Kuznets invented GDP as a measure of wealth, because nobody could figure out wealth.

Recently, there has been a great deal of discussion about a different measurement, other than GDP, because GDP just makes the rich richer and the poor poorer. What does my colleague think about an alternative measure that takes into account people's health, their safety and our environment and is something that will pull people together rather than divide them into rich and poor?

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:20 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke, BC

Mr. Speaker, I look to the example of the T'Sou-ke First Nation in my riding, which held a visioning exercise about where it wanted to go as a community in the future, which was led by its elders. It is now self-sufficient in renewable energy. It now has an oyster lease that produces a million oysters for food security. Members sat down and worked together as a community. They have created more jobs now in my riding than they have members of their first nation. With vision and working together, we can achieve an economy and an environment that work for all of us.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:20 p.m.

Conservative

Robert Gordon Kitchen Conservative Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Mr. Speaker, as we prepare to leave the House and the 42nd Parliament for the summer, I am happy to have a chance to speak to today's motion, which reads as follows:

That, given that the carbon tax will not reduce emissions at its current rate and it is already making life more expensive for Canadians, the House call on the government to repeal the carbon tax and replace it with a real environment plan.

This is an initiative that I am passionate about, which I have spoken about here many times. In fact, when I am back in the riding, my constituents continually talk to me about the carbon tax, how we are going to get rid of it and how quickly can can get rid of it. The carbon tax is something that has resonated particularly strongly with the people in my riding, and not in a positive way.

I have been privileged to serve the people of Souris—Moose Mountain for the last four years, and part of why I am speaking to today's motion is due to the commitment I made upon becoming an MP. I promised that I would represent the interests of all my constituents at every possible opportunity, and I am proud to stand here today to denounce the ineffective Liberal carbon tax and the negative impact it is having on Canadians across the country.

The fact of the matter, as stated in today's motion, is that the Liberals' carbon tax is not effective in reducing emissions, and it makes life more expensive for hard-working Canadians. The Liberals seem to think that all of Canada is urban. I say this because the majority of their policies, and especially those tied to reducing emissions, are targeted toward urban areas, with almost nothing for those living in rural Canada. When a major city gets new environmentally friendly buses, how does that benefit the people in my riding? Guess what: it does not.

Furthermore, Canadians living in rural areas are going to be hit hard by the carbon tax and in some ways more so than those who are living in urban areas. It is a normal and acceptable thing for people in southeast Saskatchewan to drive 30-plus miles just to get groceries. Driving 50 miles or more to see a doctor is the status quo, and nobody complains about it, because that is just the way it has always been done. Small businesses have no avenue to rebate the carbon tax. They end up eating it or increasing their overhead or passing it on to their customers, and risk losing their customers.

What does make people frustrated and angry is when a government swoops in and unilaterally decides that Canadians now have to pay more to go about their usual day-to-day lives, and with none of the benefits that those living in urban areas receive. The Liberal carbon tax is not helping the environment, but rather it is hurting Canadians through the increased price on things like gasoline, groceries and home heating.

I would like to share the experiences of some of my constituents that touch on how ill thought out and ineffective the carbon tax really is.

As members know, under the carbon tax, fuel used for farm purposes is meant to be exempt, but this is not the case here. Due to the Liberals leaving a loophole in their legislation, farmers who obtain their fuel at pump locations and not designated cardlocks are paying the carbon tax when they should not be. There is no mechanism to rectify this, and it is creating some big issues for farmers. While I have written letters to the minister, I have not heard one response.

Many farmers are not able to have fuel delivered directly to their farms, because they do not have the ability to store it, and so pump locations are necessary for them to do their jobs. There are huge increases in cost to secure storage areas and to protect storage areas from environmental issues, not to mention the security and protection of this resource. Furthermore, there is no cardlock station within a reasonable distance of these farmers, and a pump location is their only option.

For example, farmers on acreages that are 20 miles east of a pump location have to travel to fill up their vehicles and their equipment, and they are not even getting the promised exemption. They may farm acreages another 30 kilometres in the other direction or west of where they are coming from. We are now at the end of the spring seeding season, and farmers are still having to fight for their government to make good on the commitments it made to not charge farmers a carbon tax. It is yet another example of how the Liberal carbon tax continues to fail Canadians time and time again.

Unfortunately, Canadians have become accustomed to the Liberals misleading them and providing them with misinformation, especially when it comes to the carbon tax. When it was introduced, the minister said that 100% of the revenues from the carbon tax would go back to Canadians and that it would end up being revenue neutral. When asked specifically if that figure included the GST, the Liberals said no, that the GST would stay in our pockets. We have now found out that this is patently untrue and that the GST is being charged on top of the carbon tax, essentially a tax on a tax.

Here are some simple figures when it comes to the carbon tax and the GST on that. In 2017, the number of litres of gasoline used in Canada was 43.6 billion litres. The carbon tax at 4¢ per litre amounts to $1.7 billion that is collected. The Liberals are refusing to tell Canadians how high this tax will go as we move forward. This means that people living in this country are unable to make concrete plans for their future.

According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the Liberals would need to hike the carbon tax up to at least $100 per tonne to meet the Paris targets that they committed to. The PBO has also stated that in order to meet the Paris targets, gasoline prices would need to increase by 23¢ per litre. Despite their claims that they are on track to meet these targets, there is clear evidence to the contrary. It is yet another example of the Liberals attempting to mislead Canadians so that they can save face when it comes to their failed and ineffective carbon tax that has done nothing to reduce emissions.

I would like to highlight some of the innovative work that is happening right here in Canada with respect to reducing emissions. That is the utilization of CCS, carbon capture and storage, technology. The CCS technology is installed on unit 3 of Boundary Dam, the power station in my riding. CCS allows for the CO2 emissions of that unit to be captured and stored three to four kilometres underground, preventing these emissions from being released into the atmosphere. The stored CO2 is then used by the oil industry for things like EOR, which is enhanced oil recovery. The by-product of this process is also fly ash, which is a saleable product that is used in the production of cement. The EOR helps the oil industry reduce its emissions, and the fly ash helps the cement-production companies in reducing their carbon emissions.

While retrofitting power plants with CCS can be expensive, a recent study done by the International CCS Knowledge Centre found that the cost of retrofitting the Shand Power Station would be 67% cheaper per tonne of CO2 captured, compared to the Boundary Dam that is built today.

According to the Paris agreement, CCS is mentioned in three or four potential pathways to reducing emissions. In fact, the secretary of state in the ministry of the environment of Poland, Mr. Michal Kurtyka, and the COP24 presidency bureau director, Mr. Pawel Leszczynski, were visiting the Boundary Dam and they basically said that carbon capture and sequestration will be important and make an advance to carbon neutrality.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

It being 5:30, pursuant to order made Tuesday, May 28, and this being the final supply day in the period ending June 23, 2019, it is my duty to interrupt the proceedings and put forthwith every question necessary to dispose of the opposition motion.

The question is on the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

All those in favour of the motion will please say yea.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Yea.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

All those opposed will please say nay.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Nay.

Opposition Motion—EnvironmentBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5:30 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

In my opinion the nays have it.

And five or more members having risen:

Call in the members.

And the bells having rung:

Business of SupplyGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The question is as follows. Shall I dispense?

Business of SupplyGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Business of SupplyGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

[Chair read text of motion to House]