Prospect of snap election reanimates Canada’s carbon tax battle

(Climate Home News, 25 Aug 2020) Canada’s carbon tax is facing a renewed backlash amid talk of a green recovery to Covid-19 and the prospect of a snap election in the autumn.

The Conservative Party affirmed its opposition to a federal carbon tax on Monday, as members elected veteran Erin O’Toole to lead the party.

In his election platform, O’Toole promised to “fight the carbon tax with every last breath”, saying the Conservatives would defend the environment “without adding new taxes on working families and seniors on fixed incomes”.

The carbon tax has been on the frontline of Canada’s climate debate since it was introduced by prime minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government in 2019. It puts a price on carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels and distributes the revenues in the form of rebates for taxpayers.

Now the Conservatives are eyeing a fresh opportunity to topple the minority Liberal government and scrap the tax after Trudeau – mired in a conflict-of-interest controversy – ended the parliamentary session last week, prompting a confidence vote that could trigger another election this year.

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Climate Home News, 25 Aug 2020: Prospect of snap election reanimates Canada’s carbon tax battle