Liberals and Bloc Québécois Block Poilievre’s Motion, Singh Wants to Make Oil & Gas Companies to Pay for Heating

In a parliamentary vote on Monday, the Liberals and the Bloc Québécois joined forces to defeat a motion brought forward by Conservative Party Leader Pierre Poilievre. 

The motion sought to extend a carbon tax exemption to all forms of home heating, instead of limiting exemptions to just heating oil. The non-binding motion sparked a heated debate, with Poilievre labeling the exemption as divisive and accusing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of engaging in regional favoritism.

Statistics Canada data from 2021 revealed that only a mere 3% of Canadian households relied on home heating oil, with the majority of them located in the Atlantic region.

Trudeau defended the exemption’s regional focus, arguing that heating oil is considerably costlier than natural gas. He also emphasized the importance of assisting those in the Atlantic provinces in replacing their oil-based heating systems with more eco-friendly alternatives such as electric heat pumps.

The New Democratic Party (NDP) supported Poilievre’s motion, albeit reluctantly, as NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh expressed reservations about aligning with the Conservatives but criticized the Liberals’ divisive approach. 

Related: Wilkinson Calls Moe’s Move Irresponsible, But NDP Says It Will Back Conservative Motion on Federal Carbon Tax

Singh proposed removing the Goods and Services Tax (GST) from home heating and utilizing revenue generated from a proposed windfall tax on oil and gas companies to help Canadians transition to heat pumps.

But this may also prove to be contentious as the industry targeted by the proposed windfall tax is concentrated in Alberta.

At a meeting of Canada’s premiers in Halifax, concerns were raised regarding the fairness of the carbon tax. Some premiers, including Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston, went so far as to advocate for the complete elimination of the tax. 

Related: The Food Professor Says Carbon Tax’s Inflation Impact Four Times Higher Than Initially Reported

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