Left-wing Manitoba gov’t calls on Trudeau to grant carbon tax exemption for home heating – LifeSite

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WINNIPEG, Manitoba (LifeSiteNews) — Manitoba has joined other western provinces in requesting further carbon tax exemptions on home heating from the Trudeau government.  

On October 31, Manitoba’s New Democratic Party (NDP) finance minister Adrien Sala told media that he is hoping for “greater fairness” in the carbon tax exemptions, which currently seem to favor Atlantic provinces which notably have Liberal governments.  

“We’re seeing other provinces that are asking for some changes, and we did see that the Prime Minister committed to some changes in Eastern Canada,” Sala said an interview the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC).   

“That’s definitely of interest to us here in Manitoba. We want to know how that might extend to greater fairness for Manitobans,” he added. 

Trudeau’s decision last week to suspend the carbon tax on home heating oil has been criticized for benefiting Atlantic provinces, a historically Liberal stronghold, while leaving western and Conservative provinces literally out in the cold.   

Since then, both Alberta and Saskatchewan have called upon the Trudeau government to extend the relief. Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe further promised that if the exemption was not extended to other forms of heating, he will direct SaskEnergy to stop collecting the carbon tax on natural gas, “effectively providing Saskatchewan residents with the very same exemption that the federal government has given heating oil in Atlantic Canada.”    

Moe pointed out that the tax exemption only applies to home heating oil, which is primarily used in Atlantic provinces, while other forms of heating, including natural gas (the main source of heat in western provinces) is not exempt.   

“I cannot accept the federal government giving an affordability break to people in one part of Canada, but not here,” Moe said in a video posted on X on October 30.  

“The prime minister chose to make life more affordable for families in one part of the country, while leaving Saskatchewan families out in the cold,” he said.   

However, Sala seems to be taking a different approach, perhaps hopeful that Trudeau will look favourably on Manitoba since it elected an NDP government. While not Liberal, the NDP is widely considered to have similar goal and values as the Liberal government.   

Furthermore, the Liberal Party, which has a minority government, formed an informal coalition with the NDP last year, with the latter agreeing to support and keep the former in power until the next election is mandated by law in 2025.    

“We’re going to start by having conversations with the federal government around this question to understand how those types of benefits that are being provided to folks in Eastern Canada might be extended to folks in Manitoba,” Sala said.  “No idea what that looks like right now, but we want to start from a position of collaboration and co-operation.”  

However, Trudeau, along with other Liberal officials, have announced that no more concessions are to be made. 

“There will absolutely not be any other carve-outs or suspensions of the price on pollution,” Trudeau told reporters. “This is designed to phase out home heating oil, the way we made a decision to phase out coal … This is specifically about ending the use of home heating oil.”   

Trudeau’s statement was supported by both Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson and Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault.   

Wilkinson dismissed Moe’s demand of further tax relief, saying, “There will be no more carve-outs coming.”   

“We expect him to comply with the laws of the land,” he added. “It is a requirement that they collect that or that it be collected in some way.”  

Trudeau’s decision comes as Atlantic Liberals are beginning to vote alongside Conservatives to end the carbon tax. The Atlantic provinces have voted primarily Liberal since 2015, but recent polls reveal that many Canadians living there plan to vote Conservative.   

Trudeau’s carbon tax, framed as a way to reduce carbon emissions, has cost Canadians hundreds more annually despite rebates.     

The increased costs are only expected to rise, as a recent report revealed that a carbon tax of more than $350 per tonne is needed to reach Trudeau’s net-zero goals by 2050.      

Currently, Canadians living in provinces under the federal carbon pricing scheme pay $65 per tonne, but the Trudeau government has a goal of $170 per tonne by 2030.    

While Rural Economic Development Minister Gudie Hutchings has been ridiculed for suggesting that if Western provinces want the same benefits as Atlantic provinces, they should vote Liberal, he may be correct, according to Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) leader Pierre Poilievre.   

“Justin—you must treat all Canadians equally,” noted Poilievre on X. “You’ve paused the carbon tax on oil heating until after the election. Now do natural gas, propane & other heating. Commons Sense Conservatives offer unanimous consent to pass the law axing all your heating taxes tomorrow. Deal?”   

On October 31, Poilievre dared Trudeau to call a “carbon tax” election so Canadians can decide for themselves if they want a government for or against a tax which has caused home heating bills to double in some provinces.   

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