Ontario’s government will stand up for the people of Ontario by fighting the carbon tax with every tool and power at its disposal, Premier Doug Ford and Rod Phillips, Minister of the Environment, Conservation, and Parks, announced.

The federal government has passed a law that will force low- and middle-income seniors, workers, families, and small businesses to start paying a rapidly-escalating carbon tax, starting on April 1, 2019.

“The federal carbon tax is going to hit your family’s budget like a tonne of bricks,” said Ford during a tour of Challenger Motor Freight. “A carbon tax will make no difference to the environment. But it will drive up the cost of gas for your car, home heating for your family and the cost of getting food to your grocery store shelf.”

Ford also highlighted the damage that a federal carbon tax will cause to the Ontario economy.

“A carbon tax is not the only way to fight climate change,” said Ford. “But what a carbon tax will do is chase manufacturing jobs, small business jobs, and trucking jobs out of Ontario. Because it is clear you can be for jobs or you can be for a carbon tax, but you can’t be for both. That’s why I’m ringing the warning bell that the risk of a carbon tax recession is real.”

Ford and Phillips highlighted how the federal carbon tax could affect the transportation sector in particular. Close to three-quarters of a billion dollars will be taken out of the long-haul trucking sector as a result of the carbon tax over the 2019-2022 period. For a long-haul truck consuming 88,000 litres of fuel each year, this translates into more than $3,500 in operating costs in 2019 and approximately $11,200 by 2022.

“We know that the federal carbon tax will increase the cost to heat your home, fuel your car and feed your family,” said Phillips. “Our families, workers and job creators have already made significant sacrifices to reduce Ontario’s greenhouse gas emissions. The people of Ontario have done their share, and we have a plan that will hit our remaining target without a carbon tax. There is no justification for the federal government to punish our province further.”

The province has released for consultation a new Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan tailored to the province’s specific priorities and regional challenges and opportunities while striking the right balance between a healthy environment and a healthy economy.

“Our plan serves as proof that you can both oppose a carbon tax and continue to do more to fight climate change, you don’t have to choose,” said Phillips. “A healthy environment and a healthy economy, Ontario deserves both.”

“While the federal government continues to scheme up ways to increase your taxes, we are going to remain focussed on protecting the things that matter most to the people of Ontario,” concluded Ford. “We’re going to continue keeping our promises, put Ontario back on a path to balance and make Ontario open for jobs once again. That’s how you protect health care, education and everything else the people of Ontario rely on.”

Quick Facts

  • The federal government’s output-based pricing system applies to industrial emissions that occur starting on January 1, 2019.
  • Beginning on April 1, 2019, the federal government will apply a fuel charge to fossil fuels in Ontario, resulting in an estimated increase of five cents per litre for gasoline including the additional HST cost. This will rise to 7.5 cents in 2020, 10 cents in 2021 and 12.5 cents per litre in April 2022.
  • Including the additional HST cost, the federal carbon tax will increase the price of natural gas in Ontario by 4.4 cents per cubic metre. This increase will rise to 6.6 cents in 2020, 8.8 cents in 2021 and 11.1 cents per cubic metre in April 2022. The costs of aviation fuel and propane will also significantly increase.
  • The price of diesel will add 5.37 cents per litre in 2019, rising to 13.41 cents by 2022.
  • The federal carbon tax, with HST, will add over $350 million to the cost of heavy-duty transportation in Ontario in the next year alone. By 2022, that figure could be as high as $870 million.
  • The Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan commits to reducing our province’s emissions output by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030 without imposing a carbon tax.
  • Ontario is part of a coalition of provinces, including Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and Manitoba, that have pledged to fight the federal government’s unconstitutional carbon tax.
  • Ontario is challenging the federal government’s Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, an unconstitutional, disguised tax, in court.
  • In a survey of business owners in Ontario, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and New Brunswick, Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) found that 87 per cent opposed this federal carbon tax plan.