Madam Speaker, I am pleased to contribute to today's debate on Bill C-19, the budget implementation act, and to highlight some of the measures in budget 2022 that contribute to a healthy environment.
We know that to protect our planet and to build a stronger economy, we must do even more on climate action. Canada can be in the vanguard and on the leading edge, or we can be left behind. That is, of course, no choice at all, which is why our government is investing urgently in this transition.
Achieving net zero is not going to be easy. That is for sure. It will require all of us, at every level and across every industry. Families and members of the general public are going to have to shift our lifestyles, and that is going to be painful at times.
Our plan is driven by our national price on pollution, which is the smartest and most effective incentive for climate action. In budget 2022, we also have the Canada growth fund, which I am very excited about because it will attract billions of dollars in private capital. We need to transform our economy at speed and at the scale we truly need to meet the magnitude of the challenge of climate change.
For our children, this will mean cleaner air and cleaner water for tomorrow, and it will mean good jobs for Canadians today and into the future.
We know pollution has a cost and that the dangers of climate change are real. Despite what the Conservatives may tell us, climate change is real. Putting a price on carbon pollution is the most effective and efficient way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with climate change. We have seen examples of it in other countries around the world, such as Sweden, the U.K., Denmark, Finland, Norway, Switzerland, Portugal, Slovenia, France, Japan, Chile and more.
That is why the government introduced a price on carbon pollution in 2019: to protect Canadians from the dangers and costs presented by climate change, to ensure that Canada continues to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and to put us on a path to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
Under the federal carbon pollution pricing system, the government applies a price on pollution in jurisdictions that request the federal system and in jurisdictions that do not have a system of their own that meets the federal standard, those being Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. All carbon pollution pricing proceeds—and I do mean all—are returned to the jurisdictions of origin.
In the provinces where the federal fuel charge applies, the federal government returns approximately 90% of the direct proceeds from the federal fuel charge to residents of those provinces through the climate action incentive payments and the other 10% goes to projects to reduce GHG emissions, so despite what the Conservatives keep telling the House, which is that the government is somehow profiteering off the carbon price, in fact it is not true, since 90% goes back to families and households and the other 10% is invested into projects.
Today's legislation, the budget implementation act, proposes to change the delivery of the CAI payments, the climate action incentive payments, from a refundable credit claimed annually on personal income tax returns to quarterly payments made through the benefits system. I supported this change wholeheartedly and I was very glad to see it in the budget implementation act.
For Canadians, this would mean cheques would be delivered more frequently. Payments would start in July 2022—around July 15, in fact—with a double-up payment. This payment would return proceeds from the first two quarters of the 2022-23 fuel charge year and then follow on a quarterly basis after that. Going forward, payments would be received before families had to pay for the fuel charge.
I also want to mention the rate reduction for zero-emission technology manufacturers.
Technology, globalization and a historic effort to fight climate change are also creating new industries and new jobs. It is quite obvious to see how the global economy is changing. We can be leaders in the economy of today and tomorrow, and Canadians can benefit from the good jobs and economic growth that will come with it, but to be leaders in tomorrow's economy, we need to make smart decisions today. We need to attract more investment in the industries that are creating good middle-class jobs for Canadians. We need to make our economy more innovative and more productive, and we need to make it easier for businesses, big and small, to invest, grow and create jobs in Canada, while also reducing their emissions.
Canada is already home to some of the fastest-growing markets for high-tech jobs in North America. Toronto, not Silicon Valley, led high-tech job growth from 2019 into 2020, and Vancouver outpaced New York City.
To maintain that growth and make Canada a more attractive destination for business investment in the clean technology sector, Bill C-19 proposes to reduce by 50% the general corporate and small business income tax rates for businesses that manufacture zero-emission technologies. That is significant.
Specifically, taxpayers would be able to apply reduced tax rates on income from specified zero-emission technology manufacturing or processing activities. It would be 7.5% where that income would otherwise be taxed at the 15% general corporate tax rate and 4.5% where that income would otherwise be taxed at the 9% small business tax rate.
For example, eligible zero-emission technology manufacturing would include manufacturing of wind turbines, solar panels, equipment used in hydroelectric facilities, geothermal energy systems, zero-emission vehicles, electric vehicle charging systems and energy storage equipment.
It would also include the production of biofuels from waste and the production of hydrogen by electrolysis of water. The reduced tax rates would apply to taxation years that begin after 2021 and would be gradually phased out, starting in taxation years that begin in 2029 and being fully phased out for taxation years that begin after 2031.
This proposed rate reduction should encourage businesses to make short- and medium-term investments in the manufacturing of zero-emission technologies and help Canada reach net zero by 2050.
Building on investments to encourage businesses to create clean technology, Bill C-19 would also make it easier and more affordable for Canadians and Canadian businesses to adopt clean technologies.
Canada's capital cost allowance, the CCA system, determines the deductions that a business may claim each year for income tax purposes in respect of the capital cost of its depreciable property. With some exceptions, depreciable property is divided into CCA classes, and a CCA rate for each class of property is prescribed in Schedule II to the Income Tax Regulations. Accelerated CCA rates of 30% and 50% are available for investments in specified clean energy generation and energy conservation equipment. Further, such investments are currently eligible for immediate expensing.
Today's legislation expands the list of eligible equipment to include equipment used in pumped hydroelectric energy storage, renewable fuel production, hydrogen production by electrolysis of water and hydrogen refuelling. The measure would apply to equipment that was acquired and became available for use on or after April 19, 2021.
Expanding the CCA will encourage investment in a wider array of clean technologies that can reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and support reaching Canada's 2030 target and net-zero emissions by 2050.
In addition to this, Canada's budget 2022 makes many other suggestions and proposes to make strategic investments to help Canadians switch to zero-emission vehicles by making them more affordable. First, there is a new purchase incentive that proposes $1.7 billion over five years to extend the incentives for zero-emission vehicles program until March 2025. It will ensure the eligibility would be broadened to support the purchase of more vehicles, including vans, trucks and SUVs.
We have also allocated $500 million to charging infrastructure through the Canada Infrastructure Bank, and $400 million over five years through Natural Resources Canada for charging infrastructure in suburban and remote communities as well.
We have also made strategic investments that are left over from budget 2021 that are still rolling out to help transform and decarbonize our industries. Many of those investments have helped with the manufacturing of electric vehicles here in Canada.
I would note one in Oshawa, just next door to my riding. GM Canada has announced a massive transformation that will use $259 million from the federal government to create a $2-billion transformation to help produce electric vehicles here in Canada. That will increase supply. I have heard other members talk about how they have been waiting a while for their electric vehicle.
These many investments are helping us fight climate change while building a stronger economy, which is 100% the way forward, and I am sure that they will also help to alleviate the pressures on Canadians today with the cost of living increases that we have seen.