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Results: 1 - 15 of 75
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, the challenges facing Canadians on affordability are extremely important. That is why the government has acted to, for example, double the GST tax rebate to provide relief for Canadians who are struggling with inflation, which is a global concern.
With respect to the price on pollution, the hon. member knows full well that the rebates that are provided to the vast majority of families in this country are more than they actually pay. I would suggest to my colleague, who comes from the same province as me, British Columbia, that the price on pollution in British Columbia is a British Columbia-made price on pollution. It was implemented long before the federal system, because British Columbia was a leader in fighting climate change.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I would suggest to the hon. member that if he has a problem with the fact that British Columbia does not rebate the money back, he should have a conversation with Premier Horgan. At the end of the day, the rebate system that is in place wherever the federal backstop is in place provides more money back to people than they actually pay. The vast majority of Canadian households receive more money back.
With respect to his point about not reducing emissions, I suggest he look at some of the academic studies, including one from Duke University, which show that it actually does reduce carbon emissions.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I would say that certainly the issues of affordability are extremely important to every member in this House and to all Canadians. That is why the government has acted to address affordability issues.
With respect to some of the statements regarding the price on pollution, I suggest that the hon. member do a bit more homework. There are 45-plus countries around the world that have implemented a price on pollution. Virtually every academic study tells us that it is the most effective and efficient way to reduce emissions. In Canada, emissions dropped by 9% in the last reported study, so what she is saying in the House is simply not true.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, certainly the issue of affordability for Canadians is one that concerns every member of the House. This government has acted to ensure that we are addressing the affordability issue.
With respect to the price on pollution, if we asked 100 economists, 99 will tell us that it is the most efficient way to reduce emissions and incent innovation. It is a market-based approach. Market-based mechanisms are something the Conservative Party used to believe in and, certainly as recently as 10 months ago, every member on that side of the House campaigned on putting into place a price on pollution.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I think Canadians expect their leaders of all political stripes to be able to walk and chew gum at the same time. We certainly have to address affordability pressures while we concurrently continue to address the existential threat that is climate change.
We need to take into account the cost of inaction. A report released yesterday said that the cost of not acting would be up to $25 billion per year by 2025 and $100 billion by 2050, with 500,000 jobs lost. Taking action on climate change is about addressing affordability for Canadians, particularly for younger Canadians.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, the government is certainly taking action to address affordability by, for example, doubling the GST tax credit.
With regard to the price on pollution, the hon. member knows where the federal system is in place, and I would tell her that it is not in place in British Columbia. Rebates are issued quarterly, and most Canadian families get a direct rebate and will continue to get a direct rebate that is more than what they pay.
Let us be very clear. If we want to ensure affordability on an ongoing basis with respect to climate change, we need to ensure that we have a robust climate plan to ensure that we are dealing with the cost of the future. That is something that, for over six months, the Leader of the Opposition has refused to talk about. Where is his climate plan?
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, as a bit of history, British Columbia was the proud implementer of the first carbon price in Canada. It was implemented by a Conservative premier in British Columbia. British Columbia continues to have its own approach to carbon pricing because it knows it is the most efficient way to address pricing going forward.
I would note it is pretty perplexing that every member of the opposition—
Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I note that this is a bit perplexing given that every member of the opposition sitting in the House campaigned on a platform in their last campaign, less than a year ago, on the basis of implementing a price on pollution. Were they telling the truth to citizens then or are they telling the truth now?
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, as I have said, Canada is focused very much on two elements of this. The first is addressing the affordability challenges facing Canadians. That is something that is critically important for all government members on this side of the House. My colleague, the Minister of Finance, went through a number of initiatives that are under way to try to address the affordability issue for Canadians.
We are also working internationally to address the energy security crisis by increasing production of oil and gas alongside our American counterparts, our Brazilian counterparts and others to ensure that we are actually stabilizing global energy markets and bringing prices down.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague is certainly correct that affordability is a critically important concern for Canadians. That is why the Deputy Prime Minister, in a speech last week, talked through the $9 billion in support that we are providing on that basis.
We are also working to help stabilize global energy prices through increasing production of oil and gas alongside our partners in the United States, Brazil and other countries, to ensure that we are concurrently addressing the energy crisis that exists in a manner that will ensure affordability for Canadians.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, certainly affordability challenges that are facing Canadians today are significant. It is incumbent on the government to take steps to ensure we are addressing that issue. As the hon. member knows, the Minister of Finance discussed last week the investments we are making to address the affordability challenges faced by Canadians of modest incomes.
We will continue to look at how we can actually work to ensure affordability going forward. Concurrently, we are working to address the energy security challenge, increasing the amount of oil and gas we are producing in this country to stabilize the global energy crisis, and allow it to be reduced over time, to get away from Vladimir Putin, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the impacts on energy prices.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, we are, of course, doing the right thing. That means working to address the supply constraints that have evolved since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Canada has committed to increasing its production of oil and gas by 300,000 barrels by the end of the year. We are working in partnership with our friends in the United States, Brazil and a number of other countries to stabilize global energy prices and to ensure that we are actually addressing affordability on a go-forward basis.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the same question as yesterday.
We certainly recognize the current impact that the invasion of Ukraine by Russia is having on global energy prices around the world. That is something that is of concern to all countries, all democratic countries. It is something that we are working actively on with our partners in the United States and in Europe to address. We have announced that we will be increasing oil and gas production by 300,000 barrels a day by the end of the year, alongside our American friends who are doing likewise. We are working to stabilize energy prices.
Here at home, we are working to ensure affordability for Canadians on an ongoing basis.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, from day one, this government has put affordability at the forefront. The opposition voted against middle-class tax cuts. They voted against the day care program to ensure affordability for Canadians. They have voted against affordability measures since 2015 and they continue to do so.
Here we are working on practical solutions to address the energy crisis that is facing the world. We are working to ensure that we are increasing our production, working with our partners around the world to address this issue, to stabilize energy prices and to ensure affordability for Canadians going forward.
View Jonathan Wilkinson Profile
Lib. (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I understand the important role that energy workers play in this country. I have spent much of my time, since being appointed to this post, in Calgary working with the energy sector.
I would actually suggest to my colleagues across the way that they perhaps meet with some of the energy sector workers to understand that they are focused, very much, on ensuring that we are doing what we need to do to address energy security issues, to address affordability issues and, yes, to fight climate change.
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