Supreme Court Decision Means It’s Time for Conservatives to Embrace Carbon Pricing

Ruling offers new opportunities for conservative climate action

Clean Prosperity welcomes the decision released today by the Supreme Court of Canada affirming the constitutionality of the federal carbon tax and rebate. 

“Today’s Supreme Court decision is a huge step in the right direction for climate action,” said Clean Prosperity Executive Director Michael Bernstein. “Canada has the most ambitious economy-wide carbon pricing system in the world. Today’s court decision leaves that system intact.”

“With carbon pricing here to stay, Conservative leaders — both federally and provincially — should use this moment to think creatively about conservative versions of carbon pricing,” said Bernstein. “After all, carbon pricing is the lowest-cost way to reduce emissions, and the only climate policy that generates revenue that can be used to compensate households.”

“Today’s Supreme Court decision is a huge step in the right direction for climate action,” said Clean Prosperity Executive Director Michael Bernstein.

“Carbon pricing could be a net vote winner for Conservatives. Our polling consistently shows that a carbon tax that reduces income taxes would make right-leaning voters more likely to vote Conservative. That’s true in Ontario’s 905 region and in Conservative ridings in Western Canada.” 

“While Conservatives have lamented the costs of the federal carbon tax, the reality is that the rebates put most Canadian households ahead. In 2021, for example, a family of four in Alberta is eligible for $981 in carbon tax rebates, an amount that will increase in years to come.”

“But Conservative leaders could choose to use the revenue in whatever way they deem best to reduce emissions. By next year, the federal tax will pull in $8 billion in revenue. Wouldn’t Ontario Premier Doug Ford, for example, rather use that money as he sees fit rather than have the policy designed by Ottawa?”

“Today’s Supreme Court decision also provides greater clarity for Canadian business and industry, which also broadly supports carbon pricing. Carbon pricing is an essential tool for growing the low-carbon economy of the future, while protecting the competitiveness of Canada’s carbon-intensive industries.”

Quick Facts

Ontario ManitobaSaskatchewanAlberta
  • Canadians support carbon pricing, including committed and potential Conservative voters. 
  • Carbon pricing alone can help Canada achieve most of the emissions reductions necessary to get to the Paris Agreement targets, and half the cuts needed to reach net zero by 2050.

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