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Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre visits Saint John on June 26, 2023. Image: Brad Perry

Conservative leader launches ‘Axe the Tax’ tour in Atlantic Canada

By Brad Perry Jun 27, 2023 | 5:00 AM

The federal Conservative leader says consumers cannot afford more carbon tax increases.

Pierre Poilievre is touring our region ahead of another carbon tax increase on Canada Day.

The leader launched what he is calling his “Axe the Tax” tour in Saint John on Monday.

Poilievre says Atlantic Canada will be impacted more than other parts of the country.

“Atlantic Canadians are more likely to live in rural communities with longer distances to travel and larger spaces to heat,” Poilievre said in an interview ahead of a meet and greet with party supporters.

The latest carbon tax increase, which takes effect on Saturday, will add another three cents or so to a litre of fuel.

On top of that, the federal government’s new Clean Fuel Regulations also come into effect on Saturday.

While the exact impact remains unknown, New Brunswick’s energy utility has said the increase for that province will likely be in the range of eight cents per litre.

Poilievre said the carbon tax will not only drive up the price of fuel and home heating oil but will also lead to higher prices at the grocery store.

“When you tax the fuel of the farmer who makes the food and the trucker who ships the food, you tax the people who buy the food,” he said.

Federal officials have long argued that most households will receive more than they pay through the carbon pollution pricing system, with low- and middle-income households benefitting the most.

If his party were in power today, Poilievre said he would eliminate the carbon tax and fast-track green projects to lower the cost of carbon-free energy.

That includes small modular reactors being proposed in New Brunswick, Saskatchewan and Alberta, hydroelectric dams in Quebec, and tidal offshore power.

“These are the kinds of common-sense ideas that will lower the cost of carbon-free energy rather than raising the cost of traditional energy that Canadians still need,” said Poilievre.


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