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44th PARLIAMENT, 1st SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • No. 291

CONTENTS

Tuesday, March 19, 2024




Emblem of the House of Commons

House of Commons Debates

Volume 151
No. 291
1st SESSION
44th PARLIAMENT

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Speaker: The Honourable Greg Fergus

    The House met at 10 a.m.

Prayer



Routine Proceedings

[Routine Proceedings]

  (1000)  

[English]

Public Sector Integrity Commissioner

    It is my duty to lay upon the table, pursuant to subsection 38(3.3) of the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act, a case report of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner.

[Translation]

    Pursuant to Standing Order 32(5), this report is deemed permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates.

[English]

Auditor General of Canada

    It is also my duty to lay upon the table, pursuant to subsection 7(3) of the Auditor General Act, the spring 2024 reports of the Auditor General of Canada.

[Translation]

    Pursuant to Standing Order 108(3)(g), these documents are deemed permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts.

[English]

International Trade

    Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2), and in accordance with the enhanced transparency requirements set out in the amended policy on tabling of treaties in Parliament, I am pleased to present to the House of Commons the Government of Canada's objectives for negotiations for a Canada-Ecuador free trade agreement.
    The Government of Canada intends to commence negotiations with Ecuador as soon as practicable, but in accordance with the policy, the commencement of the negotiations will take place no later than 30 days from today.

Environment and Climate Change

    Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2), and consistent with the policy on the tabling of treaties in Parliament, I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the treaty entitled “Amendments to Appendices I and II of the Convention on International Trade and Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora”, adopted at Panama City from November 14 to 25, 2022, and “Amendments to Appendix III of the Convention on International Trade and Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora”, notified on November 16, 2020; March 24, 2021; March 15, 2022; March 24, 2022; October 13, 2022; November 3, 2022; November 25, 2022; February 3, 2023; and February 20, 2023.

[Translation]

Committees of the House

Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities 

    Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the 15th report of the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities, concerning Bill C-319, an act to amend the Old Age Security Act regarding amount of full pension, which I and all the members of my political party, the Bloc Québécois, are advocating for.
    The committee has studied the bill and has decided to report it back to the House without amendment.
    I sincerely thank the committee for its work and for allowing me to present the report this morning.

  (1005)  

Official Languages  

    Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the fourth report of the Standing Committee on Official Languages, entitled “Briefing by the Minister of Canadian Heritage on her Mandate and Priorities”.
    I thank the committee for this short report, which I am very proud to present today.

[English]

Motor Vehicle Transport Act

     He said: Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise today to introduce my private member's bill, an act to amend the Motor Vehicle Transport Act.
    This bill aims to harmonize Canadian logging device rules with our southern neighbours. It proposes a 240-kilometre radius ELD exemption from the start and end points of a journey transporting livestock or insects, such as honeybees.
    This common-sense Conservative bill would give agriculture transporters the flexibility they need to safeguard the welfare of livestock if they are faced with unforeseen circumstances while loading or unloading, as well as during their journey, that may cause drivers to go over their ELD allotted hours.
    I would like to thank the constituent stakeholders whom I met with and worked with together to bring this bill forward. I also thank the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food for its work in recommending the provisions of this bill in its 16th report.
    Conservatives will always support Canadian agriculture producers to safeguard animal welfare and bring home the best-quality food in the world.

     (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Petitions

Medical Assistance in Dying  

    Mr. Speaker, today I am honoured to present a petition signed by more than 16,460 Canadians from every province and two territories, including many Yukoners.
    The petitioners call upon the Minister of Justice to bring forward an amendment to the Criminal Code to set out a specific framework for an advance request for MAID. This would be for individuals who have received a diagnosis of a capacity-diminishing, grievous and irremediable medical condition and who would wish an assisted death when they reach an advanced state of decline, their suffering becomes intolerable and diminished capacity prevents them from giving contemporaneous consent.

Rail Transportation  

    Mr. Speaker, today I rise to present a petition for the people of Lillooet.
    In 2002, train service to the town of Lillooet was cancelled, resulting in an 82% decline in tourism. Residents in my riding are calling on the federal government to re-establish rail service to the village of Lillooet for economic and medical needs.

Needle Exchange Program  

    Mr. Speaker, the second petition I would like to present today is on behalf of correctional officers who are calling on the Government of Canada to stop their failed experiment, noted as the prison needle exchange, at prisons in my riding.
    It is not going to result in any better health outcomes. That has been stated by the professionals. Correctional officers want it cancelled now.

Lets'emot Regional Aquatic Centre  

    Mr. Speaker, the third petition I would like to raise is on behalf of residents in the eastern Fraser Valley, regarding the Lets'emot Regional Aquatic Centre.
    Residents of the District of Kent, Harrison Hot Springs and Seabird Island, Cheam, Stó:lo, Sts'ailes, Sq'éwlets, Skawahlook, Popkum and Peters First Nations, as well as Fraser Valley Regional District electoral areas C and D, want a regional aquatic centre. They just want the same thing that people have in larger communities: a pool.

Transport Drivers  

    Mr. Speaker, I rise to present a petition signed by Canadians calling on the government to address the challenges transport drivers in Canada face.
    The petitioners call on the Government of Canada to make laws and regulations that protect these drivers. This protection includes a transport driver bill of rights; transparent industry contracts; the right for drivers to see what they will get paid; a must-have minimum rate of pay per kilometre for drivers and owner-operators; must-have paid layover, downtime and cancellation fees; access to bathrooms where drivers deliver their goods; a cap on brokerage fees; and mandated rest stations with washrooms across the country for the safety and well-being of drivers. They also call on the government to work with provinces and territories to twin the Trans-Canada Highway.
    Transport drivers work hard to bring us what we need every day. They deserve to be treated fairly, with good pay and safe working conditions. The petition recognizes the invaluable service provided by our transport drivers and seeks to ensure they get the rights and protections they deserve.

  (1010)  

Russia  

    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity to present a petition this morning, signed by over 600 Canadians from across Canada.
    The petitioners call on the Government of Canada to list Russia as a state supporter of terrorism. This measure would allow Canadians to take the Russian Federation to court to sue for damages. It would also send a message that Russia needs to be considered a pariah on the world stage because of its illegal invasion of Ukraine.
    I would also like to add that this measure would be of no cost to taxpayers. I am pleased to have the opportunity to present the petition here today.

Spanish Language Day  

    Mr. Speaker, it is a great pleasure for me to present a petition to this respected House on behalf of the members of Spanish-speaking communities in Canada, including those in my riding of Davenport.
    Canada is proud to be home to over 1.2 million Spanish-speaking individuals, representing a huge cultural and ethnic diversity. For those of Hispanic and Latin American descent who have chosen Canada as a new home, the Spanish language holds profound significance, serving as a vital link to their heritage, identity and traditions.
    The petition has gathered thousands of signatures and has the support of Spanish-speaking communities right across our great country, asking that Canada proclaim April 23 as Spanish language day at the federal level. It is a date chosen in memory of the great writer of Spanish letters, Miguel de Cervantes. This designation would serve as a symbolic gesture of solidarity and recognition, further empowering the Spanish-speaking community to thrive and contribute to the multicultural fabric of Canadian society.

First Responders Tax Credit  

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition on behalf of constituents in my riding. They are calling on the Government of Canada to support Bill C-310, which would amend the Income Tax Act to increase tax credits for volunteer firefighting and search and rescue volunteer services.

Air Service to India  

    Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to present yet another petition in regard to Canada's airline service between Canada and India. As members know, our Indo-Canadian community has grown significantly over the last decade. It is arguably the fastest-growing community in Canada today. At the end of the day, with that growth and the demand for international flights even from individuals of non-Indo-Canadian heritage, it is believed that having more direct flights from Canada to India would be a positive thing.
    From a personal perspective, they are really emphasizing that flights from the city of Winnipeg to New Delhi or Amritsar would be a nice thing to see.

Hong Kong  

    Mr. Speaker, I have just one petition today.
    It is deeply troubling to see the passage of article 23 in Hong Kong. This is another devastating attack on the people of Hong Kong. It creates a provision that would allow sentences of up to 14 years of imprisonment if an individual fails to disclose that another person indicates an intention to commit treason. This builds on the national security law of 2020, but it is another devastating action that requires the condemnation of the government. The government should also call for the release of Jimmy Lai.
    I am presenting a petition in relation to the situation in Hong Kong that calls on the Government of Canada to recognize the politicization of the judiciary in Hong Kong. In doing so, it could create a mechanism by which Hong Kong people with pro-democracy movement-related convictions could explain such convictions. Therefore, they would not be deemed inadmissible to come to Canada under the criminality provisions of the Immigration Act.

  (1015)  

Questions on the Order Paper

    Mr. Speaker, I would ask that all questions be allowed to stand at this time.
    Is that agreed?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.

Government Orders

[Business of Supply]

[English]

Business of Supply

Opposition Motion—Carbon Tax  

    That, given that 70% of provinces and 70% of Canadians oppose the Prime Minister's 23% carbon tax hike on April 1, the House call on the NDP-Liberal coalition to immediately cancel this hike.
    He said: Mr. Speaker, after eight years, the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister is not worth the cost. While the Prime Minister wants to drive up the cost of literally everything, common-sense Conservatives are focused on axing the tax, building the homes, fixing the budget and stopping the crime.
     Today, we are going to focus on that first piece of it because, on April 1, the Prime Minister has a cruel April Fool's Day joke planned for Canadians. As if prices were not high enough already, the out-of-touch Prime Minister is going to raise the carbon tax by a staggering 23% in just a couple of weeks.
    I know that I speak on behalf of all my Conservative colleagues when I say that we sympathize with the struggles hard-working Canadians are going through. We see it in our ridings. I have been in grocery stores where well-dressed people who look like they have jobs and have means go through the meat aisle, pick up a package of beef, stare agonizingly at it, and then put it back when they realize they just cannot afford it. That is what life is like after eight years of this Liberal government.
    On April 1, those prices are going to go up, yet again. Common-sense Conservatives are fighting all week to spike the hike and to convince the Prime Minister and his NDP coalition partners to, at the very least, not raise it any more. The first thing we can do to help Canadians is to hold the line on this punitive tax and to not make it any worse.
    I will deal with some myth-busting of the carbon tax. Do members remember when the Prime Minister promised that the carbon tax would do a few things? First of all, he said that it would be revenue neutral, that it would help Canada reach its greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and that Canadians would be better off with it because of a rebate scheme he had developed.
    At this point, I will remind the House that I will be sharing my time with the hon. member for Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry.
    Those are the three pillars that the Prime Minister built his carbon tax on: revenue neutral, reduce emissions and help Canada reach its targets, and he would give out more than he would take in from Canadians. Let us bust all three of those myths.
    First of all, it is not revenue neutral. The government keeps a sizable percentage of the carbon tax. In fact, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, or CFIB, estimates that the carbon tax alone costs small business $2.5 billion, which is $2.5 billion sucked right out of the economy, and those costs that those businesses have to pay gets passed on to consumers. The government keeps far more of what it collects than it gives out with the carbon tax. That myth is completely busted. That pillar has been completely demolished.
    On emissions reductions, let us take a look at what experts say about the Liberal government's plan. It has not helped it hit a single emissions target. The Climate Change Performance Index ranks Canada 62 out of 67 spots. Canada has actually fallen several spots on that ranking under the Liberal government, after eight years of the Prime Minister. Canada now ranks behind countries like Kazakhstan, Algeria and Belarus. Those countries are doing better than Canada under this government. The environment commissioner said that this government was stacking failures on top of failures; that is the environment commissioner the Prime Minister appointed. His own environment watchdog has concluded that this government is stacking failure after failure. It is clearly not an environment plan; it is a tax plan.
    Let us take a look at the impact it has on families, which is the third myth that somehow Canadians would be better off if they paid this tax. That has been completely shattered. We know that it adds to the cost of fuel, heating and groceries. Let us take a look at some specifics.

  (1020)  

    Starting April 1, the carbon tax will add 17¢ to every litre of gasoline and 21¢ to every litre of diesel. We are looking at staggering costs that Canadians just cannot afford. The food experts, the people who monitor the grocery industry and the price of groceries in the aisles, are saying that Canadians are going to have to pay an extra $700 in grocery prices this year, before the carbon tax hike is even factored in.
    If we factor in all of the secondary costs, we can see the ridiculous rebate ruse that the Liberals are trying to sell Canadians. Somehow, magically, if people pay these higher carbon tax costs, the government will take the money, will swoosh it around in Ottawa, and then will spit it back out in various parts at various times, and somehow, Canadians will be better off. The only problem is that once one takes a look at that scheme, it falls apart almost instantly.
     What the Liberals did was something very tricky. It was very clever, but very tricky. They designed the carbon tax rebate to only capture the direct costs, which is only what someone sees as the carbon tax on a bill, whether it is filling up one's car with gas or paying one's home heating bill. One will only see that line item cost. That is the only thing that the rebate scheme factors in. However, what it does not factor in is how all those costs in the economy get passed on to consumers. We pay that higher carbon tax every time we buy something that had to be grown or manufactured, that had to be transported, that had to be cooled or refrigerated or that had to be warmed or heated. Any time a retailer has to pay the carbon tax on their heating bills or on their utility bills, all of that gets cascaded on, and consumers and Canadians pay for that.
    The rebate scheme captures absolutely none of that, but do not take my word for it. I know many Canadians might say that the Liberals have a tale to tell and that the Conservatives have their perspectives. Let us look at what independent experts say about this part of the carbon tax plan.
    The Prime Minister's own budget watchdog, the independent, non-partisan Parliamentary Budget Officer, did this analysis and went through all of the numbers. He broke Canadian families into various groups that he calls quintiles. Basically, he took all Canadian wage earners and divided them up into different groups based on their income levels. This is based on income earners who are the middle group; these are middle-class Canadians who are average, middle-income earners. In Alberta, they would be $1,400 worse off, and in Saskatchewan, they would be $929 worse off once the carbon tax is fully implemented. In Manitoba, they would be $1,000 worse off. In Ontario, they would be $1,200 worse off. Nova Scotians would be $1,100 worse off. Prince Edward Islanders would be another $1,100 worse off. For the people in Newfoundland and Labrador, they would $680 worse off, even after the rebate scheme. We are talking about average middle-class Canadians.
    If we look at one income bracket just below that group, they are still worse off too. They are not better off. These families are still paying more in the rebate, but that middle group is significant. That is almost $100 a month that Canadian families just simply cannot afford. They cannot afford groceries, cannot afford to keep the heat on and cannot afford to pay higher costs through the carbon tax. Again, these are the independent analyses of the Prime Minister's own budget watchdog.
    The final point I will make is the role the carbon tax plays in inflation. The government tries to say that the carbon tax is not a significant driver of inflation. Let us look at what the Bank of Canada governor himself said. I am just going to quote very briefly from committee evidence, and then I will yield the floor.
    Mr. Tiff Macklem, the Governor of the Bank of Canada, told the committee that eliminating the carbon tax would drop inflation by 0.6 percentage points. My colleague from Northumberland asked him to clarify because 0.6% might not sound like a lot. However, when inflation is at 3.8%, with the target of 2%, and if the Bank of Canada can start cutting interest rates once inflation gets closer to the target, that means 0.6% is about a third of the 1.8% that Canada has to eliminate in inflation to get back down to the target so that interest rates can come down. In other words, the carbon tax is responsible for about a third of the extra inflation that is plaguing Canadians and is forcing the Bank of Canada to keep interest rates high. If the government eliminated the carbon tax, it would be one-third of the way to getting inflation back down to the target, which means interest rates and prices can come down.

  (1025)  

    This week, Conservatives are going to stand with the 70% of Canadians who oppose this carbon tax hike and the 70% of premiers who oppose the carbon tax hike. We are going to fight to spike the hike so we can axe the tax.
    Mr. Speaker, we saw the former leader of the Conservative Party twist, bend and jump all over the place to try to justify statistics so that Conservatives can continue their spin of misinformation.
    Let us be very clear. There is a carbon tax, and there is a carbon rebate. It is as simple as that. Eighty per cent plus of people will receive more in the rebate than they will pay in the tax. No matter how many somersaults or twisting of the facts the former leader of the Conservative Party does, that is the reality.
    Why do Conservative Party members not go around Canada saying they are going to be cutting the carbon rebate? They know full well that the disposal income for 80%-plus of people is going to go down under the Conservative plan.
    Mr. Speaker, it is funny that the hon. member is the one who has to twist, turn and pretzel.
    We have to hold up the rebate in just the right light, maybe on the second full moon of the month, and if we have it at the right angle, we might find where someone is better off. This is not my opinion. This is from the independent budget watchdog.
    I can tell all my colleagues participating in the debate today that the Liberals are going to do this all day. They are going to start talking about only the direct costs of the carbon tax, but we know all the experts' analyses have concluded when we factor in all the costs, that retailers have to raise their prices, that shippers have to raise their prices, that producers have to raise their prices and that companies have to pay out lower wages because they are paying a higher share of the carbon tax. When that is all factored in, Canadians are worse off.
    The Parliamentary Budget Officer has shown that 60% of Canadians pay far more than they get back. The fifth quintile, the fourth quintile and the third quintile of middle income-earning groups are hundreds of dollars worse off, even after the rebate program is factored in.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, the Conservative motion today is very short, clear and concise. They are relying on numbers, and I imagine that the Conservative Party is very thorough and does not pull numbers out of a hat. They claim that 70% of Canadians oppose the 23% tax hike that will take effect on April 1. However, if we look at the survey, we see that those numbers apply to the government's decision to exempt heating oil from the carbon pricing legislation, not to the legislation itself.
    Did the Conservative Party forget to specify that in its motion?
    Mr. Speaker, that is not the case at all. We heard the pleas from Canadians who are suffering because of this punitive tax.

[English]

    We know Canadians are opposed to the carbon tax, especially the hike in the carbon tax, and it is not just public polling that shows that. Seventy per cent of premiers have urged the government to, at the very least, not hike the tax that is coming on April 1.
    The Prime Minister is very divisive. He likes to divide groups of Canadians against each other. He likes to divide regions against each other and provinces against each other, but he is actually achieving something, which is a little rare in Canadian politics. He is creating consensus and unity among premiers from various regions, from west to east, Liberal or Conservative. He is uniting them in opposition against his terrible tax plan.
    The carbon tax hike is going to make everything more expensive. Canadians are going to be worse off. They are going to have to pay more, and they are going to lose more money at the end of the month. The rebate program does not cover it. Those are the facts.
    The least the Liberal government could do in a cost of living crisis, as young people are moving back home, as people are moving into tent cities, choosing between heating and eating, is to spike the hike so that prices do not rise any further.

  (1030)  

    Mr. Speaker, the one area where I agree with the Conservatives is that the carbon tax has not brought down emissions, and it has not brought down emissions because the Liberals believe that the tar sands companies would do the right thing. We had Pathways Alliance and the net-zero plan. We have seen carbon emission decreases across the board, except in big oil where it increases.
    As for the carbon tax, Suncor, which was one of the companies that made $78 billion in profits last year, pays one-fourteenth of the carbon tax that “Joe who fills up his gas tank” has to pay. We gave these companies free money, and we continue to give them free money. They are burning our planet and have no intention of doing the right thing. The Liberals were suckers for believing that Rich Kruger, Suncor, Imperial and the rest of the tar sands companies actually cared about burning the planet. I am sorry. I will retract that because we know the Conservatives do not care about burning the planet either.
    Mr. Speaker, my comrade over there from the politburo actually wants to make my speech illegal. If that member's bill passed and I gave the speech I just gave outside of this chamber, I could go to jail, because that is the mentality of the NDP. Its members want to control speech, stifle debate and impose their views.
    However, he did touch on what happens in other countries. Remember, under the government's environment plan, when our European allies came calling asking for Canada's clean LNG to get off Russian oil, that member and his party stood with the Liberal government and said no. It was shameful.
    Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has done a great job in the last little while of uniting the country. There is a great Canadian tax revolt against him and the constant never-ending tax increases that are coming. After eight years, Canadians know they have had enough. They cannot afford the cost of the Prime Minister any longer. He is uniting the country against him and the constant tax increases Canadians are facing.
    Seventy per cent of Canadians are opposed to the latest spike in the carbon tax, which is a cruel April Fool's Day joke coming on April 1 that is going to see a 23% increase in the carbon tax at a time when millions of Canadians are struggling to make ends meet. The punishment and the never-ending tax increases under the Prime Minister, which are fully propped up by the NDP every step of the way, are all part of the plan to quadruple the carbon tax in the coming years.
    Seventy per cent of Canadians and seven premiers from every part of this country are united against this latest tax hike. It has become so bad that the Liberal Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador has called out the Prime Minister and demanded a stop to this latest increase. Even provincial Liberal parties in New Brunswick and Kathleen Wynne's party in Ontario are against this. The Ontario Liberal Party is now so tired of the Prime Minister. He is so toxic now and so unpopular that he is uniting the country against him, including the Ontario Liberal Party, which is now coming out and not just saying it wants to spike the hike but even saying it is going to axe the tax entirely. When the party of Kathleen Wynne will not even support the carbon tax anymore, one knows Liberals are on the wrong track. The great Canadian tax revolt is well under way.
    The numbers speak for themselves. I am going to talk about a few numbers of fact about the struggle Canadians are going through. Seven hundred dollars is how much more a family of four in Canada is going to pay on their grocery bill in 2024. That does not even factor the increase of the carbon into it. This latest increase, a 23% hike, is going to drive up the cost of food, heating and filling one's car even more.
    It is getting worse. Sadly, we have have seen food bank reports over and over again these past few years talking about a surge in the number of visits in this country. The Liberals and the NDP say all the time that they have a plan and that their plan is working and helping. It is not. A recent food charity report said that food banks in this country are bracing after record usage in 2023. They are bracing for one million more visits by Canadians to food banks this year. This is insanity.
    The Prime Minister and the NDP are absolutely tone deaf to keep doubling down, or quadrupling down, frankly, on the carbon tax and think this is not going to get even worse. It has become so bad for charities that 36% of charities last year had to turn people away because they were running out of resources. The Liberals and the NDP, this costly coalition, are about the only ones left in this country, and there are the very few, who are not getting with the program.
    Canadians are tired of the tax hikes. They cannot afford 61¢ a litre on the price of gas in the coming years. It is driving up the cost of living. It is driving up the cost of groceries and the cost of doing business and is taking business away from this country. Even with the abundance of great agricultural land in this country, we are now seeing companies and grocery stores importing food from around the world rather than having it grown here close to home when Liberals are nailing greenhouses with the carbon tax and farmers with an astronomical amount in carbon tax. We are talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars for one grain-drying operation in my riding, and they're on their way to quadrupling it. Enough is enough.
    We know the Liberal math and their promises never add up. That is why the budget just does not balance itself. It is because their math never makes sense.

  (1035)  

    It makes sense to the average Canadian, who knows that it is driving up the cost of their household budget. It is driving up their mortgage now. It is driving up groceries. It is driving up heating. It is driving up having a car and taking one's kids to hockey or to go out and about like Canadians do.
    The Liberals promised $50 a tonne. That is as far as they were going to go with the carbon tax. They broke that promise and they tripled that to about $170 a tonne, after promising it would not go above $50. They promised rebates for businesses. For all of the carbon tax that small businesses and businesses pay in this country, they give them zero rebates, let alone the rebates they give to households, which we know, as the Parliamentary Budget Officer says, do not cover the carbon tax costs that families pay. Businesses get nothing.
    Liberals broke their promise, and now they are trying to get us to believe in their talking points and their little chart, saying that Canadians are better off with the rebates they get.
    It is nonsense. Nobody believes it and neither does the Parliamentary Budget Officer. In his report, the facts are clear. The average family of four in a Canadian province that is projected to get a certain amount back on the rebate are out hundreds of dollars, regardless of which province they live in. If one is in Ontario, one is out, on average, in 2024 and 2025, $627. For Alberta families, it's $911, and it's $502 in Manitoba. The list goes on and on. The more they increase this carbon tax, the bigger the difference, debt and struggle Canadian families are going to face.
    One of the important things is to read the fine print when it comes to these Liberals and their NDP coalition partners. They never just give a straight answer. Watch question period any day. They will never give a straight answer.
    The carbon tax in the coming years is going to quadruple. Here is how. They do not just do it with one carbon tax. They have two carbon taxes. There is the first carbon tax, which is going to total 37¢ a litre on the price of gas in the coming years. The rebates, as I have just confirmed, do not even cover that. They now have a second carbon tax coming in every part of the country. They “word salad” these things. They changed the name, a “clean fuel standard”. It is a second carbon tax with zero rebates for anybody. That is going to be 17¢ a litre on the price of gas in the coming years.
    If that is not bad enough, what really triggers and infuriates Canadians is the fact that the Liberals and the NDP do not have only one carbon tax. They have a second carbon tax and then they tax the tax. They put the GST and HST on carbon tax one and carbon tax two, for a total of 61¢ a litre. They are out of touch.
    Here is the thing that, I think, puts the cherry on top of just how out of touch and aloof, after eight years of the Prime Minister, the Liberals and the NDP are. Over the last year, Canadians are united, as I mentioned, more than ever before against the carbon tax and against this latest April 1 increase. The PMO put out talking points last week. The title is “Is the carbon tax suffering from a failure to communicate?”
    I am sorry. That was not the PMO. It was the CBC that wrote that article. I am sorry. I think it was probably provided by the PMO to the CBC to write, where they try to defend. Again, the entire argument, for the last year, from the Liberals is that it is just a communication problem, that they are just not explaining themselves enough.
    Canadians know themselves. They cannot afford the Prime Minister. They cannot afford this carbon tax. They cannot afford a 23% increase on it on April 1, on its way to quadrupling in the coming years. If this was a communication problem, it would have been solved, because the Prime Minister loves photo ops. He loves all of these news conferences and these flashy word salads.
    In the last year, as a million more food bank visits are expected this year, more people than ever before are using food banks. There are mortgage defaults. The economic news gets worse. The only thing the Prime Minister has done in the last couple of months is rename the carbon tax. That is how out of touch Liberals are.
    This carbon tax and the cruel, latest increase, the never-ending increases, are not a communication problem. They are a tax problem. Canadians have finally realized. They have had enough. It is time.

  (1040)  

     Spike the hike. Axe the tax, and finally give Canadians some relief.
    Mr. Speaker, I can understand the argument that the carbon tax would be inflationary. The problem is that the experts do not seem to think that.
    For example, the Governor of the Bank of Canada, in September, said that the carbon tax only contributed about 0.15 percentage points to inflation. A Policy Options review in 2023 estimated that carbon taxes increased consumer prices between 2018 to 2023 by 0.6%. Stats Canada, in a B.C. study, figured that only about 0.33% of the increased cost of food was attributable to the carbon tax.
    I am not sure where the Conservatives are getting their statistics from, but I would like to hear some of their statistics.
    Mr. Speaker, Canadians agree with the common-sense Conservative consensus that is building across the country. They know it is common sense.
    We cannot tax the farmer who grows the food, tax the trucker who ships the food and then tax the stores that sell the food. When they all get no rebate, they pass that cost onto the consumer. The Governor of the Bank of Canada has said the carbon tax is adding to inflation. Nobody believes this when the rebates do not even cover the first carbon tax, and it is on its way up to 61¢ a litre. We cannot add that cost to farmers, to truckers and to businesses.
     Liberals even tax the big bad polluting snowplows, the private and public snowplows. They are putting a carbon tax on clearing snow in this country. They are carbon taxing everything and it is driving costs up. We cannot go and add all these costs and taxes on and just expect it to evaporate. It is driving up inflation. It is driving up the cost of doing business and the cost of living. It is just common sense.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, for us, today really feels like Groundhog Day.
    It seems like every time there is a Conservative opposition day, it is always about the carbon tax. There are plenty of momentous issues we could be talking about this morning, but we are still talking about the carbon tax. It is so ridiculous.
    My Conservative friends and colleagues often talk about the government's inflationary spending. According to the International Monetary Fund, in 2022, the government gave the oil industry $50 billion in direct and indirect spending. Keep in mind that in 2022, the five biggest oil companies made a combined $200 billion in profits. This is in addition to the fact that the Liberal budget plans to spend $80 billion on tax credits for oil companies by 2035. That is not counting the $34 billion that Trans Mountain is going to cost.
    Does my colleague think that all this spending is inflationary spending, yes or no?

  (1045)  

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois is like the weather vane of Canadian politics. We just never know where it is going to take its stand.
    That member is the one who stood up in the House and said, when talking about the carbon tax, that he wanted to radically increase the carbon tax. He loves the Liberal-NDP coalition. The Bloc Québécois is hopping right on board. They are out of touch and aloof, and we just cannot figure them out anymore, just like the member from the Bloc Québécois.
    For that second carbon tax, which is 17¢ a litre added to the price of gas, they are sending that to Ottawa. They are putting a second carbon tax on the province of Quebec and sending all of that money to Ottawa. What has the Bloc Québécois become?
    If he is saying there are better things to talk about, I am thinking that with April 1 coming and the need to spike the hike, where we have 70% of Canadians, seven premiers and people frustrated with these never-ending tax increases, he needs to go back to his riding and talk to some real people. They will tell him they are sick of the tax increases in the province of Quebec as well.
    Mr. Speaker, I like the member, but of course he does not remember the dismal decade, which was the Harper decade, where the Conservatives made it extremely difficult for people to even live. Seniors were forced to work for years before they got their pensions. Services were axed. I can see the Conservatives reacting because they know how deplorable their record was. They were absolutely obscene. There was $30 billion a year given to overseas tax havens. Money was poured into oil and gas CEOs. They ravaged this country.
    One of the things that I think is very interesting is the climate changer performance index that the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle mentioned earlier. Let us go back to 2014. In 2014, under the Harper government, climate change deniers, we were the fourth worst in the world in terms of our performance against climate change. We know that costs Canadians thousands of dollars every year. Every Canadian pays the price of climate change.
    My question is very simple: Why are Conservatives climate change deniers?
    Mr. Speaker, I am proud of the previous Conservative government, under which we had houses people could afford and food people could afford, and we did not need to have millions of Canadians going to food banks. I am proud of the previous Conservative government, under which there were not tent cities exploding everywhere in this country like they have been in the past few years under the Liberals.
    For the record, the NDP owns every single bit of that responsibility, because it propped up the Prime Minister, but I cannot wait for the next election, for several reasons, whenever that may be. Many Canadians are saying, “sooner rather than later, please” because here is the NDP's pitch to help the struggling senior in Burnaby, British Columbia: Put a carbon tax on of 61¢ a litre, drive up the cost of food, drive up the cost of gas, drive up the cost of rent and drive up the cost of losing a home. The NDP, provincially and federally, is complicit.
    Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. That is pure disinformation and the member knows it. B.C. does not have a federal carbon tax, so he is going to have to withdraw his words.
    That is not a point of order; it is a point of debate.
    The hon. member for Timmins—James Bay is rising on a point of order.
    Mr. Speaker, simply will I challenge my colleague, whom I have enormous respect for, but I think it is not accurate that he knows he is spreading misinformation. I think he just reads his lines.
    I do not hear a point of order. The hon. member for Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry has the floor.
    Mr. Speaker, I always love to hear the NDP. I appreciate its members' interventions proving they just love the carbon tax. They have no problem quadrupling it. Canadians will decide in the next election. I cannot wait.
    I am thankful for the opportunity to once again clarify how having a price on carbon is the most effective way of addressing climate change and curtailing its devastating effects on the health and safety of Canadians. I have had an opportunity to go on television a couple of times with my colleague, the failed Conservative leader, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle. He and I have had a couple of debates on this issue, and I am proud to say that Canadians deserve action that addresses the horrific costs associated with climate change.
    Also, today in the news, inflation numbers are in, and inflation is down around 2.8% from the high of at 8.1% in June 2022. Over the last three months, food and goods inflation have actually been negative. Groceries are going back down to normal. This is a really encouraging trend, and it is worth noting that it is happening in the context of our fighting climate change and lowering our emissions at the exact same time.
    In 2023 we saw a record wildfire season here in Canada. More area was burned, more than double the historic record, and hundreds of thousands of Canadians were evacuated from their homes as a result. I remember that when I was kid, we used to talk about global warming, and there were always images of polar bears and the Amazon rainforest. However, climate change is not in some far-off place; it is right here. It was in the skies of Ottawa last summer when we were working here. There were people with asthma who could not come to work. People were not leaving their homes. There were respiratory distress alerts. In total, the area burned was 18 million hectares, which is two and a half times the previous record set in 1995 and more than six times the average over the past 10 years.
    The Insurance Bureau of Canada also concluded that the average annual severe weather claims paid by insurers in Canada could cost more than double over the next 10 years, increasing from $2.1 billion a year, which is what they are at right now, to over $5 billion a year, and that must be accompanied by an increase in premium income. Climate change is not free, and pollution should not be free either. There are very real costs associated with having one's house burn down or having to flee one's home and job due to an evacuation order.
     We also know from experts and research that the most effective and efficient way to address climate change is to put a price on carbon pollution emissions, which are the chief cause of man-made climate change. The Conservatives on the other side might bellow at me and deny the existence of climate change, as they always do, but it does not change the fact.
    Emissions are on their way down in Canada. We have reversed the disastrous Harper legacy of rising emissions up until 2015. We have done that by putting a price on carbon pollution. We have reduced our emissions, and that encourages reductions right across the economy while giving households and businesses the flexibility to decide what changes they are going to make. It also creates incentives for Canadian businesses to develop and adopt new low-carbon products, processes and services.
    However, members do not have to believe me that it is being done right, as we are doing here in Canada. There is a gentlemen, William Nordhaus, who has a Nobel prize in economics that he was awarded in 2018 for his work on carbon pricing and macroeconomics. He said that Canada is getting carbon pricing right, that it is both effective and affordable for consumers and it lowers emissions right across the economy.
    This is because the bulk of proceeds from the federal pollution pricing system go straight back into the pockets of Canadians. In provinces where the fuel charge applies, eight out of 10 households continue to get more money back through their quarterly Canada carbon rebate payments than they pay as a result of the federal pollution pricing system. For the fiscal year starting on April 1, a family of four will receive, under the Canada carbon rebate, $1,800 in Alberta, $1,200 in Manitoba, $1,120 in Ontario, $1,504 in Saskatchewan, $760 in New Brunswick, $824 in Nova Scotia, $880 in Prince Edward Island and $1,192 in Newfoundland and Labrador.
    When I was on one of the TV programs I mentioned earlier with the failed Conservative leader, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, I asked the member whether he had cashed his cheque, which would have been around $1,300 as he has a family of more than four in Saskatchewan, and he refused to answer. The Conservatives repeatedly refuse to acknowledge that the rebate program is an effective way to combat the affordability crisis and it is an effective way to lower our emissions. More importantly, for eight out of 10 households, these amounts represent more than they will pay as a result of the federal pricing pollution system. Remember, the federal government does not keep any proceeds from the federal fuel charge. They are all returned to the jurisdiction in which they are collected.

  (1050)  

    Carbon pricing works and climate change is real. It does not matter how much the Conservatives yell and repeat their slogans and lines written by their campaign team; we know that there are many ways to make affordability a reality in Canada. That is why we have seen the inflation numbers come down. We have seen groceries become a bit more affordable in the last couple of months. That is really positive news.
    According to economists, the inflation on food and other goods, like telecommunications, was actually negative over the last couple of months. This is in the context of pricing carbon. If Conservatives are going to say that pricing carbon leads to inflation, then how have we seen a rising price on pollution over the last three years associated with a decrease in our inflation? We know that there are many ways to make life more affordable, and affordability has been a top concern of the government since we got elected in 2015. Serious governments need to have a plan to fight for affordability, the environment, reducing emissions and to fight climate change at the same time.
    Conservatives have been talking about food banks a lot lately, which is important. I volunteer at food banks. I support a lot of poverty reduction and poverty elimination agencies, and I meet with officials from those organizations on a frequent basis. They have a lot of really good recommendations for our government. They have recommendations for a universal basic income and how to expand programs like the Canada child benefit. They have recommendations such as making sure that child care is affordable. Pharmacare is on their agenda. They want to make sure that Canadians can access their vital health care without having to make a decision between paying their bills and paying their medical expenses.
    That is why we have been there. None of those food banks, food rescue organizations, poverty elimination experts or economists have pointed to a price on pollution as a cause for inaffordability or inflation, so we are delivering the support where it is most effective, to those who need it most.
    People who live in rural communities, like many of my constituents in Milton, face unique realities. The measures we have introduced help to put even more money back into the pockets of families dealing with higher energy costs because they live outside large cities and have more expensive home heating and transportation costs. We have been very clear that we will continue to implement our pollution pricing system while ensuring that we continue to put more money into the pockets of Canadian households.
    Most recently, through Bill C-59, the fall economic statement implementation act, which we voted on last night, we introduced measures to advance the government's fiscally responsible plan to build a cleaner, stronger economy. It introduces measures to create well-paying jobs, generate growth and build a cleaner economy that works for everyone by advancing Canada's plan to both fight climate change and lower our emissions, as well as to ensure that families can pay their bills. Making life affordable for Canadians while protecting the environment will always be a priority for our government, and it remains a priority today.

  (1055)  

    I would like to talk about two things. The first is about following through on a campaign commitment. The government was elected three times on a commitment to fight climate change and lower our emissions. Three times we campaigned on a promise to price pollution. In the hypocrisy of Conservatives, in their 2021 platform they planned to put a price on carbon with their then leader Erin O'Toole, but their failed Conservative leader, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, went back to his 2019 campaign promise of saying that Canada should be allowed to increase its emissions. He said it again yesterday on television. He has repeatedly said that Canada should be allowed to increase its emissions, which would make climate change worse; it would make sure that Canada is not a leader in fighting climate change on a global scale.
    Integrity requires us to follow through on our commitments, and all of the Conservatives ran on a commitment to price carbon. Unfortunately they have taken their jackets off, flipped them inside out, tossed Erin O'Toole to the curb and are back to their 2019 campaign commitment of the failed leader of the Conservative Party, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, to ignore climate change altogether.
    The second issue I want to address is political maturity. In 2015, emissions were on their way up. We campaigned on a commitment to reverse that trend, lower our emissions and be a leader in fighting climate change around the world. Conservatives, on the other hand, ran on a commitment to do nothing on the environment. They do absolutely nothing on the environment. Their party's official statement on climate change is that there is no human cause for inflation. It requires us to look in the mirror and ask what our plan is.
     For two and a half years, Conservatives have said they would like to axe the tax. They have made bumper stickers and hoodies. It is their brand now: Axe the tax. Political maturity requires them to come up with an idea or a plan to replace it with something. If they want to axe the tax, then what are they going to replace it with? I would ask Conservatives what their plan is to tackle climate change.

  (1100)  

    Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to take to my feet and ask a question in debate today.
    The member opposite talked about political maturity and doing what one says one would do. Does he realize that he ran on a campaign to never increase the carbon tax past $50 a tonne? That is a commitment he made to the people of Milton. No wonder he is plummeting in the polls after that bush league speech.
    The member bends over backwards, trying to ask, “Did he take the money?” He asked the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle if he had cashed his carbon tax rebate cheque. That is Canadians' money in the first place. They earned it.
    The Liberals are trying to argue about how to best give the money back to Canadians. How about they do not take it in the first place and stop trying to give Canadians back their money. Let them keep it when they make it.
    Mr. Speaker, I did not hear a question in the member's statement. However, I will address something that he said. In 2019, that member ran on a commitment, with Erin O'Toole, to price carbon. He went door to door.
    An hon. member: That was not in 2019.
    Mr. Adam van Koeverden: Mr. Speaker, it was in 2021. I am sorry. I get confused because, in 2019, none of them even mentioned climate change as the failed leader, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, ran on a commitment to ignore climate change. The Conservatives realized that was a failed opportunity, and Erin O'Toole recognized that, if one would like to be the prime minister of this country, they needed to have a plan to lower our emissions and fight climate change.
    Clearly the member opposite has amnesia, or he has chosen to go back on his commitment to price carbon. I have a question for him. The amount his family will be receiving in the Canada carbon rebate is $1,504. That addresses affordability challenges for members of his community. It is also an incentive to lower our emissions.
    I hope that the member will join me in making sure his community is aware of that $1,504—
    We will continue with questions and comments.
    The hon. member for Victoria.
    Mr. Speaker, it does feel as though the Conservatives do not have any plan to address the climate crisis. They cannot even really admit that there is a climate crisis.
    However, the Liberals have failed to communicate what their silver bullet solution is for carbon pricing. To double the rebate right now for rural Canadians and try to gain back some ground, they will be increasing the carbon price on small businesses. The Liberals already owe small businesses and indigenous groups $3.6 billion.
    Why would the Liberals not make big oil pay what it owes by implementing an excess profits tax? We just saw polling that says the majority of Canadians wants an excess profits tax on big oil and gas. Why will the Liberals not do it?
    Mr. Speaker, I always say it is refreshing when I have the opportunity to discuss how we fight climate change with the member for Victoria.
    Instead of having to listen to Conservatives deny the existence of climate change and deny our leadership opportunity in lowering our emissions and fighting climate change, we get a refreshing opportunity with the New Democrats to discuss how we fight climate change.
    I agree with the member. The excess profits of the oil and gas industry are absolutely obscene. Not only that, but what they have done with the oil sands is an environmental disaster. I had the chance to visit Fort McMurray, and we have also heard testimony in the environment committee about the poisoning of the Kearl site through tailings ponds leakages.
    There needs to be more accountability from the oil and gas sector. It needs to pay for the mess it has made. We need to ensure that accountability and integrity are there throughout every aspect of our economy.
    Once again, I will say that it is refreshing to talk about how we will fight climate change in the House, not if we will fight climate change, which is always the case with the Conservatives.
    Mr. Speaker, I want to reiterate something that was brought up by my colleague here on this side of the House, which was that the Prime Minister said the carbon tax would not be increased past $50 a tonne.
    I recently read Jody Wilson-Raybould's book, in which she said that she had realized that the Liberals will say whatever they have to say to get elected. It is obvious that this is just another broken promise from them.
    The member for Milton talked about emitting emissions. I have a very basic question. Does he believe that families that are heating their homes, putting fuel in their gas tanks to take their kids to hockey or to get to work, or feeding their families, are emitting emissions?
    Mr. Speaker, it is a reality in Canada that we live in a cold country in the winter, but it gets pretty warm in the summer. A lot of our goods come from far away, and that requires a lot of transportation costs. Canadians have a carbon footprint.
    There is a way we could increase that carbon footprint. We could ignore climate change and say to heck with it, we are just going to let carbon emissions fly and that we do not care about climate change.
     However, there is an alternative. We could consider a heat pump. We could consider more fuel-efficient vehicles. We could consider more locally grown produce and meat. These are ways to lower our carbon footprint. We are supporting Canadians through those choices.
    In Saskatchewan, where my colleague is from, there is a $1,504 rebate.

  (1105)  

    Mr. Speaker, it is disappointing that we are again discussing this today, after we have discussed it time and time again, but I think it was telling for the member for Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek when the member for Milton said, which is quite reasonable, that we need to have a plan to fight climate change, and the member for Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek said, no, we do not. That is the Conservative Party plan.
    An hon. member: You are misrepresenting what I said. I said that you do not have a plan. You need to be truthful in this place.
    Mr. Chris Bittle: Mr. Speaker, she is heckling me now because she is quite upset that I am calling her out. She thinks she can heckle and not be called out on it, but clearly, it is climate denial. She is trying to shout me down at the moment.
    Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, I have been trying to listen to this dismal debate, but people shouting at each other has lowered the tone even more than it normally would be, so I would ask you to let people say their dismal points so they can go on the record without this kind of bitter batter back and forth.
     Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I would like you to clarify if, in fact, it is a point of order when a member absolutely misleads the House about what another member said during debate.
    I would caution members not to impugn what other members have said in their speeches to make sure that we treat everyone as honourable members, as we all accept in this chamber. I want to make sure we have a reasonable debate among members of the House.
    Mr. Speaker, on the same point of order, the member across the way clearly misled the House on something my colleague said. I think it is incumbent upon you as Speaker to have him withdraw a comment that was a direct and absolute intentional misrepresentation of something one of my colleagues on this side of the House said.
    The member is known for that. You know he is known for that, and it is about time somebody called him on it. I request that you do that, Mr. Speaker.
    Mr. Speaker, the member yelled what I said she said. You can check Hansard and go back to the tapes. I am happy to come back if it was not what the member said. It was loud and clear, and it was caught by Hansard. I suggest you go back to check because it was very clear.
    To allow other members to impugn what I heard seems to be hypocritical for those members. They did not hear it and were not being yelled at. I was sitting next to the hon. member. This is preposterous.
    This is why we recognize an individual to speak, and there is a question and comment period afterward so people can be clear in their positions on whatever we are talking about. I would caution members not to put words in other people's mouths. It seems to happen an awful lot in the chamber, and it should not happen. I would ask members to be judicious in the words they use. We will go back to listen to the tapes if that is what we need to do to find out who said what when.
    I will ask the hon. parliamentary secretary to continue, but I will caution him. Maybe he could move on to his next point.
    Mr. Speaker, again the Conservatives are saying the quiet part out loud, which is that they deny the existence of climate change, an existential threat to humanity. They come back time and time again with slogans. I have said before that their only environmental plan is to recycle slogans in this place. They represent ridings across the country, ridings that are in drought, or that have suffered from fires, floods and hurricanes, which have been exacerbated by climate change. What do they do? They heckle, mock, and deny. They offer no plan for the future and mislead Canadians on what is actually increasing prices.
    The major increase that Canadians are suffering from, especially on food, is with respect to climate change. I have asked a number of Conservative members over the course of the last couple of years to explain to me why prices for food in the United States have increased at the same rate they have increased in Canada. They have increased at the same rate, even though there is not a national price on pollution in the United States.
    An hon. member: Oh, oh!
    Mr. Chris Bittle: Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are still heckling me. They cannot even accept the evidence before them that it is climate change. They cannot accept it from the farmers in their own ridings. I have seen it in Niagara with vine loss.

  (1110)  

    Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, we need to be accurate because this is for the historical record.
    My hon. colleague claimed that the Conservatives were heckling. I think it was just a bunch of grunts and snorts. I think he should be accurate about how the Conservatives are responding.
    That is not a point of order. While I do appreciate the levity that the hon. member tries to bring to the House, let us try to be serious in the discussion we are having today.
    Mr. Speaker, I expect a little better from the member in the seriousness of this debate. I know he believes passionately about this.
    Speaking about farmers back home, just a couple of years ago we saw a 25% loss of vines in the grape industry in Niagara. We are seeing catastrophic losses in British Columbia. I know that some members represent those farmers. Again, as I said, there have been historic fires and floods. Those costs are borne by Canadians, and what do Conservatives have to say to those Canadians? They have no plan. There is nothing on the table, and those costs will continue to increase. People may not be able to get insurance. That is a reality as one's insurance costs will go up, but that is ignored.
     It is funny. The first time I heard a Conservative politician even mention a rebate was when the premier of the government in Saskatchewan was trying to reassure Saskatchewan residents that they should not worry as they would still get their rebates, and that is because Canadians look forward to seeing that. Conservatives ignore that whole aspect of it. They do not address it, and they make up numbers on the cost of the price on pollution, even though they know full well that Canadians, especially lower-income Canadians, are much better off.
     By cutting the price on pollution, the biggest recipient would be the oil companies, and they would not pass that along. As we have now seen, oil companies are having record profits. It is a commodity-based industry. They are not going to pass that profit onto us. This is about the Conservatives standing up for big oil, which is truly unfortunate.
    I believe some of them do understand that there is a climate crisis before us, but why is there no plan? All of them ran on pricing pollution. A couple of years ago it was fine for them to go door to door to say that they were going to price pollution. It was not a plan that I particularly agreed with, but it was nice that every party in this country, including every member sitting here, ran on pricing pollution, knowing we need an environmental plan.
    This evening there will be tributes to the late prime minister Brian Mulroney. In all of the speeches yesterday, there was talk of him being a great statesman. We are lucky as Canadians to have had him at the helm to work with the United States and other countries to get things done, whether that was for apartheid or environmental issues. One of those issues was pricing pollution. I think we can all remember the scourge of acid rain, what it was doing, the concerns Canadians had and the way to fix it.
    An hon. member: It was not a carbon tax.
    Mr. Chris Bittle: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member heckled me that it is not a carbon tax.
    The way to fix it was to price pollution, to price the thing one did not want so one has less of it. This is cognitive dissonance. They cannot get it through their heads that this works. They can yell and try to shout me down, but it worked. Former prime minister Mulroney worked with his counterparts in the United States. They are laughing, which is unbelievably shocking.
    However, it worked. They worked with premiers across parties. They worked with the Liberal premier in Ontario. They worked with the president of the United States. They worked across the world to get a price on pollution so that they could eliminate the scourge of acid ran. We saw that it is not an issue. Canada can be a leader, which we choose to be, or we can go the Conservative way and just deny this incredible threat that is facing us.
    In 2015, Canada was on track for our emissions to grow to 815 megatonnes by 2030. Conservatives had no climate plan. It was free to pollute, and oil and gas companies were allowed to emit unlimited pollution.

  (1115)  

    Our latest update projects that our emissions will be 467 megatonnes in 2030, which is 43% below where they should be. I would have thought that in this place we could all agree that we do not like pollution. I would have thought that this would be a consensus we could all come to. Unfortunately, it is not. As a result of our work, our emissions have declined by 7% since 2015 for the first time ever and we are on track to meet our climate targets.
    I occasionally speak of them as my two favourite constituents, Hannah and Ethan, who are my son and daughter. They are seven and five years old. I am disappointed that we do not have conversations about what the future will look like for them in 2030 or 2050. We look at a party that only wants there to be profits for oil companies right now. I am hoping that for the rest of day we can have that debate.
    Mr. Speaker, it is always a pleasure to rise on behalf of the people from Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo.
    First, I want to wish my father a happy birthday today.
    On a more sombre note, I also want to recognize the life of a constituent, Ms. Gemma Bittante, who passed away recently. She was a pillar in my life, a pillar in the Italian community and somebody who will be greatly missed. She gave hours and hours of volunteer work and made me hot dogs when I was just a little kindergarten student. May perpetual light shine upon her. I wish her family the best in this difficult time.
    I listened with intent to my hon. colleague's speech. He spoke about disincentivizing, and that is my word, not the word he used, certain behaviours and we tax those.
    In my view, the problem with the carbon tax is that we cannot disincentivize people from eating, and the carbon tax impacts the price of food. One cannot disincentivize people from driving when they have a rural location.
    How can this lead to the result that the Liberal Party wants when the reality is that people need to do the things it is trying to curtail?
    Mr. Speaker, again, the rebate is not mentioned, which covers the things he is talking about. Farmers are exempt. Farm diesel is exempt from the price on pollution.
    We can incentivize car companies, for example. The auto industry is one of the most innovative in the world when it comes to greening up. We have much more fuel-efficient vehicles precisely because of initiatives by government and regulation in terms of making cars less polluting.
    I know that they would like to throw that away, but I honestly believe that the member, who comes from a province that has suffered from the severe impacts of climate change, wants to see action rather than saying that we do not care, which seems to be where the Conservative Party is right now.

  (1120)  

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, former environment minister Catherine McKenna, who worked to implement the carbon tax, spoke to the media yesterday.
    She said that the Liberal government had done a poor job of selling its own environmental and economic measure and that it was a shame the Conservatives had completely taken control of the narrative. She wondered how this could have happened.
    According to her, the Minister of Finance apparently was not too keen on the idea of environmental measures and was more on the side of the oil companies. This is information that was recently revealed by the media.
    Can my colleague tell me when the Liberals are finally going to take back control of the narrative and defend the measure they put in place, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?
    Incidentally, this measure is not going to do the job on its own. The government should put other measures in place so that we can meet our greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets.

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, the Province of Quebec has shown us how effective a price on pollution has been, which was in existence well before the federal price and well before we got elected. Some members of the Conservative Party were members of a British Columbia Conservative Party that brought in a price on pollution because they knew it was effective.
    I think it is going to take all of us to dispel the misinformation that is being spouted by the Conservative Party on this issue, to care about the climate, to care about our children and future generations or to at least have the Conservatives come up with some kind of plan.
    Someone called the price on pollution a magic bullet. It is not, but the Conservatives offer nothing. We could maybe demand that they offer something to explain to Canadians what they are going to do.
    Mr. Speaker, we lived through the dismal decade of the Harper years, when Canada was the fourth-worst country in the world with respect to emissions around climate change. We saw the doubling of housing prices under the Conservatives. We saw the doubling of food bank line-ups under the Conservatives. We saw people forced to work longer and longer as the retirement age of seniors was scrapped. It was terrible.
    My question for the Liberals this. Why have they continued so many of the same practices? The massive handouts to oil and gas CEOs have continued under the Liberals. Yes, they have moved up from the absolutely deplorable record of the climate-denying Conservatives, but only a few spots.
     The reality is that the Liberals should be putting in place things that the NDP have been pushing in the House of Commons as the adults in the House, such as ensuring that we actually have an excess profits tax, that we end oil and gas subsidies and that we actually invest in clean energy.
     Why are the Liberals not doing the things that they know they have to do, if we are really to beat this battle against climate change?
    Mr. Speaker, we are doing it. We are ending fossil fuel subsidies. We are engaging in serious plans on technology and on other issues. It is not just a price on pollution; it is a comprehensive plan. We are working on it, and we are happy to work with the NDP on this issue. We have been taking action since 2015, and we will continue to do so.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, like my colleague from Avignon—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, with whom I will be sharing my time, I find the motion a bit odd. It is based on a survey, not facts. It is a motion that misleads Quebeckers and Canadians. It says the carbon tax increase planned for April 1 will take place immediately when it is in fact staggered until 2030 or 2031.
     To be clear, it is not our job to tell the opposition parties what to do with their opposition days, but the Conservatives are obsessed with the carbon tax. They cannot sleep at night, and have no other content, so this is their focus. It is their choice. Nonetheless, their motion could at least contain facts. That would be a good start.
     It is not a motion based on science. The Conservative Party could have talked about global warming and offered alternative solutions, but it did not. Nor is it a motion based on respect for Quebec, since nowhere does it mention that the federal carbon tax does not apply to Quebec. I will therefore repeat so it is clear for the Conservatives: the carbon tax does not apply to Quebec, either directly or indirectly, through regulation or through the back door. Lastly, this motion is not even about sound management of public funds, since it does not address the $83 billion the government has earmarked for oil subsidies.
     Yesterday, in the rather embarrassing speech given by the Leader of the Opposition in honour of Mr. Mulroney, it was stated that Mr. Mulroney reduced the size of government. The Conservatives could have tabled a motion to cut the size of government by $83 billion, but they did not, because they are oil Marxist-Leninists. The motion tabled for consideration was written and proposed by someone incompetent who would be fired from any workplace where facts, knowledge and rigour are required. We can draw our own conclusions.
     Now, I would like to take advantage of this lull to thank the member from Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis. I feel this is the right time. Under the Charest government—because, as we know, she is a Liberal—she was part of the cabinet that brought in the array of decrees that introduced the Quebec emissions trading system. Because of the now-Conservative member for Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis, whom I thank from the bottom of my heart, the carbon tax does not apply in Quebec.
     It does not apply directly. It does not apply either by law or under the clean fuel regulations, which the Conservatives have dubbed the second carbon tax in an attempt to mislead Quebeckers. We have more stringent legislation, and our businesses know that we will continue to be consistent, that we will apply it. Our businesses have already started complying, and it is working.
     The Conservatives' latest assertion to dupe Quebeckers is that it applies to Quebec through the back door. Listening to them, it is as though this glass of water in front of me is made of propane and that lemons are made of Alberta diesel. They claim everything we buy is made in Alberta.
     We even hit a world record recently. As we know, there is parliamentary work to be done here. The work of Parliament must be taken seriously. Yesterday, in committee meetings, where we are supposed to work on important issues for Quebeckers and Canadians, the Conservatives paralyzed proceedings with motions on the carbon tax, suggesting that it applies to Quebec. In the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, they moved motions regarding the carbon tax as it relates to immigrants, when it does not apply in Quebec and they are not even in Canada. That is what the Conservatives have come to—

  (1125)  

[English]

    We have a point of order from the hon. member for Calgary Centre.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, I am a member from Calgary, and I sit on the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. No motion was received on behalf of my party regarding the carbon tax. Could my colleague correct the record?
    I think we could save that for questions and comments.
    Mr. Speaker, they were moved, actually. They may not have been debated, but they were moved.
    I am going to say something that will please the member from Calgary even more, since he likes this sort of thing. The Conservatives moved a motion on the carbon tax at the Standing Committee on the Status of Women. I just want everyone to think about that for a moment. Let that sink in. The Conservatives moved a motion on the carbon tax at the Standing Committee on the Status of Women.
    However, that is nothing. Yesterday, they debated motions on the carbon tax at the Standing Committee on Industry and Technology, and the member for South Shore—St. Margarets asked telecom CEOs what effect the carbon tax would have on cellphone bills. The CEOs of the biggest companies looked at him like he came from another galaxy. They told them that it had no effect on Quebeckers' cellphone bills. However, he kept going and kept asking the same question again, as though a committee worked the same way torture does, as though the more he laid into them, the more they would talk. He was told again that it had no impact.
     However, the world record was set at the Standing Committee on Official Languages. The member for Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier debated two motions at the Standing Committee on Official Languages. The member for Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier is the only one of the 42 million people in Canada who speaks French to diesel. He is the only such person in Canada, because he is trying to get into cabinet. He is prepared to do anything, including grovelling, and he believes propane is bilingual. He is the only person like that in Canada. I could not make this stuff up. There are lists of things like that.
     This is a party that has no respect for parliamentary institutions, no respect for the intelligence of Canadians and Quebeckers, and no respect for facts. This party has no respect for anything. Meanwhile, they are not attacking the oil subsidies. They say they want to shrink the size of government, provided that oil is not affected.
     There are two kinds of Conservatives who foist this kind of debate on us. The first kind are the creationists, for whom human biology originates with Adam and Eve in fig leaves, the apple, the serpent and all that. They believe that the Earth is flat and that climate change does not exist. They are told to be quiet, but they exist and there are many of them. These people believe things that are not true, but I think that they are sincere in their beliefs.
     Then there are the other members of this party, particularly the Conservatives from Quebec, the ones who are pro-Charest, former Liberals and former members of Action Démocratique du Québec. These people supported the Quebec system, and today they want to become ministers. What do they say? First they say that this is not an environmental plan, but rather a tax plan, even though anyone who has studied taxation beyond the fundamentals was taught that, in a modern tax system, taxation has an impact on the environment. These members are lying to Quebeckers.
     They say that it is not working because greenhouse gas emissions have increased. They are incapable of understanding that, without appropriate pricing, emissions would have increased more rapidly. These people have driver's licences, yet they do not know the difference between braking and reversing. I would certainly never lend them my car. These people say that, because China has done nothing, we will do nothing. The Conservatives have decided to look to Communist China for policy inspiration. They are waiting for the Communists to act first. What next? Will they congratulate Putin on his re-election? It almost seems that way. These Conservatives are inconsistent. The reason they are acting this way is quite simple: They are exploiting people's distress.
     That is why today's motion refers to a survey, not to facts. That tells us how they think and how they practise politics. It tells us what they think of people's intelligence and how they will govern when the time comes. It will be by survey.
     Meanwhile, in Quebec, we made the transition. We were smart about it, because we realized that everybody else was transitioning and that western Canada could not separate itself from the rest of the world, any more than Quebec could. That said, we can and should separate from Canada.
     What did we do? We banked on the environment and the transition. Today, it is working, and companies from all over the world are coming to set up shop in Quebec, where there is clean energy, because, in a few years' time, their customers will be asking for decarbonized goods. In fact, we now wonder if we will have enough megawatts of clean energy to have them come here, create jobs and generate economic growth. We have created five industrial clusters in Canada with superclusters and oil money. Within the next decade, we should be able to create 47 new ones.

  (1130)  

     Meanwhile, the Conservatives want to live in the Stone Age. They want to live in the past.
     If anyone wants to know whether I support this motion, I will let my colleagues figure out the answer. I think that the smart people will be able to guess that the Bloc Québécois will vote against it.
    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate my Bloc Québécois colleague's comments, which were very on point. I would like to make a correction: Four motions, not two, were debated yesterday at the Standing Committee on Official Languages concerning official languages and diesel.
     I would like to know what my colleague thinks of the Conservative Party's old electoral platform from the last election. How does he think the Conservatives can reconcile that electoral platform with the fight against climate change and their discourse today, which is completely inconsistent with it?
    Mr. Speaker, because I am in the House for this debate, I will not be able to attend Mr. Mulroney's funeral, so I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere condolences to the family and my deep respect for Mr. Mulroney, who was a Progressive Conservative and who believed in the market. He knew that incentives could change behaviour. That is why, when it came to acid rain, Mr. Mulroney was very proud of the Montreal Protocol, which introduced an emissions trading mechanism.
    Earlier, a Conservative member yelled out that it was not a carbon tax. It is a pricing mechanism. These two mechanisms have their pros and cons, but they are market-based.
    The Conservatives no longer believe in the market. They believe in using public money and giving that money to companies they are friends with. If that is what the Conservative Party is like, I think many people who voted for them in the past are going to have second thoughts.

  (1135)  

    Mr. Speaker, I heard the speech made by my colleague from Quebec. He was very interesting, and very passionate, but does he live in the real world? I am not certain.
     He said that the Conservatives took advantage of people's troubles. That is interesting. Could people's troubles be caused by the carbon tax itself? The cost of living is rising. Inflation is on the rise, too. Could the relationship between the two be the cause of Canadians' troubles? Will he continue to downplay Canadians' troubles?
    Mr. Speaker, my colleague did not ask that question when the price of gas went down at Thanksgiving last year. He was too preoccupied with the price of turkey.
     Since he asked earlier, I will give my colleague the list of the committees at which the Conservatives moved motions about the carbon tax yesterday, bringing the meetings to a standstill: the Standing Committee on National Defence, the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans, the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Standing Committee on Science and Research, the Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs, the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, the Standing Committee on the Status of Women, the Standing Committee on Industry and Technology, the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates, the Standing Committee on Natural Resources, the Standing Committee on Finance, the Standing Committee on Health, the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security, the Standing Committee on Official Languages and the Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs. They brought all that to a standstill yesterday.
     It was a demonstration and a quantification of how little respect they have for our institutions.
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his speech. I really enjoyed his comments about propane and diesel and the French language. This is a prime example of the Conservatives' almost pathological obsession with attacking the price on pollution. It is an obsession that blinds them to the climate crisis, which is real and has an impact on forest fires, droughts and floods.
     What does my Bloc Québécois colleague think about the Conservatives not having a climate and environmental plan?
    Mr. Speaker, there is something missing from the Conservatives' platform, and that is the principle by which everyone must pull their weight.
     The logic behind the Conservative Party of Canada not having a plan is that, since China is being regressive, they will be regressive too. Since others are not doing the right thing, they will not do the right thing either. The Conservatives' logic, especially under their new leader, is to compare themselves to whoever is the worst, since that is the only way they can look good. I think that that is not the type of excellence we are used to seeing from political parties.
     Obviously, we all have our differences, but I think that, at one time, in Mr. Mulroney's time, for example, the Progressive Conservative Party had far more dignity and was far more consistent.
    Mr. Speaker, I thank the member who just spoke. I dream of having that kind of presence and the skill to deliver that kind of speech.
    What I want to do is present the facts that were recently reported by Radio-Canada about the whole carbon tax issue. I think it is extremely relevant to today's debate.
    As my colleague said, today's fairly concise Conservative Party motion is based on the results of a survey of Canadians. The motion reads as follows:
     That, given that 70% of provinces and 70% of Canadians oppose the Prime Minister's 23% carbon tax hike on April 1, the House call on the NDP-Liberal coalition to immediately cancel this hike.
    The Conservative Party claims that 70% of Canadians are against this carbon tax hike, so I took a look at the survey to see if that is actually true. I discovered that the poll was about the government's measure to exempt home heating oil from the carbon pricing act, not about the existence of the act itself.
     The Conservative Party therefore chose to put their spin on the numbers, perhaps because “Axe the tax” makes a good slogan. However, it is not really true that 70% of Canadians are against the 23% increase that will take effect on April 1, because this increase will be gradual. It is true that, at some point, the carbon tax will reach a certain amount, but these amounts will be spread over several years, until 2030. What they are claiming here is a bit of a stretch. As my colleague who spoke before me was saying, this is one of the reasons why the Bloc Québécois is against the Conservatives’ motion.
     I looked for other figures. It is funny, because I found the same numbers, that is, 70% and 23%, but they refer to something completely different. I found out that 70% of the global GDP has a carbon price. More than 48 countries around the globe have a carbon tax or a cap and trade system. It is now standard in most industrialized countries to put a price on pollution, and that is what Canada did a few years ago.
     The 23% is simple enough. According to the same study, 23% of global greenhouse gas emissions are covered by a price on pollution. I thought it was funny to find these same numbers but then realizing they mean different things. Obviously, I did not pull these figures out of a hat; they were published by France’s ministry of energy transition. It is interesting to see what other countries are doing instead of complaining of what we have at home.
     The Conservative motion asks that “the House call on the NDP-Liberal coalition to immediately cancel this hike.” That is interesting because it is the first time the coalition is being called “la coalition entre les libéraux et les néo-démocrates” in French. Normally, the Conservatives use different formulations when they talk about the coalition. In English, they say that it is the NDP-Liberal coalition, or a coalition between the Liberals and the NDP, but when they are talking to Quebeckers in French, they say that it is a coalition between the Bloc Québécois and the Liberals. Unfortunately for them, the motion does not include this nuance. It mentions only a coalition between the Liberals and the NDP.
     Let us get back to the famous carbon tax hike. It will indeed reach $170 by 2030. For now, it is set at $65 per tonne. Unlike what the Conservative Party would have us believe, it is not the Bloc Québécois that says we must increase the price on carbon pollution to help Canada achieve its greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. It is the Parliamentary Budget Officer, or PBO. The Office of the PBO is a well-respected institution. I think that the Conservative Party should believe the figures published by the PBO. Not so very long ago, he said that, to achieve the Paris Agreement targets by 2030, we would have to increase the price on carbon to $239 per tonne. The carbon tax is a tool Canada uses to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, and this tool should benefit people who are a bit more economically conservative. It is therefore a little hard to understand why the Conservatives are so against the price on pollution.
     Radio-Canada’s Fannie Olivier published an analysis a few days ago entitled “À quoi ressemblerait un Canada sans prix sur le carbone?” or what would Canada be like without carbon pricing?

  (1140)  

     The Conservative Party is threatening to axe the tax as soon as it comes to power.
     Let us go back to 2016 when the Prime Minister took advantage of a debate on the ratification of the Paris Agreement to announce a price on carbon. He told the provinces that they would have to comply. He gave them two years to do so. Then, he would start imposing a tax of $10 per tonne that would gradually increase. Obviously, a few provincial environment ministers did not take that very well. In Quebec, we were not concerned, because we already had a cap and trade system in place with California that has been working perfectly well since 2013. Therefore, this carbon pricing has no impact in Quebec. My colleague explained that. The carbon tax does not apply to Quebec, despite what some may think, because, unfortunately, people have been spreading misinformation. Some provinces even challenged the tax before the Supreme Court, but they were unsuccessful. There is a real power struggle with the provinces.
    It must be said that the Liberal government, as I mentioned earlier, has not done a very good job of explaining this environmental measure. It recently created a loophole in its own legislation by introducing a three-year exemption for heating oil with the aim of quelling discontent in the Atlantic provinces. That did nothing to help its popularity ratings, unfortunately.
    What would happen if we woke up tomorrow and there was no longer a carbon tax in Canada? Sébastien Jodoin, a professor in the faculty of law at McGill University, says that there would be significant consequences, starting with the hit on the pockets of many Canadians. That is interesting. Conservatives often tell us that people have no money, that they are poor, that the carbon tax is making those who are poor even poorer. However, we know that 80% of Canadians who pay the tax receive a refund from the federal government that exceeds what they pay. Should carbon pricing be abolished, they would have less money in their pockets. I find that interesting.
    Pierre-Olivier Pineau, Chair in Energy Sector Management at HEC Montréal, says that “the great irony is that the majority of Canadians in provinces that pay the federal tax, earn money from it. Abolishing it would impoverish Canadians.” That is interesting. Unfortunately that is not a speech we hear often from the Conservative Party. Obviously, removing it would also have an impact on greenhouse gases. The government is trying to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions with this measure. Getting rid of it would have consequences in the short, medium and long terms.
    The carbon tax currently being used by the Government of Canada seeks to reduce one-third of the emissions in the country by 2030. It must be said that the way things are going, we are nowhere close to meeting our greenhouse gas reduction targets by 2030. I would even go so far as to say that we need other measures, starting with the money that is given to the oil and gas companies. These companies make billions of dollars in profits every year and the government keeps taking taxpayer money and giving it to those people. I think we could take that money and help people cope with the cost of living. We could invest in green energy, such as wind, solar and hydroelectricity in Quebec. We need investment in these economic sectors that are good for the planet. We need to find other ways. If the Conservative Party wants to abolish carbon pricing, then it needs to come up with other, meaningful ways to fight climate change.
    I want to come back to the fact that 23% of global emissions are now covered by a carbon pricing or emissions trading system. That statistic is also from the World Bank. In her article, Fannie Olivier said that the number of countries that have such a tax has significantly increased in recent years. We are talking about nearly fifty countries or states that have made the leap. Take, for example, Vietnam, or even Turkey. Doing away with the tax on carbon would really go against what is being done internationally.
    I still have a lot more I would like to say, but I see that my time is up, so I will stop there.

  (1145)  

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Pursuant to Standing Order 43(2)(a), I would like to inform the House that the remaining Conservative caucus speaking slots are hereby divided in two.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, I have an important question for my Bloc Québécois colleague.
     According to her, the carbon tax should be $239 per tonne rather than $170. Did she take into account the implicit carbon tax created by the subsidies to battery plants? The Liberal government has given approximately $45 billion in subsidies to foreign companies so far.
     Does she agree with the figure given by the Quebec government, which determined that the implicit carbon tax was $800 per tonne, money that comes out of Canadian taxpayers' pockets?

  (1150)  

    Mr. Speaker, I would rather not be misquoted. What I was saying about the $239 per tonne is that that is what the Parliamentary Budget Officer is proposing. It is not the Bloc Québécois that is proposing it, it is the Parliamentary Budget Officer.
     What he is saying is that, with the current tax, about eight in 10 Canadian households get more money back than they pay with the tax. That seems clear enough to me.

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate many of the comments the member and the speaker before her have put on the record.
    The question I have is with respect to the spreading of misinformation. If one takes a look at social media, there is a great deal of information out there that is just not true.
    Can the member provide her thoughts on the impact this has on sound, good public policy, when we have the official opposition spreading misinformation to the detriment to the policy itself?

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, disinformation is becoming more and more of a problem. Now we are seeing it with respect to this government measure.
     If I had one piece of advice to give the Liberal Party, the party currently in power, it would be to take back control of the narrative on its own environmental and economic measures. Why is the Conservative Party making axing the carbon tax the slogan for its next election campaign on the pretext that it is what is making Canadians poorer? We agree on the fact that the carbon tax does not contribute that much to inflation. It contributes only 0.1%.
     The former minister of environment and climate change, Catherine McKenna, says that it is supposed to be a good environmental and economic measure. Why do the Liberals not say so? I urge them to speak up.
    Mr. Speaker, I really enjoy working with my colleague on the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security.
     However, there is something I am having a hard time understanding. Quebeckers have a good understanding of the impact of climate change. There is no doubt that climate change is having an impact, that climate change is costing Quebeckers a lot of money, and that something needs to be done.
     However, there are Conservative members in Quebec who deny the existence of climate change. The Conservative Party systematically refuses to put the least policy in place to counter climate change. That is what I have trouble understanding.
     I would like to know whether my colleague can explain to me how Quebec's Conservative members can deny the existence of climate change.
    Mr. Speaker, no one can really explain this. No sane person in Quebec thinks that climate change is not real. We are living it. I am living it in my riding with coastal erosion. It is a scourge and we need to do more to fight it.
    One of the first things we can do is put a price on pollution, but we also need to stop subsidizing oil companies, which pollute enormously.
    In Bill C‑59, which we voted on yesterday, there are still billions of dollars in tax credits for these oil companies that make billions of dollars in profits. If we took all that money and helped Canadians cope with the rising cost of living, it seems to me we would be further ahead. It seems to me we would be further ahead if we invested in green economies and green energy.
    I will stop here. I hope the NDP will support these measures.

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie.
    The Conservatives seem to be oblivious to the fact that the climate crisis is happening; that it is costing Canadians billions of dollars; that it is costing farmers their crops; that it is costing indigenous communities, as they are evacuated from their homes each wildfire season; and that it is costing British Columbians their homes and their livelihoods during extreme flooding, as well as their lives and their loved ones when there are record-breaking heat domes.
    The climate emergency is here. The Conservatives refuse to present a plan to tackle the crisis; instead, they are more interested in helping out CEOs in big oil and gas than truly helping Canadians who are struggling. Alberta declared the beginning of their wildfire season in February. Last summer, kids could not play outside because of the smoke-filled air. People could not go outside without choking on dust and smoke.
    At the end of 2023, 18.5 million hectares of forest had burned, forcing thousands from their homes. Many people lost everything. For some context, the worst wildfire season up to then burned 7.6 million hectares; that was in 1989. Now it is at 18.5 million hectares, more than double the total land size of Portugal. These wildfires are getting worse because there are massive droughts impacting whole regions across the country. The soil is so dry that, when the fires start, they can keep burning and nothing gets in the way.
    The impacts are not just on our forests. Farmers across Canada are having to face these awful drought conditions. In Canada right now, including in Alberta, there are states of emergency because of the drought conditions. There are negotiations about water allocations, discussions on who gets to use the water. Farmers cannot rely on natural rain, and there are massive threats of crop failure.
    In my home province of British Columbia, the provincial government is already preparing for a catastrophically dry summer. Yesterday, an $80 million fund was announced to help farmers invest in water infrastructure.
    Conservatives are blaming the high cost of groceries on the carbon tax, but what about crop failures? What about the devastating conditions farmers are facing because of the climate crisis? What are the Conservatives doing to address this water crisis that our farmers are forced to deal with? I will note that it was a New Democrat provincial government, not a Conservative one, that announced the water infrastructure fund.
    The Conservatives have no plan to address the climate crisis. They have no plan to stop wildfires. They are going to let our kids continue to choke on smoke in the summer, when communities are forced to evacuate their homes. The Conservatives think it is okay to let the biggest polluters off the hook for literally burning our planet.
    I want to talk about the carbon tax. Obviously, Conservatives want to get rid of it. They want to make it free for the biggest polluters, big oil and gas companies, to pollute. Meanwhile, they would cut and gut the rebates that put more money back in the pockets of Canadians. Getting rid of these rebates, which most Canadians receive, will hurt lower-income Canadians the most.
    However, the Liberals' pricing scheme has allowed the biggest polluters, the biggest corporations, to pay less than everyone else does. The problem with the current construction of the carbon tax, and the PBO has put out a number of reports that confirm this, is that 80% of Canadians get more money back than they pay. This is a fact the Conservatives continue to choose to ignore.
    Even if the Conservatives only care about pocketbook issues, if they deny the reality of climate change, if they ignore the fact that the climate crisis is a pocketbook issue, they should want to give Canadians a break on their home heating. They should want to make big oil and gas companies pay what they owe. However, when the NDP presented a motion to do just that, to take the GST off home heating, and to include those who use electricity to heat their homes, the Conservatives and the Liberals voted against it.

  (1155)  

    The motion also called for an excess profits tax on big oil and gas companies, a policy that recent polling shows the vast majority of Canadians support. To make life even more affordable, the NDP suggested making heat pumps free for middle and low-income Canadians. When it comes to addressing the climate crisis and the cost of living crisis, the NDP is the only party that is offering solutions.
    Canadians want real solutions. They are struggling to make ends meet and they need support, but not by taking away hundreds of dollars in rebates for a tiny break on carbon pricing, leaving Canadians worse off than they were before. They want real solutions that will help them afford their groceries, rent, child care and their medication.
    The Conservatives will never make the housing market more affordable. They will never fight for national pharmacare, medication for the people who need it. They will fight against pharmacare. They will never take on the grocery store chain CEOs, the big pharmaceutical companies, real estate developers or big oil and gas CEOs, because these are the people who make up their governing body. Half of the Conservatives' national body is made up of lobbyist from these sectors, and lobbyists are flocking to the Leader of the Opposition's cash for access events. However, these are the same companies and the same CEOs who are cozy with the Liberal government.
    Canadians want a government that will look out for them, but the Liberals and Conservatives are looking out for the interests of CEOs and lobbyists. Canadians also want a government that will address the wildfires, floods, droughts, deadly heat domes and the climate-related emergencies they are facing. Canadians are scared about the future. Despite the Liberals' words saying that they believe in climate change, they invite oil and gas CEOs to help craft their climate plan. They water down key policies like an emissions cap on oil and gas and refuse to take the excess profits off big oil.
    Canadians are frustrated with the carbon tax, because when it comes to the Liberal government, they are not seeing the climate action that is needed to address the climate crisis. When the Liberal government declared a climate emergency in 2019, the very next day it bought a pipeline.
     More recently, even though it has been promised for years, when it comes to eliminating domestic fossil fuel subsidies, when it comes to handing out billions of dollars to big oil and gas companies, the Liberals presented a plan, after delay and delay, that was littered with loopholes, allowing these big oil and gas CEOs to keep lining their pockets, continuing making record profits and continuing to accept government subsidies.
    When it came to capping oil and gas emissions just a few months ago, the Liberals watered down the cap so badly that it does not even line up with their own weak climate plan, with our Paris targets. It feels like the Liberals have truly stacked their emissions reduction plan on carbon pricing. It is not a silver bullet.
    Then the Liberals botched their communications to Canadians so badly that of course Canadians are frustrated. They are paying more at the gas pumps, more to heat their homes, more on groceries and more for their medication. All they hear is the disinformation the Conservatives are feeding them, but the truth is that the Liberals are not making it easy for everyday Canadians to get off fossil fuels.
    Our NDP team knows that the climate crisis is a pocketbook issue. We have proposed many ways to make life more affordable and to tackle the climate crisis. We need to take the GST off home heating, give Canadians heat pumps and invest in public transit. We need to fix the greener homes program and ensure that big oil and gas are paying what it owes.
    Neither the Liberals nor the Conservatives have the courage to take on big oil and gas, but we do. Canadians want a government that looks out for them.

  (1200)  

    Mr. Speaker, the member made reference to the greener homes program, which is a Liberal government program. When the member talks about heat pumps, again, it is a Liberal government program. There are many things such as the electrification of vehicles. The incentives that are provided by this government are extensive. However, that is not necessarily what my question is about.
     The Conservatives will say that the residents of Winnipeg North will not benefit from the carbon rebate, when 80% of people will get more money back than they pay. They are saying that they are going to axe the tax in British Columbia, but there is no carbon tax. I am wondering if she could address the issue of misinformation.
    Mr. Speaker, I want to quickly start with heat pumps, because that is what the member also started with. The greener homes program was riddled with problems. So many middle-income Canadians could not navigate the system and could not afford to pay the money up front. Low-income Canadians were excluded altogether. That is why New Democrats forced the government, through our supply and confidence agreement, to include a commitment to provide energy efficiency to low-income Canadians. We are going to keep pushing the government. It is unfortunate that it cancelled that program and has not provided a plan to replace it, a meaningful plan to help low-income and middle-income Canadians heat their homes efficiently.
    On disinformation, it has been beyond disheartening and atrocious to see Conservatives tour around Canada, not only making up facts or maybe generously telling fiction to Canadians about how carbon pricing works, but also going to my home province of British Columbia and pretending that there is a federal carbon tax there. We just heard similarly from my Bloc colleagues. I am sure the Leader of the Opposition is in Quebec saying that he will axe the tax. It is a disservice to our democracy and Canadians. Canadians deserve better.

  (1205)  

    Mr. Speaker, I wonder if my hon. colleague realizes that coal consumption worldwide hit record usage last year. In 2024-25 we are going to hit another record.
    I will quote Premier Furey, the Liberal Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, who said, “The issue for this particular tax is there are limited options to change right now in Newfoundland and Labrador....In the absence of the ability to change, what does the tax really accomplish?” It accomplishes nothing.
    What would accomplish something would be to cut the red tape and shorten the approval process for building mines to mine things like lithium, nickel, copper and whatnot, the rare earth metals needed for the green transition. The approval time to build a new mine to mine these precious metals required for the transition is 18 years. In the U.S. it is 40% less and in Australia it is 25% less.
     I would like to know what the NDP-Liberal costly coalition's plan is to reduce approval times to mine green metals.
    Mr. Speaker, this is a perfect example of a Conservative climate plan.
    Yesterday, I heard Conservatives and Liberals arguing back and forth about who built more pipelines and who could get pipelines approved more quickly. This is not a future for Canada. Once again, we see the Conservatives denying that the climate crisis is real and failing to tackle and meet this moment, while Canadians are worried about not only their future but their present reality.
    The member mentioned coal. Thermal coal exports tripled since the current government came into power. Imagine a government committing to phase out thermal coal and end thermal coal exports, but instead it triples them. It does not tell Canadians that it has done this. It waits for a New Democrat to find out that information and make it public. That is why I have tabled a motion in the House to ban thermal coal exports.
    We need to tackle the climate crisis like we want to win.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, the Conservative Party and its representatives in the House can be criticized for many things, and I point that out whenever I can, but I want to start by saying that one thing we cannot fault them for is their lack of determination. There is a definite consistency in their obsession with the price on pollution or the carbon tax. One thing is for sure: They are not giving up. They keep coming back to us with this fantasy of doing nothing to fight climate change, this climate crisis affecting the entire planet.
    Every day, every week, we hear that the situation is worse than what the experts thought, worse than what the experts at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, have been telling us for years. Let us look at some very recent and quite harrowing examples.
    Let us start with the price on pollution or the carbon tax, which has been in place in some provinces for a few years now. I would remind the House that this does not apply in Quebec, despite what my Conservative colleagues from Quebec are saying, which is that a trucker who fills up in Ontario could feel the effects. It is minimal. It is almost insignificant. Quebec has had a carbon exchange for years now, which is a slightly different tool from a price on pollution or a carbon tax.
    What the Conservatives never say and what the Liberals have such a hard time explaining is that there is a financial compensation program for middle-class families as well as for the poorest workers in the provinces where this carbon tax applies.
    According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, who is a leading authority on Parliament Hill, 80% of Canadian households in provinces where this applies get more back than they pay in carbon taxes, a legitimate price indicator tool to change behaviours.
    It also seems really strange to me that the Conservatives have spent years refusing to apply a market rule that could change the behaviour of individuals and big corporations or maybe both.
    The people in greatest need, those struggling to pay rent or buy groceries, will receive financial compensation. The Parliamentary Budget Officer tells us that 80% of Canadian households will receive more money back than they pay out. The Conservatives say nothing about that and the Liberals, for whatever reason, are incapable of explaining it. The political communication has been terrible.
    According to Statistics Canada's models, 94% of households with an annual income below $50,000 will get back more in rebates or compensation than they pay out in carbon taxes applied to their daily or weekly purchases. Obviously, we will never hear that from a Conservative, and that is a real shame. Facts are facts, and I think our debates in the House should be grounded in facts.
    The Conservative Party is moving its 29th motion on the carbon tax in a very specific context. We keep hearing in the news that the planet is headed for a dead end. We are being told that we are moving in the wrong direction. This has consequences. The Conservatives have no climate plan, and that is disturbing. Their inaction is troubling. They appear to be wilfully turning a blind eye.
    I would now like to read some excerpts from an Agence France-Presse article published in La Presse this morning that reveals some very worrisome information. I will start with this:
    Records broken for ocean heat, sea level rise and glacier retreat...2023 capped off the warmest 10-year period on record, with the UN warning on Tuesday that the planet is “on the brink”.
    The Tuesday referred to in the article is today. The study came out this morning.
     A new report from the World Meteorological Organization or WMO, a UN agency, shows that records were once again broken, and in some cases smashed, for greenhouse gas levels, surface temperatures, ocean heat and acidification, sea level rise, Antarctic sea ice cover and glacier retreat.

  (1210)  

    That is pretty much the perfect storm for making things worse. Even with our targets for reducing greenhouse gases to prevent natural disasters, to prevent people from suffocating, to prevent people from dying from pollution, things are likely only going to get worse.
     The article goes on to say the following, and I quote:
    The planet is “on the brink” while “fossil fuel pollution is sending climate chaos off the charts”, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned.
    “There is still time to throw out a lifeline to people and the planet” but, according to him, we need to act “now”.
    The report confirms that 2023 was the hottest year on record, with an average surface temperature of 1.45°C above pre-industrial levels.
    The objective of the Paris Agreement was to limit the global warming increase to 1.5°C compared with the temperature in 1830 or 1850. In 2023, the increase reached 1.45°C. There is no doubt about it, we are going to hit the 1.5°C limit. Perhaps we will manage to keep it to a maximum increase of 2°C, but at that rate, not only are we not making any gains, we are going backwards, and backwards faster than we thought.
     “Every fraction of a degree of global heating impacts the future of life on Earth”, warned the head of the United Nations.
    “The climate crisis is THE defining challenge that humanity faces and is closely intertwined with the inequality crisis—as witnessed by growing food insecurity and population displacement, and biodiversity loss”, said the WMO secretary general....
    As I said earlier, 2023 marks the end of the hottest decade on record since 1850. The situation is catastrophic.
    On an average day in 2023, nearly one third of the global ocean was gripped by a marine heatwave.... Towards the end of 2023, over 90% of the ocean had experienced heatwave conditions at some point during the year.
     In 2023, global mean sea level reached a record high...reflecting continued ocean warming (thermal expansion) as well as the melting of glaciers and ice sheets.
    Sea levels are rising because the glaciers are melting. In particular, a big chunk of Antarctica is breaking off. If it melts, average sea levels will rise by several metres, so if we are being honest, for Bangladesh, this is going to pose a few problems. For the city of London, it is going to pose a few problems. For New York City, it is going to pose a few problems. What the Conservative Party is proposing is to carry on, to forge ahead. According to this party, everything is going to be fine, we are going to find a technological magic wand and we are going to capture all the carbon with a big vacuum cleaner that is going to go everywhere. That is not how it works. The technology is unproven.
    I could talk about last year's wildfires. There was smoke everywhere, in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, over Montreal. Things will be worse this summer. Not enough rain fell and we did not get enough snow this winter. We will experience more drought and have more wildfires this summer. It is happening around the world.
    I am going to quote from an RTL info article posted a few days ago about the situation in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It says:
     Rio de Janeiro residents are looking for “open spaces” and shade in a park as a new heatwave descends upon Brazil, with record high temperatures.
    That was the situation this past Sunday in Rio de Janeiro.
    The heatwave that Latin America has been experiencing since the beginning of the year brought the perceived temperature up to a record 62.3°C in Brazil this weekend....
    That is not livable. Obviously, people are at risk of getting sick. They are at risk of dying. All of the health care professionals who are concerned about the climate crisis and the environment are saying that this is a matter of human lives. It is also an economic matter. Some insurance companies are refusing to cover apartments and houses that are too close to the water. Drought, flooding and forest fires are happening and will only get worse. Quebeckers and Canadians are the ones who will pay the price given the impact on their lives and their bodies. Unfortunately, the Conservative Party is not presenting any solutions.

  (1215)  

    Madam Speaker, I salute my colleague from Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie and thank him for his speech.
    I will have the opportunity later to say more about what we have been proposing for years now on climate change, because, yes, we recognize that climate change is real and that we need to do something about it. After eight years of the Liberal government, however, the results are not there.
    What does my colleague think about the action of his neighbour, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change? After eight years of the Liberal government, the UN ranked Canada 62nd out of 67 in terms of effectiveness against climate change.
    Is he aware that the Liberal carbon tax has put Canada in 62nd place, that Canada has never managed to meet its targets in eight years and that we are a long way from the ambitious targets of the Paris Agreement, while this government and his Liberal neighbour, the hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie, have done absolutely nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?
    What does he think of his neighbour?
    Madam Speaker, when I said that the Conservative Party is not very good at fighting climate change, I was not suggesting that the member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie is doing a fantastic job on this front. I have to agree with my colleague: Over the past eight years, the Liberal government has failed in the fight against climate change. Even the former Liberal environment minister, Catherine McKenna, is very critical of the government.
    I would like to remind the House, as my colleague from Victoria did earlier, that, in his mandate letter, the current Minister of the Environment was told to ban thermal coal exports. However, coal exports have tripled under this Liberal government, even though it presents itself as a climate action champion. The Liberals have been totally hypocritical.

  (1220)  

[English]

    Madam Speaker, I asked the member's colleague from British Columbia a question, and I will be more focused on the question itself in regard to how the leader of the Conservative Party is touring the country and literally spreading information that is questionable and that many would say is intentionally misleading. Examples of that include the province of British Columbia, where the carbon tax does not apply, and the member's home province, where the carbon tax does not apply. To people like my constituents in the province of Manitoba, he is saying there is no net benefit, in terms of dollar value, from the carbon rebate versus the carbon tax, when over 80% do receive more than they actually pay.
    I am wondering whether the member could provide his thoughts in regard to the ongoing spreading of misinformation by the official opposition.

[Translation]

    Madam Speaker, despite the Liberals' pathetic record on fighting climate change, my colleague is absolutely right that the Conservative Party, and the Conservative Party leader in particular, are giving Canadians bad information.
    I challenge the member for Carleton and leader of the Conservative Party to quote the Parliamentary Budget Officer, who says that 80% of Canadian households will receive more money in rebates and compensation than they pay in carbon tax. I challenge the leader of the Conservative Party to say that loud and clear in the House.
    Madam Speaker, I enjoyed the speech by my colleague from Rosemont—La Petite‑Patrie, who always delivers passionate speeches on the fight against climate change. I agree with him.
    The only thing is that the NDP is hard to follow. In the last two budgets, the government, whose record he just panned, brought in six tax credits worth a total of $83 billion by 2035. The NDP is getting all worked up over climate change and the fact that the Liberals are not doing enough about it, but it voted in favour of those budgets.
    How does my colleague reconcile these two things?
    Madam Speaker, the NDP has not shied away from criticizing those measures, which are actually hidden subsidies to oil and gas companies. My colleague from Timmins—James Bay is introducing an important bill on behalf of our party to ban oil and gas advertising, similar to how we banned tobacco advertising.
    At the same time, we have forced the Liberals to do things they had never done before that are going to help average Canadians. For example, people who make less than $70,000 a year will have access to a dentist.
    I have given 15 presentations in seniors' residences in Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie. People are extremely pleased with our efforts because we are delivering concrete results that will change people's lives and change the face of the world, no pun intended.
    Madam Speaker, while the common-sense Conservatives focus on their Conservative priorities, which are to axe the tax, build the homes, fix the budget and stop the crime, the Prime Minister is not worth the cost after eight years.
    After eight years of this Prime Minister, everything costs more. Two million Canadians now line up at food banks. A few days ago, Montreal police were forced to intervene when chaos broke out at a food bank that did not have enough food to feed all the hungry people. I would point out that these people are going hungry while living in Canada.
    After eight years of tax hikes and inflationary deficits, people can no longer pay their rent. The cost of housing has doubled. In the Prime Minister's hometown of Montreal, the cost of housing has tripled because of his inflationary policies, even as he has spent $89 billion on housing. After eight years of this Prime Minister, we are experiencing a crisis of crime, auto theft, extortion and violence caused by repeat offenders.
    After eight years, this Prime Minister is not worth the cost. He only wants to raise taxes on Quebeckers and other Canadians, and I would like to point out that he is doing that with the Bloc Québécois's support. The Bloc Québécois wants to drastically increase the tax on gas and diesel for Quebeckers in the regions. With the Bloc Québécois's support, the Prime Minister wants to destroy certain natural resource industries.
    On May 1, a decree will be issued to shut down the forestry sector for reasons that make no sense. This decree infringes on Quebec's jurisdiction. That is why the common-sense Conservative Party supports the member for Louis-Saint-Laurent's bill that would scrap the duplicate approval process for natural resource projects. We want Quebec to have the power to decide how it will protect the environment and jobs. We trust Quebeckers, while the Prime Minister and the centralizing Bloc Québécois are trying to concentrate all the power in Ottawa by destroying jobs in the Saguenay region and elsewhere in Quebec. We are the only party with common sense.
    When we say that the Prime Minister is not worth the cost, it is because he claims that the tax hike is intended to protect the environment. A headline in today's Journal de Montréal reads, “For the first time, Canada is the most polluted country in North America”. This comes on the heels of the news that Canada ranks 62nd out of 67 countries on fighting climate change.
    All these taxes, all the attacks on our natural resources, have done nothing to improve the environment. All they have done is make life harder for Canadians and Quebeckers. Fortunately, the Conservative Party has a common‑sense plan to axe the tax, build the homes, fix the budget and stop the crime. That is common sense. That is what we are going to offer.

  (1225)  

[English]

    By the way, I will be splitting my time with the member for Louis-Saint-Laurent, so it is not just the rest of my speech that you will have a chance to enjoy, Madam Speaker, but also his incredible oration. It will be a real treat to hear from him.
    After eight years, the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister is not worth the cost. He is not worth the cost of food, which has had the worst inflation in over four decades, with two million people, a record-smashing number, lining up at food banks across the country. Chaos broke out the other day at the food bank in Montreal, where the police were forced to intervene, as the food had run out and many stomachs were still hungry waiting in line. A third of charities are turning Canadians away because they no longer have the resources to feed them after eight years of the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister.
    After eight years, we now have a Facebook group called the “Dumpster Diving Network”, where 8,000 Canadians share tips on how they can climb into a garbage can and pull out food to feed themselves because they cannot afford groceries. There is nothing left on the shelves at the local food bank; therefore, people have to go digging in garbage. This is the dumpster economy that the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister has given us after eight years. He is not worth the cost of food.
    He is not worth the cost of housing, which has doubled after eight years of funding local bureaucratic gatekeepers who block homebuilding and printing cash, which inflates housing prices.
    After eight years, he is not worth the cost of taxes. He punishes work. People make it and he takes it. He punishes the people who get out of bed in the morning and work hard by taking the cash off of their paycheques, paycheques that have less purchasing power because after eight years of doubling the debt and printing $600 billion of new cash, he has caused the worst inflation in four decades. That has spiked interest rates, which now force many Canadians to sell their homes or face bankruptcy, which is rocketing higher. In fact, the pace of increase in bankruptcies is vertical. If we look at the graphs, it is straight up, as more and more businesses are declaring bankruptcy because the Prime Minister's inflationary spending has sent interest rates on their debts skyrocketing.
    It is in this miserable environment that the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister proposes yet another cruel tax hike. He plans to do it on April Fool's Day. It is an April Fool's Day tax hike. Just like him, this tax is not worth the cost.
    Let us go through the facts.
    There has been a lot of disinformation spread by the NDP-Liberals and their friends in the bought-and-paid-for media about the economics of the carbon tax, claiming that people are better off by paying the tax. Here are the facts from the Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer. Albertans, this coming year, will pay, on average, $2,943 per family while they get only $2,032 back in rebates. That is a $911 net cost. In other words, they pay about 50% more than they get back. In Saskatchewan, the average family will pay $2,618 this coming year and get only $2,093 back, a net cost of $525. In Manitoba, they will pay $1,750 and get back only $1,250, for a net cost of $500.
    In Ontario, the average family will pay $1,674 and only get back $1,047, a net cost of $627. In Nova Scotia, they will pay $1,500 and get back $963, for a net cost of over $500. In Prince Edward Island, it will pay $1,605 and get back only $1,055, for a net cost of $550. In Newfoundland, it will pay $1,874 and get back only $1,497, for a net cost of $377.
    I dare the Liberal media that have been pushing this disinformation to contact the Parliamentary Budget Officer, run all those numbers by him and ask him if I have it right. We already did, and he confirmed that we do.

  (1230)  

    Why does this matter? It is because we have to stop the disinformation, the disinformation that has not only polluted the debate but sent countless people to food banks as they cannot afford to pay their bills, the disinformation that will grow in importance as the Prime Minister quadruples the carbon tax. The gap between the cost of the tax and the rebate people get back grows massively, forcing more people to live in these awful tent cities and lose their homes, forcing seniors to choose between eating and heating as they shiver, hungry, in the cold, in their modest homes.
    That disinformation is dangerous. It must be corrected because the truth is that the carbon tax is just like the Prime Minister. It is not worth the cost.
    Only common-sense Conservatives will spike the hike on April 1. After the carbon tax election, we will axe the tax. Let us bring it home.
    Madam Speaker, I am wondering if the leader of the Conservative Party could explain. When he talks about the spreading of disinformation, I would ultimately argue that he is the king of doing just that through social media.
    Why does the leader of the Conservative Party instruct his members not to participate in political panels? I was on CTV yesterday and there were no Conservatives around. I was on other CBC panels and there were no Conservatives around. It is an avenue through which Canadians can find out what it is the Conservatives are saying. However, when it comes time for it, the Conservatives are nowhere to be found because they know that there is more accountability when they are on those political panels.
    Why does the Conservative leader support the absence of Conservative members on panels and public meetings?

  (1235)  

    I want to remind members that they provided the leader of the official opposition with their attention and they did not interrupt him. I would ask them to do the same when someone else has the floor. I think that this is the respect they can give them.
    I also know that the leader of the official opposition is very able to answer questions and comments and does not need any assistance.
    The hon. leader of the official opposition.
    Madam Speaker, one can tell that Liberals are losing the carbon tax debate when they say that we all have to spend more time talking to the state-controlled media that covers for him. We know that one of the reasons why the Liberals helped Bell raise the cost of cellphone and other services is that Bell owns CTV, which reciprocates with wonderful Liberal propaganda.
    Our focus will be talking to real people, folks who are struggling to pay their bills after eight years of the Prime Minister, the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister, doubling housing costs and now quadrupling the carbon tax. Real Canadians know the cost. The Liberal media can do anything it wants to try to cover up the fact that this is a tax grab and it is a scam. We will go around the state-controlled media, directly to the Canadian people, and we will share our message that we will spike the hike and axe the tax.
    Madam Speaker, today, the leader of the official opposition brings up the idea that he is interested in Canadians and he is interested in making life more affordable for Canadians, but we know that he voted against a national school program. We know he voted against our motion to take GST off of home heating. He voted against dental care. He voted against child care. Even yesterday, shockingly, he voted against getting humanitarian aid to Palestinians who are starving to death.
    He does not care about Canadians. He does not care about people around the world. He has already said he would cut foreign aid. He has already said that he would cut all of these programs that make life more affordable for people. He is a one-trick pony with nothing to offer Canadians and Canadians know that.
    Madam Speaker, that is another nasty partisan attack from the desperate NDP. She is an Alberta NDP member who is being abandoned by her own provincial party. The NDP in Alberta is so ashamed and embarrassed of her that it is breaking ties with the federal NDP. In fact, the provincial NDP in Alberta knows that her party sold out Albertans to sign on with the most anti-Alberta Prime Minister in 40 years.
    She is now voting to bring in a $2,943 carbon tax on her own constituents. Every family in her riding will pay almost $3,000 in carbon taxes because she voted with the Liberal Prime Minister, against her constituents, to hike the tax.
    Only common-sense Conservatives stand for Albertans, to spike the hike and axe the tax.
    Madam Speaker, I have been looking back in Hansard. In the last few years, 36 members of the Liberals, which is actually 37 because one member added it today, stated that the carbon tax was revenue neutral. Who says it is not? Public accounts actually said, last year, that $670 million of the carbon tax was used for government programming.
    Does that sound like the carbon tax is revenue neutral as the Liberals are claiming?
    Madam Speaker, no, it sounds like the government wins and the taxpayers lose. It takes in more money in direct tax revenues from the carbon tax than it pays back out in rebates. Worse than that, according to the PBO, the carbon tax destroys so much economic activity that it leaves people worse off than the direct carbon tax that they paid, and that is why, when we combine the economic and the fiscal cost to the average family, Canadians are losers.
    However, the good news is that when common-sense Conservatives spike the hike and axe the tax, Canadians will be winners again.

  (1240)  

    Madam Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to speak to this motion, but I have to say, it is such a challenge to follow in the footsteps of my leader on this very specific issue.

[Translation]

    Canadians are once again being forced to deal with an unfortunate government decision to take even more money out of taxpayers' pockets.
    According to the Liberal plan, in just a few days, on April 1, the carbon tax will increase. We are not talking about a small hike of 3% or 4% because of inflation. We are talking about a 23% increase. Such a dramatic tax hike is something that happens rarely, if ever. Unfortunately, the Liberal carbon tax has the blind support of the NDP and the enthusiastic support of the Bloc Québécois, which desperately wants to drastically increase the carbon tax. That is their choice. It is their decision. It is not ours.
    Canadians are struggling right now. We saw some sad incidents in Montreal where the police had to intervene because hundreds and hundreds of people were getting impatient when trying to access the food bank. Canada is a G7 country. Montreal is the capital of francophone America, but unfortunately, it is facing terrible situations like these. This is not the Canada that I love. Canada needs to do a lot better.
    People are being crushed under the weight of financial hardship, and housing prices and rents have tripled. Meanwhile, this government, to help taxpayers, wants to raise the carbon tax on April 1. That is not the right choice.
    Some will say we need to address climate change. Yes, we recognize that climate change is real and must be addressed, but with pragmatic measures, not dogmatic ones. What is the government's track record? Think back to when the Liberals got elected in 2015. They were so proud to say “Canada is back”. A few weeks after the election, the Prime Minister arrived in Paris, all proud and happy, saying that Canada was back and that there would finally be concrete measures to control global pollution and that Canada would be a leader. The founder of Equiterre, who is now a minister and is currently being sued by Equiterre, was saying he was proud to be Canadian and to see the Prime Minister talking like that.

[English]

     Is Canada back? Canada is way back. That is the reality.

[Translation]

    After eight years of this Liberal government, after eight years of lecturing from the Liberal Prime Minister, after eight years of imposing and increasing the Liberal carbon tax, what has this government achieved? Zilch. Not a single target has been reached, except during COVID-19. I hope the plan is not to shut down the economy, as we had to do during COVID-19, in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
    Canada is not among the 13 countries that met the Paris Agreement targets. Canada actually ranks 62nd out of 67 countries in terms of climate change performance. Despite all the announcements, all the words, all the commitments and all the ambitious targets, the Canadian government, this government's Liberal Canada, comes in 62nd out of 67. That is not according to the MEI, the Fraser Institute or the Conservative Party. That is according to the UN. Every year, the UN presents its rankings at COP. At the latest COP, which was held in Dubai, Canada ranked 62nd. I will have the opportunity to talk about the minister's trip to Dubai in committee a little later. This is not something we are happy about. It hurts to say it, but it is the truth. The Liberals were too focused on a dogmatic approach instead of a pragmatic one.
    If the Liberal carbon tax worked, we would know it, but it is not working. That is why the Conservative leader, the member for Carleton and leader of the official opposition, mentioned an article published in today's edition of the Journal de Montréal under the headline “For the first time in history, Canada is the most polluted country in North America”. According to the article, the 13 most polluted cities in North America are all in Canada. That is the Liberal record after eight years of government lectures. No one is happy about it, but that is the reality.
    We believe that we have to get rid of the Liberal carbon tax, and we are not the only ones who feel that way.

  (1245)  

    Seven of Canada's provincial premiers cannot all be wrong at the same time. Seven provincial premiers have asked the Liberal government to drop this policy, which will cause inflation and, most significantly, leave taxpayers with even less money in their pockets. One such premier is the very Liberal premier of Newfoundland. Although I do not know him personally, he is someone who, like all Canadians, sees a tax hike of this magnitude as a very bad idea. The 23% increase comes at a time when everyone is struggling with housing, the cost of living or the price of food. Regrettably, we are not even talking about the price of food anymore, but about the incidents happening at food banks. That is not the Canada we want.
    For that reason, as Conservatives, we support pragmatic approaches above all. Climate change is real and we have to deal with it. In his speech at our national convention in Quebec City last September, the “Quebec City speech”, as we call it here, our leader described our party's vision and the pillars of action that we intend to focus on in our fight against climate change.
    This was done at a Conservative national convention. Some 2,500 delegates from across Canada, representing all 338 ridings, gathered in my region, Quebec City. I am very proud of that. The reason I am explaining the partisan political framework for this announcement is that, quite often, when people do not want to talk about something, they announce it on a Friday afternoon at 4 p.m. in a brief press release. They say thank you, have a good night, and no one talks about it. In contrast, I am talking about a milestone speech for our party.

[English]

    In English, I would say that it was a milestone speech by our leader in front of 2,500 members and supporters of our party, from coast to coast among the 338 ridings, who attended this convention. That milestone speech by our leader, le discours de Québec, was very important. We set the table for the next government, if we receive that support. We would be honoured to receive the support of Canadians.

[Translation]

    This environmental plan is built on four pillars. The fundamental objective is to reduce pollution. The government has demonstrated that pollution cannot be reduced by taxing it. We believe that what we need are very pragmatic measures, not dogmatic ones.
    The first pillar would be to provide tax incentives for companies to use high-tech solutions to reduce pollution. The companies are the ones creating the greenhouse gases, and they know why they create pollution. It is up to the companies to decide for themselves. They are the ones that know why they create pollution and how to reduce it. They should be incited and encouraged to do so through tax incentives.
    The second pillar of the Conservatives' action on the environment would be to green-light green projects. Now more than ever, we need green energy such as wind, solar, hydroelectric, geothermal and nuclear power. We need these green energy sources. We need to green-light green projects. I am pleased to see that my colleagues opposite are smiling at this proposal. We introduced Bill C-375 to speed up the process. I am pleased to know that the Liberals are going to vote for it, and no doubt the hon. member for Kingston and the Islands will have an opportunity to explain why he thinks this is an excellent idea.
    The third pillar would be the Canadian advantage. Here in Canada, we have everything we need to deal with climate change and everything we need in terms of natural resources, energy and knowledge. We just need to use them. I am from Quebec. HEC Montréal published its “State of Energy in Quebec” report a few weeks ago. It found that consumption of petroleum products increased by 7% over the past year. The thing that worries me the most is that 48% of the products consumed comes from the U.S. energy sector, more specifically from Texas and Louisiana. I have nothing against those two states, but as long as we are using fossil fuels, we should be getting them from Canadian sources instead of sending millions of dollars to another country.
    The fourth pillar, and quite likely the foundation of all of this, would be to work hand in hand with first nations to address climate change.
    We are against radically increasing the carbon tax on April 1. Seven provincial premiers cannot all be wrong. On the contrary, they are right. I would like this government to give Canadians a break and scrap the idea of increasing the Liberal carbon tax.

  (1250)  

[English]

    Questions and comments.
    Now is the appropriate time for the hon. deputy government House leader to make a comment, and not while someone else has the floor.
    The hon. deputy House leader.
    Madam Speaker, the member talked about the leader quite a bit, but I think he is being a little humble. He, too, was a leader. He was the leader of the ADQ, which later became and is now known as the CAQ in Quebec.
    When he was the leader, he voted with the National Assembly of Québec, unanimously, to bring in cap and trade, which is another form of a price on pollution. As a matter of fact, the last person to speak in the National Assembly was this member, when he said, “We are satisfied that there will be a register of greenhouse gas emissions, and the fact that all the information will be public confirms the desire for transparency that unites us here in this House.” That is what the member said just before he participated in a unanimous vote to bring in pricing pollution in Quebec.
    I am wondering if he could inform the House as to why he has had such a dramatic change of heart, and if he no longer believes in that system that he voted for.
    Madam Speaker, I have seen the member do far better than this. However, to address, first of all, the quote that the member gave, I can repeat it without any question, because it has nothing to do with the price on pollution. We were talking about the registry on emissions of gas. That has nothing to do with this policy. That happened 11 years ago.
    Since then, after more than 10 years of the application of a cap-and-trade system, we recognize, and I am not quoting myself but the environment minister of Quebec, that with that system, $233 million is leaving Quebec and going to California.
    I do not think that California is a third world country.

[Translation]

    It is not a developing country.

[English]

    I do not think it needs Quebec money. I think Quebec can deal with this situation by itself.

[Translation]

    Madam Speaker, I would like to ask my colleague a question. For a moment, let us pretend that he is in front of a jury and has to tell the whole truth.
    If we were to abolish the carbon tax or oppose the increase, does that mean that tomorrow morning, no one would need to use food banks, rents would drop drastically, the world would be a better place, the cost of groceries would go down and we would be contributing to climate change?
    Is this really what my colleague wants Quebeckers and Canadians to believe?
    Madam Speaker, I notice that the member used the word “drastically”. That happens to be the word that her colleague from Longueuil—Saint-Hubert used when he said that the government and governments should drastically increase carbon taxes.
    I assume that the member and all Bloc Québécois members are quite happy that the Liberal carbon tax is going to increase by 23%. Perhaps that is not enough in their eyes, and it should go up even more.
    People are having to line up at food banks. This is hurting all Canadians and Quebeckers, in every riding. There is not one riding that is more affected by this reality than any other.
    Thankfully, there are volunteers who work very hard, like those I had the opportunity to meet and support this weekend. When people are out there lining up, is it a good idea to raise taxes and take even more money out of their pockets when they are already struggling? The answer is no.
    If some people think it is a good idea, all they have to do is keep voting for the Bloc Québécois. They want to drastically increase carbon taxes, but we do not.
    Madam Speaker, I like my colleague very much, but we lived through the Harper years, when the lineups at food banks doubled and the cost of housing doubled. We also heard the same speeches as the one the member just gave.
    In 2006, the Conservatives told us that they would take care of the environment. What happened? We became the fourth-worst country in the world with respect to emissions that contribute to climate change. The Conservative government was a disaster for the environment.
    My question for my colleague is simple, and I know that he is sincere. Why does he align himself with the Conservative Party, a party that denies climate change?

  (1255)  

    Madam Speaker, I also have a great deal of respect for my veteran colleague, who obviously does very good work in the House. However, he is totally wrong. I started my speech by saying that climate change is real and that we need to address it. We need to deal with it constructively and effectively. We do not believe that the Liberal tax on carbon will resolve this situation. The Liberals' dogmatic approach of drastically increasing taxes, which is supported by the NDP and the Bloc Québécois, is not going to solve anything. Instead, we need meaningful action to reduce pollution.

[English]

    Madam Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for Winnipeg North.
    The only thing the Conservatives want to axe is the rebates people are getting. They have no interest in helping to provide for Canadians, especially in their time of need, and we have seen that through various votes. We have seen that through the initiatives that the Leader of the Opposition has taken this week, what he has said and what he has directed his members to do, which I will get to in a second. What they really want to axe is the Canada carbon rebate. That is it.
    The Canada carbon rebate currently provides, or will provide, in this fiscal year, on average, to each family, the following: Alberta, $1,800; Manitoba, $1,200; Saskatchewan, $1,500; Nova Scotia, $825; P.E.I., $880; Newfoundland and Labrador, $1,192; New Brunswick, $760; and in my province of Ontario, $1,120. That is an average.
    I will give members the raw data as to how people are benefiting and how more people are better off through those rebates they are getting than what they are paying.
     I took the opportunity to do the exercise myself. I went back to 2023 and dug up all my gas bills from Enbridge for heating my home. I calculated the federal carbon amount that was added to each bill, and after adding up through 2023, it came to $379.93 that was paid in 2023. I drive an electric car, but I wanted to be as fair as I could, so I looked up how much fuel is needed for a car for the average person. The average is 1,667 litres. I then multiplied that by the federal carbon tax for 2023, and it brought me up to $238.
    Let us assume that because I live in a household where we have two cars, we have to multiply that by two. After all is said and done, taking into account what I paid to Enbridge for the carbon tax and what I would have paid through purchasing gas at a gas station, the total amount that I paid in 2023 was $855. In my household, I receive the rebate directly into my bank, and when I looked at my bank statement, the amount I received in 2023 was $885. Before even considering any initiatives that I could have taken, and I have taken some, for example, I am driving an electric car, but before even taking any initiatives—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    Mr. Mark Gerretsen: I hear Conservatives heckling me. I will not name names, because that would not be fair, but I have sat in the House and had Conservative members walk up and say, “Hey, Mark, by the way, just so you know, I drive an electric now, and I absolutely love the car.” Of course, they would never actually get up in the House of Commons and say that, because that would go against their entire narrative. In the interest of protecting the identity of the people who have done that, I will not say who they are, but I get a kick out of how they are heckling me now while I am saying this.
    Before I even attempt to do anything to improve my carbon footprint, just from the basic math, I am already ahead. The reality is that 94% of households with incomes below $50,000 a year get rebates that exceed their carbon taxes. I have demonstrated to members that in a household of four with two vehicles, it is already very plausible.
    When we start to tap into some of the many initiatives that the federal and many provincial governments have to make one's home more efficient, to install heat pumps, for example, to make conversion away from fossil fuels, we can very quickly see that if I put a heat pump in my home, that $379 I paid in 2023 no long exists, and I will be receiving in excess of $380 a month. If we also add into that the various other initiatives I could take and the choices I could make, I would end up even further ahead. It is very clear that the vast majority of Canadians receive more than they pay.

  (1300)  

    I was very relieved to hear today, and I have heard on a number of occasions, the House leader, the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, at least starting to talk about the rebates. Earlier today, I actually heard him concede that, by his information, 40% of households are getting more back. I say that we are at a place where we can work toward educating the member for Regina—Qu'Appelle. I do not think we are that far off before we can get him from that 40% to the real number of 80%. At least Conservatives are starting to come around.
    However, make no mistake about it. Conservatives want to axe the Canada carbon rebate, which is money that is being put into the pockets of Canadians, that is helping to deal with the effects of climate change and that is incentivizing them to make more energy efficient choices in their homes or in what they drive. Even if one only moves from a gasoline-only vehicle to a hybrid vehicle, one will start to see savings. One does not even have to go all-electric. Again, that just further increases the excess amount one receives as opposed to what one pays.
    I do not want to leave the impression that Conservatives are interested in any way in helping Canadians. That has been said in the House already. The Leader of the Opposition, on March 14, sent a letter to his MPs saying that Conservatives will stand in the House and will force votes they can oppose on many different items in order to perpetuate and continue the false narrative Conservatives currently have that the vast majority of people are not getting more back more than they are paying.
    Let us talk about some of those things. Perhaps Conservatives will be a little smarter this time around when we go through a marathon voting session. Perhaps they will more strategically pick what they might want to vote against, because they are lining themselves up to vote against things that are based on communication from the Leader of the Opposition and that are based on a false narrative; he believes the price on pollution is not actually putting more into the pockets of Canadians.
    Conservatives are lining themselves up this week to vote, once again, against three motions that affect Ukraine. These represent over 15 million dollars' worth of equipment to Ukraine, Operation Unifier supports Ukraine with $130 million, and then $285 million goes to Operation Reassurance to assist Ukraine. They are going to vote against RCMP members who have been injured on duty, which is at a cost of $20 million. Over $1 million is for Reaching Home programs to help address homelessness, and $12.5 million is for the collection of banned assault firearms. The very heat pump program I talked about earlier, which provides over $40 million in grants to Canadians, they will be voting against it. There is an anti-racism strategy, a round table on missing and murdered indigenous girls and LGBTQ+ people, which is over $1 million, and of course, there is the Canada housing benefit, which represents over $100 million.
    The Leader of the Opposition has set up a false narrative that people do not get back more than they pay into the price on pollution when the vast majority do. He is willing to hedge his bets on that false narrative and, at a cost of doing so, is going to vote against all those items I just listed.
    I would strongly encourage the Conservative Party of Canada members to have a good look and self-reflect on where they have come over the last number of years, from Stephen Harper, who spoke in favour of a price on pollution, up to their most recent leader and their most recent election campaign, when they knocked on doors and talked about pricing pollution. It is time to have serious look in the mirror and to reflect on exactly what it is they stand for. The reality is that the only thing they are showing themselves to stand for now is misinformation.

  (1305)  

    Madam Speaker, the member talked about electric vehicles and about having options moving forward, and I think doing more for the environment is always possible. They have done very little in their eight years. We see that they are 63rd out of 68 countries in reaching environmental targets, so they have been failing. Basically, they have a tax plan.
    A little over two years ago, my wife and kids were caught in a storm with my friend. The storm was so bad that they hit the ditch. If they had been in an electric vehicle, because they were in that ditch for eight and a half hours and no one could get to them, they would have frozen to death. It was lucky my friend had filled up the vehicle. An electric vehicle would not have lasted that long in -30°C weather.
    How much is the life of my family worth to him when he forces choices on Canadian people?
    Madam Speaker, I would like the member to perhaps fly into Toronto one day. I would be happy to pick him up at Pearson, and I would like to drive him to Ottawa so that he can have the experience of driving in an electric vehicle. What he just said there is factually incorrect. They had a full tank of gas, and they could have kept the heat on for eight hours. That is great.
    If I have a full battery, I can keep the heat on for days. The heat is not what drains an electric car battery; it is the actual driving, as is the case for a combustion vehicle. That comment is based on a widely circulated, hugely misinformed meme that is out there, and I cannot believe he even brought it up in the House of Commons. I know the meme he is talking about. It is false, and it is misinformation. If my battery is full and I end up in a ditch, I can sit there for three or four days if I am just producing heat.
    I do want to remind the hon. member for Regina—Lewvan that he had an opportunity to ask a question. If he has anything to follow up with, then he should wait until the appropriate time.

[Translation]

    The hon. member for Longueuil—Saint‑Hubert.
    Madam Speaker, I always kind of question the government's budgetary choices—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!

[English]

    The hon. member for Kingston and the Islands and the hon. member for Regina—Lewvan seem to want to go back and forth. As I said, it is not the appropriate time. I am sure the hon. member for Kingston and the Islands wants to hear the question that is being asked of him so that he will be able to answer it. Again, if individuals have questions and comments, they need to wait until the appropriate time.

[Translation]

    The hon. member for Longueuil—Saint‑Hubert.
    Madam Speaker, my question is really about questioning the government's choices. There are a lot of things I do not understand about this country, but let us just focus on the Liberal government's budgetary choices.
    There is a homelessness crisis going on right now. It has been going on in Quebec for five years. In fact, since the federal government launched the national housing strategy, homelessness in Quebec has doubled. There is also homelessness in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton. This is really serious. There is only one federal program that deals with homelessness, and that is the Reaching Home program. Now we have learned that the program will be cut by 3% for the next two years. This 3% cut seems crazy to us. It seems like the Liberals want to show the Conservatives that they are capable of fiscal restraint, so they are making cuts all over the place, including to services for the homeless.
    Recent budgets announced $83 billion in tax credits for oil companies by 2035, and yet services for the homeless are being cut by 3%. I would like my colleague to explain that to me.

[English]

    Madam Speaker, if the member is concerned about homelessness and initiatives this government has put forward, I would encourage him to not be tempted into voting against all the opposed items the Conservatives will be putting up. As I indicated, two of them, the Reaching Home program to address homelessness and the Canada housing benefit, are on the chopping block as a result of the opposed items the Leader of the Opposition has put forward.
    The reality of the situation is that, while he says we are subsidizing the fossil fuel industry, we have phased out the fossil fuel subsidies. The only way we continue to subsidize, in any way, the fossil fuel industry is to help to deal with abandoned orphan oil wells. That member might that think that it is not our problem, because they were companies from 50 years ago. We should leave the wells there, and that would be the end of that. Unfortunately, governments at the time did not think it was good to ensure that the proper money was in place to deal with those wells later on, so now society has to pick up the tab. That is the unfortunate reality. However, it is something that we have to do in our environmental interests.

  (1310)  

    Madam Speaker, I think we need to talk about going well beyond subsidies. We know that in Great Britain they had an excess profit tax on oil and gas; that is the Conservatives in Britain. We cannot even get Liberals to do that. Right now, the Liberals have ended the Canada greener homes loan program. I have constituents who want to access that program. I have contractors saying they are going to have to lay people because they were employing people and were supporting Canadians who wanted to do the right thing.
    My questions to my colleague are these: Will they charge an excess profit tax on oil and gas? Will they not just fund the greener homes loan program but also actually provide it with the necessary resources to make it through a full budget cycle so that all Canadians can access it?
    Madam Speaker, if the member for the NDP brought forward an opposition motion that we charge an excess profit tax on the oil and gas industry, I would vote for it.
    Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure to be able to rise to speak to the important issue of a price on pollution and the carbon rebate.
     I want to take a bit of a different angle on just how isolated the Conservative Party of Canada is today. When we look at the issue of a price on pollution, we will find it actually originates in 2015 in Paris, where the world came together and said not only that climate is change real but also that we need to take a policy direction around the world to try to limit the amount of emissions and ultimately reduce them so we would have a better environment worldwide.
    What we have witnessed over the years is a high level of participation from countries around the world. For example, the European Union, which is made up of many different countries, including France, Italy and so many others, came up with the green deal, which in essence is about a price on pollution. We can also look at countries like Ireland, England and Mexico. We often say that the United States does not have a price on pollution, but that is not quite accurate because there are many American states that do.
    Not only does Canada have a national price on pollution, but the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec also have a price on pollution. In the House of Commons today, the Liberal Party, the Bloc Québécois, the NDP and the Green Party are in favour of a price on pollution. We used to have a Conservative leader, Erin O'Toole, who was in favour of a price on pollution. Then we have to factor in where the Conservative Party is today. The Conservatives have isolated themselves to say that they do not support a price on pollution, even though under their former leader Erin O'Toole, in that policy platform, all the Conservatives, including the current leader, advanced, promoted and encouraged a price on pollution. It is in their platform.
    What we have witnessed since the new leader was minted not that long ago is that the far right element of the Conservative Party has taken control. The whole idea of the MAGA Conservatives has taken control through the leadership of the Conservative Party today. Because of that, Conservatives have changed their mind. They now say they are not in favour of a price on pollution. The world is changing and is recognizing the importance of a sound policy decision, but an irresponsible Conservative Party today is saying no to a price on pollution.
    England today is saying to countries around that world that if they are going to be exporting products to England and do not have a mechanism for a price on pollution, they are going to have to pay additional fees on that merchandise going into England. That is something it is acting on and is going to be putting into place. What does the Conservative Party really think about a price on pollution and the impact that will have on trade?
    We saw that with the Canada-Ukraine trade agreement, where Conservatives were prepared to use it as their sole issue as part of the rationale for opposing the Canada-Ukraine agreement, because there was reference to a price on pollution. It was not always their sole issue but was their second issue. If we think about it, Ukraine has had a price on pollution since 2011. Ukraine wants to be able to have a formal trade agreement with the European Union, which also has a price on pollution.

  (1315)  

    However, the Conservative leadership and the members across the way have closed their eyes like an ostrich, put their head in the sand and do not recognize good, sound policy. I can say that is not in the best interest of Canadians, just like it was not in the best interest of Canadians when the Conservative Party voted against the Canada-Ukraine trade agreement. That is the reality. The statements and the policy direction of the Conservative Party, with the far right element, is to the detriment of good, sound public policy, which is going to be there for future generations of Canadians and others. Canada needs things such as trade agreements. We need international trade; that is a good thing.
    The rest of the world is recognizing that the environment matters and that the price on pollution is an effective tool, but we have the leader of the official opposition going around saying he is going to get rid of the price on pollution. How backward-thinking is that when we contrast it to what the rest of the world is doing? That is not responsible public policy-making.
    Instead, the Conservatives are more focused on developing a bumper sticker that they believe is going to get them votes. They believe they are going to be able to fool Canadians. That is the bottom line. They have no faith in Canadians' understanding the reality; we see that in what they are telling Canadians.
    The question I had earlier today for the leader of the official opposition was this: Why does the Conservative Party not participate in political panels on CTV or CBC? Canadians still view those networks.
     One member is saying, “No, they do not.”
    Mr. Speaker, CTV and CBC would argue differently, and so would I. I think CTV and CBC have played a very important part in public debate for generations. The leader of the Conservative Party says they are state-operated organizations. How ridiculously stupid is it to make that sort of assertion? The leader says it not only here in the House; he says it outside the House also as he chooses to avoid true accountability on some of the stupid things he is saying, things that are absolutely misleading.
    He will go to the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec and try to give the false impression that they have the same sort of carbon taxing system as Manitoba, Atlantic Canada, Alberta and others have. That is just not true. He tries to tell people in the provinces where there is a carbon tax, a federal backstop of a carbon tax, that they are paying far more into the carbon tax system than they are receiving.
    Again, we have said very clearly, as the member for Kingston and the Islands has pointed out by his specific example, that a vast majority of people actually receive more money back from the rebate than they pay through carbon tax on gas and heating their homes. That is something the Parliamentary Budget Officer has made very clear. Over 80% of people will receive more dollars back than they will put directly into the carbon tax. That is indisputable. Members of all political parties, except for the Conservatives, are acknowledging that.

  (1320)  

    What does that mean? When the leader of the Conservative Party travels the country and says he is going to axe the tax, it also means he is going to get rid of the rebates. When Conservatives talk about getting rid of the rebates, they are telling well over 80% of my constituents that they will have less disposal income because of that particular action. I find disgraceful what the leader of the official opposition is spreading across the country.
    Madam Speaker, Dan Kelly from the CFIB has recently said he was horrified to see the government's new plan with respect to rebates for small businesses. Small businesses actually bear most of the burden of the carbon tax but get almost nothing back. In fact, the government promised that they would get more than they are actually getting.
    Does the member support improving the situation for small businesses or just letting them die on the vine?
    Madam Speaker, the member opposite is trying to change the narrative of what I said. I said that 80-plus per cent of the constituents I represent, and I emphasize the word “plus”, are getting more money back through the carbon rebate than they are paying in carbon tax. That is a fact. The member opposite, in asking the question, did not challenge that fact because, as he knows, it is the truth. However, the leader of the Conservative Party says he is going to cut the tax and cut the rebate. That means less disposable income for 80-plus per cent of the constituents I represent.
    To me, that is very deceptive. That is why the Conservatives do not want to participate on political panels, because there is a higher sense of accountability than the garbage they are putting out through social media.

[Translation]

    Madam Speaker, I do not know if my colleagues from English Canada are aware that what we have been hearing in the House this morning is a ringing endorsement for Quebec sovereignty. In Quebec, we are concerned about fighting climate change. Our province has the lowest greenhouse gas emissions, by the way, because we have taken action, because we rely on hydroelectricity and batteries.
    This morning, we have been hearing two things. On the one hand, we hear that the government has been spending a lot of money for years and has the world's worst record. Canada has the worst record when it comes to fighting climate change, despite quite needlessly throwing billions of dollars out there, with help from the NDP, which supports the government most of the time. On the other hand, we have the Conservatives saying that they are going to do even less.
    All Canadians are saying that no matter how much they spend or do not spend, they are getting nowhere. This is really a ringing endorsement for Quebec sovereignty. I hope that all Quebeckers are watching this debate today and taking note.

  (1325)  

[English]

    Madam Speaker, I hope that people in all regions of the country are taking note of the debate.
    Manitoba, like Quebec, is a major investor in hydro and green energy. There are all sorts of opportunities in virtually every region of the country. Never before have we seen as much investment in greener jobs, and those greener jobs are going to translate in every region of the country. The federal government is providing incentives and encouraging that development. Quite frankly, I would challenge any member opposite to point to a government that has done more to support greener jobs in our economy in every way.
    Madam Speaker, the member has spoken a lot about the disinformation that the Conservatives have been spreading, and I agree, but the Conservative member asked him a very fair question about small businesses.
    We know that the federal government currently owes small businesses and indigenous groups $3.6 billion. Those are rebates that the government has promised small businesses, and they are still waiting. The government has also said it is going to give small businesses less because it has doubled the rebates for rural Canadians. Why would it make small businesses pay for that when we could be making big oil and gas pay for it? The output-based pricing system is unfair. Suncor pays 14 times less than an average Canadian does in carbon pricing. Why not make big oil pay what it owes?
    Madam Speaker, I believe that Canadians, as a whole, recognize the principle that the polluters need to pay. The government has recognized this and, ultimately, moving in very significant ways, has put a price on pollution. Today, it is oriented. We continued to go in the right direction on that matter in all aspects.
    Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to rise today on behalf of the people of Coast of Bays—Central—Notre Dame and, in fact, on behalf of all the people of my great province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
    What is not a pleasure is what Justin Trudeau has done—
    The hon. member will remember that he is not to mention individuals who sit in the House of Commons by their names, no matter what position they have.
    I am sure the hon. member for Coast of Bays—Central—Notre Dame will retract that and get back on track.
    Madam Speaker, after eight years of the costly NDP-Liberal coalition and under the Prime Minister, the people of Newfoundland and Labrador have seen their cost of living go right through the roof.
    Now, the carbon cult plan is to raise the carbon tax by 23% on April 1. It is yet another in a long line of cruel April Fool's Day jokes that we are going to encounter until 2030, when the price on carbon reaches 61¢ a litre.
    On Saturday, the Voice of the Common Man, known as VOCM to most people, had a poll. It showed that 90% of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are against the April 1 increase in carbon tax of 23%. I guess people might wonder why the people of Newfoundland and Labrador are so against the costly coalition's increase in carbon tax. It is simply because Newfoundland and Labrador's geographical area is very remote. Everything comes to Newfoundland by the use of fuel. Whether it is food, building supplies or even fuel, it arrives by fuel.
    The fishing industry takes quite the hit, whether in terms of the processors that use fuel to cook the crab, the trucking companies that truck it or the fishermen who drive around and move their supplies. The carbon tax has quite the impact. It impacts the price the fishermen receive.
    It impacts the mining industry. There is a mine in my riding that shut down, and one of the main reasons was the high cost of fuel.
    It has a massive impact on the forestry industry and the tourism industry. People cannot afford to travel to Newfoundland and Labrador anymore.
    The Speaker is very aware of how much it costs to get to Newfoundland and Labrador, as I know she has family connections in one of the great communities in my riding, Belleoram. The Speaker is well aware of the crippling effect of high fuel costs.
    If it costs more for fishermen to harvest the fish or processors to process it, or for farmers to grow vegetables and wheat, or whatnot, and for truckers to truck those products to the grocery stores, which are paying more in energy bills, at the end of the day the consumer foots the bill.
    Seventy per cent of Canadians are against this 23% increase in carbon tax, and seven Canadian premiers have come out against it. This includes the great supporter and childhood friend of the Prime Minister, the Liberal Premier of Newfoundland, Andrew Furey, who just sent a letter to the Prime Minister, pleading with him to pause the increase. He said, “I respectfully request that you consider pausing the implementation of the April 1st carbon tax increase”.
    We will see if he listens. All along, Premier Furey supported the carbon tax, but now he sees the light. Yet his good friend, the Prime Minister, consistently breaks the promise he made to Canadians to hold carbon pricing at $50 per tonne. The new goal, of course, is $170 a tonne.
    Then there is the constant bragging that carbon tax is revenue-neutral. It is not. People do not have to take my word for it: The independent watchdog, the Parliamentary Budget Officer, says that Canadians will pay more in carbon tax than they receive in rebates. At the same time, the Liberal-NDP coalition has not met one single solitary climate change target, and it will not.
    The member for St. John's South—Mount Pearl continues to talk about the cold hard cash that Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are going to find in their pockets. Increases such as the one coming on April 1, which lead to a total increase by 2030 of 61¢ a litre, are not putting cold hard cash in anybody's pockets. I will tell the House what Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are finding cold: the temperatures in their homes. They cannot afford to heat them. That is where we will find the cold.
    Last week, Liberal Premier Furey said, “The issue for this particular tax is there are limited options to change right now in Newfoundland and Labrador.... In the absence of the ability to change, what does the tax really accomplish?”

  (1330)  

    Hiking the carbon tax will accomplish more of the same, more of nothing. Our common-sense Conservative leader and I toured Newfoundland and Labrador over the last year. We were in Labrador. We were in St. John's East. We were in St. John's South—Mount Pearl. We were in Avalon and Bonavista—Burin—Trinity, my great riding of Coast of Bays—Central—Notre Dame and Long Range Mountains. We heard the message loud and clear that life is simply unaffordable these days.
    On a recent visit to the Community Food Sharing Association in St. John's last week, we were shown quite a disturbing picture. Their demand has risen by over 40% in the last three or four years. They are now having to try to save food banks that are about to close their doors because they cannot find the resources to supply the needs of the public. We heard the struggles. We heard the pleas, such as those we heard from the food bank.
    If the six NDP-Liberal MPs from Newfoundland and Labrador are hearing the same pleas, which I am sure they are, we really hope they listen to the requests of the people who elected them, the people who sent them here. They sent them here to be their voice in this place. They come a long way every week. I am looking over at my colleague, the member for Bonavista—Burin—Trinity. I travel on a plane with him quite a bit. He comes a long way from out where he lives. It is quite the trek. He is bringing those concerns from all the way out there in Bonavista—Burin—Trinity to the House. I am sure that the folks out in Clarenville, and New-Wes-Valley and places like that are hoping that he remembers the pain that the hike in this carbon tax is going to bring to those folks on April 1 and beyond, as it continues on into 2030. I hope that my hon. colleague and, along with him, his five NDP-Liberal colleagues support our motion to stop the hike in the carbon tax when the vote comes up later this week.
    There is hope, because if the six NDP-Liberal members from Newfoundland and Labrador continue to neglect their constituents, there is going to be a price to be paid. These are the people who elected them to come here, to represent them and to be their voice in Ottawa. If they continue to not speak as their voice and vote against Conservative motions, such the one before the House to spike the hike, the price to be paid is not going to be a price on pollution. It is going to be a price on NDP-Liberal seats in this place. We plead with them, as their constituents do, to vote with Conservatives, spike the hike and heed our plea.
    Common-sense Conservatives, very shortly, will axe the tax, build the homes, stop the crime and balance the budget.

  (1335)  

    Madam Speaker, aside from slogans, let me make a plea to the member who just spoke. On April 15, the people in Newfoundland and Labrador, a good many of them his constituents, will have a cheque deposited in their account. A family of four will get $298. When that is added up, it will be well over $1,000 for the year. If the member votes in favour of this motion, what he is really doing is voting against that rebate cheque being deposited in their accounts.
    The Parliamentary Budget Officer has made it very clear that 80% of Canadians get more back in their rebates than they actually pay out. That is a fact. I will say that on CTV on a political panel. The member opposite will not do that.
    Will the hon. member admit to why he wants to deny his constituents those rebate cheques?
    Madam Speaker, I am bewildered as to why my colleague across the way is fighting against the independently appointed Parliament Budget Officer, the watchdog for this place. In Newfoundland and Labrador, $1,874 is what the average household will pay this year. The rebate will be $1,497, for a net loss to each household of $377.
    Is there a new math? I did not think math changed. We could go all the way back to the Greeks; it has stayed the same.
    I am hearing feedback on both sides of the House when it is not the appropriate time. I would ask members to please refrain from doing that.
    Questions and comments, the hon. member for Edmonton Strathcona.
    Madam Speaker, last week, we had a constituency week. I went to 15 different seniors' residences and spoke to seniors across my riding. They were, very clearly, absolutely delighted with the NDP dental care program, which included seniors.
    I listened to the member speak about how he wanted to make life more affordable for Canadians, yet his party votes against things like the dental care program. His party votes against things like the national food program for children. His party votes against things like taking GST off of home heating. Every time we bring forward a smart idea that will make life more affordable for Canadians, the Conservatives vote against it.
    When I spoke to seniors in my riding, they were deeply concerned about the potential of a Conservative government. They asked me what I would do to ensure that those folks never got into power.

  (1340)  

    Madam Speaker, that member should spend a day in my constituency office in Grand Falls-Windsor and listen to the phone calls and read the emails we get from seniors and folks who are absolutely disgusted with that fake dental program. It works for nobody.
     Talking about our constituents, let us talk about her constituents. In Alberta, they will pay $2,943 this year in carbon tax. Their rebate will be $2,032, for a net loss to the average family in her riding of $911. She has a lot to be proud of.
    There was still some back and forth, other people having debates. I want to remind members to please be respectful. If I have not recognized them, they are not the ones who should be speaking at the time.
    The hon. member for Longueuil—Saint-Hubert.

[Translation]

    Madam Speaker, over the past year, I toured Quebec on the housing issue. I travelled all over Quebec. I met with over 70 organizations representing 15,000 members. These are people who work with the most vulnerable, namely, women who are victims of domestic violence and people with intellectual disabilities. We talked about housing and homelessness. No one—not a single person—talked to me about the carbon tax to deal with people who do not have shelter or housing. I was told that we need investments, that we need to invest in social housing and the most vulnerable. No one talked to me about the carbon tax.
    When I hear my Conservative colleagues say that they are close to the disadvantaged and the people who care for people, I cannot believe that they would say that.

[English]

    Madam Speaker, I do not know what my hon. colleague does not understand about the carbon tax, but a lot of the things that are consumed in his riding enter Canada in Vancouver. They come across the country and the carbon tax is applied to the fuel that is used to ship everything from B.C. to La Belle Province. The grain that the great bread of Quebec is made from, the consumers of Quebec pay for all of these things. He knows it. He knows that common-sense Conservatives have a plan to build homes, and we will do it and even help that man in his own riding.
    Madam Speaker, it is always a true privilege and honour to rise in the House of Commons and represent the wonderful, amazing, hard-working people of Peterborough—Kawartha.
    Today, we have a very important opposition day motion, put forward by the member for Carleton, the official leader of the opposition, Canada's next prime minister, to protect and help Canadians.
    The reality is that life has never been more expensive after eight years of the Liberal-NDP Prime Minister. He lost his way so long ago that he cannot see the forest for the trees. He has refused to listen to the reality of what is happening outside of this building.
    The motion put forward today is, “That, given that 70% of provinces and 70% of Canadians oppose the Prime Minister's 23% carbon tax hike on April 1, the House call on the NDP-Liberal coalition to immediately cancel this hike.”
    People watching at home might say that if 70% of Canadians agree with this, how can the Liberal-NDP coalition go along with something that nobody wants. That is Liberal math and Liberal logic. Not only that, the Liberals will tell people that they will get more back with their carbon tax rebate, which makes no sense. There would not even be a rebate if they did not take the money to begin with. There is zero common sense. The average Ontario family is going to pay almost $1,700 in carbon tax, and that is just this year. The numbers in 2030 are $3,583. This has been a lie from day one.
    The Prime Minister promised that initially this tax would never go higher than $50 a tonne. Now it is set to reach $170 per tonne. The Prime Minister said that the carbon tax would be revenue-neutral, but the Parliamentary Budget Officer confirms that Canadians pay more than they get back in rebates. The Prime Minister said that the carbon tax would help lower GHG emissions, but the Liberal government will not meet its own environmental targets by 2030. Why does anybody believe him? They do not, and why should they? He tells them one thing and does another. He doubles down and lets his ego lead, because it is way more important to be right than to listen to Canadians who are truly hurting.
    According to the “Food insecurity among Canadian families” report, using data from the 2021 Canada income survey, almost 50% of single mothers living below the poverty line struggle with food insecurity. What is going to happen with this carbon tax increase on April 1 if already 50% of single mothers are struggling with food insecurity?
    This past week, I had the chance to visit the beautiful province of New Brunswick, and I will give a shout-out to the east coast and the amazing humans who live out there. I went to many food banks that had a double to triple increase in one year. The demographic of who is using that food bank are students, seniors, working middle class and active serving military families.
     I could not believe what I heard Jane from Oromocto Food Bank. She said that it had about 50 active serving military families accessing the food bank. I asked her since when and she told me that was about four or five years. The other part was that they had to pay rent for their housing. How are the houses heated? Natural gas. What is on natural gas? The carbon tax.
     It gets even better. Not only does the Liberal-NDP coalition charge the carbon tax, but it taxes the carbon tax. That is disgusting. The PBO has reported that the carbon tax on propane and natural gas used for greenhouse heating and cooling, livestock barns and drying grain will cost the farmers nearly $1 billion by 2030. Has anybody visited a farm? I do not know if members know this, but farmers do not have a lot of money. Farmers often have a lot of assets but very little cash flow. If we bankrupt farmers, we bankrupt Canadians and prevent them from being able to eat.

  (1345)  

    This is the most insane thing I have ever seen. We have to ask what the government is doing and why it is doing it. It makes us question what is happening.
    According to Canada's Food Price Report, food cost for the typical family of four is expected to rise by $700 in 2024. According to a Second Harvest report, 36% of charities had to turn people away because they were running out of resources. In addition, 101 first nations communities have taken the Liberal government to court over the carbon tax. They are waking up. It is all virtue signalling.
    I have this lovely letter from a woman named Barbara. She said, “I heat my home with propane and a wood stove. Not only are we paying the carbon tax, but we are paying HST on the carbon tax. That is double taxation. I have called and written and spoken, but I can't get any answers.” Barb is not alone, because the Liberal-NDP coalition does not want to listen to her.
    Yesterday, in question period, there was an exchange between the Leader of the Opposition and the finance minister, who said that the Liberals would take no lessons from the Conservatives, because they would stand for the least vulnerable. Was that a Freudian slip? I am not sure.
    I will read comments that are coming to me. A lot of times, the Liberals across the way will say that Conservatives are making things up. They love to gaslight Canadians or find one person to zone in on their confirmation bias and say that they have toxic positivity, that things have never been so great, that things have never been so wonderful. We know that is not true.
    One person said, “Hello Michelle. I live in Peterborough. I'm a wife and a mother of 4 (ages 13 years -15 months). The increase caused by the carbon tax and 8 years of [the Prime Minister's] Liberal government is killing my family. My husband has a job that used to be the golden ticket of jobs here in Peterborough and now we can barely get by. We used to spend $400 for groceries and have a month's worth of food. Now we are lucky if that gets us more than a week. I can't afford new glasses. My husband can't afford to go to the dentist. And don't get me started on the price of formula and diapers! All of this lands squarely on the incredibly corrupt shoulders of the [the Prime Minister] Liberals and the NDP coalition. Any help you can provide and advocate for is amazing. Please help us.”
     Bob Bolton wrote, “There should be no CARBON TAX in the first place Michelle, we have all kinds of trees to look after that issue, thanks.”
    Meaghan Ireland Danielis said, “As a mother of three and a small business owner with a partner working full time and a part-time job myself, it's already a struggle to put food on the table and pay bills. This tax increase will raise the prices of everything yet again. I am not sure how people are supposed to survive, let alone thrive. Its a scary state of affairs. I really hope that our next government can find a way to clean up some of the terrible mess that's been made. I know, you know Michelle..., people are suffering and there is no need for it to be this way. Everything has been flipped and the focus is all wrong. I have always been a proud Canadian and a patriot. These last few years for the first time ever, I've considered leaving my beautiful home of Canada. I have lost hope and I know I'm not alone in this.”
    She is not alone as 70% of Canadians are experiencing what she is experiencing. Working-class families cannot afford to put gas in their cars, food in their fridges or heat their homes. That is the reality. All Conservatives know this. For some reason, that side of the House, the people who are in charge of the country, fail to acknowledge it, fail to recognize it—

  (1350)  

    Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order. The member is giving an impassioned speech about her riding and there is so much noise in the chamber, it is impossible to hear her from the front of the floor of the House.
    I have already signalled the Sergeant-at-Arms and he is taking care of that.
    The hon. member for Peterborough—Kawartha.
    Madam Speaker, I have thousands of comments. Members can visit my Facebook page, read them and maybe join people.
    The reality is that we hear them and we are fighting for them. We know that Canadians do not want the Prime Minister to force his tax hike on them. We have common-sense solutions to axe the tax. The Conservatives will stand with Canadians, fight for them and promise to make life more affordable.
    Madam Speaker, on April 15, there are going to be carbon rebate cheques circulated to Canadians. Conservative Party members are going around saying that they are going to axe the tax, but axing the tax also means getting rid of the carbon rebates. Many Canadians now factor those rebates into their budgets. Four times a year, on a regular basis, Canadians are receiving a rebate, and many of them factor it into their expenses and budgets. As well, a vast majority are receiving more money back from the rebate than they put into the tax. That is the truth and the reality.
    Would the member make it very clear whether the Conservative Party is prepared to take away those rebates that will be deposited on April 15?
    Madam Speaker, it is so hard to rationalize the delusion of Liberal logic and Liberal math. It is so challenging. The argument is that they are going to give a rebate. If they did not take the money, there would be no rebate. People do not have that extra money to give. For an average family in Ontario, it is going to cost just under $1,700 in carbon tax. What they are going to get back is just over $1,100. That is from the Parliamentary Budget Officer. That is math, real math, and that is the reality.
    Why are the Liberals trying to gaslight Canadians? Canadians know the truth. They are the ones accessing the food banks, and they are the ones who cannot afford to live because of the Liberals.

  (1355)  

    Madam Speaker, in June I asked the Parliamentary Budget Officer what would happen if we did away with the carbon tax and went toward subsidies and regulations, or what would happen if we did nothing. The U.S. has made it clear there would be a border carbon adjustment, and I asked what the impact would be on those eight in 10 Canadians.
    He said that it depends exactly what is done in place of the carbon tax, but if we just speak about a carbon adjustment at the U.S. border, that would probably lead to an economic slowdown in Canada and it would be significant, depending on the adjustment, of course. However, he said it was not unthinkable that this could lead to negative impacts on sectors that are more energy-intensive. He said it would drive up inflation in the U.S., and that in Canada it would probably have the opposite effect and act as a depressor on economic activity and on prices. It would be the opposite effect, which is not much better. This is what he cited. In fact, one could say it is worse because it would depress economic activity.
    My colleague ran on a price on pollution. As my colleague knows, I am always trying to work on solutions. What are Conservatives proposing in place of a carbon tax to ensure that Canadians do not get the impact of a carbon adjustment at the border with the U.S., the U.K. and the EU?
    Madam Speaker, I ask the member opposite, and all the members who ask this question, if they have visited a farm lately. The 2023 food price report estimated that the carbon tax will cost a typical 5,000-acre farm $150,000 by 2030. Anybody who visits a farm knows that farmers are the stewards of this land. They are the most innovative, the most creative and the most environmentally friendly. They have all the technology. They know what to do with the land because they are the stewards of the land.
    My question back to them was what was going to happen when there were no farms because they cannot do this. To answer the question, I would rely on farmers and their technology, innovation and connection to the land to actually help the environment, and not on a tax that punishes Canadians.
    Madam Speaker, today we were at the Standing Committee on the Status of Women and the member for Peterborough—Kawartha put forward a motion to stop the carbon tax so single mothers could afford to feed their families. The Bloc, the NDP and the Liberals all voted against it. Is this what the government cares about? It does not care about single moms. It does not care about how they are going to feed their children, because its members did not vote with us.
    Could she tell us how we are going to help these poor single mothers?
    Madam Speaker, yes, it was shocking to adjourn debate on something that is so easy to do to help and to listen. Again, I reiterate that this is 70% of Canadians. We know the carbon tax disproportionately impacts the most vulnerable: single mothers, those with low incomes, seniors and students. All of these people are accessing food banks at historical highs. Never in history has it been this bad. It is simple: Replace that person across the way who likes to call himself the Prime Minister, get rid of this tax and make life affordable for Canadians.

Statements by Members

[Statements by Members]

[English]

Agriculture and Agri-Food

    Madam Speaker, Canadian farmers and ranchers are responsible stewards of the land and are united in their goal of feeding Canadians and the world. They are also on the front lines of climate change, often dealing with its devastating effects, including droughts, floods and wildfires.
    The severe droughts of 2021 resulted in a 27% decline in Canadian grain production. The drought of 2023 is projected to lower the grain harvest by 6.5%, with the Prairies being especially hard hit. This year is shaping up to be a continuation of this trend. An overwhelming majority of Canadians, including farmers, are rightfully concerned about the impacts of climate change and we hear them.
    While Conservatives continue to deny the reality of climate change and the role it plays in driving up food prices, we are helping the agri-food industry adapt to climate change through the Canadian agricultural partnership, the AgriRecovery framework and the national adaptation strategy.
    We will always be there for farmers.

  (1400)  

Environmental Stewardship Award

    Madam Speaker, I rise to honour the guardians of the grasslands, the classical conservationists and the protectors of our pastures. Of course, I am speaking about agriculture producers across the country.
     Today, I am proud to recognize constituents Doug and Linda Wray of the Wray Ranch near Irricana, Alberta, for receiving the Canadian Cattle Association's environmental stewardship award for 2023. Their focus on sustainable farming is an example of how Canadian agriculture is leading in efficiency and environmental farming, producing the best-quality food in the world. The Wrays' commitment to soil health is evident through practices like conservation tillage, pasture management, and bale and swath grazing. This results in significant improvements such as increased soil and organic matter and reduced erosion.
    I congratulate them for their recognition as stewards of the environment. May their family farm live on through generations of Wrays and serve as an example of the greatness we see every day in Canadian agriculture.

Taiwan

    Madam Speaker, as we welcome the honourable Kelly Hsieh, the deputy minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of China, on Parliament Hill today, let us celebrate our friendship between Canada and Taiwan.
    I rise today to acknowledge Taiwan as an important stakeholder and a valuable partner for Canada and the international community. The signing of the FIPA between Canada and Taiwan in December 2023 demonstrated Canada's commitment to strengthening economic ties with the Indo-Pacific region.
    However, Taiwan's accession to the CPTPP would be an even greater achievement. Taiwan is a significant economic player in the Indo-Pacific region. It promises economic growth, trade diversification and regional stability. By embracing free-trade principles, Taiwan can contribute to a prosperous, rules-based international order. By supporting Taiwan's accession to the CPTPP, Canada would demonstrate its commitment to promoting these principles in the region.
    Let us embrace the—
    The hon. member for Pierre-Boucher—Les Patriotes—Verchères.

[Translation]

Julien Lévesque and Laurence Brière

    Mr. Speaker, Quebec has some great athletes. I am pleased to rise in the House to celebrate the victory of two of our athletes, Julien Lévesque from Boucherville and his partner Laurence Brière, who form one heck of a figure skating duo.
    I was delighted to see these two youngsters, beaming and waving the Quebec flag, all with the Canadian championship medal around their necks.
    This Quebec duo, competing in the “novice” category in Waterloo, Ontario, came out on top against all the other athletes from the Canadian provinces. It is a resounding testament not only to their talent, but also to the amazing ability Quebeckers have to shine among the best in the world.
    Julien and Laurence, you have our admiration, and you can be sure we will following the rest of your journey closely. Bravo, we are proud of you.

[English]

Women in Business

    Mr. Speaker, on March 8, I had the immense pleasure of meeting and celebrating women community leaders from my riding of Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel.
    The women spoke of their personal stories, challenges and triumphs. They are successful women, not only in their respective lines of business, occupations or professions, but because each day they inspire and serve as role models for other women.

[Translation]

    I am especially grateful for our government's efforts to encourage women, but also to actively support the participation of women in the workforce, including with the very first women entrepreneurship strategy and several other measures that have allowed women to enter the workforce in record numbers.

[English]

    Let us continue to celebrate women on International Women's Day and every day, and pursue our efforts to create and offer them opportunities to thrive and succeed.

  (1405)  

[Translation]

International Day of La Francophonie

    Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, March 20, is International Day of La Francophonie. The Organisation internationale de la Francophonie's theme this year is “Créer, innover, entreprendre en français” or create, innovate and engage in French.
    As president of the Canadian Branch of the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie I want to issue an invitation. We are more than 321 million French speakers in the world. We have to make daily efforts to grow the French language. Here at home in Canada and in Quebec, the decline is a sad reality and we have to be vigilant and do what it takes to turn things around.
    My party, the Conservative Party of Canada, recognizes the decline of French. We will continue to take meaningful action to slow this decline across the country.
    Tomorrow, I invite francophones and francophiles to do something meaningful in their community to promote our language, French.
    Let us be proactive ambassadors. Let us celebrate our beautiful language every day. Let us create, innovate and be proud of our language, French.

[English]

Ilyas Mullabhai

    Mr. Speaker, the community of Don Valley West is deeply saddened by the loss of Ilyas Mullabhai, a dear friend, valued colleague and trusted adviser.
    Ilyas's unwavering commitment to advancing community-based initiatives is well recognized. He was instrumental in assisting the Islamic Society of Toronto in establishing a new religious centre and community space that will provide a safe and inclusive environment for Muslims in our community.
    I had the pleasure to collaborate closely with Ilyas, particularly on our joint advocacy for youth initiatives. Our work together on the Canada summer jobs program at Masjid Darus Salam has helped a generation of young people acquire valuable skills, earn fair wages and prepare for post-secondary education.
    Brother Ilyas was committed to serving others. That commitment was rooted in his belief in humanity and in his faith. I extend my condolences to his son Arshad and his family. He will be missed.

Nowruz

    Mr. Speaker, as the evening approaches, marking the arrival of Nowruz at precisely 11:06:26 p.m. tonight, we gather to celebrate a tradition steeped in the renewal of the earth and the rejuvenation of our spirits. This ancient festival, rich in symbolism and joy, invites us to embrace the new year with hope and optimism.
    In the spirit of this celebration, let us reflect upon the wisdom of the Persian poet, Khayyam, whose words resonate with the essence of Nowruz.
    [Member spoke in Farsi]
[English]
    Khayyam's poetry captures the essence of Nowruz with elegance, urging us to leave the past behind us and embrace the present's fresh promise. As we greet the new year, these words inspire us to meet the future with open hearts, celebrating Norwuz as a symbol of renewal, unity and shared values. This ancient tradition beckons us toward a brighter, more harmonious path in the future.

Communities of York—Simcoe

    Mr. Speaker, it is ridiculous. The rural communities of York—Simcoe are not eligible to receive the rural top-up on the carbon tax because they are classified as being part of Toronto by the government, and now, not a single community in northern York Region has received any housing funding from the Liberals' overhyped housing accelerator fund, but Toronto has received half a billion dollars.
    A clear message has been sent to the residents of Georgina, East Gwillimbury, Aurora, Uxbridge, Bradford and the Chippewas of Georgina Island. According to the Liberals, they are not Toronto enough for housing funding, but they are too Toronto to get the rural top-up.
     The Liberals are out of touch. They are hiking up the carbon tax by 23%, though it does nothing for the environment. Their housing fund will not build a single home, including in fast-growing places such as York—Simcoe.
    Enough is enough. Conservatives will spike the hike, axe the tax and bring in homes Canadians can afford.

Cattle Industry

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to proudly celebrate our Canadian cattle industry, the ranchers and beef producers across the country who help raise quality product for our tables and tables around the world.
    This week, representatives are in Ottawa for the annual CCA reception. I think about champions at home in Kings—Hants, folks such as Dean and Catherine Manning, the Oulton Family and Ryan Knowles with the Hants County Meat Company. I appreciate all the work they do in our communities, and locally, to provide great product.
    However, as a young parliamentarian, I also want to recognize the work of the Canadian Cattle Youth Council, whose members I had the chance to meet with yesterday: Kimberly Landsdale, Charlene Yungblut, Scott Gerbrandt and Patrick Sullivan. I would like to thank them for the work they do to help support youth farmers across the country and all our representatives who are here in Ottawa today.
    Let us, as parliamentarians, get out and celebrate all that is good for the Canadian cattle industry.

  (1410)  

ArriveCAN App

    Mr. Speaker, Canadians continue to ask questions about the ArriveCAN app, and Conservatives continue to push for answers.
    Last week, we continued to prosecute GC Strategies, an IT firm of two people who performed no actual work, yet it was paid a third of $60 million in contracts for the ArriveCAN app. After hiding from accountability to the point of being threatened with arrest, the two individuals finally appeared at committee.
     Although they were still evasive, MPs were able to learn that the two partners pocketed $2.5 million, and for what? One partner, Kristian Firth, that said he had averaged two to four hours per day at a rate of $2,600 per hour. His partner said that he had no clue as to what went on at any point in the ArriveCAN process and only processed the security clearances for their subcontractors, a job he did wrong.
    The Liberal government must listen up. It must explain why it wasted millions of dollars. Canadians want their money back, so it should start explaining and pay up.

[Translation]

Carbon Tax

    Mr. Speaker, after eight years of this Liberal government, all over Quebec, farmers are protesting because of the carbon tax and the related drop in their net income. The Bloc Québécois chooses to ignore and even punish them.
    Indeed, the Bloc Québécois wants to drastically increase Liberal taxes on gasoline and food. It wants to do so on April 1. This commitment seems like a joke, an April Fool's joke, but unfortunately it is not.
    The Union des producteurs agricoles confirmed to me in person last week the devastating impact this 23% increase is going to have on all Canadians, especially on farmers in my region.
    Of what use is the Bloc Québécois? It punishes Quebeckers and worsens farmers' already complicated living conditions.
    All Canadians hope that the government as well as the Bloc Québécois will cancel this absolutely devastating tax.

[English]

Nowruz

    Mr. Speaker, today marks the spring equinox, otherwise called Nowruz, which marks the new year for Iranians, Afghans, Ismailis, Baha’is, Zoroastrians and over 300 million individuals across the world. Many around the world are excited to welcome spring and the promise of a new year.
    I am certain every member of the House will join me in wishing all those celebrating Nowruz across Canada a happy new year.
    Happy Nowruz.

Special Olympics Canada Winter Games

    Mr. Speaker, a few weeks ago, Canadian athletes gathered in Calgary for the Special Olympics Canada Winter Games, and competitors from Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing sure made us proud.
     From Manitoulin Island, skip Tyler Madahbee and team members Dylan Danville, Dayne Tipper, Austin Recollet and William Leclair brought home the gold for curling, and Matthew Bedard won three bronze medals in snowshoeing. Elliot Lake's Adam Cormier took home a silver in teams and a bronze in singles in five-pin bowling.

[Translation]

    Every year, coaches, volunteers and employees make Special Olympics an event that everyone can be proud of. It is important that we recognize all they do to support and encourage our athletes.

[English]

    The oath of the Special Olympics is “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.” Our special Olympians who participated in this year's winter games continue to exemplify this oath.
    I congratulate Tyler, Dylan, Dayne, Austin, William, Matthew and Adam. They have shown strength, determination and courage during these challenging competitions. We are all so very proud of their accomplishments.

[Translation]

80th anniversary of the Institut maritime du Québec

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to mark the 80th anniversary of the Institut maritime du Québec in Rimouski.
    This great national institution was founded on May 24, 1944, under the leadership of Jules‑A. Brillant. Eighty years later, the Institut maritime du Québec remains the only marine labour force training centre in Quebec, the largest in Canada, and the only francophone institution of its kind in North America. Since its founding, the Institut maritime du Québec has trained generations of sailors and experts, contributing to the marine industry across all oceans.
    I would like to thank the artisans of yesterday and today for making this great expertise from Quebec and the Lower St. Lawrence shine throughout the world. Long live our national treasure, the Institut maritime du Québec, and happy 80th anniversary.
    Let us be sure to attend the big festive banquet on April 6 to celebrate together.

  (1415)  

[English]

Carbon Tax

    Mr. Speaker, April 1 is usually a day of lighthearted fun for Canadians during which we amuse one another with practical jokes.
    This is not so for the uncaring NDP-Liberal Prime Minister, who will play a cruel joke on Canadians by increasing his carbon tax once again, this time by 23%, on everything. Seventy per cent of Canadians oppose this tax, and all Atlantic Canadian premiers, including the Liberal premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, have joined common sense Conservatives in demanding that the government axe the tax.
    An astonishing two million Canadians need to visit a food bank every month, and now we see charities running out of resources and money to help Canadians. A wise Nova Scotian once commented that no one would believe that one could pay money to the government and it would give more back. This simply is not true. Today, in the Nova Scotia Legislature, all political parties voted unanimously, calling on all Nova Scotia MPs to scrap the carbon tax hike and axe the tax.

Carbon Rebate

    Mr. Speaker, it is exciting news that tax season is here.
    When Canadians file their taxes, they will receive the Canada carbon rebate. In the provinces where it applies, such as my home province of Ontario, the Canada carbon rebate will put even more money back in the pockets of most Canadians than they pay into the carbon pricing system.
     Affordability is top of mind in everything our federal government does. With the Canada carbon rebate, we are directly putting money into the bank accounts of Canadian families. Families are counting on these cheques, especially low- and middle-income Canadians, who need it the most.
    Unfortunately, Conservative MPs want to cut these rebates, which low- and middle-income Canadians rely on, but we will not let them. Canadian families can count on that.

Oral Questions

[Oral Questions]

[Translation]

Carbon Pricing

    Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have a common‑sense plan to cut taxes, build the homes, fix the budget and stop the crime. Meanwhile, after eight years, the Prime Minister is not worth the cost.

[English]

    The Prime Minister and his carbon tax are not worth the cost after eight long years. The Parliamentary Budget Officer confirms that in every single province, Canadians pay far more in taxes than they get back in rebates on a tax that will go up 23%.
    Today, common-sense Conservatives are calling for the Prime Minister to grant his caucus a free vote on our motion to spike the hike.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, eight out of 10 families across the country, in the regions where we have put a federal price on pollution, are getting more money with the price on pollution.
    What the Leader of the Opposition is proposing is not only to take away the cheques that are given to families to help with the cost of groceries, rent and the impact of climate change, but also to do nothing to fight climate change and build a stronger future.
    We are here to help Canadians with cheques. We are here to fight climate change.

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, Nova Scotians understand that after eight years, this NDP-Liberal Prime Minister is not worth the cost, and they are right. According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the Prime Minister's carbon tax will cost the average Nova Scotia family $1,500.
    That is why the Nova Scotia legislature, Liberals, Conservatives and NDP, voted unanimously to call on federal MPs representing the province to vote with the common-sense Conservatives to spike the hike.
    Will he allow a free vote, so that Nova Scotians can vote for their constituents rather than the party boss?

  (1420)  

    Mr. Speaker, a family of four in Nova Scotia gets about $824 back in a year for the price on pollution.
     The Canadian carbon rebate delivers more money into the pockets of eight out of 10 Canadians right across the country. The Leader of the Opposition wants to take away those Canada carbon rebate cheques from Canadian families, where eight out of 10 families do better even with the price on pollution.
    It is a way of fighting climate change, building a safer and more prosperous future and putting more money back into the pockets of Canadians, which is something he wants to take away.
    Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has finally done something helpful when it comes to math. He says that his rebate for Nova Scotians is $850. Well, the Parliamentary Budget Officer confirmed that the cost is $1,500 for the average Nova Scotia family. He wants to take away $1,500 in carbon taxes from the average Nova Scotia family and give back only $850.
    Everybody knows that the carbon tax is just like him, not worth the cost. Will he allow a free vote?
    Mr. Speaker, once again, the Leader of the Opposition wants to take away the Canada carbon rebate cheques that land in Nova Scotians' mailboxes and in the pockets of families right across the country where the price on pollution is in place, because eight out of 10 of them do better with the price on pollution and the Canada carbon rebate.
    He wants to take those cheques away from Canadians, and he wants to do far less to fight against the climate change impacts that Canadians are feeling from coast to coast to coast. He has no plan for the future and no money for Canadians.
    Mr. Speaker, the tax revolt has spread to Ontario, where the Liberal leader of the provincial party has now flip-flopped and says that she, too, is against the Prime Minister's carbon tax. Maybe that is because she read the Parliamentary Budget Officer report showing that Ontarians will pay $1,674, which is more than $600 more than the rebate in that province.
    Will the Prime Minister allow his Ontario MPs to have a free vote on our common-sense Conservative motion to spike the hike?
    Mr. Speaker, families in Ontario are facing higher prices for groceries and higher costs for rent, and we are delivering a Canada carbon rebate that leaves them better off. Eight out of 10 Canadian families across the country have more money in their pockets with the Canada carbon rebate than the price on pollution costs them. At the same time, the price on pollution is bringing down carbon emissions, preparing a cleaner economy for the future and putting more money back in Canadians' pockets.
    The Conservatives want to take away the Canada carbon rebate cheques. We are going to continue to support families on affordability and fighting climate change.
    Mr. Speaker, this is right from the Parliamentary Budget Officer's numbers. He says $1,674 is the cost to the average Ontario family, and the rebate is only $1,047, so Ontarians are paying more than they get back, just like British Columbians, whose NDP government is administering the federally mandated carbon tax. According to the Vancouver Sun today, the budget presented by the NDP in that province says the carbon tax will raise $9 billion over three years and pay back only $3 billion. That is a nearly $6-billion net carbon tax cost.
    Will he allow B.C. MPs a free vote?
    Mr. Speaker, for Canadians watching politics and watching question period, for reporters in the gallery, or for anyone who wants to see a concrete example of the fact that the leader of the official opposition does not care about the facts, this is it. He does not care about the evidence, and he does not care about how the federation works. He just wants to make clever arguments and score partisan points.
    The fact is that British Columbia's price on pollution has been there since 2008 and will continue to be administered by British Columbia, not the federal government.

  (1425)  

[Translation]

Taxation

    Mr. Speaker, this government and Canada are both living high off the hog thanks to the fiscal imbalance.
    The Canadian government collects more in taxes than its responsibilities actually require. Quebec and the provinces collect less in taxes than their responsibilities require. Of course, raising taxes is not an option.
    Do the government and the Prime Minister recognize that Quebec's extremely large deficit is in fact being manufactured by the Government of Canada?
    Mr. Speaker, in this Canadian federation, the federal government is there to work with the provincial governments to provide what Canadians need, from one end of this country to the other.
    We have made record investments in health care, dental care and transfers for the provinces to be able to provide the services they need.
    I realize that the leader of the Bloc Québécois wants to turn this into a debate about Quebec sovereignty. The reality is that we work very well together. We are going to continue to make sure that all Canadians, from one end of this country to the other, prosper.
    Mr. Speaker, we will give him a chance, we will not get into a debate on Quebec sovereignty, but he owes Quebec $6 billion in health and $1 billion in immigration for welcoming refugees. That makes $7 billion out of a total deficit of $11 billion. People stand unanimously against him and he is literally choking Quebec.
    Will he use $1 billion in immigration and $6 billion in health to rein in Quebec and turn Quebeckers into Canadians like everyone else, and Quebec into a province like all the others?
    Mr. Speaker, everyone in the House knows that when I make a commitment to Quebec and Quebeckers, I am not making a commitment to the leader of the Bloc Québécois. I am making a commitment to the Premier of Quebec.
    I can say that last Friday, we had a very good conversation. We are working together on immigration, on health care, on economic growth. We will never agree on everything, but we will agree on the need to work constructively together and not stir up trouble, which is the Bloc Québécois's raison d'être.

[English]

Indigenous Affairs

    Mr. Speaker, after decades of Liberal and Conservative failure, indigenous communities continue to live in overcrowded homes that are in desperate need of repair. The Liberals promised to take a major step toward improving this by 2030, but today's Auditor General report makes it clear that the Liberals will break yet another promise to indigenous people.
    Will the Liberal government stop spending millions of dollars on private consultants and make this serious issue a priority in the upcoming budget?
    Mr. Speaker, we thank the Auditor General for her report and are, of course, carefully reviewing all of her recommendations to pursue a path forward that effectively addresses those concerns.
    In regard to indigenous co-operation or partnerships, whether it is on housing or policing, consultation is at the heart of everything we do. We are committed to working in partnership with first nations to advance these priorities.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, indigenous communities live in overcrowded housing that is in desperate need of repair. The Auditor General's report released today shows that 80% of housing needs are not being met.
     The Prime Minister would never accept this in Toronto. Why does the Prime Minister have a lower standard for indigenous communities?

  (1430)  

    Mr. Speaker, what the leader of the New Democratic Party is saying is simply not true. We have invested historic amounts of money to work with indigenous communities on housing, on health care and services, and to help create economic prosperity. There is still a lot of work to be done, we all recognize that. However, the progress we have made on reconciliation and partnership with indigenous peoples will continue.
    We thank the Auditor General for her recommendations. We will continue to work hand in hand with indigenous communities to achieve results.

[English]

Carbon Pricing

    Mr. Speaker, the April Fool's Day carbon tax hike of 23% will hit Nova Scotians especially hard. The Prime Minister's tax will cost $1,500 for the average Nova Scotia family, far more than they get back in rebates.
    That is why Nova Scotia's assembly passed a unanimous motion, with all three parties supporting it, calling for federal MPs from that province to vote with Conservatives to spike the hike.
    One of those is the MP from Kings—Hants, the chair of the agriculture committee, which has been studying the carbon tax pain for farmers.
    The question is for the chair of the agriculture committee. Will he vote with us to spike the hike?
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    Order.
    Of course, questions can be asked of the government regarding administrative issues of government and, of course, to committee chairs. It is important for Canadians to understand, though, that when questions are asked of committee chairs, it has to be regarding committee business that is before the committee right now. After consultation, we realize that this is not the issue that is here before us.
    I see that the hon. Minister of Housing is rising on his feet.
    Mr. Speaker, what the hon. member is actually suggesting is false. We have real-world data to demonstrate that in provinces where the system actually applies, families receive hundreds of dollars more each year than they pay in fuel charges.
    The Conservatives pretend to care about affordability, yet they oppose measures to put more money in the pockets of families. They pretend to care about affordability, but they oppose measures that protect seniors' pensions. They pretend to care about affordability, but they vote against measures to remove the interest on Canada student loans.
    We will do everything we can to make life more affordable, including putting more money in the pockets of families while we fight climate change at the same time.
    Mr. Speaker, that parliamentary censorship proves everything one needs to know about this and everything else in the government.
    I asked a question of the member for Kings—Hants, the chair of the agriculture committee, which is now studying the painful impacts of the carbon tax, and the front bench here shut him down. They told him to sit down and shut up, because they had a better mouthpiece for the PMO who would stand and speak in his stead.
    The question is for the member for Kings—Hants, the chair of the agriculture committee. His committee is studying how the carbon tax hurts farmers. Will he vote to spike the hike?
    Mr. Speaker, if the hon. member has qualms about the member for Kings—Hants, I can reassure him that he is a champion for his community. He launched a petition recently to stand up to the Conservative Government of Nova Scotia for changes to the agricultural sector in his community.
    Every time the Conservatives ask a question about the environment, it is to find out ways they can do less.
    The member for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke has suggested that flooding in the Ottawa River was a result of regulations that were not in place.
    The member for Cariboo—Prince George has suggested that climate change is not a result of industrial pollution but of more body heat from a growing population.
    The member for Red Deer—Lacombe visited school kids to say carbon dioxide was plant food.
    This—
    The hon. Leader of the Opposition.
    Mr. Speaker, he is absolutely right. It is a joke, an April Fool's Day joke. The joke is on Canadian taxpayers, especially Nova Scotians, who will have to pay $1,500 in higher carbon taxes after that hike goes ahead. He says that the member for Kings—Hants is a champion. Is he a champion who cannot even speak, who is silenced by his own MPs? Will the member—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!

  (1435)  

    Order.
    The hon. Leader of the Opposition.
    Mr. Speaker, the censored champion may break his silence and tell us this: Will he vote for his constituents to spike the hike or will he rip them off on April Fool's Day?
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives want to peddle false information to trick Canadians into voting for them. The reality proven not by projections, but by real-world data, is that people who live in my province receive more money every year from the rebates that they receive than the fuel charge that they pay. Everything the Conservatives do—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    Order.
    The hon. minister.
    Mr. Speaker, every instance the Conservatives have an opportunity to speak in the House, they advocate one of two things: to do less on the environment or to take money from families in my community. I will support neither.
    We will do whatever we can to put more money in the pockets of families and do the right thing for future generations.
    Mr. Speaker, the question was for the silent member for Kings—Hants. He was asked to explain how he is voting for a carbon tax of $1,500 per family that only pays back $963 in rebates. I asked him specifically to stand and answer, but he has been shut down and shut up by his masters in the PMO.
    Once again, will the chair of the agriculture committee, the member for Kings—Hants, stand today and tell us whether he will vote to spike the hike or raise the tax?
    Mr. Speaker, the leader knows full well the rules of this place and knows that members on this side of the House are pleased and proud to speak to the affordability measures and the things that we are putting in place to make life more affordable for Canadians.
    While we are on this theme, I have a question for a member of the defence committee, the member for Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman. Why did he sell out the people of Ukraine in voting against the free trade agreement?
    Mr. Speaker, the people of Kings—Hants, Nova Scotia, are learning they do not have a voice in Parliament, because the member has been silenced. The Prime Minister is terrified that he might stand up and get off script. He knows that the unanimous will of the Nova Scotia Legislature, Liberals, Conservatives and New Democrats, was passed in a motion calling all the province's MPs to vote against the hike.
    Will the member for Kings—Hants, who is the chair of the agriculture committee, stand up for farmers in his riding and vote with us to spike the hike, yes or no?
    Mr. Speaker, the member for Kings—Hants stands up for farmers, stands up for his constituents, stands up for the people of Nova Scotia and stands up for the people of Canada every single day.
    On this side of the House, we are incredibly proud to have him as our colleague. One thing he knows is that the people of Kings—Hants do not need cuts. That is all the Conservatives have to offer them or any single Canadian.

  (1440)  

    Mr. Speaker, the member for Kings—Hants is in the witness protection program today.
    He cannot possibly stand up when his whip waves for him to sit down. This is exactly what happened a moment ago when I asked him a legitimate question as chair of the agriculture committee, a committee that is studying the devastating impact of the carbon tax on farmers in his riding and across the country.
    For a sixth time, will he come out of the witness protection program and announce whether he will vote for our motion to spike the hike?
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives love to talk Canada down. They traffic in fear and falsehood.
    On this side of the House, we believe in Canada and we believe in Canadians. That is why I am so glad to share some good news with the members of this House. The inflation number for February, which came out this morning, is 2.8%; this is below expectations and within the Bank of Canada's target range. That is the second month in a row; in January, it was 2.9%, within the target.
    Our plan is working.

[Translation]

Health

    Mr. Speaker, in 12 days, Ottawa will cut $1 billion in health care funding, if Quebec does not agree to conditions in an area under its own jurisdiction. Quebec has been given 12 days when we are talking about amounts that Quebec and Ottawa agreed on over a year ago.
    If the federal government's priority was patients, then this money would have been transferred a long time ago, but instead, in 12 days, Quebec will either have to deal with cuts or conditions. The federal government is taking sick people hostage with the money they pay in taxes.
    Why not simply give priority to patients by transferring the money right now with no strings attached?
    Mr. Speaker, it is strange. The Bloc Québécois is always trying to pick fights. However, when I speak with Minister Dubé and the Government of Quebec, it is clear that the Government of Quebec wants to work together with our government to improve the health of all Quebeckers. That is why an agreement will be signed with Quebec before the end of the month.
    Mr. Speaker, the only reason we are not talking about tense intergovernmental relations is that there is no relationship to speak of. Right now, the federal government is in its “no” phase: no to increasing health transfers with no strings attached, no to the right to opt out of dental insurance and pharmacare, and no to helping with asylum seeker intake.
    At this point, the only thing the federal government is not saying no to is our tax dollars. Quebeckers are entitled to a say in what the federal government does with their money.
    Why is it so hard to say yes? Why is it so hard to just respect what Quebeckers want?
    Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois's MO is “no”: no to collaboration, no to sharing information, no to sitting down together, no to achieving results, no to working for Quebeckers.
    The Bloc wants this to fail, but it will not. We can sit down and work together. The Minister of Health is doing an amazing job. He meets with his Government of Quebec counterpart regularly.
     Bloc Québécois members are not at the table. They have no idea what goes on there. All they want to do is stir up trouble and say this is not working.
    This is working. We are working together for all Quebeckers.
    Mr. Speaker, we may not be in government, but we simply listed a few budget measures because they also said no to giving Quebec full authority over immigration, no to Bill 21 on state secularism, and no to advance requests for medical assistance in dying.
    It is almost a matter of principle for them. Even when no money is involved, the federal government says no to Quebec. What a contrast during this week of tribute to Brian Mulroney, who championed a federalism for Quebeckers characterized by honour and enthusiasm.
    Does the government not realize that saying no to everything all the time has exactly the opposite effect?

  (1445)  

    Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois is the only one that says no all the time. The Bloc Québécois goes looking for problems. It picks fights.
    We, on the other hand, are working with Quebec to find a solution. We want to ensure that information is available in every province and territory. I am deeply proud to see that agreements have been reached with every province and territory to improve the quality of health care across Canada.
    Our goal is to work in a spirit of co-operation, not to play partisan games.

[English]

Carbon Pricing

    Mr. Speaker, last year in my riding, Kolk Farms, a local producer, was forced to pay $62,000 just in carbon tax on its natural gas alone. That is $62,000. What the Liberal-NDP government does not understand, because it is so out of touch, is that when Canadians go to the grocery store, they pick up that bill when they buy groceries for their families. Canadians are already struggling. Now, on April 1, they are going to face another increase of 23%.
    Will the Prime Minister spike the hike and axe the tax?
    Mr. Speaker, I want to remind the member opposite of the rural top-up coming to the carbon rebate. A family of four in Alberta is going to see $2,160. A family in my riding is going to see $1,430 when they live in a rural area.
    My friends, we know what it is like. That is why we are there to help people with the carbon rebate. That is why we are there to help with the child care benefit. That is why we are there to help with housing. We are there to help Canadians in rural areas as well.
    Mr. Speaker, I think what is clear is that the Liberals have a dysfunctional relationship with the truth. Canadians pay more than they actually get back, and so for the average Albertan family, they pay $2,943. Meanwhile, they get back $2,032, which means that, ultimately, they are a thousand dollars in the hole. That is how much they are having to remit to the government. That is how much the government is pickpocketing from them.
    Why is the government doing that to Canadians when they are already struggling to pay their bills, make ends meet and provide for their families?
    Mr. Speaker, I am not sure what is happening on the Conservatives' side of the House. Maybe it is that they have joined the agriculture chair in the witness protection program. When it comes to defending the interests of Albertans and their pensions, where is the MP for Edmonton Mill Woods? Where is the—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    Order, please.
    I am going to ask everybody to allow members to speak, so the Speaker can hear the question or the response and so members who do not speak the other official language can hear the translation.
    The hon. minister has the floor.
    Mr. Speaker, where are the Conservative MPs in this House when it comes to defending Albertans and making sure they have a dignified retirement? They are silent on CPP. They are silent on defending Albertans.
    They have been muzzled by their leader and they are not standing up for Albertans, despite Danielle Smith's disastrous attempt to pull Canadians out of the CPP. The Conservatives are nowhere. We are here for—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    Colleagues, let us try to keep ourselves to time by respecting those who have the floor.
    I am certain everybody would like to hear the question from the member for Tobique—Mactaquac.

  (1450)  

    Mr. Speaker, I will tell you where Albertan MPs are; they are standing up for their constituents and voting non-confidence in the government, which needs to be replaced.
    After eight years of the Liberal-NDP government, upwards of 50 active military families are using the food bank I just visited in Oromocto, New Brunswick. Those 50 families are serving at the Gagetown base, Canada's largest military base. This is an absolute disgrace and completely unacceptable. Now the Liberals are adding insult to injury by hiking the punitive, ineffective and useless carbon tax.
    When will the Liberals finally listen to Canadians, show some respect to our nation's finest and axe the tax?
    Mr. Speaker, I really find that quite rich coming from the member opposite, the member for Tobique—Mactaquac, when Conservatives voted against a raise for our hard-working DND employees. They voted against the increase for ACOA last fall when we had the all-night voting marathon.
    I would love to ask the member what he was going to say to constituents about the 106 projects that were funded in his riding that he voted against. Trust me; we will be telling them we have the backs of small businesses in rural New Brunswick and rural Atlantic Canada.
    Mr. Speaker, I will be glad to tell them that I was voting non-confidence in the government that needs to be replaced.
    The government has caused the inflationary crisis through reckless spending, and now it is hiking the carbon tax by 23% on gas, heat and food on April 1. If Liberals really cared about Canadians, especially those who sacrifice so much in service to our country, they would listen to the well over 70% of Canadians who are demanding they get off their back and axe the tax.
    Mr. Speaker, there is so much shouting today that I can forgive the member opposite for not hearing earlier today the good news for Canadians, which is that thanks to the hard work of Canadians, and it has been a challenging time, inflation in February is back to the Bank of Canada's target range. That followed the numbers for January. This is good news for Canadians who have been through a hard time.
    We support Canada and Canadians. All Conservatives want to do is cut, cut, cut.

Housing

    Mr. Speaker, Edmontonians are experiencing a double housing crisis. Rent is increasing at the fastest pace in the country while we are seeing the lowest vacancies rates we have had in a decade. The Conservatives' slogans will not build affordable homes, and the Liberals are not fixing the problem they have created.
    The NDP's protecting renters fund would help save affordable homes and give renters the hope they need. Will the Liberals commit to including this fund in the budget so Edmontonians do not go homeless?
    Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his advocacy.
    I had the opportunity to be in Edmonton recently to meet with the mayor and the provincial minister in Alberta, as well as with my colleague, the member for Edmonton Centre. We are working hard to advance additional funding to support community-based organizations that support Canadians who are living without a roof over their head. We also very recently had the opportunity to share an agreement with $175 million behind it that will build thousands of homes in Edmonton, including more rentals, which will help reduce the cost of rent and continue to support people who are looking to find a place to live.
    There is no silver bullet for the housing crisis, but we will pull every lever at our disposal to help solve it by working together with Edmonton and Alberta.

Foreign Affairs

    Mr. Speaker, the European Union states that Netanyahu is using deliberate starvation of children in Gaza as a weapon of war. Human rights groups have spoken out against the targeting of journalists, civilians, hospitals and aid workers, and the UN has called out Canada for complicity in this because we provide military weapons to Israel. Last night, Parliament called for an end to military aid to Netanyahu's government, and yet numerous military supply deals are still in the works.
    Will the minister respect Parliament and tell us whether deals like the guns from Colt in Kitchener and armed vehicles from Roshel in Brampton will be sent to Israel, yes or no?
    Mr. Speaker, I want to begin by saying that yesterday, for me, was a day I was very proud to be a parliamentarian. In the House, four out of five parties came together to find a workable solution, to find a Canadian position that Canadians could be comfortable with. We will continue to advocate for a ceasefire. We will continue to not sell arms, as we have promised, and we will continue to make sure that we bring hostages back to where they belong: in their homes.
    I invite the Conservatives to be as engaged in this as we are.

  (1455)  

Child Care

    Mr. Speaker, we all recognize the crucial importance of successful, high-quality child care for families in the Northwest Territories. With the increase in the cost of living, accessible day care is vital. Families in my riding and across the north have been eager to see this plan built out.
    My question for the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development is what is being done for the Northwest Territories and for northerners more broadly?
    Mr. Speaker, it was wonderful to be in the Northwest Territories with my colleague. I met with Jude from the Yellowknife Day Care Association, Jennifer at Aurora College and many others who were able to share with me first-hand the impact of our Canada-wide system on making life more affordable.
    As of April 1, families in the Northwest Territories will see their child care fees reduced to an average of $10 a day, saving them up to $9,000 each year per child. These are meaningful savings each and every month for the moms and dads in the Northwest Territories to put towards the essentials their families need.

[Translation]

Carbon Pricing

    Mr. Speaker, the manager of a Montreal food bank gave the following explanation after police had to intervene when food bank clients began shoving one another in line because there was not enough food. She said, “They are starving, so they are acting out.” This is Canada after eight years of this Prime Minister. Food banks are overwhelmed and in dire straits because food is too expensive. The Liberal solution is to increase the carbon tax on April 1, with the support of the Bloc Québécois, which will drive up the price of food even further. It is costly to vote for the Bloc Québécois.
    When will the Prime Minister put an end to hunger and cancel the 23% tax hike planned for April 1?
    Mr. Speaker, “the survival of our planet is at stake. I cannot ignore this urgent climate challenge and continue to look my two sons in the eyes.” Those are the words of Premier Legault. He is proud that Quebec has its own carbon pricing system. Quebeckers are proud of that. The Conservatives want to eliminate it. We will not let them do that.
    Mr. Speaker, more and more Quebec families and workers may no longer be able to make ends meet because food is too expensive. Why is food too expensive? Quebec imports food from the rest of Canada. The farmers who grow that food are paying the carbon tax. Food processors are paying the carbon tax. The truckers hauling that food are paying the carbon tax. Guess who ends up paying the bill? Quebec families do. The carbon tax the “Liberal Bloc” wants to drastically increase is also costing Quebeckers dearly.
    When will they put an end to this madness?
    Mr. Speaker, while the Conservatives are playing with semantics, we have just learned that the UN has just declared that 2024 could be the hottest year in history. What we are hearing from the Conservatives is do nothing. The planet is sounding the alarm. That is why, on this side of the House, we will continue to invest in fighting climate change. We will continue to invest in Canadian families. We will continue to invest in Canadians despite the fact that the Conservatives want to ignore climate change in this country.
    Mr. Speaker, after eight years of the Liberal government, more and more Canadians are using food banks. People are so hungry that tensions are rising in lineups, so much so that the police have to intervene to restore order while food is being distributed. Nevertheless, the Liberal government, supported by the Bloc Québécois, is going to increase the carbon tax again on April 1, and that is no April Fool's joke.
    It is very costly to vote for the Bloc Québécois. Apart from increasing the suffering of Quebeckers, what is the point of voting for the Bloc Québécois?

  (1500)  

    Mr. Speaker, I think there are a lot of people watching at home who just cannot get over the fact that the disinformation coming from the Conservative side is now limitless. The member who just asked a question voted in favour of carbon pricing in Quebec. She voted to fight climate change. She was part of a government that was a North American leader in the fight against climate change, and now, under pressure from her climate-change-denying leader, she is turning her back on all her principles. That is unacceptable.
    Mr. Speaker, I would invite the member to read the speech that our leader gave when he was in Quebec City for the Conservative convention.
    Inflation has already reached devastating levels, resulting in the highest cost of living in 40 years—
    Order. I would ask members to come to order so that the Chair can hear the question.
    I would ask the hon. member for Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis to restart her question.
    Mr. Speaker, inflation has already reached devastating levels, resulting in the highest cost of living in 40 years.
    Can members believe that some Canadians are currently unable to put food on the table? That is shameful, and the Bloc Québécois is proudly supporting a 23% carbon tax increase. It already costs too much to put food on the table, but it is even more costly to vote for the Bloc Québécois.
    Will the government show some compassion and cancel the new carbon tax hike planned for April 1?
    Mr. Speaker, could the member remind me whether the speech she is talking about is the one where the Leader of the Opposition attacked the mayors of Montreal and Quebec City? Is that the speech where he said that climate change does not exist and where the Conservatives voted? Is that the speech where he said that he was going to abandon families, seniors, young people and students and where he said that he was going to make cuts everywhere? I would like her to remind me which speech she is talking about, or perhaps he said all that in the same speech he gave in Quebec City that time.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

    Mr. Speaker, the federal government's decision to unilaterally increase Quebec's immigration targets represents a historic loss of sovereignty for the Quebec state. When Quebec sets its threshold at 50,000, it means 50,000, not 60,000 or 70,000.
    If the minister wanted to increase family reunification after the thresholds were set, he should have worked with Quebec. For example, he could have suggested finally doing something to help Quebec with asylum seekers, but no, he never co-operated. He tried to force Quebec to increase its targets whether it wanted to or not.
    When can we expect a collaboration instead of condescension?
    Mr. Speaker, yesterday I asked the member to kindly read the Canada‑Quebec accord. I should have been more specific. I would simply ask her to read section 13 for more clarification.
    Clearly, we collaborate very closely with Quebec, and we all have our responsibilities to carry out. I welcome Minister Fréchette's recent remarks. We will keep working together on our priorities, which are ultimately the same.
    Mr. Speaker, just to clarify, no one is against family reunification. We are simply against Ottawa imposing its irresponsible federal policies on Quebec.
    If the minister had wanted to, he could have negotiated compromises. Let us look at his record. He is forcibly increasing Quebec's immigration targets. He is largely responsible for the record increase in temporary immigration. He is also responsible for the disproportionate number of asylum seekers that Quebec is taking in, rather than spreading them out among the provinces.
    In all three categories, Ottawa is unilaterally increasing immigration to Quebec, with no regard for our integration capacity and no additional funding.
    Is this intentional, or has Ottawa lost all control?
    Mr. Speaker, imagine being a doctor and being asked to accept 10 patients, but instead being sent 20. That is ridiculous, and that is the situation Quebec families find themselves in.
    What I am hearing from the Bloc Québécois is contempt for Quebec families. What do they say to Quebeckers who want to be reunited with their loved ones from abroad? This is tearing Quebec families apart. It is tearing Canadian families apart.
    We will work with Quebec to rectify the situation.

  (1505)  

[English]

Carbon Pricing

    Mr. Speaker, after eight years of the NDP-Liberal government, the Prime Minister is simply not worth the cost. When the carbon tax was announced, small businesses were promised a hefty rebate. The government is now sitting on $2.5 billion in collected revenues while insolvencies skyrocket and businesses suffer under higher taxes and inflation.
    As the Prime Minister broke his promise on the carbon tax rebate, why will he not simply spike the hike, axe the tax and give small businesses their money back?
    Mr. Speaker, the MP who just spoke is a member of Parliament for B.C., and British Columbia is rightly proud of its place as a leader in Canada and the world in having a price on pollution since 2008. It is a provincial system that the people of B.C. support, so either the Conservative Party is ignorant about that or it disrespects the people of B.C.
    With respect to small businesses, the money will be going back to small businesses very soon.
    Mr. Speaker, it is not just small businesses that have been betrayed by the government on the carbon tax. First nations and Métis communities are owed over a billion dollars in promised rebates. In what seems like a sick April Fool's Day joke, remote and rural communities will see the cost of the carbon tax increase by 23% on April 1. This means higher costs to operate schools, band offices and businesses.
     I will ask again: When will the government spike the hike, axe the tax and give remote, rural, indigenous and Métis communities their money back?
    Mr. Speaker, I have a lot of respect for that MP from British Columbia, but I am really disappointed that he seems entirely ignorant of how the price on pollution works in B.C. There is no federal backstop in B.C. There is no federal backstop on B.C. small businesses nor on the people of B.C.
    B.C. has an exceptional system for pricing pollution, which the province has had in place since 2008. The people of B.C. are proud of it, and they should be.
    Mr. Speaker, $100,000 is not chicken feed. Richard, a farmer in the Shuswap, paid that out in carbon tax to run his farm instead of buying feed to raise chickens and put food on Canadians' tables. Now, the NDP-Liberal Prime Minister wants to raise the carbon tax by 23% as part of his plan to quadruple it.
    After eight years, the Prime Minister is not worth the cost. Will he spike the hike, axe the tax and let farmers grow the food, so that Canadians can afford to put food on the table?
    Mr. Speaker, I am proud to be part of a government that understands climate change is real and understands the impact it is having on farmers from coast to coast to coast. I have seen first-hand as I have travelled the impact of hurricanes and the impact of drought. All that has a cost on our farmers. I am proud to be part of a government that is fighting climate change so my little granddaughter can say, “Nanny, you tried to make a difference”, because climate change is real and it is impacting everyone.
    The hon. member for Kings—Hants—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
    The Speaker: Order. There seems to be great enthusiasm to hear from the hon. member.
    The hon. member for Kings—Hants.

Climate Change

    Mr. Speaker, I am glad the Tories stood up. They might not like the question, though.
    The member for Carleton talks about farmers in Kings—Hants, but he actually stands in their way. He will not allow Bill C-234 to come to the House to be voted on, so I call on the member for Carleton to do that to support farmers.
    However, my question is for the minister from Nova Scotia. Can he tell the House, and indeed Nova Scotians, of the work we have done to adjust the federal backstop to support rural Canadians, including the programs we have put in place on affordability around home heating and heat pumps, contrary to those guys across the way?

  (1510)  

    Mr. Speaker, over the past year and a half in our home province of Nova Scotia, we have felt the impacts of climate change more than any other part of the country, with wildfires, hurricane Fiona and floods in the hon. member's riding. He has been a staunch advocate for rural communities and for the agricultural sector every step of the way.
    Because of his advocacy, we have doubled the rural rebate that households in Nova Scotia receive. Because of his advocacy, we are offering to cover the cost of heat pumps to save people between $1,500 and $4,700 a year, and because of his advocacy, the provincial government is retreating on a policy that would impact the wine growers in his region. I am proud to stand alongside him today and will be for years—
    The hon. member for Edmonton Mill Woods.

Public Safety

    Mr. Speaker, after eight years of the NDP-Liberal government's soft-on-crime policies, more and more Canadians are becoming victims of violent crime right across the country. The Toronto Star reports that carjackings have more than doubled so far in 2024, and break and enters for the purpose of car theft have already exceeded the total number for all of last year. Canadians are not only concerned about their private property, but also the safety of their families.
     I met some of these families in Brampton this week, and they want to know when the Prime Minister will drop his soft-on-crime policies and protect Canadians from real violent crime.
    Mr. Speaker, our government is always focused on protecting Canadians from crime. That is why we are working with police forces, municipal authorities and provincial governments to do exactly everything we need to do to crack down on this increasingly violent criminal activity. I have had conversations with the Premier of Ontario and with police chiefs across the country. The RCMP are working in collaboration with their partners in these jurisdictions. The Canada Border Services Agency seized 68 vehicles at the port of Montreal this week alone.
    We will continue to do everything we need to do to keep Canadians safe.
    Mr. Speaker, what the Liberals did was bring in Bill C-5 and Bill C-75, which allow these same criminals to quickly get bail and be out on the streets, sometimes on the same day. As a result, small businesses across the country are not only dealing with higher taxes, like the carbon tax that the Liberals brought forward, but are now having to pay for extra security to protect their businesses and their families from property theft, organized crime, extortion, shootings and arson.
     This is the new reality for businesses and families in Canada after eight years of the Prime Minister. He is not worth the cost, the corruption or the crime. When will it end?
    Mr. Speaker, I respect the member opposite, but what I respect most of all is that he actually was not here when we were voting on Bill C-75. That piece of legislation actually enhanced the penalties on summary conviction for auto theft, something that most of his colleagues voted against. He was not here, so I will excuse him on that one.
    On the issue of mandatory minimum penalties, there is a guy named Ben Perrin. He might remember that individual. He used to be the lead adviser to a guy named Stephen Harper. Ben Perrin has been on the record as saying that mandatory minimum penalties were a gross error, a miscarriage of justice, and perpetuate systemic racism. That is why we reversed them. I wish these guys would get on board.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, auto theft in Toronto has nearly doubled over last year, and 2024 has only just begun. Where do the stolen vehicles go? They go to the port of Montreal.
    I would like to commend the efforts of Sûreté du Québec police in February. That said, the federal government must do more to help them. That is why our leader has proposed amendments to the Criminal Code to bring back tougher sentences for car thieves and to give the ports the resources they need to stop the crime.
    Does the Liberal government realize that its strategy to combat auto theft is not working?
    Mr. Speaker, when it comes to crime in our communities and auto theft, we have made these issues a priority with our investments in the port of Montreal. A few weeks ago, we announced $28 million for auto theft. In addition, there was $121 million to help police officers. There was also about $15 million to help the Canada Border Services Agency at the border itself.
    Our investments are what we need to do to address this extremely important issue and promote safety in our communities.

  (1515)  

[English]

Dental Care

    Mr. Speaker, I believe that no one in this country should ever spend their days in pain because they cannot afford to see a dentist. Oral health is health.
    I heard from seniors in Dartmouth—Cole Harbour that the new Canadian dental care plan is going to make a real difference in their quality of life, yet the Conservatives just do not care. The Conservatives voted against dental care for Canadians, and we know that Conservatives always choose cuts over care.
    Can the Minister of Citizens’ Services please let Canadians know how many people have applied for the program, and how many seniors will lose their dental coverage if the Conservatives get their way?
    Mr. Speaker, I am very happy to advise my colleague that, thanks to his efforts, more than 1.5 million Canadians have successfully enrolled in our dental care program. Today those 70 and older can apply, and children and people with disabilities can apply starting in June. In total, we expect nine million Canadians to benefit.
    I do not understand why Conservatives want to take dental care away from more than one in five Canadians. If we all work together, Canadians can make sure that Conservatives never have that opportunity.
    Before I pass the floor to the hon. member for Victoria, I am going to ask the hon. member for Wellington—Halton Hills, who is an experienced member, to not shout out his comments and to allow members who have the floor to respond.
    The hon. member for Victoria now has the floor.

Climate Change

    Mr. Speaker, “It's like an elephant sitting on my chest.”
    That is how a child in Edmonton describes the air quality right now. Canada currently has the worst air quality in North America. Our kids are breathing in harmful toxins and it is only going to get worse with this year's wildfire season. However, the Liberals are acting like it is business as usual, breaking climate promises while handing out billions to Canada's biggest polluters. The Conservatives cannot even agree on whether climate change is real.
    Will the Liberals stop putting the interests of oil and gas CEOs over the health and safety of our children?
    Mr. Speaker, in fact, we are doing exactly that. We are the first country, the only country, in the G20 to have phased out fossil fuel subsidies, two years ahead of everyone else. We are the only country that has committed to eliminating public financing for fossil fuel subsidies. We have the best performance of all G7 countries in terms of greenhouse gas reduction between 2019 and 2021. We are working to fight climate change. We are working to improve air quality all across the country.

Air Transportation

    Mr. Speaker, this past weekend, Flair cancelled one of its flights back to Canada and left over 100 passengers stranded in another country: no communication with them, no food provided and no re-booking on other airlines. They had to find their own way back to this country.
    If this sounds like deja vu, it is because the exact same thing happened two years ago and the Liberals promised to stand up to the big airline CEOs.
    To the minister, will he tell these passengers why his supposedly new and improved air passenger rights let them down so badly?
    Mr. Speaker, we will always stand up for Canadians and always stand up for passengers' rights. There was nothing before we came in. We are in touch with Flair and with other airline companies to see what we can do.
    We will always side with our air passengers.

Government Orders

[Business of Supply]

  (1520)  

[English]

Business of Supply

Opposition Motion—Carbon Tax  

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.
    Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the very hon. member for Kings—Hants.
    It is my absolute pleasure, as always, to be speaking on behalf of the residents in my riding of Davenport. I will be speaking to today's opposition day motion that was put forward by the Conservatives on affordability and pollution pricing. I will start with a few of my own comments and then I will go into a bit of prepared text.
    As members know, climate change is real. Carbon emissions are impacting our climate and causing the climate to change. If Canada does not continue to rapidly move toward reducing emissions now, the cost of waiting will be more expensive for Canadians later. As a result, it will be a world that will be more difficult and more unpredictable to live in.
    Last week, I happened to have been blessed to have the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources in my riding, and the question of the carbon tax came up by a Davenport resident, who said that given the fact that Canadians were suffering an affordability crisis and as of April 1 the price on pollution would go up, should people believe the Leader of the Opposition who was trying to convince a lot of Canadians that the price on pollution was a tax that would hurt Canadians?
     The minister responded by saying that there were the facts and then there was perception, that putting a price on pollution would be the most economically efficient way to reduce carbon emissions and that if people asked 100 economists, 99 and a half of them would tell them that it was true. He went on to say that the way in which we had structured it was to do it in a way that would make it affordable for Canadians. Therefore, eight out of 10 Canadian families would get more money back than they paid, and it worked directly disproportionate to income. Those who lived on the most modest means would get much more money back than they actually paid. The people who received less money back than they paid were people who lived in 6,000 square foot houses, had a Hummer in their driveway and a boat in the backyard. At the end of the day, the fact that they paid more was because they were polluting more.
    It was also noted that the Premier of Saskatchewan had decided that he would stop remitting the price on pollution for home heating. As a direct result of that, the rebate would go down for people in Saskatchewan, and the people who would suffer most would be the those people who were living on modest incomes. The premier was making poor people poorer because of the choices that he was making.
    The motion before us is also proposing to do that for Canadians.
    In 2023, we saw a record fire season in Canada in which the area burned was more than double that of the historic record, with hundreds of thousands of Canadians evacuated from their homes as a result. The total area burned exceeded 18 million hectares, which is two and a half times the previous record set in 1995 and more than six times the average over the past 10 years.
    In its 2020 report on climate risks and their implications for the insurance industry in Canada, the Insurance Bureau of Canada also concluded that “The average annual severe weather claims paid by insurers in Canada could more than double over the next 10 years, increasing from $2.1-billion a year to $5-billion a year, and must be accompanied by an increase in premium income.” It is clear that there are very real costs associated with having one's house burn down or having to flee one's home and job due to an evacuation order.
    We also know from experts and research that the most effective and efficient way to address climate change is to put a price on carbon pollution emissions, which are the chief cause of man-made climate change. Putting a price on carbon pollution reduces emissions and encourages reductions across the economy, while giving households and businesses the flexibility to decide when and how to make changes. It creates incentives for Canadian business to develop and adopt new low-carbon products, processes and services, and when it is done right, and we are doing that in Canada, it is both effective and affordable for Canadians.
    On the Canada carbon rebate, the bulk of the proceeds from the federal pollution pricing system goes straight back into the pockets of Canadians in provinces where the fuel charge applies, with eight out of 10 households in these provinces continuing to get more money back through their quarterly Canada carbon rebate payments than they pay as a result of the federal pollution pricing system.

  (1525)  

    The federal government understands that we need to maintain the price signal that, over the long term, is necessary for carbon pricing to work and bring emissions down, but at the same time we have also shown that we are willing to be flexible and innovative in supporting options that will go even further to cut down on climate pollution in the long run.
     We took temporary and targeted action to pause the fuel charge on heating oil with the goal of getting consumers off home heating oil and onto a cleaner and far more affordable alternative solution that will save them thousands of dollars and lower carbon emissions over the long run.
    Measures such as this will make life more affordable in the right way, while supporting the goal of achieving a prosperous, low-carbon future for all Canadians.
    We know that there are better ways to make life more affordable for Canadians, ways that do not involve destroying the environment and incurring more devastating costs further down the road. We are delivering this support where it is most effective, including with the oil to heat pump affordability program, which will increase the amount of federal funding that eligible homeowners can receive for installing a heat pump from $10,000 to $15,000. It includes proposing, under Bill C-59, a doubling of the Canada carbon rebate rural top-up rate, increasing it from 10% to 20% of the base rebate amount starting in April 2024. People who live in rural communities face unique realities, and this measure will help put even more money back in the pockets of families that are dealing with higher energy costs because they live outside a large city. We have been very clear that we will continue to implement our pollution pricing system while ensuring that we continue to put more money into the pockets of Canadian households and families.
    More recently, through Bill C-59, the fall economic statement implementation act of 2023, we introduced measures to advance the government’s fiscally responsible plan to build a cleaner, stronger economy. It introduces measures to create well-paying jobs, generate growth and build a cleaner economy that works for everyone by advancing Canada’s competitiveness through the implementation of investment tax credits. Investment tax credits are a key part of the government’s broader plan to work with industry towards the goal of decarbonization. This includes the carbon capture, utilization and storage investment tax credit, which is also known as CCUS.
    CCUS is a suite of technologies that capture carbon dioxide emissions, whether from fuel combustion, from industrial processes or directly from the air, either to store CO2, typically deep underground, or to use it in other industrial processes, such as mineralization in concrete. These technologies are an important tool for reducing emissions in high-emitting sectors, where other pathways to reduce emissions may be limited or unavailable. In fact, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the International Energy Agency each include CCUS deployment as an important element of scenarios in which the world achieves net-zero emissions. For its part, the CCUS investment tax credit will not only help Canadian companies adopt clean technologies but will also create jobs, ensure Canadian businesses remain globally competitive and reduce Canada’s emissions at the same time.
    In conclusion, making life more affordable for Canadians while protecting the environment has always been a priority for the federal Liberal government, and it remains a priority today. I have outlined over the last 10 minutes just a few examples of how we are making targeted and responsible investments to help Canadians find an affordable place to call home. We want to ensure that Canada remains the best place in the world to live, work, go to school and raise a family. Making life more affordable is a key part of that.
    It is a pleasure to speak on behalf of the residents of my riding of Davenport on this opposition day motion about affordability and pollution pricing.
     I am now very happy to take any questions.

  (1530)  

    Mr. Speaker, two years ago this week, the member for Davenport stated that the carbon tax was 100% revenue neutral for the government, yet Finance Canada in the public accounts stated that $670 million from last year alone was kept by the government and not redistributed. In fact, the public accounts actually said a couple of years ago that $100 million was kept for government programming.
    I wonder if the member would like to correct her statement from two years ago and come forward with the real facts on what the carbon tax is, which is not revenue neutral.
    Mr. Speaker, climate change is real. We have to take as many steps as possible to move to a low-carbon future and a low-carbon economy. The most efficient and affordable way for us to do is to put a price on pollution, which is also known as a carbon tax. We, as a government, are not keeping any of the money. We are directly giving it back to Canadians, to small businesses and to farmers. That is what we are doing.
    Mr. Speaker, what is on my mind is persons with disabilities. What is on my mind right now is the fact that persons with disabilities are not receiving the Canada disability benefit yet and that persons with disabilities are experiencing very high levels of housing need, rent and food pricing.
    I wonder if the member from the Liberals could share why the government is holding back on the Canada disability benefit and why it refuses to tax outsized profits from those large organizations that are making money hand over fist while persons with disabilities suffer.
    Mr. Speaker, in my riding of Davenport, we are huge supporters of the Canada disability benefit. We know that federal budget 2024 will be announced in the House on April 16, and I am hoping for good news for a Canada disability benefit.
    In the meantime, starting fiscal year April 1, under the Canada carbon rebate, a family of four will receive $1,800 in Alberta; $1,200 in Manitoba; $1,120 in Ontario; $1,500 in Saskatchewan; $760 in New Brunswick; $824 in Nova Scotia; $880 in Prince Edward Island; and $1,192 in Newfoundland and Labrador. Eight out of 10 Canadians get more money back than they pay on the price on pollution. We need to continue to help support Canadians as we move to a low-carbon future.
    Mr. Speaker, I am encouraged by that response from the member for Davenport. I hope she will continue to advocate for the government to fund the Canada disability benefit in budget 2024.
    With respect to this motion and the speech we heard, I am encouraged that she knows the impacts of the climate crisis, but I am discouraged to hear about carbon capture being called a “responsible” investment. She and others need to know that it is completely irresponsible. It is a new way of subsidizing the oil and gas industry to the tune of billions of dollars, and more often than not, it actually emits more carbon than it extracts.
    Will she commit to doing more research on carbon capture and having good conversations, which I know she has on many other topics in the House, to investigate the real solutions to the climate crisis, recognizing that carbon capture is not one of them?

  (1535)  

    Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his passion. We both care a lot about climate change. We both care about moving aggressively toward a net-zero future in Canada.
    I will always consider all new research and information. For me, what is most important is our objective of getting to net zero and doing it in an affordable, sustainable way for Canadians.
    Mr. Speaker, it is wonderful to be in the House. I am glad to see that my colleagues are starting to appreciate my work and that my name and my title in Nova Scotia are becoming known.
    I am living rent free in the member for Carleton's head right now. He has been calling me out a lot, and I hope he will come back into the chamber to ask me questions in a format that I am able to respond to today. I would invite my Conservative colleagues to see if he is in the lobby. I had better be careful, I do not want to say who is present in the House, but I hope the hon. member for Carleton can join the debate and ask me questions in proper form.
    This is the first time I have been able to rise in a debate format since the Right Hon. Brian Mulroney passed away. We had the opportunity to visit with his family today and to pay tribute to a great man, a great individual whose contributions to the country all Canadians will recognize. I would be remiss if I did not start my remarks today by recognizing Mr. Mulroney and his contributions to Canada. He served as a member of Parliament in Nova Scotia. In my riding, there is a great reverence for the work he did as a prime minister, as a Progressive Conservative. I have talked about this in the House. He and Kim Campbell were the last of that generation of true Progressive Conservative leadership in the prime minister's office. He did a great service.
    I have a quick story. I had the opportunity to meet Mr. Mulroney at the Atlantic Economic Forum in Antigonish. He was so generous with my wife Kimberly. He thanked her for the work she does to allow me to be a member of Parliament. He said that Mila did the same when he was in office. There were obviously two vastly different standards, but I wanted to share that story.
    Carbon pricing has consistently been something that the Conservative Party has raised every single opposition day. That is good because this is an important conversation about why the policy is in place and about how we can structure programs that make a difference to the environment but are also important for affordability. I would invite many of my opposition colleagues to reflect on what their own environmental plans are and to reflect on the fact that all of them who sit in this House ran on a platform in the last election, which included carbon pricing. I take note that is no longer the position of the Conservative Party, but I have no vision for what it stands for in relation to this really important fight that I think Canadians want parliamentarians and governments to take action on.
    To provide context for Canadians, after listening to the leader of the official opposition, one would suggest that no other country or jurisdiction has any form of carbon pricing and that somehow this is some draconian measure the government has put in place that makes no sense. What would Conservatives say to the 77 other jurisdictions around the world that have a form of carbon pricing as part of their true environmental initiatives? In fact, carbon pricing is inherently a Conservative idea, the idea that we put into the market the ability for consumers and for innovation in the private sector to lead, not necessarily government. I really look forward to what the Conservative Party will present, if it does. I will be surprised if it does come, but it should come because Canadians deserve to have political parties in this place that take that issue seriously.
    Today's opposition day motion talks about cutting the carbon tax altogether or pausing it, suggesting that it is a terrible scourge on the country. I do not take that view. I take the view that carbon pricing is a credible plan and a part of the discussion between affordability and environment. I think I bring some credibility to this debate because I have been critical of the government about the way in which the federal backstop worked.
    As I listened to the member for Carleton ask his questions today, and the government took them because of the way the procedure works, I could not help but believe that I have done more than the member for Carleton has done in 20 years to move carbon pricing policy in this country. He talks a lot about it, but I was the one who helped lead the charge to make an adjustment for rural Canada, to have an exemption in place for home heating oil and to put in place a program that matters for affordability and for home heating.
    I want to highlight, from where I sit in the chamber, that I see the Conservatives get up on heating oil, for example, and say that they want to axe the tax, which, of course, means axing the rebates that go back to Canadians. They want to axe the 17¢ a litre on home heating oil, and we know that home heating oil is the most expensive way in the country to heat homes. It has gone up by 70% over the last two years. In fact, people in the Maritimes who use heating oil to heat their homes are paying anywhere from four to five times that of those who have been able to make the transition to natural gas, including in places like Saskatchewan.

  (1540)  

    I see the member for Regina—Lewvan ready to jump in with a question, and I cannot wait for it. He needs to understand that the reason we exempted home heating oil was that we had already identified a million Canadian households that were extremely vulnerable all across this country, not just Atlantic Canada, but, of course, we were disproportionately impacted.
     I am proud of the work we did to make adjustments, not just to give slogans but also to give solutions. The good people of Nova Scotia, and the member for South Shore—St. Margarets, the member for Cumberland—Colchester and the member for West Nova, who is a good guy, would have had 17¢ a litre off their home heating bill, no doubt. Now, they are getting 17¢ a litre off their home heating bill for the next three years, and they are getting a long-term solution to save thousands of dollars a year in home heating. This is exactly an action that deals with affordability and the environment at the same time. I invite Conservatives to understand that those two things have to go together in today's context. They suggest they are mutually exclusive. I do not think that is the case. I think there is a way we can construct programs that make a difference across the way.
    Again, we have driven up rural rebates. It makes a difference. That is something I fought for as a member of a rural caucus on this side of the House. We provided actual solutions and initiatives that would adjust the policy without ruining a price mechanism that matters on the environmental fight. Of course, the money does go back to households. We have highlighted that.
     If Conservatives do not like the federal backstop, do they like any form of carbon pricing? I invite one of my colleagues to get up and say that today. I understand they do not like the federal backstop, but do they like cap-and-trade in Quebec? Do they like the B.C. plan? That is where this conversation should go. Do Conservatives believe in any form of carbon pricing?
    I hope a members on the other side will get up and ask a question about the legislature in Nova Scotia today. I would invite the 55 members of the Nova Scotia assembly to encourage the premier of the province, Tim Houston, to work in concert with Atlantic premiers, perhaps Doug Ford, the first minister in Saskatchewan Scott Moe and in Alberta, Danielle Smith. We could have a cap-and-trade system in this country. Imagine that. It could meet the federal standard. It does not have to be the federal backstop. Let us remember why it is here; some provincial premiers decided they did not want any form of price signal that makes a difference. However, I will be inviting the premiers from Atlantic Canada and the MLAs. I am happy to engage on the topic. It matters. All this government ever wanted was a credible price to be able to fight climate change and to help reduce emissions.
    I would invite the member for Regina—Lewvan to go into the offices of Federated Co-operatives in Saskatchewan and to talk to its executive team about how the carbon price is helping to drive hundreds of millions of dollars of investments in his province. The executives would tell him that is what is helping to make a difference and what is driving innovation: the carbon price. It actually helps to justify it. If not the carbon price, is the member for Regina—Lewvan just going to pour taxpayer's dollars into helping to drive that? Is that going to be the only play, or is he going to use other types of free market principles to drive the innovation that needs to happen?
    When we talk about technology, not taxes, how do Conservatives intend to incentivize the technology? I have yet to hear exactly how they are going to do that. Are they going to rely on the benevolent corporate sector? Conservatives and the leader of the official opposition suggest that corporate lobbyists are useless and that the corporate sector is terrible in this country. How are they going to incentivize them to drive the change we need on climate change? I invite them to start answering those types of questions.
    I take notice that Conservatives do not like the federal backstop. I take notice that this opposition day motion does not mention at all the fact that money is going back to households in Nova Scotia and indeed across the country. Let us have an informed debate.
    Again, I invite the member, who will be recognized in about 30 seconds, to start his answer by saying that he either believes or does not believe in carbon pricing. If Conservatives do not believe in the federal backstop, which is very clear, that is fine, but do they believe in any form of carbon pricing? Canadians need to know that answer because, at the end of the day, there is a way to be able to do this without the federal backstop, but we need provincial premiers to play a part in the solution as well. That is what I think is important. That is what is missing from today's opposition day motion.
    I look forward to the questions, and I see the members lining up.
    With 10 seconds left, just quickly on Bill C-234, will the Tories bring it to a vote? My farmers need help. They are sitting on it. They put up six speakers. We need to be able to bring that to a vote.

  (1545)  

    I am really glad the hon. member for Kings—Hants brought up the good work of the hon. member for West Nova. I appreciate that.

[Translation]

    Questions and comments.
    The hon. member for Beauport—Limoilou.
    Mr. Speaker, let us imagine that we are living in a parallel world and that the carbon tax, which Quebec and British Columbia do not pay, has been cancelled. What would the impact be on Canada's international relations and on the markets? Also, who would suffer the consequences? Would it be the poorest or the richest, such as the oil companies, who would benefit the most from abolishing the carbon tax?

[English]

    Mr. Speaker, I will respond in English. I would try in French, but that was a nuanced question.
    The hon. member hits it right on the head. If we were to cut the price signal altogether, it actually would hurt industry in Quebec. I guess the position of the Conservative Party is to hurt innovation in Quebec and to hurt lower-income families if the federal backstop was in place, but it is not because the Quebec government actually believes in moving on climate change. They are trying to suggest that this price signal is not good for innovation in this country, and it is not good to be able to meet our targets internationally.
    I do not know what the position is. I cannot speak for the Conservatives, but the way they villainize the carbon pricing policy and suggest that it is all that ails people in society is short-term thinking. It is not nuanced, and if they do not like the federal backstop, they should be proposing and pitching other types of credible environmental plans, which I have yet to see.
    Mr. Speaker, I am happy to take to my feet. First of all, I am happy that the member for Kings—Hants found his voice. Obviously, it is nice for him to speak when the front row is not here, so he is allowed to. I am glad they freed him so he got to speak.
    Secondly, on a more serious note, Saskatchewan did submit a carbon plan similar to New Brunswick's plan, and his government turned it down, so what he said was untrue. There were many untrue statements the member made. He said the provinces should have a plan. The Province of Saskatchewan submitted a plan; the government turned it down based on ideology.
    I would ask the same question that our leader asked the member for Kings—Hants during question period. On this motion, 70% of his constituents want to spike the tax and to make sure it does not increase on April 1.
    Will he vote with his constituents, or will he vote with the front benches who do not want him to speak?
    Mr. Speaker, there was a lot in that question, and I hope you will give me the proper time to respond.
    I am going to ask something of the hon. member. He mentioned the leader of the official opposition in question period today asking questions of the Chair of the committee. This is the proper form to be able to answer those questions.
    Let me say this: He talked about farmers in Kings—Hants. I need the member for Regina—Lewvan to walk into his caucus tomorrow and to ask the leader of the official opposition to let Bill C-234 come to a vote. We have an opportunity to help support farmers today. The Conservatives put up six speakers, and they are delaying the passage of a bill that could make a difference for farmers in my riding and indeed across the country. Why is it that they stand in the way of Canadian agriculture and put their partisan interests ahead of farmers in this country?
    To answer his question, and to the members of the Nova Scotia assembly who have talked about the fact that they would like to see a pause, I will happily engage with every one of those members to talk about how we could work with Premier Tim Houston and with premiers across the country to be able to put forward not just a plan, but also a plan that meets the federal standard.
    That is what the member missed in his question. Yes, Saskatchewan put forward a plan. In fact, it actually adopted a form of carbon pricing at the industrial level. Let us work together with the seven premiers to be able to establish a national cap and trade so that this terrible federal backstop that the Conservatives hate no longer has to be in place.

  (1550)  

    Mr. Speaker, there is lots of talk about carbon pricing, but the reality is that many other parts of the government's so-called climate plan are not measuring up to the commitment we need in order to meet Canada's targets.
    One of those areas is the greener homes program, which the current government has essentially run out of money for, leaving a whole bunch of homeowners, and professionals who have taken special training to do home energy assessments, high and dry. It still has not announced what its new program is going to look like, and a lot of folks are wondering when that news is going to come.
    Perhaps my colleague can tell us on what date energy auditors and assessors, and homeowners who want to apply for this financial support, are going to know what the new program looks like.
    Mr. Speaker, it has been wonderful to see the number of people who assume I am in the Privy Council here today. I sit on the backbench of the Liberal Party. I take notice of the good programs that the government has introduced to make a difference on home energy efficiency, with $2 billion under the greening homes initiative.
    There are still a plethora of different federal programs out there. I do not have a specific timeline. The hon. member will have to ask the minister responsible for the portfolio when that may come, but we will continue to work with stakeholders across the country to drive home energy efficiency. It makes sense for affordability and for the environment.
    Mr. Speaker, it is a real honour and privilege to rise on behalf of the people that I represent in Barrie—Innisfil.
    There is a full-blown carbon tax revolt going on in this country right now. Today's motion represents voices across the country. They are saying that, on April 1, when the 23% increase in the carbon tax occurs, it needs to stop.
    I know the Speaker is from Nova Scotia and that he heard the news today out of Nova Scotia that the Nova Scotia Legislature unanimously passed a motion to stop the carbon tax increase on April 1. In fact, 70% of premiers in this country are asking for the same, and 70% of Canadians are asking to axe the tax increase on April 1. Yesterday, the Liberal leader of Ontario stood in front of microphones in the Ontario legislature and called on the federal government to axe the 23% tax increase on April 1.
    That is why we are here today. One thing I get to do as the member of Parliament for Barrie—Innisfil is communicate regularly with my residents. I know many of the MPs utilize the tools that are available to communicate; in every circumstance that we deal with mailers, we ask a question.
    We ask the question so we can get a sense of how our constituents feel about certain issues that we are debating in this country. Recently, I sent out a constituency mailer. What this represents is just a small portion of the responses that I got back.
    The responses were telling. They were telling of the circumstances that my constituents are feeling right now, not only as a result of the carbon tax but also as a result of the affordability and inflation crisis and the interest rate increase crisis. These things have dramatically impacted my residents and people right across this country, and not just people, but businesses as well.
    In some of those responses, 81% of the respondents that got back to me with the mailer said that they wanted to scrap the carbon tax. It was not a trick question that I asked. It was a very simple and succinct question: “Do you support the carbon tax?” Eighty-one per cent of the residents came back and said that they do not. There were some, I acknowledge, that did support the carbon tax, and that is fine. However, what I saw is consistent with what I am seeing right across this country; this is that 70% of Canadians want the carbon tax scrapped.
    Here is what some of the residents are saying. I am their voice. I stand up here in the House of Commons as the voice of the people of Barrie—Innisfil, who have elected me since 2015.
    “We are 80 and 81 years old. We cannot afford the taxes we have”, said Lyle and Phyllis from Barrie.
    “Every month on average my carbon [tax] cost just for the gas bill is $59. At the end of the year that is $708 just for the gas bill, not to mention the cost of the groceries that have gone up. We can't save anything. Even with that little bit of my paid taxes (yes our money) I'm getting back 4 times a year, the PM acts like he is doing me a favour. It doesn't put a dent in the cost of everything going up,” said Lulu in Innisfil.
    “Just a quick note to let you know that I am OPPOSED to the upcoming April 1st carbon tax increase on gasoline. As a pensioner, I am finding it difficult to keep up with all the increases in taxes, cost of food, utilities, etc. My pension only increases...2% a year”, said Mark in Barrie. The carbon tax is going up 23% on April 1.
    “The general public cannot handle any more taxes at this time”, said Jennifer in Innisfil.
    “It's a significant contributor to inflation, which we urgently need to control”, said Alexander in Innisfil.
    “Don't believe it effectively encourages less fuel consumption”, said Todd in Lefroy.
    “They should cancel it; life is very expensive already”, said Nora in Barrie.
    That is the crux of what we are discussing here today.

  (1555)  

    As I mentioned earlier, the affordability and inflation crisis gripping our nation right now is having a real impact on people. We can add to that interest rate increases and mortgages that are coming due for renewal. Is it any wonder that there is a carbon tax revolt happening not only at the grassroots level but also among provincial premiers in this country? This is because they are on the ground. It is easy for us to sit here in the Ottawa bubble and not recognize the impact this is having on people in our country.
    I am sure Liberal, NDP, Bloc and other members are hearing from their constituents, as I am, about the affordability factor. All we are asking is to give people a break and not increase the carbon tax by 23% on April 1. This is not the end of it. The tax will be going up four times more by 2035. It is going to increase to four times more than what it is right now. People cannot afford it now; how are they going to afford it then?
    Of course, the argument from the government is that it is revenue-neutral. If one does not take it from people in the first place, then one never has to give it back. The fact is, according to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, people are not getting back what they are paying into the carbon tax.
    Liberals can argue all they want as they stand up here. As the former environment minister famously said one time, as she was sitting in a bar in Newfoundland, if they say things loud enough and long enough, people will totally believe what they say. It is effectively propaganda.
    However, the facts are in front of us, through the Parliamentary Budget Officer. In the province where I am from, Ontario, in 2023-24, the cost of the tax will be $1,363. The rebate will be $885, which means that people are spending more on the carbon tax than what they are getting in the rebate, according to the Parliamentary Budget Officer. In other provinces, such as Newfoundland and Labrador, it is $1,281. People are getting back $934. In Alberta, people will pay $2,466 in carbon tax, in terms of the fiscal and economic gross cost; the rebate they are getting back is $1,756.
    If we cannot believe the Parliamentary Budget Officer and the data he provides to parliamentarians, then why do we even have him? I would suggest that the Parliamentary Budget Officer's data, and the anecdotal data I am hearing from residents in my riding, say exactly this: They cannot afford this carbon tax. They cannot afford the increase.
    One thing I want to focus on for a minute is the cost of business. We have said many times in this place that, when one taxes the wholesalers, producers and transporters, the tax ends up at the consumer through grocery stores. The stores, by the way, are paying to heat and cool their buildings. It is ultimately the end consumer who ends up paying for it. On the supply side, business ends up paying for it.
    Yesterday, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business produced a document that it posted on its website. It reaffirmed to its members that the “carbon tax is increasing by a staggering 23% on April 1st! That means the cost of a litre of gasoline will include 17.6 cents of carbon tax!” One thing it discussed is the fact that the federal government had promised to return the carbon tax to business. Across this country, there is currently $2.5 billion owed in rebates. In the province of Ontario, $2,637 is owed to each business as a result of this rebate, yet the government continues to hold on to that money. These businesses are still being impacted on the supply side with the increase in the costs I mentioned earlier.
    I am here today on behalf of the people I represent in Barrie—Innisfil, who I know are going through a massive affordability issue. These are seniors, single moms and people trying to keep a roof over their heads, not just because of the carbon tax but because of all factors. All we are asking for today on behalf of not just the people I represent in Barrie—Innisfil but all Canadians, in this carbon tax revolt that is currently ongoing, is to axe the tax and try to help make life more affordable for Canadians.

  (1600)  

    Mr. Speaker, it is good to see the member. I appreciated his speech.
    He mentioned the PBO and asked why the PBO exists if it gets it wrong. Perhaps he could speak to the difference between fiscal and economic impacts. When I read the fiscal impacts, and that means cash transfers in and cash transfers out, they are in fact positive for 80% of Canadian households.
    Then when I read the economic impacts, those people who are lining up at food banks are still made better off, even on the PBO's analysis. I would disagree with the PBO here, and I am not the only one; the IMF and others disagree as well. Could the member speak to that?
    Mr. Speaker, I have a tough time justifying in my own mind how anybody lining up at a food bank is better off than they are providing for their own family.
    In Barrie, in the month of December, there was a 150% increase in food bank usage. We are seeing two million people a year utilizing food banks in this country. The expectation this year is that there is going to be another million, on top of the two million, who are going to be utilizing food banks.
    Is that the kind of country we want? Do we want people lining up at food banks, or do we want them producing and trying to provide a secure future for their families?
    I deal with the PBO. I deal with statistics as well, just as the hon. member does. However, I also deal with those residents and businesses in my riding, which are telling me that the cost of living is way too much because of a combination of a lot of factors. Not the least of these is the increase in the carbon tax on April 1, as well as future increases that are planned, which the government said would not happen. The Liberals said they would not raise it to a certain level, and in fact they are.
    The cost of everything is going up, including the cost of necessities of life. Given the affordability crisis that exists today, I happen to think it is unfair.

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to the speech by my Conservative colleague, and he made no mention of what the Parliamentary Budget Officer clearly said. According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the price on pollution puts money back in the pockets of middle‑class families and the least fortunate. What is more, 80% of the people who pay the tax receive more in compensation than they pay in carbon tax. The tax does not apply in all provinces.
    Obviously, the Conservative Party is not saying that. If my colleague is so concerned about the cost of living for people, why did he and his party vote against removing the GST from heating costs? Why did he vote against dental care for seniors? Why did he vote against a school nutrition program for children?
    Mr. Speaker, the cost of living is currently on the rise across the country because the NDP has supported so many of the Liberal government's policies.

[English]

    I do not think he heard what I was saying before, which is that there are families in this country who are paying more in the carbon tax than what they are getting back. According to the data from the Parliamentary Budget Officer, in Ontario, the province that I live in, the fiscal and economic net impact on a family is $1,820. I have no reason to not believe the Parliamentary Budget Officer; he is an independent officer of Parliament whose job is to assess this data and give us the information according to the data he assesses. This means the family is paying more than it is getting back in the carbon tax.
    The fact is that there are premiers in this country who are now calling on the government to stop the carbon tax, to axe the tax on April 1. They are listening to their constituents, as I am doing, and 81% of my constituents have told me that they do not want this carbon tax to occur. They certainly do not want to pay for future increases that are going to happen under the Liberal government's plan.

  (1605)  

    Mr. Speaker, it is always an honour to rise in this place, and in particular for such an important conversation, because we are in a cost of living crisis and the Liberal-NDP government could not care less. I can guarantee that the most common thing every MP in the chamber hears when they are back in their riding is that the cost of living is out of control. From groceries to gas and home heating, and everything in between, it has all become unaffordable for everyone.
    What is the solution in the minds of the costly coalition? It is to ram through a 23% carbon tax hike on April 1. How out of touch can someone be? Nobody I have talked to has said, "You know what might help? What if we sent more money to Ottawa?” Nobody believes they are better off under the carbon tax, and this is why we are witnessing a carbon tax revolt. The Parliamentary Budget Officer has been crystal clear: Canadians are losing hundreds of dollars each year, which will turn into thousands of dollars if we do not stop the planned quadrupling of the carbon tax.
     Across this country, thousands of ordinary people are going to rallies to axe the tax. Young families, seniors, veterans, small business owners and new Canadians are all showing up en masse to add their voices to the growing chorus of discontent. They cannot afford to live with a decent quality of life anymore, never mind actually get ahead, and their Liberal and NDP MPs have turned their back on them. People will no longer sit in silence. They are tired of being told to shut up and just take it. They refuse to be lectured to by the Prime Minister because they dare to oppose his carbon tax.
    The good news is that they are not alone. Two-thirds of Canadians oppose the 23% carbon tax hike, and it is no wonder people are mad. The Prime Minister and his NDP coalition partners sneer at people who drive long distances to go to work or to pick up their groceries. They ignore the legitimate concerns of seniors who can no longer afford to heat their home on the coldest of nights, and from their ivory tower they disparage anyone who points out the obvious: the carbon tax plan is a tax plan, not an environment plan.
    My Liberal colleagues who do not believe me can look at the Order Paper question where their Minister of Environment admitted they do not even measure the annual amount of emissions directly reduced by their carbon tax. Even he admits they do not know whether the carbon tax is reducing emissions, so why are we paying for it?
    The ridiculousness does not end there. The same minister went to a conference of municipal leaders and proclaimed Canada does not need any more new roads or highways, and while it took a couple days to clean up the environment minister's mess, the damage was done. The people living in communities like Carman, Sanford, Brunkild and Sperling heard the message loud and clear that the Liberal government does not think that Highway 3 should be twinned, for example.
     Municipal leaders immediately started calling me, furious with the new Liberal plan to stop building roads in this country. What should really worry the Liberals is that, given their track record, nobody was actually surprised by such an out-of-touch and ridiculous announcement. Let us never forget that the Prime Minister scoffs at farmers who use propane or natural gas to dry their grain or heat their livestock barns. In fact, he pulled out all the stops to gut Bill C-234, making the bill about $900 million worse in the eyes of farms.
    What is sad is that I do not think the Prime Minister even loses a wink of sleep over how his carbon tax is punishing farm families like those that live in places like Altona, Rathwell, Roland, Elm Creek and Oakville. These farmers are paying thousands of dollars in carbon taxes to stop their grain from sprouting or spoiling in the bin. When grocery prices are at record highs, who thinks it is a bright idea to make it that much more expensive to grow and produce the food we all eat?
    My constituents will also never forget when the Prime Minister gave a carbon tax carve-out to 3% of Canadian households and left the other 97% out in the cold. People living in places like Winkler, Morden, Portage and Plum Coulee did not get the carve-out on their home heating. They too were ignored.

  (1610)  

    It was not until the Atlantic Liberal caucus was on the brink of a full-out revolt that the Prime Minister thought he could placate it by giving a temporary reprieve on the carbon tax to those who use home heating oil. While he may have stopped the insurgency within his own Liberal caucus, he reminded Canadians how politically calculating and motivated he can be when pushed into a corner. Atlantic Canadians are not the fools he took them for. They saw right through his hope of buying their vote before hiking their taxes again after the next election.
    We only have to look at the words of the Liberal Minister of Rural Economic Development to see why some people got a carve-out and others did not. It was because the good people living in communities like Morris, Rosenfeld, Starbuck and Mariapolis do not vote Liberal. The sad reality is that the Prime Minister cares only about the people who vote for him rather than about doing what is right for all Canadians.
    Now, on the verge of April 1, seven out of 10 premiers have publicly called upon the Prime Minister to cancel his 23% carbon tax hike. I do not recall the last time that seven premiers were openly opposed to a federal government policy. In my province of Manitoba, the NDP premier is not really saying much about the carbon tax hike. He said he has had private conversations with the Prime Minister on the matter, but it is telling that an NDP premier will not publicly defend the carbon tax hike. Who knows? Maybe he will see the writing on the wall and talk to our constituents, and he might even join the coalition of the common sense.
    Among the seven premiers who oppose the 23% carbon tax hike, one just happens to be the Liberal premier of Newfoundland and Labrador. That Liberal premier did something rather brave, which was to stand up to the Prime Minister. It was not easy for the premier to go against the grain of his own party, and for doing so, the Prime Minister accused him of being a short-sighted thinker, but unlike most of the Liberal MPs from Newfoundland and Labrador, this Liberal stood up for the people he represents.
    Before the Liberal MP for Avalon was placed in the witness protection program, he agreed with our Conservative caucus on the carbon tax and went so far as to call for a leadership review of the Prime Minister. In response to his comments, I called for every Canadian to have a review of the Prime Minister's leadership. It is called an election. It is time. Obviously the Prime Minister wants the carbon tax election, so let us have it. It would seem wrong not to mention what the Liberal member for Avalon summed up when he said, “People are thinking maybe it’s time for a change. I tell everybody—every leader, every party has a best-before date. Our best-before date is here.” Conservatives could not agree more.
    The reason people are opposing the carbon tax hike is that they have no more nickels and dimes to give. Close to 50% of families are $200 away from declaring insolvency. Look at the skyrocketing number of people visiting food banks to get a clear picture of what is going on in our country right now. Every day, I and, I assume, all of my colleagues get emails from constituents who are struggling to get by. Just last week I received a letter from a senior who cannot afford to put gas in her car just to get to her doctor's appointments. She cannot afford to buy fruits and vegetables, and due to high food prices, she now does the bulk of her grocery shopping at Do