The majority of voters are with this government on carbon pricing

On Friday, June 15th, 2018 in Debate, Parliament

Elizabeth May

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for Carleton’s last comments are so reminiscent of the 2011 position of the Conservative Party regarding pipelines.

Members of this place may have forgotten, but in 2011, under former prime minister Stephen Harper, the Conservative Party opposed pipelines to British Columbia on the grounds that it would be wrong to export bitumen to countries with refineries that operated under environmental standards not as good as Canada’s. That was in 2011, and things have changed and memories are short.

I will defend the government very little on its climate plan. It does not have a plan and had very few promises in the Liberal platform, but one of them was carbon pricing. Therefore, clearly it has public support to bring in carbon pricing. The NDP, the Greens, and the Liberals ran on policies for carbon pricing of different sorts, and that was by far the majority of voters. The Liberals won the majority of seats without the majority of voters. However, on this, the majority of voters are with them to bring in carbon pricing.

Ontario has gone from Kathleen Wynne to Doug Ford, who has said he will pull out of cap and trade. How do we estimate a national price when we do not know what Ontario will do?

Pierre Poilievre – Member for Carleton

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. leader of the Green Party for voting in favour of my private member’s bill last week, which would have allowed workers with disabilities to keep more of the wages they would lose to clawbacks and taxes. I know I am not her favourite member of Parliament, so it must not have been easy for her to do that. However, she did it on principle and I thank her for that.

I have to be honest. I agree with Doug Ford that Kathleen Wynne’s cap and trade system was an absolute disaster. Of all of the ways to address climate change, this was probably the worst one. It will end up sending billions of dollars to California and other jurisdictions in trading of carbon credits. It will ultimately create a new class of investment bankers and insiders who will make a fortune. The revenues raised by the government itself will disproportionately go to the wealthy and well connected in the form of handouts to businesses and rebates for those who can afford a $150,000-electric Mercedes. It is another massive wealth transfer from the working class to the super rich.

Therefore, I agree with him that we should scrap it. We should work on environmental policies that actually protect our ecology without devastating our economy.

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