Canada is scaling back its planned carbon pricing scheme to curb greenhouse gas emissions after industry executives warned it would hurt their worldwide competitiveness, the office of the environment minister said Wednesday.
But those reductions weren't enough to sway opponents.
Contending Ottawa is acting like "big brother", the Saskatchewan government has put forward its written legal argument against a federally-imposed carbon tax. While Mr. Ford has said he is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the Premier and his environment minister have ruled out any use of taxes to do so.
Conservative Finance Critic Pierre Poilievre hailed the government move as a victory in his party's anti-carbon tax campaign, arguing this is an admission from the Trudeau Liberals that carbon pricing makes Canada less competitive.More news: Senators introduce Russia sanctions 'bill from hell'
"The federal government would do well to go back to the Vancouver declaration where all first ministers signed on behalf of their provinces and territories to work collaboratively with different provincial plans to achieve our Paris commitments, not this made in Ottawa climate tax", he said.
Mulroney said the province is already working with Saskatchewan to fight the imposition of a carbon tax, and said a court challenge will be filed at the Ontario Court of Appeal as well.
However he said the lighter burden should help industry but doesn't reduce the burden the carbon price will place on individual consumers.
Stewart Elgie, director of the University of Ottawa's Institute of the Environment, said the move to ease carbon taxes is necessary to give incentive for businesses to stay in Canada while they develop solutions to lower their carbon footprint.More news: Immigration detention center employee arrested for molesting child migrant
Speaking at Queen's Park, Mr. Phillips said that a carbon tax was only a "cash grab".
Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec all have carbon pricing plans that are expected to meet federal requirements for 2019, meaning the federal system will not be imposed there. "The economy in Saskatchewan is different than the manufacturing economy in Ontario, and is different than economies of Atlantic Canada", Moe said.
In May Cement Association of Canada vice-president, Adam Auer, urged a senate committee on the carbon tax framework "to be attuned to the reality that our competitors in import and export markets don't have similar pricing systems". "Right now, it's too early", said Mathieu Bouchard, president of the Canadian Lime Institute, which represents another sector that may receive special treatment under the shifting plans.
The oil and gas business was not included on the special treatment list.More news: Rogue Goats Take Over Idaho Neighborhood. (We're Not Kidding.)